Trends and Directions in Tourism and Positive Psychology

Sebastian Filep, Jennifer Laing

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

122 Citations (Scopus)


In recent years, tourism and positive psychology has developed as a humanist-inspired study of individual flourishing in tourism. This conceptual article aims to elaborate on epistemological foundations of tourism and positive psychology research and presents an overview of current trends and future directions for this field. The rapid rise of positive psychology within and outside tourism studies is analyzed, noting similarities and tensions between positive psychology and its predecessor, humanistic psychology. We present research highlights from the emerging field in tourism, review extant literature, discuss the limitations of this approach and suggest directions for future research. Greater focus on research about eudaimonic tourist experiences is recommended, through positive psychology lenses. Suggestions are also made to further expand the traditional focus on tourist behavior to include the well-being of host communities and tourism workers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)343-354
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Travel Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • eudaimonia
  • happiness
  • hedonia
  • positive psychology
  • well-being

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Transportation
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


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