%VIRTUAL-ArticleSidebar-Travel advice% Booking a holiday from your desk at work is dangerous, say researchers, who found that not only did people spend more when they booked their holiday at work but they were also less likely to be satisfied with their choice.
The researchers from Rice University and Iowa State University used data from a hotel reservations site which listed the quality of hotel chosen by the travellers, and the rating they gave their stay.
They cross-checked this against whether the booking was made during business hours or in the evening.
Ajay Kalra, the Herbert S. Autrey Professor of Marketing at Rice's Jones Graduate School of Business told the Daily Mail that the findings seemed to indicate that people spent more when they were at work because they were tired, making the idea of a holiday seemed more appealing. People felt they deserved something extra-special to make up for how hard they were working.
He told the Washington Post that the disappointment was likely to be a result of the fact that when people pay more for their break they have higher expectations, which means it's easier for them to be disappointed than those who opt for something cheap and cheerful and don't expect too much.
The study also found that people who booked early were happier with their hotel than those who booked at the last minute. They concluded that because there was a longer gap between paying for the break and going away, people were less likely to remember the 'pain of paying' while they were on holiday.
The findings are particularly worrying given that a survey by Hotels.com last year found that 26 per cent of people had booked a holiday from their desk. People are also most likely to sneak in a quick holiday purchase between 3pm and 5pm - when they are most likely to be tired.
It seems that the sensible answer is to take your time in the evening, check out our guideto getting a good deal, and research the options that best suit you. If recent research is right, you could also consider booking a trip to Bali - the cheapest destination for Brits - thereby increasing your chances of booking a cheap holiday that you end up enjoying.