GetYourGuide study finds travel experiences beat memories of first kiss; introduces ‘Originals by GetYourGuide’ to create unique travel memories

  • Study uses artificial intelligence to visualize the profound emotional impact of travel experiences
  • For 42% of participants, travel experiences were one of the three most emotionally intense memories
  • Introducing ‘Originals by GetYourGuide’, a handcrafted collection of truly unique experiences to make memories


GetYourGuide, the leading global online travel booking platform, and emotion analytics specialist Tawny explored the influence of formative life events in relation to the emotional intensity of memories. The research used artificial intelligence to measure and visualize the expression of emotions related to memories of special travel experiences, the first kiss, or the victory of the favorite sports team, for example. The study concludes that these memories all trigger similarly strong, positive emotions, while memories of professional successes or formative career steps trigger significantly lower emotional reactions.

For almost half of all participants (47%), special travel memories triggered even more positive emotions than remembering their first kiss. For 42% of the respondents, travel experiences were one of the three most emotionally intense memories. And for 14%, travel experiences even evoked more positive emotions than holding their first born child for the first time.

“The first kiss and special travel experience share some psychological similarities. Both are multi-sensory, provoke exhilaration and critically represent a new experience that you have not had before,” says Anja Göritz, psychologist and full professor for Behavioral Health Technology at Augsburg University. “Putting yourself into situations for novel, emotionally rich experiences can benefit your emotional well-being. These types of experiences are also the ones that are likely to form long-term ‘treasured’ memories.”

For the study, 298 participants from Germany, the United States and the United Kingdom followed a guided audio meditation that prompted them to vividly imagine key moments of their lives. As they recalled those memories, their faces were scanned by facial recognition software. Using artificial intelligence, the software analyzed emotional facial micro reactions to rank different memories and describe how negative or positive a reaction was.


‘Originals by GetYourGuide’ pushes the boundaries for memorable travel experiences

Following the vision to unlock the most unforgettable travel experiences, GetYourGuide today introduces a new collection of exclusive, one-of-a-kind experiences: ‘Originals by GetYourGuide’. These experiences enable travelers to discover the world in the most profound, immersive and memorable way and are not bookable anywhere else. Every experience is crafted in close collaboration with local partners to create a memory for a lifetime.  

A standout experience co-created by GetYourGuide and the Vatican Museums in 2022 inspired ‘Originals by GetYourGuide’. With 'Turning the Lights On at the Vatican Museums', travelers could access one of the most famous museums in the world as the only visitors allowed to unlock the doors to the Sistine Chapel, and flood the holy halls with light together with the master key keeper Gianni Crea. Interest peaked in more than 15,000 people applying for a coveted seat on one of the seven tours in 2022, video assets of the experience were viewed more than 16 million times in total. The tour can now be booked regularly via the GetYourGuide platform.

Starting this March, a whole series of ‘Originals by GetYourGuide’ will gradually become available on the platform. One highlight available now is an exclusive guided experience through the Museum of Modern Art in New York, where travelers can enjoy an intimate guided tour without the crowds one hour before the regular opening hours together with a professional art historian. 

Other highlights of the new collection include experiencing Barcelona’s La Sagrada Família in a private twist to explore Gaudí's masterpiece on one's own, accompanied by the live soundtrack of the famous local organist Juan de la Rubia, a sailing trip with world-class French sailor Tanguy Le Turquais aboard his transatlantic solo racing yacht while training for the Vendée Globe. Throughout the year, GetYourGuide will add dozens more unforgettable experiences with the world's greatest attractions to the collection.


Johannes Reck, CEO and founder of GetYourGuide, says: “For years, GetYourGuide has helped travelers create lasting memories on every trip they take, and we’re thrilled to now unlock even more truly unique experiences with the launch of ‘Originals by GetYourGuide’, created in close collaboration with our brilliant local partners.”

‘Make Memories’ campaign launches March 6 across Europe and the US

The launch of ‘Originals by GetYourGuide’ is accompanied by a large-scale media campaign 'Make Memories'. It highlights the importance of meaningful moments and lasting memories - and focuses on the impact of experiences on life. 

With the launch, the company has also redesigned its homepage to make search and discovery even more intuitive and easier. In doing so, Originals by GetYourGuide are prominently featured and labeled, guiding travelers to the most immersive memorable experiences.


About GetYourGuide

GetYourGuide is the leading global online marketplace for unforgettable travel experiences. Travelers use GetYourGuide to discover and book the best and most unique activities in any destination — including guided tours by local experts, culinary excursions, cooking and craft classes, skip-the-line tickets, as well as exclusive bucket-list experiences.

GetYourGuide kicks off 2023 on the back of a strong and successful 2022 with triple digit growth numbers in all core markets compared to pre-pandemic. The company now offers more than 75,000 activities from over 16,000 experience creators. Since its launch in 2009, travelers from over 150 countries have booked more than 80 millions tours, activities and attraction tickets through GetYourGuide.

Powered by a global team of more than 700 travel and tech experts, the company is headquartered in Berlin, Germany, and has 17 local offices around the world (including in the UK and USA). To date, GetYourGuide has raised over $883M in funding and has received investment from 35 firms including SoftBank, Spark Capital, Battery, KKR, and Temasek.

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“People have the opportunity to be the architects of the emotionally impactful moments of their life. I strongly believe in the power of travel experiences to shape memories. With GetYourGuide we want to hand consumers the key to unlock those feelings of wonder and awe and turn them into lasting memories.”

Press Team
Johannes Reck
CEO and founder of GetYourGuide
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