No matter how many times you've seen the sun set, it's always better from the beach on Kauai. The stars are starrier in Sydney and tap water tastes sweeter in Evian. As the saying goes: location, location, location.
That's why a one-nighter with the stranger on holiday is a lot sexier than any tryst you'd have back home. Call it the thrill of the new or the out-of-towner glow, but whatever the explanation, a simple change in scenery can snap people out of their crackling dry spell and morph them into human catnip.
You can bank on the fact that you'll grow exponentially more irresistible the farther you travel from home. But here are a few extra tips to boost your chances of a foreign affair.
Go Somewhere You Look Exotic. Obviously your looks won't change drastically on the road, but depending on where you go, the same face that gets ignored in your local bar can be considered exotica. "Foreigners are very appealing, especially in places with a more homogenous population the white guy with the blonde hair gets noticed in Korea and even if you're awkward, you're going to get approached," says John Pick*, a New York Citybased travel writer. It eliminates the hard part of getting lucky, he says.
Show a Little Attitude. Diane Mapes, author of How to Date and a relationships columnist for the Seattle Post Intelligencer thinks that people are at their most seductive on the road. "When you're on vacation you have a certain aura about you you're excited, you're up for fun and open to trying new things. Plus there's no one around to judge you for, say, making out with that cute guy with the eye patch you met on the beach."
Jonathan Corbett, owner of Project Manhattan, where he trains aspiring New York City pickup artists, agrees: "Her friends will never find out that she's 'misbehaved,' so she can ignore the voice in her head that usually tells her, 'Don't sleep with random guys!'"
Corbett advises potential pickup artists (his clients are mostly men) not to limit themselves to bars and nightclubs on vacation: "While nightlife is always a great way to meet women, don't neglect all the opportunities to talk to and meet women during the day the hotel lobby, restaurants, the beach, shopping trips. Remember also that your time on vacation is limited, so don't be shy!"
Reinvent Yourself. It's freeing to be a stranger in a strange land. It's like getting a do-over; you can step outside yourself and be whomever you want. For one night in Paris, you're not a corporate lawyer you're a concert pianist turned milliner. Pick says, "It reduces the stuff that might be important back in your real world, like your socioeconomic status. You're more likely meet people you wouldn't normally talk to." The only baggage you bring is the kind that's holding your clothes.
But be wary of people who take their freedom too far. "I get hit on a lot," reports Jennifer Kelton, frequent flyer and founder of BadOnlineDates.com, "especially by married men. I have so many CEOs' business cards, and almost all of them were [from men] wearing a wedding band. It's really quite sad." For the record, Kelton says, she's never taken any of them up on their offer.
Hang On to Your Holiday Glow. It's usually wise to leave your out-of-town tryst where you found it. But there's no reason to abandon your newfound allure in some empty hotel room. The key is to maintain that I'm-on-vacation mindset. Quit worrying so much about the long term, take chances and reprioritize your goals so that "fun" is back up in your top five. And hey, if that doesn't work, you can always fake a foreign accent.
*not his real name