A Study on the Relationship between Subjective Well-Being and Accompanying Activities in Urban Leisure Experiences

In assessing the quality of urban policies, it is becoming more important to pay attention to the subjective satisfaction and happiness of residents living in a city. Encouraging leisure activities is one of the effective policies for urban policymakers to improve the life satisfaction of residents. Leisure is often not a complete activity on its own. After attending a concert, watching a play, or enjoying a sporting event, people often discuss those activities with other participants over a meal at a restaurant or a drink at a bar. It has been argued that the quality of the overall leisure experience can be improved by the conversation accompanying the primary activity. However, there has not been much research on the engagement in accompanying activities, their effects on the overall satisfaction with leisure experience, and the factors that stimulate them, and empirical findings are very limited. This study uses data from a survey in three global cities (Tokyo, New York, and London; N = 500 for each city) to provide basic information on the ancillary activities accompanying primary leisure activities. As a result, it was found that about half of the participants in leisure activities engage in some kind of accompanying activity and that eating and drinking are particularly popular. Through exploratory regression analyses, it was shown that, depending on the cities and activities, the engagement in accompanying activities may lead to an increase in well-being, that the presence of companions and improvements in perceived transport accessibility might stimulate accompanying activities. Finally, considering the result and the limitations of this study, we make suggestions for future research.

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