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According to recently revealed research the generation of single fifty somethings are increasingly heading to far off shores to find a mate. It seems the sunshine has their hearts all a flutter with one in ten admitting they had already had a holiday fling.

In 1989 Shirley Valentine threw off her marital chains and let herself enjoy the ultimate holiday romance with the unforgettable restaurant owner, Costas. Few of us can forget the scene where she sits looking out to see with her solo table in his restaurant. It might have been nearly twenty five years ago but the story is still inspiring travellers of today looking for love.

It seems that holiday flings are not just for the youth of today clubbing and hanging out in the local bars, the young at heart are at it too. Of the over fifties quizzed, one in five claimed that they would be more likely now than when they were younger to consider a holiday fling. Some of those who answered the survey also acknowledged that their trip was planned with that in mind completely.

While there are lots of stories of happy endings for middle aged travellers finding love abroad, the Daily Mail also points out that there are some cautionary tales too. British woman Mary Cotnoir thought she had found love with a Gambian waiter who was half her age only to discover that his interest in her was purely to secure a British visa. The message here - don't let your heart rule your head.

Also revealed in the poll, the fact that 61 per cent of those enjoying a holiday fling would keep it from their friends for reasons including the fact they knew the relationship had no future. This may be true but one in four of the respondents claimed to know someone who had met their life partners while on holiday so there is certainly hope for those with an open mind. Unlike Shirley Valentine though the majority of holiday flings for the older age group in question were with fellow British holiday makers and just 15 per cent were with locals.

So where do the over fifties on the hunt for love think their best chances lie. The results of the survey showed that, on the whole, they didn't feel they had to travel too far. Italy, Spain, Greece and France were popular choices with some also citing the Caribbean sunshine as a winner in the romance stakes.

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