Travel is the most important aspect of retirement for more than half (55%) of people, according to new research.

The most popular countries are Italy, Portugal, Switzerland, Malta and Austria.

Travelling was seen to be more enjoyable for them than spending time with friends and family (16%), the poll for small group tours operator Jules Verne found.

Head or marketing Prini Patel said: “Retirement is the perfect time to enjoy travel, with the constraints of busy working lives a thing of the past.

“Key planning earlier in life – including around health, money and pensions – are top of the list of things people who are already retired wish they had done differently.

“For those thinking about retirement, regardless of age, careful consideration of these will ensure you are in a good place and able to fulfil your wishes, whether it to be through travel, new hobbies or volunteer work.”