This study aims to develop a cross-cultural universal framework, examining two different aspects of tourists’ experience. This paper set out the elements of hedonia (positive emotions) and eudaimonia (meaning and engagement) as tourists’ experience measurable states of tourist happiness. A proposed conceptual model considers tourists’ happiness as an antecedent of tourist behavioural intentions and overall image, moderated by situational animosity (refers to the COVID-19 pandemic in this study) across different countries (USA and China). The integrative model was tested using data generated from a convenient sample of 460 tourists from USA and 440 tourists from China visited to London. Using Structural Equation Modelling (SEM), a powerful multivariate statistical analysis technique, the results statistically confirm that tourists’ happiness influences tourist intention to revisit. Further, the findings substantiate that the COVID-19 pandemic negatively influences the relationship between tourist happiness and revisit intention. Finally, several invariance analyses were performed to examine whether the proposed model can be generalized across different samples (China and USA) and the results support factor structure equivalence (configural invariance), partial loadings equivalence (partial metric invariance) and measurement (scalar) equivalence). Based on these results, discussions and implications for destination marketers, limitations, and suggestions for future research are also provided.