Typically, a summer holiday is an occasion for all the family to get together for a wonderful getaway somewhere hot and sunny. However, there’s a new wave of holiday’s that are taking the travel industry by storm – solo travellers. A survey conducted in August 2018 shows that in the past seven years, there’s been a staggering 150% rise in solo travel by British holidaymakers. It’s safe to say that solo travel is becoming big business for the travel industry. So, why has it become so popular and what impact is this having?
Why Solo Travel?
For travellers aged 35 to 44, the idea of travelling solo has become more appealing – particularly for those who don’t have a partner. In just a year, the number of them embarking on solo travel holidays trebled from 5% to 16%. It’s believed that people are choosing to travel alone because of the freedom that it brings, along with the fact that smartphones with navigation are making the experience seem less daunting.
Going on holidays by yourself has also become safe in some ways, as you can keep in regular contact with your family and friends back home. All you need is yourself, a backpack with your favourite travel accessories and a taste for adventure.
Solo Travellers In Group Holidays
There are also those people who enjoy meeting up with other solo travellers or joining groups who travel around the more undiscovered parts of the world. There are many groups that cater for various age groups, from 18-25 to 65+ groups. Meeting up with likeminded people is one of the most appealing things for solo travellers. Though there are itineraries, they’re by no means restricting, and you can opt in and out of the activities planned. Group solo trips are often more popular with female solo travellers as they feel safer.
The Impact On The Travel Industry
Many existing travel agents are expanding into the solo travel market, offering special packages for those wishing to travel to just one country or several. There have also been a number of other new companies set up to rival the bigger airlines and agencies, specialising only in solo travel. This has made for competitively priced trips, benefiting the consumer.
More and more people are booking holidays online as opposed to in a physical agency, but solo travellers like to feel looked after and reassured; spiking an interest in those visiting agents again. This is because there is a personal approach that can’t be achieved online, with the travel agent being able to make custom recommendations based on the experience the traveller is looking for.
The Most Popular Destinations
Typically, the most popular destinations include Asia, USA and Indonesia. In fact, single travellers make 50% more trips to Asia and more than twice as many to Antarctica. Many British holidaymakers prefer to go further afield than the typical European countries, giving them a stronger sense of exploration the further they’re away from home.