Traveling used to be a lot harder than we remember. Not only did you have to be good at reading a map, but you had to have the ability to overcome language and cultural barriers. It didn’t really make sense to take on a daunting trip on your own without friends and family in tow.
Companies and services like travel agencies, social media, the internet and travel rewards programs like InCruises have made our world smaller and more accessible. The fact that we can use Google in almost any part of the world can help even the most directionally challenged of us get from point A to point B and the ability to translate anything on the way has changed the way we travel for good.
So, is it true that solo travel is on an upward trend?
By all accounts, yes.
Whether it’s because we are not getting married as quickly, or we are too impatient to be in a long term relationship that involves travel, solo travel has been more popular than ever before. Air BnB and hotel bookings are having to adjust for the large influx of solo rooms on demand causing a large shift in the economy of travel. Even cruise operators have had to change their deals in order to cater to the evergrowing solo traveler wave; launching things like studio rooms designed especially for single travelers.
Why are we traveling alone?
According to Hostelworld, the number of solo bookings made by Britons has increased 60 percent over the past three years, the highest rise globally. Since 2017, almost one in eight 18-24 year old people said they had gone on a vacation by themselves. Singles holiday operator “Just You” says the age of their clientele ranges from 21 to 90, but averages out at the 55+ age group.
If we are not actually traveling, we are certainly dreaming about it. Solo travel searches on Pinterest have been growing over the last few years, increasing to over 600 over that period of time. It seems like showing your solo adventures is not a trend that is going to end soon.
What kind of people travel alone?
If you are a solo traveler, you are traveling alone for one of two reasons: there is no companion to go with, or you are someone who actively chooses not to brings friends alone on your travels. As obvious as that sounds, the amount of people that remain single is also higher than it’s ever been.
A large contributor to the rise of solo travel is the ability to work remotely. Blogging, freelancing, and marketing positions are becoming more and more popular because they are postulated as a way to work as you travel. Likewise, companies are offering more positions that allow for remote work as a perk.
So, is solo travel all it’s cracked up to be? It depends on the person traveling. It can be one of the most freeing experiences of your life or one of the loneliest. Regardless, it is an experience everyone should have at least once in their life. Solo travel can help you understand yourself in a way that nothing else will. Whatever may be keeping you from trying it, what’s the harm in trying?