Solo female travel is on the rise, and we’re here for it. According to a British Airways global study, almost 50% of women have taken a solo trip in the past, and 75% of women are planning to take one in the next few years.
It’s not just studies that highlight this; hotel owners I've spoken to have seen an increase in solo female bookings, I’ve watched as more and more of my female friends jet off alone, and the evidence of these trips is all over social media.
Instagram is full of solo female travellers doing their thing, and there are countless Facebook groups set up for the community; The Solo Female Traveler Network boasts 250,000+ worldwide members, and has seen a near 40% increase in the last six months. Much of the chat in these online groups is about support, encouragement and lifting each other up; how to find authentic experiences, sharing adventures and how to meet people along the way.
As the numbers increase, companies too are embracing the solo female traveller. Since 2016, Intrepid Travel has seen an average 16% increase in solo female travellers booking tours year-on-year, and as a result has set up female-only trips and actively employed more female guides. For those concerned about undertaking solo travel for the first time, a group trip is a great stepping stone.
Why do women want to travel alone? The perks may seem obvious: freedom to go where you want, when you want and how you want. But doesn’t it get boring? And what about safety?
Ahead, we spoke to eight women who travel alone on the regular to get their views on all this, and more. Click through to hear how long they’ve been doing it solo, where they’ve been, what motivates and inspires them, how to deal with loneliness while on the road – and the one overwhelming piece of advice they have for those of you considering taking up solo travel too.