Marketing to the Solo Female Traveller

Let’s chat about a travel trend that’s reshaping the industry: the rise of the solo female traveller.

Just last year, companies focusing on women-only travel have seen a 230% increase in bookings. Not only that, a whopping 64% of all travellers worldwide are women, with 84% of these being solo travellers! Let that sink in.

Now, you might chuckle that this means men could be a bit more attached and needy (let’s face it, most of us are… apart from Pete!), but the real takeaway is the growing eagerness among women to explore the world on their own terms. This is set to result in a $125 billion spent by women on travel this year alone.

So, what’s the market looking like?

25% of all Americans are daydreaming about solo adventures, and flight searches for solo trips are through the roof compared to last year.

A survey from Solo Traveler World reveals that the majority are in it for the freedom to see the world without waiting on anyone else. They’re all about spontaneity, freedom, and yes, personal growth. But it’s not just about the why; it’s also the how—most are going at it independently, while a significant number are open to group travels too. This highlights that some are happy to meet other solo female travellers to make new friends.

In terms of spend, we’ve got everything from budget-conscious to luxury lovers. And when it comes to destinations, Europe’s the top pick, with the US and Southeast Asia not far behind.

For those who hate stats, ignore the information below, but for those who do, I have listed some key stats that will help inform your strategies. I advise you take a look however as all this info is gold if you’re crafting tours and experiences for this growing demographic.

Sorry, bunch of boring stats incoming…

  • 25% of all Americans (83 million people) are considering taking a solo trip.
  • Searches for single-traveller flights are 36% higher for 2023 travel than in 2022.
  • 84% of solo travellers are women.
  • 59% of female solo travellers would travel alone again in the next 12 months.
  • 42% increase in solo traveller bookings over the last two years.
  • The large majority of solo female travellers were aged between 45-65+

But the question is, why and how do they want to travel?

A recent study by Solo Traveller World found out both the why, the how, what they are willing to spend and the where…

The Why

  • 63% – I want to see the world and I don’t want to wait for others
  • 57% – I want to do what I want when I want
  • 46% – I like the feeling of freedom and independence
  • 42% – I want to meet new people
  • 33% – Personal growth
  • 40% – I have different interests than my friends
  • 12% – My partner does not want to travel as much as I do (get rid of that partner!)

The How

  • 69% – Independent
  • 60% – Group
  • 23% – Urban
  • 41% – Adventure
  • 38% – Budget
  • 20% – Luxury

The Spend (per week)

  • 13% – $1,000 or less
  • 34% – $1,000 to $2,000
  • 29% – $2,000 to $3,000
  • 15% – $3,000 to $4,000
  • 9% – Over $4,000

The Where

  • 30% – Europe
  • 9% – United States
  • 6% – Southeast Asia

How to attract the solo female traveller

First things first, understand that these travellers cherish their autonomy. They’re looking to explore on their terms, free from the constraints of a pre-set schedule. Your job? Provide the flexibility they crave. Think custom itineraries and a buffet of activities to choose from.

Think about creating inspirational and/or thought provoking content, targeting their specific needs and wants. Here are some examples…

Empowerment: Ads and content that feature inspiring testimonials from women who have travelled solo with your company, focusing on empowerment, growth, and independence.

Safety and Security: Emphasise safety measures in your marketing materials. Women travelling alone often prioritise safety, so highlighting features like 24/7 customer support, vetted accommodations, and safe transportation options can be appealing.

Community Building: Create opportunities for solo travellers to connect with each other. This can be through Facebook groups (highly recommend) or in-person meetups. Encouraging a sense of community can make the female solo travel more at ease.

Personalised Travel Experiences: Offer customizable tour options that cater to the unique interests of solo female travellers. This could include themed tours, such as wellness retreats, cultural immersions, or adventure sports, allowing them to tailor their experiences to their preferences.

Authenticity and Passion: Share your brand story to showcase authenticity and passion for what you do. This resonates well with solo female travellers looking for genuine experiences. This is vitally important if you are a female led business.

Share Stories from Past Customers: Feature any positive testimonials from female customers on your website and/or on review sites. While it is always helpful for women to read reviews about companies, it is even more important that they can read specifically from other women about what they experienced. Video testimonials are huge here. Check out this customer story page from France of a Lifetime.

If you are a male led business, step aside

When it comes to marketing, particularly in the realm of solo female travel, having a female lead the campaigns can offer a unique and authentic perspective that resonates deeply with the target audience. Women are more likely to understand the nuanced concerns and aspirations of other women, especially regarding empowerment and safety.

Women can craft messages that speak genuinely to the experiences of solo female travellers, creating a sense of trust and understanding. They can also better identify with the emotions and motivations behind a woman’s decision to travel alone, whether it’s for personal growth, adventure, or the freedom to explore without constraints.

Moreover, when a brand’s marketing is led by a woman, it often feels more relatable to female consumers. It’s about seeing one’s reflections in the brand’s story, which adds an invaluable layer of credibility and sincerity to the message.

In conclusion, tapping into the solo female traveller market requires a thoughtful and nuanced approach. By focusing on empowerment, safety, flexibility, community, and inclusivity, you can create marketing strategies that not only resonate with this demographic but also empower them to explore the world on their own terms.

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