The Solo Traveler Reader Survey results this year were overwhelming. We received 2,915 responses to our 2020 survey. That's more than double the number we received last year. It's a huge number when it comes to surveys!
Your dedication is so appreciated.
This year our Reader Survey was presented with the support of Overseas Adventure Travel, a long-time client and supporter of solo travelers. They are the first company that we know of that dedicated a percentage of spaces on each departure to solo travelers with no supplement and a private room. O.A.T. offers free single supplements on all O.A.T. adventures and pre- and post-trip extensions, and free or low-cost single supplements on its small ship adventures. Please note, there is a limited supply of no supplement, single rooms for each departure.
We are a small team of four at Solo Traveler and we have to use our time wisely. With your input, we can.
Based on feedback over the years, we have three priorities for Solo Traveler. We aim to provide:
We try to make sure that every decision we make, every post we publish, and every project we take on serves at least one of these priorities. As always, this year's Reader Survey will help us fine tune our work in an effort to deliver what you need.
Reader Survey Results: Travel and the Coronavirus
There were some really positive statistics concerning the Coronavirus to be taken from the survey. It showed a real pent-up desire for travel.
77% of respondents are ready to travel internationally again once they don't have to quarantine at their destination. I feel the same way. Once things are stable (after this second wave that we're experiencing at the moment) and I won't have to spend up to two weeks in quarantine at my destination, I'll be very happy to travel. If my government requires me to quarantine on my return, I'm not too concerned. 48% of respondents are in agreement on this point.
The really good news is that the pandemic and its related restrictions has not had an adverse financial effect on the majority of respondents. It's had no impact for 71% of respondents and actually had a positive effect for 14%. Unfortunately, 15% have taken a financial hit due to the pandemic. As always, we'll continue to report on a range of solo travel styles, including budget travel.
Guided tours will continue to be important for many solo travelers with 53% likely to take tours post-pandemic. The number one reason for people taking tours is that “I can travel to destinations that I wouldn’t be confident to go by myself.” The second most common reason is that “I can relax and let the tour manager handle all the details.”
I happened to be on a tour when the pandemic was declared. I have to say it was nice to have the tour company take care of everything. Read Travel and COVID-19: A Missive from Morocco
How Solo Travelers Travel
The results of our reader survey also provided insight on how you travel.
When asked about their travel style, 70% of respondents indicated that they travel solo independently and 60% take tours. Clearly, many people are inclined to take tours for some trips and to go independently on others.
Adventure and nature travel beat out urban travel 45% to 25%. Likewise, budget travel was more than twice as important as luxury travel running 45% to 20%.
And when it comes to future travels, respondents suggested that they will travel more often (46%), travel more consciously and sustainably (40%) and take longer trips (25%).
43% said that they would prioritize travel in their personal budgets.
Your Kind Words about Solo Traveler
Sometimes we're helpful to you. Just as often, perhaps more often, it's members of the Solo Traveler community that deliver the information and inspiration you need. Either way, we're happy you have been helped.
Here are a few of your many kind words.
- I have travelled only in Canada since 1984, mostly solo and mainly road trips. Now that I am retired, I am looking forward to travel outside Canada and your newsletters give me the confidence and information to explore that. Thank you!
- Keep up the good work. I have truly benefited from the insiders group. (If you're unaware of the Solo Traveler Insiders, you can find more information here.)
- I appreciate the posts and the warm, human writer!
- I’m one of those people who read your weekly newsletters but has done very little solo travel, but I definitely plan to book international travel with your suggested tour groups when the pandemic is over. I thoroughly enjoy your weekly newsletters and have bookmarked 2 or 3 of the recommended tour group companies for future travel. Thank you.
- I have been traveling solo for the last 10 years, I love it. In 2015, I traveled around the world for 6 months, best trip ever and I did it all solo. Some places I met up with tour groups, other countries I did by myself. I love the freedom of solo travel and am always up for a solo road trip. I enjoy your newsletters and often get ideas from them. Thank you.
- Please continue your great coverage of opportunities for solo travel.
Oh, we will!
From all of us at Solo Traveler – Tracey, Simon, Tycko, and Janice – our heartfelt thanks for joining us on this journey.
In addition to the Reader Survey results, you can find more information, industry research, and trends here: Solo Travel Statistics and Data: 2020.