When will Single Travellers receive a fair deal?
The market caters for single home-owners, single parents and single dating, but apart from a few operators offering mundane package tours, solo travellers are ignored.
I cannot be alone in finding holidays that appeal, the penalty for my interest being that I must pay for two. Me and myself.
I refer in particular to `flight specials` (with pp in small print) and to hotels charging double room rates, for single occupancy.
“To awaken quite alone in a strange town is one of the pleasantest sensations in the world,” writes Freya Stark, who frequently travelled alone in areas where few Europeans had left a footprint.
I agree. And perhaps the greatest pleasure of single travel is to be able to plan a day, without having to juggle with what a companion wants to see/do. (There be nothing worse – as an African proverb says, than a `bad` travel companion).
It`s not selfish. Neither is it strange. Any genuine solitary traveller will confirm that travelling alone is the best way to meet local people and to explore the culture that you have come from far to enjoy.
The Victorian women travel writers Isabella Bird, Mary Kingsley, and Marianne North, all travelled alone, each of them proclaiming that companions were a nuisance..
And in those days, there were no sites such as www.journeywoman.com to provide helpful advice for independent feet.
Perhaps `men` have a similar website. My appeal is for all single travellers.
c.Christine OsborneImage: Woman traveller IndonesiaSource: www.copix.co.uk

About Travels with My Hat

Australian photojournalist and author. Used London as a base for nearly forty years while freelancing in the Middle East, Arabian peninsular, Africa and South Asia. Have written and illustrated more than a dozen books and travel guides. Operates a well regarded religious images stock photo library: www.worldreligions.co.uk. Live in Leura in the Blue Mountains outside Sydney.
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  1. Cate says:

    Great post, I notice the Americas hit you with single subsidies but when I was in Asia I didn;t get stung so much. I'm in Panama and have basically had to forget about staying and seeing things because I'll have to end up paying 50% more. What the..? Some operators would rather go without than cut their prices for just one willing single traveller I think.

  2. ChristineO says:

    I`ve been a solo traveller all my life so I feel for you. More agents may be offering holidays for singles, but they`re group tours to well visited places. Nothing unusual, like Panama. By chance, I heard a programme featuring Freya Stark last evening who said: `a companion immediately isolates you`. BBC iplayerGReat Lives Series 19.Safe travels.

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