What you need to know

Solo travel is more than just a niche market. Some 15% of UK adults have been on holiday on their own in the past five years and levels of future interest suggest the potential pool is as high as 26% for ‘pure solo’ holidays and 12% for ‘group-based solo travel’. The awkwardness and stigma that may once have been associated with this mode of travel have largely dissipated and solo travellers view holidaying alone not as a second best option or even as a last resort but as an affirmative lifestyle choice that even has its own distinctive advantages.

At the same time loneliness and concerns over security are major barriers to expansion and, although there are some signs of progress in sectors such as cruise, the notorious single-person room supplement issue is still the bugbear of solo travellers. Outside of the specialist groups sector the mainstream travel industry remains highly focused on the core couples/family market.

Covered in this Report

Solo holidays refer to overnight trips either in the UK or abroad of one night or more made for leisure purposes. This Report also makes a distinction between ‘pure solo’ holidays (where people go on holiday just on their own) and solo holidays where people travel on their own but join a group of people they didn't know (eg a group holiday or escorted tour).

Data on the size of the domestic market is for Great Britain rather than the United Kingdom (ie Northern Ireland is not included), sourced from VisitBritain’s GBTS (Great Britain Tourism Survey). Data for the overseas market is for the United Kingdom is sourced from the ONS IPS (International Passenger Survey).

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