If you are a woman looking to solo travel, you are not alone. Solo female travel is trending. According to Solo Traveler World–a company that extensively compiles and analyzes travel trends from a wide variety of sources–solo female travel is one of the most rapidly growing sectors of the travel industry.
Statistics from travel companies across the board are consistently showing solo female travel to be a flourishing market. In 2014, Booking.com released its first ever Solo Travel Report, which conducted independent research spanning five countries. The Report found that “72 percent of American women have embraced solo travel,” and that “American women ranked first in frequent solo travel”, meaning they are the most likely to take three trips or more in a given year. Sixty-five percent of U.S. women polled had vacationed without a partner.
Solo travel has been even more popular than before the pandemic. Data from Booking.com shows that while only 14 percent of travelers were going solo pre-pandemic, by mid-2021 the number had almost doubled to 23 percent. Google trend data in the past three years, since November 2019, has also shown a steep rise in people searching for the terms “solo travel” and “solo female travel”
"Solo Female Travel" Google Trend Data | Nov. 2019-2022
If you are a woman with a thirst for adventure, insatiable wanderlust or global curiosity, you have most likely been tempted to join the bandwagon and travel solo.
But what about your safety? Let’s face it, being a woman is still not ideal in many countries and cultures. So where are the safest places to go as a solo female traveler? We did some research to find out.
Safe Places to Explore as a Solo Female Traveler
A study published by NBC and conducted by Bounce–a travel company specializing in baggage storage–analyzed key criteria to rank the safest travel destinations for women to solo travel. Included in their criteria were the percentage of women who have experienced violence, the number of female victims of international homicide (per 100,000 females), overall safety of the country, percentage of women who feel safe walking alone at night, attitudes toward violence against women, laws on domestic violence and the global gender pay gap score. Utilizing statistics from these areas, they scored destinations on a scale of 10–10 being the safest for solo female travelers.
The top three destinations included the Republic of Ireland (with a score of 7.88), Austria (7.70) and Norway (7.45). So what does each of the top-three destinations have to offer?
Bounce's Scores for Best Destinations to Travel as a Solo Female
Top Three Safest Places to Travel as a Solo Female
Here's some destination highlights from the top-three safest places to visit as a solo female traveler.
#1 Safest Destination for Solo Female Travel: Ireland
The “Emerald Isle” is a great choice for solo female travelers. It is easy to navigate, English-speaking and stunningly beautiful. The natural backdrop, with jagged seaside cliffs, sweeping green vistas and rolling hills will make you feel as if you’ve been dropped into a painting. There are an abundance of charming villages to wander, stunningly-gorgeous hikes to take, castles to explore and fascinating historical landmarks to discover. Visit one of the world’s largest puffin colonies in Northern Island along the wind-swept coastline, trace the path of the Vikings and the Celts across the land, drink a cold beer at one of Dublin’s oldest pubs while listening to traditional Irish ballads, dance a jig with some boisterous locals, or kiss the Blarney Stone. Do it all while in the number one ranked safest destinations for solo female travelers.
Second Safest Place to Visit as a Solo Female Traveler: Austria
There’s two incredible sides to Austria: the man-made, and nature-made. In terms of the man-made, Austria boasts some of the world’s finest art, music and architecture. Over centuries, immense wealth flowed to Austria, collecting in lavish palaces, galleries, museums and concert halls across imperial Vienna, many of which still remain today. Tour Baroque churches, explore ornate palaces, meander charming village markets (especially during Christmastime), visit Imperial horse stables, and gawk at fine art. In terms of nature, Austria’s Alps are tough to beat. Zip along a mountain railway, frolic through flower-filled meadows, hike across glaciers, ski the snow-covered peaks or raft the rapids. Austria’s outdoor activities are endless.
Third Safest Place to Vacation as a Solo Female Traveler: Norway
Norway has some of the most breathtaking natural landscapes on the planet with massive lakes, jagged peaks, rolling greens, Arctic glaciers and the unforgettable Northern Lights. These all serve as backdrops for some of Europe’s prettiest villages. If you enjoy wildlife, Norway has an abundance of it: you can watch migrating whales, see wild reindeer, delight in puffin colonies and, high in the Arctic, see polar bears and walruses. Active adventure seekers can mountain bike, ski, dogsled, hike, white-water raft, snowmobile and climb. Or, when you need a break from the action, explore Norway’s more cosmopolitan offerings. Norway is known for both honoring traditional architecture, while welcoming more modern innovation. Stunning Scandinavian Contemporary architecture–with its geometric shapes, artful lines and industrial flair– captures the imagination, while more classic constructions, like Oslo’s colorful row homes, immerse you in Norwegian charm.
Is It Really Safe to Travel as a Solo Woman?
While statistics can help solo female travelers make informed decisions about the safest destinations to visit, there are always risks when traveling anywhere, solo or otherwise. Travel inherently involves risk. You can lose your passport, have your bag stolen, get pickpocketed, fall ill to a stomach bug, break a bone skiing, get in a fender-bender or catch Covid. When traveling solo, all these mishaps can become even more painful as you try to navigate the hurdles alone in a foreign country. Having an advocate on your side is particularly important as a solo female traveler.
Best Travel Insurance for Solo Female Travelers
ARREVA Advantage is designed to give travelers peace of mind in any circumstance, anywhere. ARREVA brought together three leading companies in the travel insurance industry, each with their own specialties. Our company joined REVA air evacuation, a leader in medical and emergency air evacuation services and repatriation, with Star Indemnity, which provides comprehensive medical coverage to travelers abroad, and World Travel Protection, which specializes in travel concierge, trip coordination, translation services and baggage support.
Combined, the three arms of protection under ARREVA Advantage provide one of the most comprehensive travel insurance products on the market, especially for solo female travelers. Our members can rest easy knowing they have a 24/7 advocate on their side should they come across any hurdle. We offer monthly and annual plans for both the short-term and long-term traveler. You can read more about our comprehensive benefits here.
Whether you stumble into a medical issue, have an emergency, suffer a trip delay, require a translator, or just need some general travel assistance, ARREVA Advantage is standing by to help as you explore the globe. Call us today to learn more about how we protect and advocate for you abroad.
Some More Interesting Solo Travel Statistics
Women continue to travel solo more than men (2020) “47% of travelers with Overseas Adventure Travel are registered as ‘solo'. An astounding 85% of these solo travelers are women.”
Searches for “Solo Women Travel” drastically surged in 2019. “Google searches for ‘solo women travel’ increased by 32% in 2017 and 59% in 2018. The search grew to a 230% increase in 2019.
Pinterest saw massive growth in interest for solo female travel. “Pinterest has also reported a 350% increase in women pinning articles in ‘solo female travel’.”
According to Phocuswire, solo travel as a global trend continues to grow. (2019) “Making up around 18% of global bookings, solo travel is becoming ever more popular and has increased by 7% in the last year alone. Solo travelers typically take longer trips than the other traveler personas at approximately 19 days on average.”
According to Overseas Adventure Travel (O.A.T), Women continue to travel solo more than men (2020) “47% of travelers with Overseas Adventure Travel are registered as ‘solo'. An astounding 85% of these solo travelers are women.”
Roughly one in four people say they will travel solo in the next year (2018) — and that’s on the rise, according to a survey of 2,300 people by marketing firm MMGY Global.
Reasons People Solo Travel
The Solo Traveler Reader Survey polled 2,359 people in 2021. The survey included 26 questions. The respondents were primarily women, American, and over 55 years of age. Below are the results from a number of the questions pertaining to solo travel.
Solo female travel is absolutely trending, and there are safe ways to do it. If you're considering taking a trip solo, we encourage you to protect yourself with the best possible travel insurance. You need a 24/7 advocate on your side to help you as you hit travel hurdles (which are usually inevitable in some form). ARREVA Advantage can be your advocate wherever you go. Reach out to us today to find out how we can support you as you embrace your dream of seeing the world.