Tourism

Research shows travel is the real winner this Valentine’s day

Spending Valentine’s day binge-watching the Bridget Jones’s Diary trilogy and scoffing down chocolates on your lonesome?

Well according to new research you might be a lot better off.

A survey commissioned by adventure travel company Explore has found that many people are being held back from living their travel dreams by reluctant partners.

The survey found 42 per cent of us have experienced challenges with our partners when choosing where and how to holiday. Our biggest relationship disagreements when planning a trip is over the activities that we wish to pursue on holiday (16 per cent) and, crucially, where to travel to (13 per cent).

But more than half (59  per cent) of those refuse to let that stop them, and would consider travelling alone or have already taken a solo holiday. Whether you’re in a relationship or single this Valentine’s Day, a solo adventure may just be is the perfect gift to yourself, even if your dream destination or travel ambition isn’t shared by your partner or friends.

The study also confirmed that the trend for ‘experiences over things’ isn’t going away. More than a third of those surveyed said they would prioritise a holiday over home improvements or clothes.

The research found that 44 per cent of us would consider a holiday to achieve a life goal. The top experiences solo travellers would most like to tick off their bucket list include getting up close with wildlife on the Galapagos Islands (20 per cent), spotting penguins on an Antarctic cruise (19 per cent) and seeing the Big Five on safari in Africa (18 per cent).

So what’s stopping the rest of us? Cost is the biggest barrier cited for not taking that trip of a lifetime. And, with hefty solo supplements often applied to those travelling on their own, that’s not surprising. Explore has a policy never to charge single supplements for anyone that’s happy to share a room with someone of the same sex.

And now, with its whopping solo travel offer launching this week, there has never been a better time to travel solo – now you can have your own room at no extra cost with some massive savings more than 90 trips.

Solo travellers with Explore are in good company – a whopping 64 per cent of explorers on its small group trips are travelling solo. 60 per cent of these are women. The most popular trips for solo travellers are walking & trekking holidays, while the most popular destinations are Italy, India, Spain and Morocco.

Yet, the company has also reported an increase in solo travellers choosing off-the-beaten-track destinations such as Georgia and unusual experiences like travelling into the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone.

SEE WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

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