What travel agents should offer to solo travelers

Basic things a travel agent should offer to a solo traveler

Our latest solo travel eBook explores the untapped potential of the solo travel market – a sector that makes up 18% of all global bookings. But attracting solo travelers to your agency is only half the battle. Knowing exactly what solo travelers want and need is an essential next step. Here we offer practical advice on exactly what to give your solo traveler clients to ensure they book with you again and again.

group of solo travelers

Traveling solo, but not alone

Loneliness is one of the biggest concerns for solo travelers, but going solo doesn’t have to mean going it alone. If you’ve got clients thinking about trying solo travel, why not suggest an escorted group tour

Escorted tours offer the opportunity to travel solo within a group of like-minded individuals, usually with the use of an expert guide. Your client will still retain their independence, but won’t have to worry about eating meals alone or organizing their own transport. 

Book group excursions and day-trips

If escorted tours don’t hit the mark, think about offering day trips or excursions on which your client can meet new people. Bedsonline's partner Urban Adventures, for example, offers great city tours that hit many of the main sights and attractions with the use of expert local guides. On these trips, your clients will get a better understanding of a destination, gather insider knowledge from locals, and might well meet fellow travelers they can swap tips and socialize with. 

solo traveler jumping on a bed

Hotels vs hostels

If you’re booking accommodation for a solo traveler, think about what suits them and their situation best. If they’re concerned about getting lonely and are keen to meet fellow travelers, you could book them into a hostel where communal dining and living spaces offer a chance to make friends. Alternatively, seek out hotels that make an effort to help their guests connect through complimentary happy hours and meet-ups

If your client is a solo female traveler, it might pay to find a hotel or hostel that has all-female dorms or women-only floors, such as London’s Dukes Hotel or some of the Generator Hostels around Europe. These properties offer safe spaces specifically for women to ensure your client feels as comfortable as possible while traveling alone.

Book their transfers

It can be incredibly daunting arriving in a new destination and having to hop on the local bus or train to reach your hotel – especially when traveling alone. That’s why including transfers in your offering for solo travelers is essential. Book them a shared transfer or private taxi in advance and ensure someone will be at the airport with their name on a board on arrival and it will ensure their trip gets off to a perfect start. 

solo traveler looking at a map

Offer tips and tricks for their trip

Your role as an expert advisor doesn’t have to end once the trip is booked. Without a partner or friend to turn to with questions about their trip, solo travelers will need your service throughout their entire journey. Add unique value to your offering as an expert travel advisor by giving out useful materials or tips to your clients before they hit the ground. 

Consider sending your client top tips on solo traveler safety, or provide them with advice on using the public transport networks in their destination in advance so they are armed with the right information to hit the ground running. 

For those going completely alone, without an escorted tour, offer a list of recommended solo-friendly restaurants – such as places with bar dining or communal tables – so they can dine in confidence without feeling lonely.

solo traveler - and - kid cheering with a plastered arm

Offer a travel insurance

Finally, remind them that travel insurance is essential, and be sure they understand the type of insurance they need. With many solo travelers taking extended trips – the average length is 19 days, so a good portion is traveling for a month or longer – they might want to consider ‘backpacker insurances’. If they are a frequent traveler – many solo travelers take three or more trips per year – recommend they get multi-trip insurance to save on costs. 

In conclusion...

Ultimately, solo travelers have specific needs and in order to serve them better, you’ve got to keep up with expectations. Employ some of the advice we’ve offered in this blog and you’ll be well on your way to attracting and keeping the loyal solo traveler market. 

Everything travel advisors need to know about solo travel

Sources
Traveler personas for OTAs; Travelport
Solo travel statistics and data; Klook
Solo travel statistics; Solo Traveler
 

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