Updated: April 15, 2018 10:11:28 am
PRACHI PATHAK (38) is more of a ‘bike-person’ at heart. She feels claustrophobic in the close confines of her car and gives it a ditch while she zooms off on her Platina, setting on a solo expedition to a new destination. “I have promised myself to do this at least once a month,” she said.
Pathak associates travelling solo as a confidence-building and hassle-free experience. “When you travel solo, you do not have take anyone else’s responsibility except yours. You decide where you want go to and budget it accordingly. You emphasise on the good and learn how to deal with the bad. Travelling alone also teaches whom to confide in and who not to trust,” added Pathak, who runs a consulting agency on health and sanitation.
Like her, women travellers in India are increasingly preferring to travel by themselves on a holiday, stated a study by travel website Cleartrip. The study has analysed the booking trends and budgetary expenditure on travels undertaken by women over the past three years.
The study showed that 75 per cent of bookings made by women during this period were for solo travel. Increasing income levels, proliferation of smart devices and social media exposure have contributed to this change, it said.
At 21 per cent, Maharashtra has contributed to the highest share of women travellers going solo in India. Delhi follows at 17 per cent and Karnataka at 14 per cent, the study added.
Balu Ramachandran, head of air and distribution, Cleartrip, said: “With more women becoming financially independent and their income rising, the concept of solo travel is gaining attraction. International travel has become affordable and accessible for Indians, prompting a large number of women to travel on their own.”
The study suggested that along with tier-I cities, including Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai, women from tier-II cities, such as Ahmedabad, Indore, Jaipur and Patna, are emerging as “decision makers” when it comes to traveling solo. Women travellers between the age groups of 25 to 40 from tier-II cities are searching for travel related information online, the study added.
“Overall connectivity has drastically improved and Internet penetration is higher than ever. The proliferation of smart devices and greater social media exposure is allowing more women to discover new destinations,” Balu said.
For international destinations, Dubai, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, London, Kathmandu, Colombo, Denpasar, Sharjah and New York are largely preferred by women. Whereas Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Chennai, Kolkata and Pune and leisure destinations such as Goa, Kochi, Jaipur, Guwahati, Vizag and Thiruvananthapuram were the top domestic destinations visited by women in 2017.
Swati Kale, general manager of Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation, said: “Increased awareness about tourists spots and local events has contributed to this. Women are exploring different type of experiences. To cite a few, while some prefer an experiential stay in a village, many look forward to adventure trips.”
“Since the past one year, we have seen growth in the number of women travellers in the age group of 35 to 45 years, who are interested in solo trips. Our travel packages to Dubai and Russia have seen a significant numbers of solo women travellers. Along with budgeted travel, they are equally keen on leisure trips,” said Pinakin Morawala, spokesperson for IRCTC.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines
- The Indian Express website has been rated GREEN for its credibility and trustworthiness by Newsguard, a global service that rates news sources for their journalistic standards.