EASIER THAN YOU THOUGHT
Going It Alone
In a slow economy, you can avoid a single supplement—and still get your own double room.
Travel when others don't
Discounts for singles abound in the less busy off-season—summer in Mexico and the Caribbean, winter in Alaska—when tours and resorts have difficulty filling all their spaces. Globus, for example, has no supplement on 11 of its tours in Europe this winter, saving people as much as $550 per trip (globusjourneys.com). At the Club Med Turkoise resort in the Turks and Caicos, there was no supplement for solo travelers who booked a double room this past June (clubmed.us).
The off-season is also a good time to save on the supplement on cruise ships, although the companies often do not advertise the deals. For example, Blecker says that some cruise lines, such as Royal Caribbean, charge less for the supplement on what they call "repositioning cruises," when companies move their ships from their summer cruising waters to their winter waters (from the North Atlantic to the Caribbean in the fall), or vice versa. "These kinds of specials are out there with the mainstream brands, but they're not so easy to find," she notes. "You should have a travel agent look on your behalf."
Try a European operator
Tour companies based in Europe are also less likely to charge a supplement, mainly because the fee is not an accepted part of the culture there. "Europeans are not as couple-oriented when it comes to travel," says Lane. "Plus, they're more cost-conscious and simply would not agree to pay the supplement, so tour operators have less choice. The market drives the cost." In addition, European companies often offer accommodations in family-run pensions and older hotels, which have rooms of varying sizes—including single rooms. For instance, Solo's Holidays, a British operator that specializes in organizing trips for singles, provides most of its customers with their own room at no additional charge (solosholidays.co.uk).
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