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The New Truth About Women Travelers?

By Valerie Rains
updated September 29, 2021
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Courtesy the State Library and Archives of Florida

A recent survey by Travel Guard North America, a travel insurance provider, aimed to shine a light on how women are traveling today. The company polled travel agents across the continent to find out what kinds of trips women were booking, with whom they were traveling, and their motivations for choosing the types of trips they did. The results, in my opinion, were surprising: Poll respondents said that 91% of women traveling with other women chose friends as their companions (as opposed to 8% who traveled with relatives), and that women over 45 make up the majority of small-group women-only travelers—with the proportions dropping dramatically with each decade of age. (Personally, I wouldn't be surprised if it was simply the use of travel agents that was dropping with each decade of age, but it could be a little bit of both.)

In terms of what these travelers aimed to do on their trips, the agents pegged shopping and sightseeing as the most popular activities at 27%, then history, culture, and education as the focus of 17% of the itineraries, beach retreats as the goal for 16%, adventure travel for 15%, and cruising as the trip of choice for 13% of women travelers.

Of course, this travel insurance company had their own motive for producing the survey—to find out how many women travelers were also purchasing trip insurance. Their conclusion: A whopping 94% of women travelers bought insurance for their trips, according to the travel agents polled.

So let's hear it from the ladies who read Budget Travel: Does this survey reflect how you plan and book trips with your friends (or, in the case of the odd 8%, with your female relatives)? We want to know!

I'll start: I've been doing girls-only trips since my 20s, mostly with my mother, my sister, or both—although I have mixed in a few more traditional girlfriend getaways, like the RV adventure I dragged two college friends along for this summer. And I didn't use a travel agent—or buy trip insurance—for any of them. Does that make me the odd woman out?

Tell us your trip habits in the comments!


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