For a few years now, my daughter and I have been traveling
together, but with her classes, boyfriend, etc., I feel this might
be coming to an end. My travel agent says it can be just about as
expensive to travel by myself. How does that figure? Can you help
Thanks for your time.
Love to travel,
The bane of the solo traveler is the
single supplement, a fee he or she pays to cover the unoccupied half of
his or her accommodations. Sometimes this fee can be an additional 200
According to the Travel Association of America (TIA), single travelers
account for 21.8 percent of all travelers. Luckily, the travel industry
has taken note of the high demand for solo travel, and penalties are being
eliminated on many cruse lines and tours. Solo travel is becoming more
affordable than ever.
Here are some ways to minimize the single supplement, or get around the
extra cost of traveling alone:
- Plan your trip with a travel agent who
is familiar with issues faced by single travelers. The American
Society of Travel Agents (ASTA) can help you find an agency near
you that specializes in singles travel. If there isn't an agency in
your area, ASTA offers a travel
request service on its site to help you find an agent who can
- Work with a tour packager that has the
power to find you the best deals. Companies like Saga
Holidays, which caters to the 50-plus travel market, offers
no-supplement tours on some packages.
- Join a singles travel club. There is
power in numbers, and singles tour packagers can often leverage
no-supplement rates from hotels and cruise lines. Connecting:
Solo Travel Network, for example, is a club with solo-friendly
holiday options without expensive single supplement charges. Members
can also share reader reports, tips, etc., and for free, can post
travel companion ads.
- Look into "matching
programs." Some cruise lines like Holland America offer a
"single share" program, which can help you find a roommate
so you can cruise at the lower double-occupancy rate. Understand that
you do not have a choice in roommates, and you risk being stuck in a
small cabin with someone who you are not comfortable with. If no one
can be found, you get the double-occupancy cabin at half-price.
- Travel during off-peak season. During
the winter months, resorts and cruise lines have excess capacity, and
often forgo the single supplement penalty.
I hope I've been helpful. Happy travels!
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