The Rise of the Female Traveler

by Tiffany Paul

There’s no question that more and more women are making their way into the corporate scene, and we mean business! With more wealth at our disposal and more responsibility in the corporate world, it’s no surprise that women today are traveling more than ever before.  Women represent the most important and fastest growing segment of the travel market, in terms of both leisure and business travel.  With somewhere around 67 million participants, the potential of the women’s market is over $19 trillion annually.

But it's not just women in business that are fueling this explosive growth in the travel industry. We're seeing this trend across women of all ages, occupations and income brackets. In fact, nowadays, the average adventurer traveler is not a male, but a 47-year-old female. Estimates are that women will spend nearly $125 billion on travel this year. One trend that is influencing this uptick in travel is that women today are getting married and having kids at a later age, which frees up her time and money for travel. In fact, one-third of women today are 27 or older, not married and without children. The Travel Industry Association Reports an estimated 32 million single American women who have traveled at least once in the past year, and about three in ten who travel five or more times a year. 

However, the influence of the female traveler goes beyond simply physical travel. Statistics show that women make 80% of all travel decisions, regardless of who they travel with, who pays for the trip, or where they go. And thanks to the internet, she is more prepared than ever when making decisions regarding travel. Women are not only leveraging the web, but also books, travel agencies and friends when making decisions in regards to her travel destination and itinerary. When choosing a destination, studies report women today are more often seeking something new or unusual for her trip, whereas men opt for the more tried and true getaway.

It's clear; women today have a strong impact on the world of travel. There's no doubt her dollar and decision making power will continue to influence travel for years to come. It is essential that travel related businesses and websites, hotels and airports keep the female traveler at the forefront of their minds when making decisions on how to go-to-market. This trend is here to stay.