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Why Do Women Travel for Pleasure More than Men?

Updated May 16, 2024
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Traveling can be a fun and relaxing experience and a great way to unwind and break away from the daily grind. And while some enjoy traveling with groups of friends or family, there are many people who prefer traveling alone. Interestingly, numerous statistics suggest that women dominate leisure travel, including solo trips. Women also make an estimated 80% of all travel decisions.

Research reveals that women are significantly more likely to travel recreationally than men. In the United States, 63% of leisure travel is undertaken by women, compared to just 37% by men. Worldwide statistics are similar. Not surprisingly, women are the focus of most travel ads, which frequently depict female travelers having a wonderful time in a multitude of far-flung destinations. And while many women enjoy traveling with friends and family, women make up the vast majority of solo travelers. According to one industry statistic, an astounding 85% of solo travelers are women.

In recent decades, traveling has become more accessible as many women earn more money and have fewer domestic constraints than in previous generations. And despite safety concerns, traveling solo allows you to control your own itinerary and provides an opportunity for introspection and self-discovery.

Wanderlust and women:

  • Egeria, a woman who climbed Mount Sinai in 381 AD, is credited with producing the world’s first travel memoir.

  • Mary Seacole made history in 1857 when she published Wonderful Adventures of Mrs. Seacole in Many Lands. Describing her experiences as a traveling nurse, her autobiography was one of the first published by a mixed-race woman.
  • Journalist Nellie Bly wrote of her fast-paced adventures traveling the globe in Around the World in Seventy-Two Days in 1890.

  • Three-quarters of participants on adventure, nature, and cultural trips are women.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
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