Boomer Gals – You’re News! You’re the New Stars of Solo Travel!

Let's Go to Italy Together!Just when you thought that every other generation and demographic was getting all of the attention, well, it’s our turn!

We are the emerging and growing demographic and we are at the front of the solo travel trend! Yep, Boomer gals, as they say somewhere, we’re kickin’ butt and takin’ names!PostcardZ from Victoria

Four years ago when I first started writing/blogging, solo travel was one of the hot emerging trends I wrote about…

Let's Go to Italy Together!Cruise lines and tour companies were beginning to take notice and just starting to rethink those hefty (and prohibitive) single supplements. You know what those are, right? It’s when you want to travel solo or have your own room and you can dinged for a small fortune and, adding insult to injury, get a “lesser than” room! (Been there, done that!)

Well, those days are coming to an end as the Boomer Generation, especially women, are stepping  up, stepping out and wanting to see the world…often on their own! Once seen as almost pitiful (like you don’t have any friends or family who will travel with you, poor thing!), now solos are welcomed and lauded. Now there are plenty of possibilities and opportunities and Boomers are ready to pack their bags and live those dreams!

I remember when I decided to take my first totally solo venture. I decided that I knew it was something I had to do so I set out to find my “courage muscle” –  a long weekend to Santa Fe, New Mexico. I flew to Albuquerque, rented a car, stayed in a B&B, enjoyed great food, took a cooking class, went to the Opera, went to museums and shopping, and drove all around the area. In other words, I did exactly what I wanted to do – all solo and I loved it! Sure, there were “moments” when I felt a bit lonely and shy but overall I was so damn proud of myself! I knew then, as I know now, that a “courage muscle” has to be flexed!

Since, I’ve traveled solo and combined it with small group tours (that I organize and lead) and sometimes meet with friends. It’s perfect. I meet my doubts and trepidations, take a deep breath and overcome one at a time. Always taking precautions for my safety and well-being, I find that my solo travels have made me a better traveler. I’m forced to engage and interact and, therefore, I grow and learn…and meet so many fabulous people!

Photo: Victoria De Maio

My “private” visit with Papa in Rome – solo but certainly not alone!

For those not quite ready to do an entirely solo trip, especially internationally, joining a small group of like minded travelers is the perfect way to be “solo” but still have the umbrella and security of the group. I did this on my first “solo” trip to Italy in ’97. I had been traveling solo domestically for business but going overseas was a new “stretch”. I was going to meet a group in Rome and flew in several days before and after the tour to explore a little on my own. It was truly a breakthrough for me as I met my apprehensions and anxieties and not only survived but have never had a regret!Let's Go to Italy Together!

It’s because I’m so familiar with the reservations many solo travelers (especially women) have, and particularly if traveling internationally, I found myself organizing small groups to Italy. (Okay, I also happen to LOVE Italy!) Suitable for couples and friends, they are also absolutely perfect for the solo traveler.

Since I’m a Boomer, my audience is pretty much Boomers as well – with groups of 12 or less, no one is lost in the shuffle or feels awkward. Instant friends after the welcome aperitivo, everyone not only enjoys and embraces the experience but they’re ready to plan the next one!

I’ve even had seasoned solo travelers as guests and they loved the experience, too.  It’s the perfect compromise between being totally on your own and still having the support and comfort of the group. No fuss, no muss, just sit back and enjoy yourself!

Photo by Victoria De Maio

Margie, a seasoned solo traveler, loved her small group experience!

Let's Go to Italy Together!So my advice to you is to revive that dream, meet those fears head on and just take that first step – even if it’s a baby step, you’ll be so gratified that you did! And I’m here to help you!

PostcardZ from VictoriaLet me know how you plan to flex your travel courage muscle in 2016! I’d love to hear from  you…and I have some tips, too…

Thinking of Going Solo? You’re Not Alone!
25 Great tips for the Solo Traveler

Solo But NOT Alone!
Going Solo–Getting Started Advice & Why a Small Group is a Perfect Solution!

Read Margie’s Blog Post About Her Solo Experience

Let’s Go to Italy Together!

Let's Go to Italy Together!

Did You Know?

How the Travel Industry is Responding to the Rise in Solo Travelers  (New York Times, 5/17/2015)

Interesting Facts & Statistics About Boomer Women:

According to: ImmersionActive (3/9/15):
“Boomer Women spend 9 of every 10 vacation dollars!”

Excerpted from: 5 Facts About Boomer Women and E-Commerce (May 2015)

“Over 30 million women 50 years and older are online. They account for 9% of all online users in the United States. And they are the fastest growing demographic.

The Internet is an everyday part of Americans over the age of 50. It’s the top source for information on topics of interest, outpacing TV and print media by a substantial margin. PREFER EMAIL!
41 percent of Facebook users are Boomers
48 percent of Twitter users are Boomers

In fact, the fastest growing demographic on Facebook is baby Boomer women.

Excerpted from: She-Conomy.com:
“Women over the age of 50 are becoming super consumers who control nearly 75% of the wealth in America.
They are the fastest growing demographic online.
Other than email, they spend more time on social media than anywhere else online with the majority of that time on Facebook.”

Excerpted from: HMT Associates:
“Marketing to Boomer Women” interview with Marti Barletta

“From ages 45 to 65, individuals experience more life transitions than at any other time in their lives. This translates to BIG opportunity for marketers and retailers to win the hearts, minds and business of PrimeTime Women, THE Boomer big spenders.”Let's Go to Italy Together!

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About PostcardZ from Victoria

Wish you were here! I love sharing my passion for travel and insights I've learned along the way. Enjoy my travel tips and inspiration with a lighthearted twist! Join me as we create a forum for sharing experiences and information! Enjoy my newly updated & edited book, "Victoria's Travel TipZ Italian Style!" with MORE great TipZ and then, let's go to Italy together!
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9 Responses to Boomer Gals – You’re News! You’re the New Stars of Solo Travel!

  1. Sandra Brooks says:

    Woohoo! Let’s hear it for strong, independent Boomer women!! You lead the pack in a wonderful, exciting way. Keep representing us as the traveler extraordinaire!

  2. Wonderful post and thanks for including me! I did have a fantastic time last spring with you in Puglia!!!

  3. Paula says:

    Yes a great post to remind us all to not be hesitant and seize the opportunity to travel when you can, and not waiting for others to join you. The scariest moments are in a country where you don’t speak their language and you are at the train or bus stations – it can actually feel a little lonely!
    Your tours are perfect in that they allow a person to travel independently within a small group! Every solo experience wether it be travel or something else, only makes you more confident to tackle the next hurdle.

    • Thank you so much, Paula, for your words of wisdom and testimonial. You’re a perfect example of a Boomer gal who steps out and lives her travel dreams and also finds a small group a rewarding experience. The perfect combo, si? Looking forward to fall in Puglia together!

  4. Love this post Victoria! I have been traveling solo since the early 80’s, driving from coast to coast and in between. I camped, yes in a tent! and stayed in hotels. I discovered White Line Fever is a real thing :-) I have taken a few solo motorcycle trips covering over 1000 miles per trip. I took to the skies finally in the early 2000’s.

    You are right, at times it can feel lonely, and I agree with you that you are kind of forced to be a bit more outgoing and out of our comfort zone. I found traveling 1 Up as we call it on a bike, that people came up to me just because of the curiosity factor. I love interacting with other travelers and locals when going solo. With social media I now feel like I am connected with friends even though I am half way across the country.

    Being able to do what I want to do, when I want to do it, for as long or short as I want to do it is awesome! There have been times I wished there was someone to share an ‘ahhh….’ moment with, but mostly it is a great way to travel. Let’s see if I still feel that way when I make my first solo trip to Italy 😉 I know that will be a bit intimidating.

    I love to hear that the travel industry is finally recognizing the Solo Traveler. I love the tours that you do and hope to join you some day. Who knows, maybe we’ll cross paths some day in CA as well! Thanks for all of your efforts!!!! <3

    • Thank you so very much, Rae! I love hearing about your fabulous solo adventures. You’ve really been building that “courage muscle” and have many more fabulous stories ahead of you. I truly hope you can join me on one of my tours, too – I absolutely know you’d LOVE it…predicting paths will most assuredly cross!
      Carry on! 😀
      V.

  5. Pingback: ♥La Dolce Vita Meets La Joie de Vivre♥ | PostcardZ from Victoria

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