This is my latest for Forbes: Why Does that $7.6 Trillion Travel Industry Ignore Single Parents? I would LOVE to hear your experiences traveling as a single mom. Do hotels, airlines, resorts, cruises, car rental agencies, tours, etc., accommodate you? Which companies are you loyal to as a single mom or dad traveler? What makes traveling as a single parent (or grandparent, aunt, uncle or godparent) really challenging? Share in the comments!
As a single mom, Kayt Sukel traveled with her kid. A lot. The freelance science writer and partner at TravelSavvyMom and her son, now 8, have visited more than 25 countries — and a whole lot of resorts, hotels, airlines and tours.
Sukel is often frustrated by the lack of options for single parents.
“A lot of family destinations are great at providing childcare options now — a kid’s club or camp on site,” says Sukel, who lives in Houston and continues to travel extensively with her new husband and stepdaughter. “But they aren’t as good as providing singles options. I don’t want to go to the dance club, nor am I interested in a couples massage by myself. Let me know that I have options, as a single, beyond heading back to my room and reading a book.”
As a single mom myself, I feel her pain — but it doesn’t stop at just lack of resort activities for uncoupled people. Start the list with scourge of the unmarried traveler: The singles supplement, which can nearly double the price of travel for traveling on cruises and organized tours. Then there is the social aspect. I’m happy to hang out with two-parent families on vacation, but there are so many single-parent families in the world. In fact, more than a third of children in the United States grow up in single-parent homes, not to mention those who have a parent who is deployed or working nonstop, or grandparents traveling alone with grandkids. It boggles the mind that the $7.6 trillion global tourism industry (according to the World Travel & Tourism Council) does not market to me and my tens of millions of fellow single parents … Click to Forbes for the rest of the post.