Women in South-East Asia are embracing solo travel and women's only trips, pointing to perhaps a greater need to cater to this niche market.

A STUDY of over 600 women from Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia has revealed that women in South-East Asia are embracing independent travel. This was according to the findings of TripAdvisor’s Women and the World Travel Survey. The study by the world’s largest travel site has found that one in three (36%) travel alone for leisure, with 43% planning at least two solo trips this year.

Additionally four in five women (80%) in South-East Asia cited the ability to do whatever they want without worrying about others as the main reason for travelling without friends or family. When it comes to the destinations for solo travel, four in five (81%) are planning to venture within Asia, followed by exploring their home country (36%) and Europe (36%).

Of those who travelled alone, three in four (75%) women reported that the experience has changed them, with feeling more confident; learning something about themselves; and becoming more aware of their surroundings, as the top three changes they experienced.

The survey also found that two in five women (41%) go on leisure trips with other women, with more than half (53%) planning at least 2 trips this year. The majority of them mentioned the ability to enjoy the same activities, followed by bonding with other women as the motivating factors for travelling with other women. Their favourite activities when travelling with other women are shopping (76%), experiencing local cuisine (67%) and indulging in beauty and wellness activities (54%).

*The TripAdvisor Women and the World Travel Survey was conducted with 636 female travellers from Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia from 26 February to 5 March 2014.