Travel doesn’t always involve two parents, a fact that family travel tours don’t always acknowledge. But Intrepid Travel, which has included family tours in its offerings for a decade, is leading the way with the debut of dedicated solo-parent family tours.
This is clearly good news for single parents who want to share a slightly more challenging adventure than they’d be willing to take on as the sole adult in their travel group. But it’s also a great opportunity for two-parent households. Because when it comes to travel, families don’t always have the same schedules or even the same interests. There are all sorts of parents traveling solo with kids: Parents who don’t both have the same vacation schedule (or the same number of available vacation days) but still want to go great places with kids, multi-children household parents who want the chance to spend one-on-one time with just one kid, and families with children of different ages and interests.
Solo Parent Adventures: Solo But Not Alone
“How families travel is changing,” says Intrepid’s Regional Director Leigh Barnes. “We wanted to create an option for parents going solo but not alone on a trip with their kids. We chose ‘challenge and change’ destinations, places that are accessible but off the beaten path, and are challenging but also really family friendly.” Intrepid’s initial destinations for these solo-parent trips include Costa Rica, Northern India, Egypt, Morocco, Thailand, and Vietnam.
The pricing of these solo-parent family trips puts it within reach of more single-budget households as well. There’s no single supplement for parents, the base price is comparatively low, and there’s a 10 percent discount for each kid.
The Future of Solo Parent Travel
For now, Intrepid is the only company that’s offering single-parent family trips, but Barnes expects that to change; “two in 10 kids in Canada are raised by single parents, and 20 percent of children in the U.S. live in single-parent households.” Intrepid is leading the industry change, but Barnes guesses that other tour companies will begin to offer solo-parent family trips in years to come.
So what will these Intrepid trips be like when they launch later this year? Here’s my guess: Because Intrepid tends to attract adventurous travelers looking for the support of small groups and the access that you get with a local guide, it seems like a fair bet you’ll end up traveling with other like-minded families, parents and kids who are curious about the world and ready to explore. And that sounds like a pretty good way to travel solo but not alone with your kids.
More from SmarterTravel:
- How to Enjoy (and Not Just Survive) a Family Road Trip
- Parenting Lessons from the Back Seat
- 13 Tips That Take (Some of) the Stress Out of Flying with Kids