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单身旅行的都是什么人

更新时间:2015-6-16 9:48:31 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

Travel Industry Responds to Rise in Solo Sojourners
单身旅行的都是什么人

Vacations have long gone hand-in-hand with company: family bonding, honeymoons, babymoons, bands of oats-sowing college backpackers. Yet today, more and more travelers are going solo — and they’re not who you might expect them to be.

度假早就不再是增进家庭感情、新婚蜜月、孕期蜜月、大学背包客的集体出游——那种总要与旅伴手牵手进行的活动了。如今,越来越多的旅行者开始选择独自出游――而且他们的身份与你所预想的很可能并不一样。

Some 24 percent of people traveled alone on their most recent overseas leisure vacation, up from 15 percent in 2013, according to the 2015 Visa Global Travel Intentions Study, which was conducted across 25 countries by Millward Brown, a market research organization. Among first-time travelers, solo travel is even more popular, jumping to 37 percent, up from 16 percent in 2013. And while the stereotypical solo traveler has traditionally been single and looking, a solo traveler these days is just as likely, if not more likely, to be married or in a committed relationship.

据维萨公司(Visa)委托市场调研机构明略行公司(Millward Brown)在25个国家开展的《2015年度全球旅行意图研究》(2015 Global Travel Intentions Study)显示,约有24%的人在最近一次出国度假时是独自成行的,较2013年时15%的比例有所上升。在首次出游的旅行者当中,单人旅行的风气甚至更盛,从2013年时的16%跃升至37%。传统观念素来认为,单人旅行者均为单身且在寻求恋情的人,然而如今的单人旅行者却有同样的几率(假使不是更高的话)是已婚人士,或者至少已经订婚。

As the numbers creep up, more travel brands are paying attention. Take Solos Holidays, one of the oldest and largest companies in Britain offering guided getaways for solo travelers. The company has been around since 1982, but a few weeks ago it introduced an American arm, Solos Vacations, that’s beginning to offer escorted trips (to Italy and Britain so far) through Solosvacations.com. (Guided tours in general are becoming more popular among solo travelers, according to Visa’s research, up almost threefold compared with 2013.)

随着单人旅行者的人数不断攀升,也开始有更多的旅游品牌对此投以关注。以单人假日公司(Solos Holidays)为例,这家英国公司专为单人旅行者提供向导游服务,它在英国同业中历史最悠久、规模也最大。公司成立于1982年前后,不过就在短短几周前,它的美国分支机构单人度假公司(Solos Vacations)刚刚开张,开始通过网站Solosvacations.com提供陪同游,目前目的地仅限意大利和英国(据维萨公司的研究结果,总体而言,选择向导游的单人旅行者人数正在不断增加,相较于2013年时增长了将近三倍)。

Who exactly are these solo travelers?

这些单人旅行者到底都是些什么人呢?

Many are unattached, of course. “I was amazed to find that over half of American adults are single,” said Andrew Williams, the managing director of Solos Holidays. He was referring to research about the percentage of American adults who have never been married being at a historic high. (In 2012 one-in-five adults (25 and older) had never been married, according to analysis of census data by Pew Research Center, compared with about one-in-ten adults in 1960.) “It’s clearly a shift in the same direction that we’ve seen in the U.K.,” he added. “Perhaps you’re a little further ahead than we are in that regard.”

许多人自然是没有婚约在身。“我很惊奇地发现,半数以上的美国成年人都是单身,”单人假日公司的常务董事安德鲁·威廉姆斯(Andrew Williams)说。他指的是一项显示从未有过婚史的美国人比例达到历史高点的研究。(据皮尤研究中心[Pew Research Center]人口普查数据的分析结果,2012年时,美国25岁及以上的成年人中有五分之一从未有过婚史,相较之下,1960年时的这一比例为十分之一。)“这与我们在英国所看到的转变方向显然是一致的,”他补充道,“说不定在这方面,你们美国人还要比我们领先一点点呢。”

At the same time, plenty of solo travelers are in committed relationships. There are those who travel by themselves because their partner’s job prevents them from taking simultaneous getaways. Some have a yen for a particular activity, like golf, that isn’t shared by their partner. Others are caregivers for a disabled spouse or partner and take the occasional solo trip when a family member is able to help out at home.

另一方面,也有大量单人旅行者都拥有一段经过承诺的关系。他们当中有的之所以独自出行,是因为他们的伴侣出于工作原因而无法在同一时间内一同出行。有的则是因为十分向往某项活动,而其伴侣对此却并无同样的兴趣。还有的一直在照顾身患残疾的配偶或伴侣,只能趁其他家庭成员方便帮忙照顾时,才出门享受一下难得的单人旅行。

“Many people seem to think that solo travelers are single people, with many or most looking for love,” said Priscilla O’Reilly, a spokeswoman for Overseas Adventure Travel, which caters to baby boomers and seniors. “That’s not the case with our travelers.” Plenty of people who book with the company — where more than 40 percent of travelers are solo, up from 35 percent in 2013 and 27 percent in 2007 — do so without their spouse or partner. “If a spouse or partner can’t leave work, has a conflict, or is disinterested in a destination that his or her partner is pining to see, the partners have no qualms about heading off on their own,” said Ms. O’Reilly. Most of them are women, she added, “and, some of them admit that after having taken care of spouses and kids for so many years, it’s nice to have an experience on one’s own without worrying, ‘Is Fred having a good time?’ ”

“许多人似乎都认为,单人旅行者都是单身人士,其中有很多甚至大部分都在寻找恋情,”专门服务婴儿潮世代和老年旅客的海外历险旅行公司(Overseas Adventure Travel)的一位女性发言人普莉西亚·奥莱利(Priscilla O’Reilly)说,“但这并不符合我们公司的旅客的情况。”在这家旅游公司订购旅程的人中有很多――其中有40%以上的旅行者都是单人出行,较2013年的35%和2007年27%均有所上涨――都是在没有配偶或伴侣陪伴的情况下出游的。“如果配偶或伴侣无法放下工作,日程安排有冲突,或者对另一方想去的目的地没有兴趣,那他们对于独自前往也不会有什么心结。”奥莱利女士说。她还补充说,这些旅行者多为女性,“而且,他们中有的人承认,在照顾配偶子女如此多年之后,他们很高兴能有机会独自出游,而不必顾虑‘弗雷德现在过得好吗?’”

Indeed, of Americans 45 and older who have traveled solo, some 53 percent are married while 39 percent are single or divorced, according to AARP.

的确如此,据美国退休者协会(AARP)数据,曾独自出游过的45岁及以上的美国人中,约有53%都是已婚者,仅有39%是单身或离异者。

These changing demographics and lifestyles mean that the climate for solo travel is (slowly) improving. Some fees are being dropped, and more packages and deals are being marketed to people who plan to vacation on their own.

这些不断变化的人口统计数据和生活方式说明,单人旅行的风气正在(缓慢)发酵。有的费用正在被废除,更多的旅行套餐和优惠正在被推介给那些计划独自出门度假的人们。

Cruise companies are not only adding more cabins dedicated to solo travelers, some are also doing away with single supplements (surcharges that can be anywhere from 10 to 100 percent or more of the standard rate). In March, Tom Harper River Journeys, a river cruise company based near Boston, said that in 2016 it would introduce a ship with supplement-free staterooms and French balconies for solo travelers. A few weeks earlier, the Majestic Line, a small-ship cruising company based in Britain, announced that next year two of the seven en-suite cabins on a new ship will be for solo travelers and won’t have single supplements. And Holland America, based in Seattle, plans to add 12 new ocean-view cabins for solo travelers next year on its forthcoming ship, the MS Koningsdam.

邮轮公司不仅在增加更多专为单人旅行者准备的客舱,有的还在废除单人附加费(这种附加收费可相当于标准费率的10%到100%不等)。今年3月份,美国波士顿附近的一家内河邮轮公司汤姆哈珀河旅行公司(Tom Harper River Journeys)表示,将在2016年新增一艘邮轮,所有的特等舱和法式阳台客舱全对单人旅行者免收附加费。就在几周前,英国的一家小型船舶(small-ship)邮轮公司雄伟游轮公司(Majestic Line)宣布,明年的每艘新船上,将有七个套间客舱中将有两间留给单人旅行者,而且不会收取任何单人附加费。美国西雅图的荷美邮轮公司(Holland America)则计划在将在明年下水的新船“荷美科林丹号”(MS Koningsdam)上,为单人旅行者增加12个新的海景舱。

Meanwhile, companies that do require single supplements are dropping some of them here and there. In March, Zegrahm Expeditions eliminated the single supplement on three of its 2015 trips: a circumnavigation of the Black Sea; a visit to India, Sri Lanka and the Maldives; and a circumnavigation of South Georgia Island. Another operator, Tauck, did away with the single supplements on category 1 cabins on its European river cruises for 2015.

与此同时,那些收取单人附加费的公司,则开始在各种不同的场合减免部分此类费用。今年3月份,集广公司(Zegrahm Expeditions)在2015年的所有航线中,免除了三条的单人附加费:黑海环海行,印度、斯里兰卡和马尔代夫行,还有南乔治亚岛环岛行。另一家运营商塔克旅游公司(Tauck),则免除了2015年所有欧洲内河邮轮行一类客舱的单人附加费。

One doesn’t have to set sail to score a solo bargain, however. In April, the on-demand car service Uber sent customers an email before a San Francisco Giants game that said, “If you’re headed to today’s game solo, or even with one friend, opt for uberPOOL. UberPOOL will match you with a rider going to a similar destination, and get you there for $7 or less.” (UberPOOL is available in a few major cities including New York.)

不过,你想要享受单人优惠的话,并不是只有选择出海才行。今年4月份,应召专车服务优步(Uber)在旧金山巨人队(San Francisco Giants)的一场比赛前,向所有用户发送了一封电子邮件,其中说道:“如果您准备独自去看今天的比赛,或者只跟一个朋友一起,就选择优步拼车(uberPOOL)吧。优步拼车会为您匹配一位目的地相近的乘客,让您全程只需7美元甚或更低便可抵达。”(优步拼车仅在纽约等少数几个大城市开通服务。)

It’s becoming par for the course for online travel agents and review sites like Orbitz and TripAdvisor to include search filters for singles and solo travel. Hotels have yet to make many strides, though a few, including the Westin New York Grand Central, have gotten creative. In July the hotel offered what was seemingly the first getaway package from a major American hotel brand directed at solo female travelers without children. It included a consultation about healthful eating with the hotel’s executive chef and discounted yoga classes. The hotel’s website described it as “a memorable experience for guests traveling with friends or recharging on their own.”

众多在线旅游代理商和在线旅行点评网站,像旅程网(Orbitz)、到到网(TripAdvisor)等,在网站上加入专门针对单身人士和单人旅行的搜索条件,正在逐渐成为一种常规做法。酒店界尚未对此做出多少让步,不过也有少数几家拿出了一些创意,其中就包括威斯汀纽约中央酒店(Westin New York Grand Central)。今年7月份,这家酒店推出了直接面向没有儿童随行的女性单人旅行者的旅行套餐,这在美国的主流酒店品牌中似乎尚属首例。这份套餐包含由该酒店行政主厨提供的一次健康饮食咨询服务,还有享受折扣的瑜伽课程。该酒店在自己的官方网站上将其描述为“一次难忘的旅行,献给与友同行或独行充电的你”。

Cath Cole, 42, who runs a fund-raising consultancy in Britain and has been on several trips with Solos Vacations to places as varied as Turkey and Northampton, England, first traveled solo with the company to shake off work stress with a week in the sun in the Dominican Republic.

42岁的凯斯·科尔(Cath Cole)在英国管理着一间融资咨询机构,她已经在单人度假公司订过数次行程,目的地遍及土耳其、英国北安普敦等地。她在该公司的安排下完成了第一次单人出行,享受了一周多米尼加共和国的阳光,以此来消除工作压力。

“I was single at the time and none of my friends could get away,” she said. “Being self-employed, I often get holiday time at late notice and many of my friends can’t be flexible, so whether I’m in a relationship or not, I still consider Solos. It’s not the dating scene everyone who hasn’t been thinks it is. Sure, some people get together, but that’s not what it’s about. It’s about independent travelers, not dating holidays.” (Solos Vacations attendees can be as young as 25, Mr. Williams said, but on average are about 55.)

“我当时正值单身,朋友中也没有谁能够抽身出门,”她说,“身为自由职业者,我经常很晚才能获知自己的假日时间,而我的很多朋友在时间安排上都没法做到那么灵活,所以无论我是否在与人交往,我都会考虑单人度假公司。这并不是任何没有过亲身体验的人所设想的那种约会情景。当然,有些人也会在中途集合,但这并不是这类旅行的重点所在。这类旅行是为了单人旅行者准备的,而不是为了假日约会。”(威廉姆斯先生称,单人度假公司的顾客中,最年轻的只有25岁,不过整体的平均年龄为55岁上下。)

Ms. Cole is one of countless women who travel by themselves. At Overseas Adventure Travel, for instance, 80 percent of solo travelers are women.

独自旅行的女性不计其数,科尔女士只不过是其中的一人。以海外历险旅游公司为例,有80%的单人旅行者都是女性。

“Looking back, the one thing I wish I’d known was not to be so nervous the first time,” Ms. Cole said. “The best part is definitely the people you meet, even the ones you don’t stay in touch with, because they are what make the holiday. I’ve become Facebook friends with a number of them and still meet up with one or two of the ones I clicked with the best.”

“回想起来,我希望当时我就能了解的一件事,就是第一次出行不必如此紧张,”科尔女士说,“这趟旅程中最棒的部分,绝对是你所遇到的人,哪怕是那些你并没有保持联系的人,因为正是他们成就了你的这段假期。我和遇到的许多人都成了Facebook上的好友,而且还与我最常互动的几个人不时会面。”

Like Ms. Cole, many solo travelers enjoy their trips enough to strike out on their own again. More than 80 percent of people 45 and older who have taken a solo trip plan to take another within the next 12 months, according to AARP. And among affluent travelers, solo travel has more than doubled, research from Visa shows.

就像科尔女士一样,许多单人旅行者都很享受他们的旅行,很愿意再次独自出行。据美国退休者协会数据,曾独自出游过的45岁及以上的人中,有80%以上都计划在未来12个月里再来一次。而据维萨公司的研究显示,在经济富裕的旅行者当中,单人旅行的次数更是增长了一倍有余。

One recent morning, Mr. Williams of Solos Holidays received a letter from two solo travelers who met on one of his company’s trips. They wrote to tell him that they were planning to get married.

不久前的一天早上,单人假日公司的威廉姆斯先生收到了一封信,是两名在他公司安排的旅程中结识的单人旅行者一起寄来的。他们写信告诉他,他们已经准备结婚了。

“So I’ve lost two customers,” he said.

“于是我就这样少了两名客户,”他说。

Then again, if reports about spouses traveling solo once in a while are to be believed — maybe not.

不过话又说回来,如果那些认为已婚人士仍会不时独自出游的报告真的可信的话――或许他并没有。

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