Ctrip.com International appears to have put the “single” back into China’s Singles’ Day shopping holiday as the company saw a significant number of solo travelers booking trips on the platform on Sunday.

Single passenger orders on Ctrip accounted for 13 percent of the total on November 11, an increase of 2 percent from the previous year. However, 25 percent of post-’95 customers booked solo trips for November and December during the shopping event. Post-’90s travelers accounted for more than 40 percent of all solo travelers who booked on Ctrip.

More than 40 percent of solo travelers who booked trips on Ctrip were born after 1990

The proportion of older travelers booking on the platform declined while younger travelers, particularly those born after 2000, increased during the shopping holiday, according to company data.

While single passenger reservations on Ctrip can be interpreted as “solo travel,” it is impossible for the online travel agency to state with complete accuracy whether these same travelers are making travel plans with friends who book separately.

Women also accounted for a larger proportion of solo bookings for the holiday, following the trend that Chinese women are more likely to make travel arrangements independently. Ctrip noted that 58 percent of solo travel reservations were made by women, showing that “more women are not only economically independent, but also have rich travel experience and the ability to travel alone,” the company explained.

Women account for the majority of solo travelers in China, and a growing number of solo travelers are heading to Northern Europe this winter

In particular, Ctrip said that northern European destinations were popular among solo travelers interested in seeing the Northern Lights this winter. The platform noted that no international destination ranked in the top 10 for trips booked.

With growing interest in seeing the Aurora Borealis, Ctrip said that solo travelers’ reservations for Iceland, Norway, and Finland increased 61 percent from last year. Finland has been actively courting Chinese travelers and recently launched a WeChat mini-program travel guide. Meanwhile, the first direct flights between Oslo and Beijing will begin on Hainan Airlines next year.


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