ANN@The China Post June 29, 2017, 1:34 pm TWN
The solo female traveller market is an increasingly powerful sector in the travel industry. But while solo travel is usually rewarding, safe, and eye-opening, women who take to the road alone usually have more issues to take into account than men. A minority of horror stories of dodgy Airbnb and Couchsurfing hosts can see women flocking to the nearest female-only floor in a hotel.
But now one peer-to-peer accommodation site has decided to do something about that, by launching a sub-group dedicated to female hosts and guests.
Overnight – a site and app similar to Airbnb, which allows you to book accommodation with local residents – has teamed up with Girls Love Travel, a women-only online community, to launch "Groups", which will allow home-sharing through trusted networks.
The feature will connect travellers and hosts who share friends or social networking groups in common. With 350,000 members of Girls Love Travel located around the world, it's a promising start. Other networks are in the works to collaborate, too.
Overnight said in a statement: "While cost is a key issue for travellers, trust is perhaps even more important – both for travellers and home-sharing hosts. This is especially true for female travellers."
Girls Love Travel founder Haley Woods told The Independent:
"Within the Girls LOVE Travel community, we empower women to go out, travel, and explore the world. The problem is that, when choosing to house-swap or couch-share with a stranger, safety can be a real concern for many of our members. Alternatives such as hotels or hostels can often be pricey, and may delay trips due to budget.
"Building this partnership between Girls LOVE Travel and Overnight presents members with a peer-to-peer network platform to help answer those concerns by providing members a cost-effective opportunity to stay with ladies they have met within our online community. Overnight provides our members the added benefit of moving beyond the computer with other female travellers, and creating lasting relationships."
The Groups feature also allows hosts to use tiered pricing, offering lower rates to travellers from their own networks. Overnight says that it discovered hosts were willing to drop prices for guests they have a connection to.
Current featured picks on the website include a private room in West Hollywood for $60, and an apartment in Chicago for $100.
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