Stats: 71% of Women Traveling for Work Feel Less Safe Than Men

A global survey of business travelers revealed that over seven in 10 women (71 percent) say they feel less safe when traveling for work than men. The survey was commissioned by World Travel Protection (WTP), a travel risk management organization. The Opinium survey of 2,000 business travelers in Australia, Canada, the U.S. and the U.K., was conducted between from January 23 to February 2, 2023. It found that women travelers are more likely to take measures to protect their safety during business travel than men.

Almost one in three women (31 percent) say they do not travel or go out on their own at night, compared to 18 percent of men, and almost half (46 percent) always stay in close touch with family and friends so their whereabouts are known, compared to 36 percent of men. To avoid unwanted attention, nearly one in five women (19 percent) wear a wedding ring (real or fake) as a form of protection. Unfortunately, unwanted attention can turn violent, and the dangers of traveling for women go beyond feelings of safety. Over one in 10 women business travelers (12 percent) have experienced a negative incident, ranging from minor theft to assault, when traveling.

Nearly one in five women business travelers (19 percent) feel it’s the responsibility of their organization to act with women’s safety in mind when they are traveling alone and should take specific steps like ensuring flights do not arrive late at night. More than one in five women (21 percent) prefer to stay in hotels that make provisions for solo women travelers.

In addition to personal safety, global women’s equality issues are of greater concern to women business travelers than men, with more than one in three women (36 percent) saying they do not like traveling to countries where women’s rights aren’t protected, compared to only 15 percent of men. Due to the stigma around women’s health, one in 10 women business travelers (10 percent) have been unwell with what would be considered a women’s health issue while traveling but felt unable to get help because of the stigma.

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