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Press releases

NEW PARKING SCHEME TACKLES WOMEN'S FEAR OF TRAVELLING ALONE

5th Jun 2006


Thirteen and a half million women feel less secure travelling alone today than they did ten years ago according to research by Travelodge.

To help combat the personal security concerns of single female travellers, the budget hotel chain is trialling a new car parking scheme at its Wembley hotel.

Three parking spaces adjacent to the hotel entrance have been designated 'female only' in a move that will contribute to a more female friendly travel experience. The bays are clearly differentiated by a large pink logo on the floor of each space and signage on the wall at the front of the bays. CCTV cameras are trained on the spaces and hotel staff will patrol regularly to ensure the correct use of the spaces.

More than six million women stayed in a hotel on their own in the last year (26%), a figure that is set to rise in the next ten years according to industry reports (1). Personal security is the main concern for women (45%) staying away from home overnight, followed by worry about family at home (41%) and work stress (5%).

Travelodge's research, designed to better understand the needs of single women travellers, found more than 12 million female drivers (83%) are afraid of using a car park at night. Forty per cent are even concerned about their safety crossing a car park during the day.

More than half of all women drivers (52%) will avoid travelling at night if it means using a car park alone. Forty-eight per cent of female drivers find underground car parks the most intimidating parking environments, closely followed by 46% that fear using multi-storey car parks alone.

Over 9 million female drivers (61%) believe specific car parking spaces reserved for women would significantly help alleviate personal security concerns.

Kyle Rowe, Travelodge Operations Director, said "Our research has shown security is clearly a priority for our female customers and we want to do everything we can to alleviate any concerns they may have. If this trial is successful, we will allocate spaces for women at our other hotels with on-site car parks."

The research revealed women from all regions in the UK welcome the concept of female only parking. The top five most supportive regions are:
- 74% of Welsh women
- 73% of women from Yorkshire and the Humber
- 69% of women from the East Midlands
- 65% of Scottish women
- 62% of women from the South West

More women from London (37%) have stayed in a hotel on their own in the last year, than any other region.

The most concerned regions on each issue are:
- Women from East Anglia (51%) worry about their personal security more than any other region when travelling alone
- Yorkshire women (60%) are the most likely to feel intimidated by Underground car parks
- Women from the West Midlands are most likely to avoid driving somewhere at night if they have to use a car park alone (57%)
- Women from the East Midlands feel less secure about travelling alone today than they did 10 years ago (69%)
- More women from the East Midlands (91%) worry about their safety when using a car park at night than any other region
- More women from the South East (44%) worry about their safety the most in a car park, even during the day

Notes to Editors:

For more information, please contact:
Jo Begbie
Travelodge PR Manager
01844 358 624
07841 725 053

(1) Barclaycard Business Traveller Survey 2005/6 predicts more women will travel for business in future given rise in women working in higher status positions.

Figures based on Office of National Statistics:
- 46,613,000 Britons over 18 yrs (24,121,700 women and 22,491,300 men)
- UK Driving licence holders - 34,423,000 (15,211,000 women and 19,213,000 men)
- Travelodge research conducted by 72 point in May 2006 among 2000 UK adults.
- As the first budget hotel brand to launch in the UK in 1985, Travelodge currently has approximately 292 hotels across the UK in city centers, near attractions and airports.



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