Want to learn travel writing and become a travel blogger? Here’s how to start a travel blog website, become a travel influencer, and live the travel writer’s life.
If you love to travel and you enjoy writing, chances are you’ve dreamt of traveling the world and writing about your experiences. If so, there’s no reason you can’t become a travel blogger and get paid to travel and write for a living.
In fact, combining your love of writing and travel to live the life of a travel blogger is the perfect way to not only share your travel stories and advice with other hopeful wanderers but also gain new readers and followers as a travel influencer.
As with any writing career, being a full-time travel blogger takes writing skills, effort, and dedication – but it can definitely be worth it. If being a travel writer sounds like your dream career, this article will get you started on your journey of becoming a travel influencer.
- What is travel writing?
- The best travel writers of all time
- The fascinating history of travelogue writing
- Why is travel blogging a great career?
- What skills do you need to be a successful travel writer?
- How to improve your travel writing skills
- #1. Read travel writing guides & publications
- #2. Take travel writing courses
- #3. Choose a travel writing niche
- #4. Publish your own travel blog
- #5. Create authentic & beautiful content
- #6. Learn how to tell compelling stories
- #7. Optimize your travel blog for search engines
- #8. Attend travel conferences (virtual or in-person)
- How to get paid for your travel writing
- #1. Content writing for travel websites
- #2. Content writer for a travel company
- #3. Writing a travel guide
- #4. Writing a travel memoir
- #5. Monetizing a travel blog
- #6. Become a travel influencer
- #7. Offer travel itinerary writing services
- #8. Get invited to FAM trips & conferences
- #9. Collaborate with travel vendors
- #10. Join travel writer networks & associations
- #11. Become a travel journalist & get a press card
- #12. Become a Google Local Guide
- #13. Become a TripAdvisor Influencer
- Writing tips & tutorials
What is travel writing?
Travel writing is a coherent narrative of people, events, sights, feelings, adventure, and exploration, by a travel writer or travel journalist.
Travel writing in English literature or any language, as related to travel essays, guidebooks, travelogue writing, or travel itineraries, has overlapping boundaries and is grouped together as travel literature.
In an age where everyone is a travel blogger, it can be easy to forget that travel writing is a long-standing and respected literary tradition. For centuries, writers have been setting out on adventures and bringing their tales back to share with the world.
For many people, travel is a way to escape the mundane and experience something new. For others, travel is a way of life. Professional travel writers make their living by traversing the globe and writing about their experiences.
There are many different types of travel writing, and as a travel blogger today, you would create travel content that’s more of interest to a tourist and offers tips and advice to help them avoid obstacles and make their journey smoother and more enjoyable.
The best travel writers of all time
Today, travelogue writing is more popular than ever, and there are many great travel writers who continue to explore the globe and share their stories with the world.
This list of travel writers includes some of the best travel writers of all time, who made a career out of chronicling their journeys:
- Paul Theroux
- Bruce Chatwin
- Pico Iyer
- Rolf Potts
- Dervla Murphy
- Colin Thubron
- Eric Newby
- William LH Moon
- Jan Morris (Trieste)
Whether they’re exploring their own backyard or venturing to far-flung corners of the globe, the travelogues written by these travel authors provide an invaluable glimpse into new cultures and locations.
The fascinating history of travelogue writing
A travelogue in creative nonfiction writing is similar to a blog because it is a written account of someone’s travels. It chronicles a person’s travel experiences in the form of a diary, a journal, or a series of blog posts.
However, travelogues are usually more formal than a blog and are often published as travel books or pamphlets. Despite these differences, the two genres share a common purpose: to document and share the experiences of the author in a highly personal and reflective way.
Robert Louis Stevenson was a pioneer in travelogue writing. He was one of the first writers to describe the majesty and beauty of travel destinations.
In 1885, he published The Merry Men and Other Stories, a collection of tales set on the Scottish island of Erraid. These stories are credited with being the first examples of tourism literature.
Stevenson’s work helped to popularize the idea of traveling to remote, natural locations for recreation and relaxation. He wrote about travel and adventure, and his work inspired many others to do the same.
Today, his novels like Treasure Island, and his travelogues, are still some of the most popular in the genre. His travelogue writing showed that even wild, untamed places could be appealing tourist destinations. His work inspired others to explore the world and see its wonders for themselves.
In 1336, the Italian scholar, Petrarch, decided to travel to the summit of Mount Ventoux in Provence. This was no small feat in the 14th century, and Petrarch documented his journey in a travelogue.
In addition to describing the physical challenges of the climb, Petrarch also drew an allegorical comparison between his ascent of the mountain and his own moral progress in life. For him, both endeavors were motivated by a desire for self-improvement and a love of learning.
By scaling the heights of Mount Ventoux, Petrarch felt that he had accomplished something significant and gained a new perspective on the world. In much the same way, he hoped that his moral development would lead him to greater understanding and wisdom.
In another example of medieval travel writing, the English travel writer, Richard Hakluyt, published a travelogue called Voyages in 1589, which detailed the accounts of sailors and explorers who had traveled to distant lands.
Hakluyt’s travelogue was immensely popular, and it remains an important text in the travel literature genre. In addition to providing fascinating accounts of far-off places, Hakluyt’s travelogue also helped to shape the way that future generations thought about travel and exploration.
His work inspired others to see travel as an opportunity to learn about new cultures and to gain new knowledge, rather than simply as a means of transportation. As a result, Hakluyt’s travelogue has had a profound impact on the way we think about travel today.
Travel and nature writing tends to merge in many works. Gerald Durrell and Ivan Sanderson are naturalist authors. Charles Darwin’s famous account of a journey on HMS Beagle intersects science, natural history, and travel.
If you’ve ever wanted to be a travel writer but didn’t know how your work in another field would translate into writing about trips abroad, keep in mind that the best travel writers were never planning to write travelogues.
They were just doing their job and then found themselves in remote regions, like Laos or Iran. There are many well-known travel writers who went from being professional journalists or photographers to chronicling their travels.
Today with our access to technology, it’s easier than ever before for anyone with an Internet connection to become what they were meant to be – a great storyteller!
Today, a lot of travelogues and travel stories are in the form of social media video content. So, it’s important to learn how to write groundbreaking scripts for your travel videos.
Why is travel blogging a great career?
Travel blogs and travel videos (including travel bloggers on Instagram) are essentially literary works available as online travel journals or travelogues that were written on the move while being constantly updated.
Travel bloggers have something to offer everyone, from travelers looking for tips on planning their next trip, to those just looking for something to read on their next flight.
Being a professional travel blogger has many perks. Not only do you get to travel the world and see amazing places, but you also get paid to write about travel, and make a living writing about your travel experiences.
What skills do you need to be a successful travel writer?
The skills you need to be a successful travel writer are the same skills you need to be a successful writer, in general.
You need to be able to write well, have an interesting point of view, a good sense of story, and be able to capture the reader’s attention. But there are a few things that might help you specifically when it comes to writing about travel.
It’s important to be familiar with the basics of great travel writing — the different types of travel stories, the elements of a good story, how to structure a story, etc.
You also need to learn how to take great photos and videos, as the use of photographs in your travel article is essential to create visual impact and illustrate your story.
As a travel blogger, you also need to have some knowledge of world geography and different cultures and have a strong sense of adventure and curiosity about new places.
If you travel extensively, you need to have some understanding of different languages too. You should also be able to do your own research because you’ll often be writing about places you’ve never been to.
How to improve your travel writing skills
No matter how well you write, it’s always a good thing to work on your travel blogging skills. Here are some ways to improve your travel blog writing skills and break into travel writing:
#1. Read travel writing guides & publications
Reading a guide to travel writing is a great way to get inspiration for your own work and see how other writers approach the task of describing their travels.
Here are some travel writing guides that will help you improve your travel writing skills:
- The Art and Craft of Travel Writing
- Travel Writing Guide: 4 Tips for Travel Writing
- Lonely Planet’s Guide To Travel Writing
- The Best Women’s Travel Writing, Volume 11
- The Cambridge Companion to Travel Writing
- The Routledge Companion To Travel Writing
- The Routledge Research Companion To Travel Writing
You can also read travel books written by the bestselling travel authors listed above, and articles by travel journalists in the best travel magazines, to get a sense of the genre and to see how different writers approach their craft.
Not only will this give you ideas for your own work, but you’ll also get a sense of the techniques and style that make good travelogues interesting to read.
You should also subscribe to the blogs of the best travel bloggers in the world, including the top travel blogs on this list of the best Indian travel bloggers.
Follow the profiles of the best travel bloggers on Instagram, travel bloggers on YouTube, and TikTok travel influencers, to understand what makes them so successful.
#2. Take travel writing courses
The stories we gather while traveling are among the most important in our lives. We get to keep those stories for the rest of our lives if we remember the details. Writing about them in a travel journal helps to keep our memories fresh.
In this Travel Journaling course, you’ll learn how to write extraordinary travel diaries, and chronicle your journeys in your travel journals with bold and vivid details, allowing you to maximize your time for exploring so your writing doesn’t eat up precious vacation time.
This highly-rated Travel Writing Course taught by Dave Fox, a freelance travel writer, bestselling travel author, and writing and creativity coach, is one of the best travel writing programs online to help you cut short your learning curve and learn all about travel writing.
I have done both of his travel writing courses and found them very useful in learning how to write engaging travel blogs and avoid the cliches and other mistakes that aspiring travel writers tend to make.
#3. Choose a travel writing niche
There are already a lot of travel bloggers out there, so it’s important to find a niche that isn’t oversaturated and for which you can easily create content. Here are a few tips for choosing a travel blogging niche:
- Choose a niche that interests you
It’s important to choose a travel blogging niche that you’re interested in and passionate about because you’ll be writing about it every day.
Think about what you’re passionate about. What are you interested in? What do you want to blog about? What type of traveler are you? What do you love talking about more than anything else?
What are some of your favorite travel experiences? Are you an adventure seeker, a foodie, or a history buff? There’s room for everyone in the travel industry, so find what interests you and focus your content around that.
Here are some popular travel blogging and influencer niches you can choose from:
- Food and travel blog
- Adventure blog
- Backpacker blog
- Road trip blogs
- Couple travel blog
- Family travel blog
- Solo female travel blog
- Frequent flyer blog
- Budget travel blog
- Digital nomad blog
- Accessible travel blog
- Travel photography blog
- Responsible travel blog
- Sustainable travel influencers
- Luxury travel influencers
- Business travel influencers
- Travel and lifestyle influencers
Also, research how you can make money blogging in that niche. Chances are, if you’re really enthusiastic about a topic and have unique and interesting experiences to share, it will be easy to write about and readers will enjoy reading your content.
- Choose an evergreen niche with room to grow
What’s your blog’s angle? Is there room to grow in this niche, or could it possibly die down the road? It’s important to find an evergreen travel niche that will allow you to pivot if you need to.
For instance, when international travel shut down during the COVID-19 pandemic, many travel bloggers began focusing on camping, road trips, local and domestic travel, adventure travel, and eco-travel, which were still possible to do.
This will allow you to keep traveling and writing even during a pandemic, a natural calamity, or any other global phenomenon.
- Choose a niche you can be an expert in
What are some of the unique aspects of your travels that you can focus on? Can you write a solo travel blog, sustainable travel blog, business travel blog, or adventure travel blog?
Perhaps you’re an expert on budget travel or traveling with kids. Or maybe you have a special interest in off-the-beaten-path destinations or culinary tourism.
You don’t have to know everything about your niche, but it should be a topic about which you know more than regular folks and are willing to learn more.
- Choose a niche that people will want to read about
Finally, you need to choose a travel blogging niche that people will want to read about. Do some research using tools such as Google Trends to find upcoming and popular niches, and see how interest in them grows and wanes over time.
For example, you may want to avoid choosing a narrow or seasonal niche (such as Christmas markets) as your primary blog topic, although you can write a few blog posts about it.
Instead try to find an evergreen niche, such as family travel, luxury travel, adventure travel, camping, road trips, traveling with pets, budget travel hacks, etc.
Interest in these broad topics is unlikely to die down, so your travel content will likely remain relevant for a long time as long as you stay up to date with the latest trends in the travel industry and keep your content fresh and relevant.
#4. Publish your own travel blog
Keep a travel journal and write about your travels frequently. The more you practice writing about a trip, the better you’ll become at it.
In his Travel Journaling course, award-winning travel humorist, Dave Fox, shares his favorite travel journaling techniques and shows you how to find time to write in the middle of an exciting trip.
Not only will travel journaling help you improve your writing skills, but you’ll also have more material to work with when it comes time to sit down and write a finished piece.
In this Blog Post Writing course, you’ll learn how to write and publish captivating blog posts for your target audience, and how to optimize, proofread, edit and publish blog posts that encourage your site visitors to convert.
You’ll also learn how to create a content calendar, and track your analytics for professional insights into how well your posts are doing.
WordPress is the blogging platform used by all professional and famous bloggers, which is why I recommend creating a travel blog on this platform.
These quick tips to create a blog site with WordPress will help you get your travel blog up and running quickly, and start blogging right away.
#5. Create authentic & beautiful content
Your content could be anything from videos of your travels to blog posts about the different places you’ve visited. But authenticity, and aesthetically beautiful photos and videos, are the keys to getting your audience to take you seriously as a travel influencer.
So find your voice and share your experiences honestly and authentically – people will appreciate the transparency and be more likely to trust your recommendations.
You’ll also need a good camera, some creativity, and good photography and videography skills. Invest in quality camera equipment and learn how to edit your photos and videos so they look professional.
Here are some photography courses to help you uplevel your travel photography skills:
- Photography Essentials: Getting Your Best Shots
In this comprehensive photography fundamentals course, you’ll learn how to harness your creative potential and capture your artistic vision through the lens.
- Jimmy Chin Masterclass on Adventure Photography
In this photography class, award-winning National Geographic photographer, Jimmy Chin, takes you on location to teach you techniques for capturing breathtaking shots, and learn different creative approaches for commercial shoots, editorial spreads, and passion projects.
In his MasterClass, Jimmy Chin will teach you how to gather the gear — and the perspective — to bring your photography to new heights with his techniques for planning, capturing, and editing breathtaking photos.
#6. Learn how to tell compelling stories
When you write about your travel experiences on your own travel blog, pay attention to the details that make them interesting and memorable.
Be creative in your travel story writing, weaving in anecdotal information and personal reflections, along with factual details about the places you visited.
Try to capture the sights, sounds, and smells of the places you visit. One of the key elements of descriptive travel writing is using sensory language that will help readers feel as though they’re right there alongside you on your journey.
Use descriptive language to bring scenes to life for the reader. Bland phrases like “it was a beautiful day” won’t engage readers in the same way as evocative descriptions such as “the sun blazed down mercilessly” or “the air was thick with humidity.”
These are some of the most important elements of travel writing, and they can help transport readers right into the heart of your story.
In Dave Fox’s highly-rated Travel Writing Course, you’ll gain a clear understanding of the techniques professional writers use to write captivating travel essays, and discover your own, unique writing voice.
#7. Optimize your travel blog for search engines
Learn how to optimize your travel blog with these bloggers’ SEO tips. Make sure you add relevant, high-traffic keywords in your travel articles so you can build traffic from the search engines.
Use grammar and proofreading tools to edit and revise your work carefully, and ensure that it’s well-written and polished before publishing it.
In the SEO Blueprint for Bloggers course, you’ll learn how to figure out what successful bloggers are doing right so that you can create the best content that ranks, converts into more money, and that your readers will go crazy for.
The travel niche is huge on Pinterest! You can learn how to leverage Pinterest to get more shares and traffic to your blog with the Pinterest Traffic Avalanche Course, one of the best Pinterest courses for bloggers.
#8. Attend travel conferences (virtual or in-person)
Before COVID-19, the travel world was abuzz with travel conferences and events. Now a lot of these have gone virtual.
TravelCon is a travel conference that was designed to create an environment that facilitates networking between experts inside and outside of the travel industry to teach you about what’s working right now, timeless business practices, and the skills you need to succeed long-term.
TravelCon will teach you everything you need to learn from experts in and out of travel like Nomadic Matt, Pico Iyer, Pauline Frommer, Nicole Walters, Jeff Goins, Don George, Gabby Beckford, Jeff Jenkins, Mike & Anne from Honey Trek, Angie Orth, Erick Prince-Heaggans, Valerie Joy Wilson, Faith Adele, and many more.
You can get your TravelCon 2022 Virtual Pass here and get access to the talks, keynotes, panels, networking, and other benefits of attending this travel writer’s conference, so you can take your travel writing career to the next level.
If you want access to TravelCon 2018, 2019, and 2022 virtual passes, you can buy the TravelCon Virtual Pass Mega Bundle which includes over 100 timeless talks to help you make more money, learn new skills, and give you a leg up against your travel blogging competition.
How to get paid for your travel writing
Getting paid for your travel writing can be a bit of a challenge, as not all payments may come in the form of actual cash. However free trips and discounts are also a form of compensation.
Here are a few different ways to get paid for travel writing:
#1. Content writing for travel websites
As a content writer for travel websites, you can start earning an income immediately with your travel writing skills. Different types of travel writing jobs all have one thing in common: they pay writers to write about their travel experiences.
You can find freelance travel writer jobs that pay to write articles for travel magazines, or start writing for inflight magazines, travel websites, or blogs on travel and tourism.
Many top travel magazines are always looking for fresh travel-related content, and are willing to pay freelance travel writers to write short essays on travel experiences. You can even get paid to write travel reviews.
Some travel publications pay freelance travel content writers to write travel feature articles. Just imagine how awesome it would be to get paid to write for Travel and Leisure magazine, or become a National Geographic travel writer!
These travel publications usually have guidelines for what they’re looking for in terms of article length and topic, so familiarize yourself with their article submission guidelines before pitching a story that you think would be a good fit.
You can work as a freelance travel blogger by querying magazines, websites, and blogs that are actively hiring travel writers, and accepting pitches from freelance travel writers.
You can cold pitch a travel editor with ideas for stories or features that focus on a particular destination. When pitching, be sure to offer up detailed story angles and highlight why your particular perspective would make for an interesting read.
In The Complete Guide to Query Letters for Travel Writers, Roy Stevenson explains how well-written query letters convince magazine editors that you have an exciting travel story their readers will absolutely love.
“Well-written query letters convince magazine editors that you have an exciting travel story their readers will absolutely love.”
In the book, Dealing with Grumpy Editors: How to Pitch Your Story to the Media, you’ll learn how to make your media pitches more successful and land more travel writing gigs. Learn how to write a flawless pitch to an editor in the video below.
If your pitches are well-crafted and capture the attention of the editor, you stand a good chance of getting published. Many of these travel publications pay per word, and some even offer expense reimbursement for travel-related stories.
You can also find travel writer jobs and other travel-related jobs on travel networks like Travel Massive, a global community for people who create travel.
#2. Content writer for a travel company
You can offer professional travel writing services, like web content writing for travel websites that pay for travel article submissions, or work as a full-time content writer for a travel company.
If you write for travel writing companies, you’ll need to learn persuasive travel writing skills to sell their travel packages and services to website visitors.
In this Storytelling Course, you’ll learn how to weave fascinating narratives out of data-driven facts and make sure your writing leaves a lasting impression.
Learn the techniques for creating mind-blowing content that captures and holds readers’ attention; create compelling tales around your content to increase sales, and use your imagination to craft compelling stories with strong emotional appeal.
#3. Writing a travel guide
Another great way to get paid for your travel writing is by writing a travel guide, and publishing your travel tips and hacks as an eBook on Amazon Kindle Publishing, or an audio walking tour guide on Audible.
Becoming a writer of travel guides is a very popular way to earn money as a travel blogger, and you can publish a series of guides on each country, city, or region you’ve visited.
Travel guides are particularly handy for first-time travelers, and as a guidebook writer, you can get paid for writing about sightseeing, providing useful information on hotels and restaurants, and other useful travel tips and hacks that you learned on your travels.
#4. Writing a travel memoir
Writing a travel memoir is a great way to make money in your travel writing career. A travel memoir is a personal account of your travels, usually with a specific focus or theme.
People love reading travel memoirs. They are fun, interesting, and often inspiring. Most of the travel books in the list of the best travel writers above would classify as travel memoirs. But writing a good travel memoir is not as easy as it seems.
You can’t just jot down a few notes about your trip and call it a day. To write a truly great travel memoir, you need to be both a good writer and a good storyteller, and paint a vivid picture of your experiences.
When writing a travel memoir, it’s important to strike the right balance between writing about your experiences and writing for your audience. For retired travel bloggers, writing a travel memoir is a great way to leverage a lifetime of travel experiences.
This Memoir Writing Course is a guide to getting your memoir written, edited, and published. You’ll learn how to turn your life story and memories into a non-fiction book, your memoir.
As very few travel writers get published via the traditional route, you could just avoid travel writing publishers and self-publish your book or publish a travel blog instead.
#5. Monetizing a travel blog
Monetizing a travel blog is, by far, the most lucrative way to get paid for your travel writing, but like professional, famous bloggers, you must think of your travel blog as a business or a writing platform, not a quick way to make money with travel writing.
Travel writers like Roy Stevenson note that travel websites and blogs take a minimum of four years to start earning a livable income — and that’s only if you do everything right.
“It takes a minimum of four years to start earning a livable income with travel websites and blogs — and that’s only if you do everything right.”
You can learn several ways to earn money from blogs once you start writing about your travels and build your blog traffic and readership.
For example, if you write an article on the best destinations to visit in a specific season, you can monetize your blog post with affiliate links from travel affiliate networks like Travel Payouts – the best CPA travel affiliate network with over 100 of the best affiliate programs for travel bloggers.
You can promote travel gear, travel books, and more products for travelers in an article on your packing list for your next trip once you join the Amazon affiliate program.
You can also start a YouTube channel, upload your travel videos and start earning through sponsorships, affiliate marketing, or from the YouTube partner program.
#6. Become a travel influencer
To become a travel influencer, you must start building an audience and an engaged community of followers who trust your judgment and recommendations.
You may want to do some social media content creation courses to learn how to start posting your videos and stories on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and TikTok and build a community of followers on each of these platforms.
Here are some social media marketing courses to help you do that:
- Becoming an Instagram Influencer course – Learn the process of becoming an Instagram influencer and get everything you need to know about Instagram’s platform, with detailed steps on how to grow and monetize your account.
- Instagram Reels course – Learn the recipe to master Instagram Reels, grow your influence and followers like crazy, and get Instagram Automation tips for Reels before it even launches.
- YouTube Mastery & Monetization course – This course by Matt Par is a complete roadmap to take beginners all the way to make a full-time income and has just as much content for the veterans to scale their business and perfect their techniques.
- Make viral videos with MKBHD – Learn how to make compelling videos that go viral in this MasterClass as MKBHD (Marques Brownlee) guides you through creating engaging video content that connects with your viewers on any platform.
Instagram is an important channel for travel influencers, but you need to learn working Instagram engagement strategies to grow your brand and build a strong community of Instagram followers targeted to your niche.
If you grow your followers and engagement on Instagram, you can provide more value to advertisers, and attract more and better travel sponsorships and collaborations.
You can use a social scheduling tool like Tailwind to transform your travel photos into hundreds of optimized, personalized designs for Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest.
It will also help you grow your Instagram following, with a smart Instagram assistant that helps automate all of your social media designs, scheduling, and analytics.
You should also start building connections with other travel bloggers, and collaborate with brands on influencer marketing platforms, to create interesting and engaging content and monetize your personal brand.
#7. Offer travel itinerary writing services
Travel design or travel itinerary writing services involve creating custom itineraries for specific types of travelers. As a travel designer, you can help sophisticated travelers save time and ensure that their trip is planned out efficiently.
After the pandemic, bespoke travel services, such as safe travel itinerary writing and travel planning services, have become popular to help discerning travelers negotiate the post-COVID world of travel.
In this course on how to use Travel Design to create perfect travel adventures, you’ll learn the steps required to progress from service design to travel design, and how to build the perfect travel itinerary scenario.
You’ll study how travel experiences and adventures are staged, and learn how to prepare more efficiently for creating better travel itineraries, adventures, and experiences for your clients.
Once you learn these skills, you can also work with travel brands, travel agencies, and Destination Marketing Organizations (DMOs) to provide itinerary writing services for safe travel tours.
#8. Get invited to FAM trips & conferences
Food bloggers or travel bloggers and lifestyle bloggers often get invited by government tourism boards to go on free familiarization (FAM) tours or press trips and conferences where they get to experience the cultural delights of a specific destination at no cost.
A FAM or familiarization trip is usually organized by tourism boards and is an opportunity to learn about destinations for free.
FAM tours or press trips exist because media outlets want more than just coverage. They also crave authentic experiences from influencers which give travelers greater insight into stories worth telling.
In return, influencers are expected to create some content and post about their experiences on their blog and social media channels, as well as create videos to promote the destinations they visited.
For instance, my press trip to Nepal for the International Travel Bloggers & Media Conference (ITBMC) in Katmandu, as well as the FAM tours, was covered by Nepal Tourism. In return, I wrote about my travel experiences in a series of blog posts and published a number of videos on my YouTube channel.
You can also land press trips by selling your story ideas to tour operators and editors of travel publications. According to Roy Stevenson, author of The Complete Guide to Query Letters for Travel Writers, knowing how to sell your story ideas opens the door for press trips to almost any destination in the world.
“Knowing how to sell your story ideas opens the door for press trips to almost any destination in the world.”
In his eBook, How to Land Press Trips and FAM Tours, Roy will show you exactly what you need to do to get invitations for Press Trips and FAM tours.
You’ll learn where to find press trip listings, how to use your travel assignments to make the most of each trip, how to request travel perks to help defray the costs of your assignments, and a lot more.
If you like the idea of going on press trips as a travel content creator, you can join the Matador Creator’s Network which will give you access to paid gigs with brands, press trips, and paid content opportunities.
If you enjoy trying out new culinary experiences, you can expand your niche to start a food and travel blog, and even get paid to write restaurant reviews or write about cultural and culinary events.
#9. Collaborate with travel vendors
Another way to get paid for your travel writing is to partner or collaborate with vendors when you travel. For instance, you can ask tour operators for discounts in exchange for writing about them on your blog and social media channels.
This tactic helped me save a good chunk of money on sightseeing when I took a bucket-list trip to Norway to see the Northern Lights.
In order to be successful in partnering or collaborating with travel vendors, you should send them a press kit with details of your travel blog analytics, and social media following as well as a list of any previous travel collaborations and the results you achieved for them.
One of the best ways to connect with travel vendors who are actively looking to partner with travel bloggers and travel agencies is to attend Travel & Tourism Trade Shows and Tourism exhibitions.
You can find these on event platforms and websites like the ones below:
#10. Join travel writer networks & associations
If you’re serious about becoming a travel blogger, you should also join travel writers’ associations like the ones below:
- The International Travel Writers & Photographers Alliance
- The International Food Wine and Travel Writers Association
- International Travel Writers Alliance (ITWA)
- Society Of American Travel Writers (SATW)
- North American Travel Journalists Association (NATJA)
- TWAI – Travel Writers Association of India
Not only will these travel association memberships give you legitimacy as a travel content writer, but they will help you network with other travel professionals and find more opportunities to get paid for your writing.
#11. Become a travel journalist & get a press card
The best travel journalists don’t travel without their press cards. This is an invaluable resource for a freelance travel writer or travel blogger, as it is also accepted wherever an official press card is required for media accreditation or identification purposes.
Some travel writer associations, like the International Travel Writers Alliance (ITWA), will issue a press card as official recognition that its holder is a professional or freelance travel journalist.
The Alliance press card will help you secure media admittance to events, celebrations, attractions, and entertainment throughout the world, and also provide access to a range of specific and ongoing opportunities from the Alliance’s travel industry partners and their agencies.
In addition, the ITWA sends out a twice-monthly bulletin that provides you with long-life items that can be used in confidence, while also suggesting ideas for your future travel assignments.
Each item carries a media contact who will be delighted to hear from you and support you in any way they can.
#12. Become a Google Local Guide
The Google Local Guide program is an important part of Google Maps, where you can find reviews and information about local businesses.
Local Guides help tourists find the best places in their area to visit, share knowledge about local businesses and provide reviews for each one on a scale from one star (poor) all way up to five stars (excellent).
With the Google Local Guide program, travelers can learn all about their surroundings, from reviews and photos to listings information or even street views, and explore new areas by checking out what other people have done while traveling around their current location.
As a Google Local Guide, you earn points when you score a place with ratings, describe your experience with reviews, share photographs and videos, provide insights with answers, respond to questions about a place, update information with place edits, add missing places, or verify the information by checking facts.
In this gamified review program, those points lead to higher levels of the program and when you become a Level 4 Local Guide, you unlock your first Local Guides badge.
Google will reward you further by giving you access to special perks and benefits like early access to Google features, partner rewards, or being featured on promotional videos. They may even invite you to attend a fully-expensed summit of Local Guides.
Read Google’s guidelines for writing a travel review and making great videos to increase the likelihood that your review will get published.
Make sure you don’t violate the policies of the Google Local Guide program by posting fake reviews, spam, or restricted content. Reviews that are flagged are taken down in order to comply with Google policies or legal obligations.
#13. Become a TripAdvisor Influencer
TripAdvisor is one of the most popular and influential travel websites, and as an influencer, you can provide valuable insights to your followers about destinations, hotels, restaurants, and more.
People often look to TripAdvisor for advice on where to stay, eat, and play when they travel. This puts TripAdvisor in a powerful position to connect travel brands with travelers.
Becoming a TripAdvisor influencer is a great way to share your experiences with users of this website and influence their travel plans by helping them choose the best travel vendors and tour providers.
As a TripAdvisor influencer, your opinion could have a real impact on someone’s travel plans. You could even get access to exclusive perks and rewards from TripAdvisor and its partners.
These benefits could include things like complimentary stays, exclusive events, and unique experiences. Here are some tips to become a TripAdvisor influencer and attract travel and tourism brands who want to work with you:
- Write honest and informative reviews of hotels, restaurants, and attractions. Be sure to share your experiences honestly and objectively. This is the key to being influential on TripAdvisor – people trust your opinions and insights if you provide them in an honest and transparent way.
- Upload high-quality photos of your travel experiences. Photos are a key part of any travel review, and good photos will help make your reviews more engaging for readers.
- Get involved in the TripAdvisor community. Join discussion forums, answer questions, and provide feedback to others. Join relevant Trip Advisor discussion forums and answer other users’ questions.
- Share your experiences on social media. Recommend travel and tourism businesses that you’ve had positive experiences with to your friends and followers on social media.
If you have a large following on social media, you can leverage that to help promote your TripAdvisor activity – and attract new readers in the process. Becoming a TripAdvisor influencer can also offer a number of benefits as a travel blogger in terms of:
- Increased exposure and traffic – As a travel influencer, you’ll have increased exposure on TripAdvisor, which can result in more traffic to your website or blog.
- Increased engagement – When you write about your travel experiences on TripAdvisor, you’ll not only be providing valuable information to other travelers, but you’ll also be engaging with the TripAdvisor community. This increased engagement can lead to more blog followers and even more traffic.
- Increased brand awareness – As a travel influencer, you’ll be enhancing your brand’s visibility and reach online. This can result in more offers of brand sponsorship and collaboration.
I hope you found this travel writing article useful in learning travel writing, starting your own travel blog website, and becoming a travel influencer.
Check out this list of travel and tourism jobs for more jobs that allow you to travel and pay well, and remember that you can’t start a travel blog without traveling, whether locally or internationally.
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© 2022 – 2023, Priya Florence Shah. All rights reserved.
Priya Florence Shah is a bestselling author, an award-winning online publisher, and an online branding consultant. Download her free personal branding eBooks and check out Devi2Diva, her book on emotional self-care for women. In her spare time, Priya writes science-fiction novels and poetry and chills with her two-legged and four-legged kids.