How to Become a Travel Writer
Have you ever wondered how you can travel the world, explore new destinations and earn money while doing it?
If you have a way with words and the ability to craft engaging content, a career as a travel writer might be perfect for you.
With the rise of remote work and innovations in technology, your dream of becoming a digital nomad could become a reality!
And, as the travel industry picks up after a difficult year, what better time to get back on the road than now?
Look no further, because in this blog post we’re going to show you how you can turn your passion for travel into an exciting new career.
How to become a Travel Writer
Whether you have previous experience or not, a career in travel writing is possible.
Dedication, passion and a dose of creativity will take you far in this industry, and of course, excellent grammar and writing skills as well as a knowledge of marketing, social media and promotion will give you a huge advantage.
To succeed, you will need to be highly self-motivated, flexible and adaptable. And, while a degree in journalism isn’t necessary, consider taking an online travel writing course or workshop in order to enhance your skills and attract potential clients.
What does a Travel Writer do?
Jetting off to exotic destinations, staying in luxurious resorts and enjoying gourmet culinary delights?
This is what many people think of when imagining travel writing.
However, while these types of jobs do exist, the reality is that when starting out as a travel writer your projects may not be so glamorous.
Writing jobs are mostly remote and can be done from the comfort of your laptop wherever you are in the world, but it is important to be prepared to tough it out in the beginning.
Travel writing is a broad topic, and there are many areas that you can specialise in. Writers can create an array of content including:
- Blog posts
- Destination guides
- Travel itineraries
- Social media or website content
While the main focus of travel writing is, of course, the writing itself, there is much more to this occupation than meets the eye.
Freelance writer Briar Jensen explains that writing jobs also include many other tasks like destination research, photography, updating social media, self-promotion, networking and upskilling.
How to make money as a Travel Writer
Trips to far-flung destinations and writing for world-renowned travel companies such as National Geographic and Lonely Planet might sound like a dream come true, but the reality is that it can take a while to make a name for yourself in the industry.
Travel writing is competitive, and although it can become a full-time job, when starting out it may be difficult to earn a lot of money.
Freelance writers usually set a per-word rate, although jobs can also be paid per hour or for a specific project as a whole. Once you gain experience, build a network and promote yourself and your work, you can begin to charge higher rates and find better paid jobs.
Travel Writer jobs
Love the idea of becoming a travel writer but don’t know where to start?
The global travel industry is huge, and aspiring writers can find jobs working for magazines, online publications, travel agencies, tour operators… and the list goes on!
There are a vast array of companies that are looking for travel-related content, and it is possible to find both freelance and contract based roles.
Some online travel brands such as World Nomads and GoAbroad will pay you to contribute to their website or blog, and make sure to keep up-to-date with the Linkedin pages, social media posts and websites of your favourite travel companies to be the first to know about potential job opportunities.
Tips for Travel Writers
We know that starting a new career can be difficult, and all of the information out there can be overwhelming.
Well, we’ve got you covered!
Here are some of our top tips for aspiring travel writers.
✔ Build a portfolio of your work
In the past, a traditional portfolio with a range of published work was essential for securing writing jobs.
If you’re just starting out in the industry and don’t have any published work yet, fear not!
Consider starting a blog, website or social media page to build an audience and showcase your skills to potential clients.
And, you don’t need to travel the globe to start off; why not write about your favourite local spots or the hidden gems of your own city?
✔ Develop an online presence
In today’s tech-focused world, building an online presence is key for marketing, networking and self-promotion. Having a consistent and engaging Instagram page could be the difference between landing a job or not, so be wise with your online strategy.
✔ Hone in on your writing skills
While it may sound simple, creating top-quality content is crucial.
Even if your writing skills are top-notch, bad quality photographs, too much text or simple grammar mistakes can put readers - and potential clients - off.
Consider how your writing can engage an audience, provide them with useful information or appeal to a need to make them keep reading, and always double-check your work to ensure it is mistake-free.
✔ Find your niche
Whether it is adventure travel, culinary gems, luxury destinations or backpacking on a budget, find an area that you excel in and stick with it. Even if you choose to write about a more generalised topic, make sure you know your stuff in order to stand out from the crowd.
✔ Stay up-to-date
Because the travel industry is constantly transforming, it is important to keep up with the latest travel trends so that you can provide your audience with the most useful and relevant information.
Do your research and read as much as you can to stay in the know.
Constantly writing and not getting any responses?
Travel writing can be a rewarding career, but it also takes a lot of hard work, dedication and perseverance.
We know that it can be frustrating, but write as much as you can, be consistent, keep learning, and in time your network will grow.
Pros and Cons of being a Travel Writer
While regular travel, new experiences, flexible hours and location-independent work are huge benefits of being a travel writer, there are some downsides that you may want to consider.
Working while travelling may sound idyllic, but always being on the road without the comfort of having a home base can take the joy out of travel. Travel writing isn’t a constant vacation, and like any other job, it also comes with its challenges.
The competitiveness of the industry can make it hard to stand out from the crowd, and the road to becoming a successful travel writer takes time. Don’t expect to gain hundreds of clients in the beginning; aspiring travel writers need to be passionate enough about their profession in order to stick with it when times get tough.
On the other hand, while there are many travel writers out there, there are also many travel companies! Brands are always looking to improve their content and attract and engage an audience, and travel writers can provide them with just that.
How can travel writers help travel brands?
Research by Condor Ferries found that 90% of consumers do all of their holiday research online. Online travel content is a powerful and strategic tool that can increase website traffic, help to grow an audience and attract new clients.
If you are a travel company thinking about hiring a writer, there are many benefits to consider.
Engaging and shareable travel-related content such as blogs, articles and social media posts are an essential part of any successful marketing strategy and can help your company to find its brand voice, and content such as guidebooks, destination descriptions and itineraries can also provide your clients with lots of added value.
In order to find the perfect travel writer for your business, it is important to first consider what type of content you want to share and who your audience is.
Whether you are an aspiring writer or a travel company looking to improve your offerings, we’re sure you are as passionate about travel as us!
Here at Nezasa, we are dedicated to providing travel brands with the most innovative, efficient and powerful software solutions.