If you ever wondered how to travel the world and make money simultaneously, then you definitely want to know how to become a travel writer!
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First, let me clear the air. Contrary to what many people believe a travel writer and a travel blogger are not the same thing. Travel writers earn their money with freelance writing jobs for travel magazines. While travel bloggers earn their money by creating content for their own website or private brands.
Thankfully, one does not have to exclude the other. A lot of travel bloggers publish articles in online magazines too. And a lot of travel writers use their own platform to advertise services or sell products. However, in this article, you will find out everything you need to know on how to become a travel writer.
To be a travel writer you need to have a passion for travel and a desire to produce informative and entertaining content of your travels. Good writers often graduate with a degree in English/ journalism or complete some sort of travel writing course.
While a formal education might not be crucial it is important that you know how to appeal to a wider audience and captivate their interest. Therefore, consider starting out by reading educational material on travel writing like Lonely Planet or Matador Network.
Given that travel writing is considered a craft, you don’t need an extensive set of references (it doesn’t hurt though). But you need to possess the right skills to craft a publishable travel article.
Tip: Nomadic Matt’s Travel Writing course teaches you the Ins and Outs of the profession!
The good thing about travel writing is that you can basically write about a destination of your choice and combine it with your current travels. However, online magazines usually look for specific or trending destinations to be covered.
If you are looking to travel to popular destinations that are written about often, you will need to come up with a unique angle that appeals to readers. Either way, you should always perform a thorough research before pitching your material to travel sites.
How To Become a Travel Writer
How to get started
As in every freelancing profession, the number one way to receive jobs is by promoting your material. So, the first thing you need to do is to create an online presence. Start by setting up a portfolio website or blog that showcases your articles, pictures, and publications. Make sure to link all your social media channels to it and use these platforms to connect with potential customers and readers.
Secondly, network, network, network! Make sure to develop relationships with other writers and editors in the travel writing field. These people will become part of your network, that you can use to learn about job opportunities. Good events to receive leads for freelance writing jobs are TBEX, ITB Berlin, and the Book Passage. Or join a travel writing community such as MatadorU or Make a living writing.
An additional step you want to take is to join freelancing websites such as Fiverr. These platforms offer huge databases of writing jobs for a number of different publications. Even though they might not all be travel related, you can use them to connect with editors for future jobs. Scroll to the end for a list of freelancing websites.
How to find Jobs
When you hear about travel writing you most of the time think of big publications like Lonely Planet, Conde Nast Traveler, and BBC Travel, but the reality is, competition for these magazines is fierce and most of the time they already have staff covering these sections.
So, think different and research small publications that offer a travel section. You will be surprised how many local publications are eager to pay for a quality article on trending destinations or modes of travel.
To help you get started with your search we compiled a list of 50 websites and magazines that will pay for your writing. These magazines and websites might not pay much, but it’s better than nothing and good practice. Be sure to read their guidelines and get familiar with their writing style before submitting an article.
As a new travel writer, you are looking at a very unstable stream of income. The amount of money you make is directly linked to the number of jobs you completed. Meaning that you might have 2 jobs one month and 5 jobs the next.
In addition, rates differ considerably and can range between anything from $50 to $1,000 per article. With the latter applying to experienced travel writers for big travel and leisure publications.
Of course, the most important point on how to become a travel writer is the lifestyle. As a travel writer, you are on the road a lot and visit some of the most beautiful places on earth.
However, traveling, particularly in western countries, can be quite expensive. That’s why a lot of travel writers relocate to parts of the world that are known to be cheap. By backpacking through South East Asia or South America you are able to lower your expenses and afford the lifestyle.
Some writers will even pick up a work exchange job with companies like workaway.info or worldpackers.com to cover their room and board. While that is a great way to immerse into the culture, it’s important to remember that you are there for work. You constantly need to be journaling your experiences and producing publishable content. Yes, the life of a travel writer is exciting and versatile, but also requires a lot of self-discipline and courage.
- You make money while you travel the world
- As a freelancer, you are your own boss
- You get to network with people that might open doors in the future
What else do you want to know on how to become a travel writer? Let us know BELOW!
50 Websites that pay!
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