Author: Dev

How To Approach Tourism Boards For Travel Blogging Sponsorships

Of late I’ve been fielding questions from bloggers and non-bloggers alike about how to score travel blogging sponsorships from tourism boards. So speaking of my experiences, of working with over 20 tourism boards so far, this is what I suggest. But before anything, let’s understand a couple of things: Tourism boards are the government organisations responsible for the tourism of a particular town, or a country. A city may have its own tourism board, eg. Zurich city has Zurich Tourism Board, despite the country, Switzerland, having one — Switzerland Tourism Board. For a travel-blogger, working with a Tourism Board is as much an achievement as playing in the national team for a sportsman. The more you have worked with tourism boards, the more successful you will be considered as a travel blogger. Media Trips organised by Tourism Boards are called FAM trips, or the Familiarization trips. Now, if you’ve just started blogging and are struggling with increasing your readership and social media followers, remember that there’s no “magic number” when it comes to knowing when it’s the right …

Different Ways Of Making Money Travel Blogging

One of the frequently asked questions that travel bloggers come across is how do they make money travel blogging, and it is only natural for someone to ask so. I mean travelling is an expensive hobby. You have a week-long holiday inGoa and you end up spending a couple of thousand Rupees — at the very least. But if you dedicatedly work on your blog, you eventually start reaping the benefits. Most bloggers who quit their job to travel and blog full-time start making money during the first year of their blogging-stint. Though of course, the money generated is often not enough, and bloggers always have to rely on other sources of income (for example, I rely on freelance writing heavily — Read: How I Make Money Travel Blogging) there are still enough ways of generating revenues from your blog. Different bloggers moreover use different ways of making money. But before I disclose all the ways I know of (or have tried in the past) let me put a word of warning first. If your goal of …

How To Create A Media Kit For Your Travel Blog

When I started blogging in 2015, I had no idea what a media kit is, and how crucial it is to have one for my travel blog, particularly if I wanted to travel the world scoring sponsorships. I remember for the initial 4 months of blogging, I contacted about a hundred travel companies, and wrote them emails without my media kit — resulting in no positive response, and often, no response at all. Though initially, I thought it was because of the fact that I was new at blogging and my readership wasn’t impressive enough, I think now that I  look back at it, I can assure myself that it was because my email spoke highly of my inexperienced blogger-self. A 500-word long email with no media kit attached was, in fact, the reason (consider sending a 500-word email to an employer with no attached resume). So, having a media kit is important — particularly if you’re looking at blogging as a long-term plan and want to gain travel sponsorships and make money from blogging. …

5 Must See Holiday Destinations In Kerala

Kerala holds enough charisma with its stunning beaches on the Malabar Coast, green patches of coffee and tea plantations in the east, and the many intertwining backwater canals that can be found all across the state. Rich in heritage, abundant in wildlife and tropical charm, Kerala will give you that relaxing, laid-back vacation, that you are looking forward to. And for some quick assurance, here are my top five hand-picked destinations in Kerala: Bekal: Located in the Kasargod district on the west coast of Kerala (about one and a half hour drive from Mangalore) Bekal boasts of many scenic attractions and an offbeat holiday experience. Attractions like the Bekal Fort, a feisty beach and calm backwaters moreover always add to the experience. Enjoy the sun-kissed beaches from Bekkal Cliff and coconut palms that sway in the breeze with a view of the emerald ocean on the horizon. And if you’re planning a short visit only, look no further than staying at Taj Bekal. Spread across 26 acres of beautiful open space, with an amazing view of the sea & backwaters, Taj Bekal is a visual delight. Periyar Tiger Reserve: Thekkady is home to Kerala’s largest …

How To Find Travel Blogging Sponsorships And Travel The World For Free

Finding sponsorships for your travel blog and thus travel the world for free isn’t a tough thing to do. You just need to work for it! When people come across my blog and find out that I’ve been travelling the world for years without having any permanent source of income (no, my dad isn’t supporting my travels anymore!) first thing they ask me is how I fund myself. Those familiar with the business of travel blogging, more closely, rather ask: how I find sponsors for my travels. So first things first: unlike as a fashion or a tech-blogger, surviving as a travel blogger requires a combination of two things: one, making money from blogging, and two, finding sponsors and travelling the world for free. Because unlike with other forms of blogging (take tech-blogging, again, for instance) in travel blogging, every story requires a bit of money invested. For example, a blog post on the latest Android version may not require you to pay for anything to get the content but just an update in your phone, …

My Biggest Solo Travelling Lessons

When you’ve been travelling for long enough, you start calculating the benefits. You wonder whether your solo travels have made you a better and stronger person and whether all these journeys, that you’ve so far taken, have given you a deeper understanding of yourself – from within, and without. You wonder if you want to keep continue travelling, or is it about time to find some stillness in life and look for a purpose in another direction. I’ve been wondering the same thing, repeatedly asking myself the same question – what is it that I’ve gained through all these years of solo travelling. Has it made me a better person and perhaps a bit stronger too from within. Do I want to keep continue doing it? And the answer that came to me was a sure “Yes!” Solo Travelling Has Made Me A Decision Maker Before I started travelling solo I was a team player and not a leader. My decisions would wait for others. But when you’ve travelled for long, having no one but yourself to …

How To Travel From Kuala Lumpur To Penang

Penang is one of those rare frozen-in-time places which connects centuries-old history with today’s modern lifestyle. It caters for the history buff and travel photographer but also nature-lovers. It’s one of those offbeat, yet popular places in southeast Asia, and Malaysia in particular, that has still maintained its laid-back vibe and an old town charm. In short… Penang is Amazing. And with that fact, comes the hard reality — soaring popularity and increasing tourist inflow. More and more tourists are travelling to Penang every day. The good thing is, however, getting to Penang is easier than one can imagine. You have options to choose from. The basis of time it takes to how much it costs, here’s my way of understanding how to travel from Kuala Lumpur to Penang. If You Want To Travel Superquick, Pay Not So Much But Miss The Journey — FLY  Costs around 700 Indian Rupees (nearly 10 USD) — somewhere between what a bus and train costs. Quicker than both bus and train — total three hour travel time, with one hours flight journey and two hours for check-in and check-out. Unlike the …

Offbeat Destinations Near Manali For A Peaceful Holiday

The town of Manali, in Himachal Pradesh, is one of the top tourist destinations in Indian Himalayas. Its close proximity to New Delhi and Chandigarh is moreover continuously making it easier for the crowds to break away from the usual city-madness and experience the peaceful Himalayas. And with the upcoming 4-way highway, all the way from Chandigarh to Manali (with New Delhi to Chandigarh already having one) it is going to be easier than ever for people to reach Manali — meaning, Manali is going to get more crowded, more smokey and bustling with life in the coming years. Recently while travelling to Manali (long story short: I visit Manali and surrounding a few dozen times a year, while staying for a few dozen weeks. I know the place better than my home New Delhi) I realised that Manali isn’t a place I would want to travel to. And it also isn’t a place I would write a Travel Guide for — Things To See And Do In Manali! Not anymore! The idea of having a …

Travel With A Backpack Or A Suitcase?

A die-hard budget backpacker rolling a ‘pretty’ suitcase on the wild-west Kuala Lumpur-ian streets, sounds confusing right? That’s exactly how you’d have found me — struggling between the hard choices of lifting and rolling an 18 kg suitcase — had we met a month ago. It all happened when I was invited by Selangor Tourism for a 5-day blogging trip in the Selangor region, in Malaysia, back in July, and an idea struck my mind that ‘I don’t want to look the odd one in the group, carrying a backpack.’ A quick phone call to another blogger, who was accompanying me on the trip, and my fear turned into reality. At least everybody else was attending the trip like a behaving gentleman. Reluctantly, I decided to put my hard-earned respect at stake, ditched my backpack behind, for the first time in my previous 2-year travel stint, and carried along a nice-looking suitcase. An Easy Lesson, Learned The Hard Way As soon as my FAM trip got finished, and I was left on my own, like a helpless solo …

How To See Berlin In Less Than 6 Hours

Berlin is one of those few European towns that nobody should miss, especially if someone’s visiting Germany. There is art, history, culture, nightlife, an old town charm, fancy pubs — in short, something for everyone. In fact, there is so much to travel for in Berlin that you at least need a few days to explore it all. During my recent blogging trip with Germany Tourism, I ended up having less than 6 hours in the town, before I had to catch a flight to New Delhi. The good thing was, I had a Germany Tourism official (and I’d thank Mr Jens Becker again for this) travelling with me, who, before leaving, not only helped me locate the lockers in the central train station in Berlin, and buy a day pass for the public transport to save me time, but also created a personalised travel guide to cover the highlights of Berlin on a fast track. In less than 6 hours, I covered most of the highlights that Berlin had to offer. Though of course I still only skimmed through its skin, …