When you’re just getting started as a travel writer, an ideal place to submit your articles is online. It’s relatively easy to get published on travel websites because many of them are screaming out for content.
If you can mold your travel stories to the style of the sites where you’d like to be published, you’re more likely to succeed. Here are a few hot trends in online travel magazines today, along with some approachable publications that follow these trends…
TODAY’S TRAVEL WEBSITE HOT TOPICS:
** Adventure Travel
Though adventure travel stories have been around for years, they’re still snapped up by editors all the time. That said, the idea of adventure travel is morphing…
Sites are looking for more than the standard descriptions of whitewater rafting trips, where getting bounced around on class five rapids and soaked by jets of icy water is the worst that could happen.
The new breed of adrenaline rush junkies seeks over-the-top, harrowing near-miss, flirt-with-death action that will make them the office hero on Monday. Examples of these sought-after stories include vacations where you fly vertically over Moscow in a Mig-29 jet fighter at Mach one, take Formula One racing car lessons, and climb high mountains above your technical expertise.
Websites that eagerly accept adventure pieces include:
** Solo Travel Websites
The solo traveling trend is getting stronger every day. Solo travelers go where they want, when they want, and see what they want without having to worry about a partner’s preferences. They eat where and when they like (or not at all). They stay in cheap hostels or expensive hotels whenever the urge hits.
If you have a solo travel experience, these websites would like to hear from you. Connecting… Solo Travel Network is one such site, at www.cstn.org Check out their website and writer’s guidelines.
** Women’s Groups
Today, more and more women are traveling in pairs or small groups, for weekends or longer, on bachelorette trips, cruises, boutique shopping weekends in London or Rome, art courses in Carmel, art museums in Paris, or baiting amorous Frenchmen.
Many women’s travel websites have sprung up and are getting a lot of hits. They’re seeking articles with a feminine perspective, although you don’t have to be female to write the stories. One in particular seemed happy enough with my Paris Catacombs article, which still resides on their website.
Here are a few women’s travel sites to try:
** Personal Experiences
Stories about poignant and moving experiences have been around on the Internet for years, but they’re becoming more mainstream now.
These experiences range the gambit from visits to WWII cemeteries… to funeral ceremonies in other cultures… to simple, brief encounters between people of different cultures that affected the writer profoundly. These little meetings of the cultures are extremely powerful when well-written.
Many mainstream travel websites will gladly take these stories. Check the writer’s guidelines for such preferences before submitting. Some websites that are worth trying with this sort of story are www.goworldtravel.com and www.escapeartist.com.
** Specialty Tours
Travel tours have been around since the Romans conquered the rest of the known world two millennia ago and ventured out into it like curious tourists today. These days, I’m seeing more and more articles about specialty tours appearing on the Internet and in specialty magazines.
It’s not uncommon to see a busload of military historians doing a week-long tour of the landing beaches, battlefields, military cemeteries, and war museums along the Normandy coastline… groups of avid art historians and artists on barnstorming tours of Europe’s art museums… whale-watching tours… wine tasting tours… sacred sites tours… eco-adventures, etc.
** Food and Restaurant Reviews
Travel websites dedicated to the gourmet cook and gourmand eater have sprung up all over the web. AWAI has featured one or two of these recently. Culinary and gourmet tours of a country or region, often including cooking lessons and wine tasting, are in demand right now.
** Senior Travel Websites
The mature traveler is now on board with travel websites, and those sites are looking for submissions that appeal to this market. Here’s a list from Transitions Abroad with some leads: www.transitionsabroad.com/listings/travel/senior/KeyWebSites.shtml
** Budget Travel Websites
If you’ve traveled on the cheap, budget travel websites will often pay you for your money-saving tips.
Here are a few frugal travel websites to surf:
** Luxury Travel
Despite the global economic crisis, there are still plenty of people with enough money to travel in luxury and live like royals. Some websites cater to this population, and they are more likely to pay for submissions than their budget counterparts.
Try this site:
These are some of the most popular topics I’ve observed among online publications. For more leads on websites to pitch with your ideas, try Google. It’s amazing what you’ll come up with when you do a Google search with the words, “food travel websites,” or “adventure websites.”
[Editor’s Note: Learn more about opportunities to profit from your travels (and even from your own home) in our free online newsletter The Right Way to Travel.]