Adventures in making money travel blogging (sarcasm)

How travel blogging enriched our lives and bank balances…

When writing a travel blog everything must always be amazing and life changing. You do not want your readers to think that anything ever goes wrong on the marvelous journey you are taking. Visit as many countries as possible, remember it is all about quantity – being able to say I have visited 5,4543 countries by the age of 25 automtically means you will be better than those who haven’t. Here is my list on how to have a sucessful, money-making travel blog:

1. Comment on every post by every travel blogger with lots of followers.
2. As soon as possible get loads of adverts on your site.
3. Write a re-hashed version of the same post that appears on hundreds of other blogs – best beaches in Thailand is always a great one!
4. Tweet every five seconds, everyone in the entire world must know you have written a new post so you can have thousands of followers.
5. Huge amounts of followers means you are likely to get given free trips by companies! With these free trips you write sponsored posts saying how wonderful a hotel/trip is (even if it wasn’t).
6. Do not forget the importance of an e-book – perhaps one on house sitting despite you doing all of one houses sit (the readers do not have to know).
7. Act like you are a expert on everything travel.

The above is of course sarcasm. I have nothing against people trying to make money from their blogs but so often I’ve come across ones who are at best fake and worst plain nasty. I desperately need to find myself more travel blogs written by the sort of people I wouldn’t want to throw a drink over. Recommendations please.

Disclaimer – No travel bloggers were harmed in the making of this post.



How house sitting opened up the world to us

My list of places I wanted to visit in England was rather large, add Europe and it was obscene so I had not even attempted to include further afield. We bought a camper van two years ago with the idea of going round Europe. Being on a tight budget at the time meant we could only afford a 16-year-old LDV (not the best make and no longer being produced). The LDV was the only one out of many we had viewed to have everything we needed for the trip: cooker, 12v electric with leisure battery and a decent bed. Considering how it was completely ready for use and had 10 months MOT the £1900 price seemed quite good. Unfortunately, a week after getting it and the second time I drove the gearbox went and whilst we did replace it and head off to France the van proved way too large for me to drive. Other factors, such as the van having very poorly fitted doors meant we were awoken most nights by other campers. After a month we had to head home as I was exhausted and in danger of causing an accident. The European dream needed a re-think. Continue reading

Adventures in blogging

When I tell most people I have started a blog their reaction is ‘good luck’, I am left thinking why do I need luck it’s not a new career venture… Oh I see.

Last week my one week old blog had 15 followers, a few comments and a lot of likes on the pictures. I was elated, I never set this blog up to get huge followers, earn money and sell related ebooks but I cannot lie – seeing a new follower does give you a boost. I love to write and to share my experiences so a blog seemed a good idea. I did not realise I had unwittingly entered such a scary world by blogging about our travels.

Recently a well established travel blog contacted me and asked if I would like to write a section for their new e-book. According to them doing this would get my blog so much exposure with their fans, yep they do not have followers but fans apparently! I said no politely; it just did not sit right with me for various reasons. I had a rather rude response back saying lots of others would jump at the chance and I would not be successful. Well naughty me for not following the rules. Obviously it does not occur to them that not everyone sees their blog as a popularity contest.

I would like to take the opportunity to say that whilst I write about travel I do not see myself as a travel blogger. My main job is helping Zack with the admin side of the website design business, thus, blogging is a hobby just as photography, reading and walking are. I could never travel constantly for six months let alone years! I love my family, friends and house too much to not see them for so long – Skype is great but nowhere near a substitute, I cannot hug my mum or stroke one of the cats on it. I neither could do things purely to write about on the blog, sometimes I love a few days of reading and not going anywhere. Some would say I could write a post about relaxing on holiday, I say this makes the blog too much like a job. SEO, retweeting articles insanely, buying followers?! Not for me. No offence to anyone that does have a blog to earn a living, it just does not appeal to me.

To the followers I have, hello. I hope you enjoy what I post and if it’s ever useful all the better. I cannot promise posting schedules, giveaways or inspirational stories (I hate that phrase for some reason), but I can say that I will always reply to genuine comments, will never have sponsored posts and adverts and most certainly will not be releasing an e-book.

Adventures in owning an old car

Having inherited my attitude to money largely from my stepfather; a man who finds the word buy very distressing, I naturally own a cheap car. Mine was ridiculously cheap, some people probably spend the same on weekly groceries. Thankfully I for the most part got away with my thrifty purchase for four years. Last year however it all started to go a bit wrong…

Continue reading