Travel. Travel. Travel. Who does not want to experience new things. Now, people started to documented their travel journal through blogging. These people called travel blogger (read: how to make a food blog). You might wonder how they manage to travel all the time and most importantly how they get those money for travelling. The question that being a travel blogger means you can travel for free through sponsorship still in the air. Yet, does blogging really create enough income? would you want to sacrifice your fixed income to live dangerously by being a freelancer?. Check out these travel blogger has what it says on how to make a travel blog.
Q: Why you choose to be a travel blogger?
Indohoy (I): We realize there is very little information about travelling to Indonesia, especially on the internet. Well, there are some, but you have to search deeper and it’s too complicated for us, especially for foreigner. Hence, we decided to create a blog for the purpose of helping others travel to Indonesia. We believe there is big potential.
Ariev Rahman (AR): I like to write. Several of my travel writings has been published, then it got me thinking, why dont’ I start blogging about travel?. Of course, this will be different if I prefer to spend my money on gadget or stuff.
Debbzie (D): I choose to write about travel and food because that’s what I know and experience since little. My travel hobby started when parents took me everywhere since 1-year-old. Also, I have an education background in culinary and used to work as a pastry chef and barista.
Q: How to choose your blog topic?
I: Cap cip cup! Depends of what information we have and which we think is necessary for our readers.
AR: There’s no specific way. If I like a certain topic then I will write it. So, don’t be perplexed when suddenly I write about Dian Sastro.
D: I choose my topic randomly, depend on my mood.
Q: Which part of the blog that you update regularly?
I: There’s a Trip section, but it’s updated if the remaining post is live. Trip is about a summary of blog post based on destination.
AR: I think readers like to read my Mamacation section; stories of travel with my mom. To pick a topic is very easy, stuff that I like, that what I will write.
D: I try to update my blog every week.
Q: Do you start blogging as a full-time or part-time first? When is the right time to pursue full-time blogging?
I: From the start, we always be a part-time blogger. There always be other project/ job. But, mostly we’re having too much fun blogging rather than do our main work. There is no perfect time to become a full-time blogger. Only a willingness to work harder. Once we receive advice from Trinity; “Don’t leave your day job (for blogging)”. You must have a plan and strategy to support being a full-time blogger. If there’s no, don’t start full-time.
AR: Actually, I’m not a full-time blogger. My blogging activity comes after office hour. Also, because of money issue and KPR (house loan credit) which I still need to paid back, I decided to stay as a part-time blogger, hence I still receive a fix income.
D: Hmm.. I started my blog for fun, I never think it as a serious work.
Q: What made you stand out among other blogger?
I: Our focus is providing practical information in English. In Indonesia, these concept is still rare, especially the one who write consistently.We differentiate our self from the stories and information of less traveled places. The hidden gem. We want to show the tourism potential of that place. From the beginning our target market is a foreigner. We dream of more foreigners visit Indonesia; from that mindset we translate it into the information that would be beneficial for them.
AR: I’m handsome, while others more pretty. Ok sorry that a joke, I think its how I tell my story that differentiate me from others.
D: I choose my topic randomly, depend on my mood and I prefer to tell my stories via photos. Hence, you will see more than 15 photos on 1 post. Moreover, I like to write a food review about the local culinary.
Q: How long it takes for your blog to receive steady visitor and keep increasing too?
I: Huge visitor is a relative number and our readership growth is gradually. There’s no specific traffic increase unless we’re being featured in well-known media, but it’s temporary. So, in total it’s been 6 years from the start of our blogging.
AR: Hmm.. its relative regarding stat. I still think I’m nothing. Maybe around 1 – 2 years back, people started noticing Backpack Story.
D: The first 6 month my readers are family and close friends. Then, I don’t know how it grows. In one year the number of page views and visitor keep increasing.
Q: Congratulations! I see that your blog is huge now. When it started to receive attention from media or brand?
I: Hmm… we’re not sure. I think in the 3rd year when brand start “looking” at blog/blogger as a promotional media.
AR: Around a year after I started my blog. Too bad there’s no sponsor want to barter with a house in Pondok Indah ;p
D: On the 2nd year, I start receiving sponsorship email
Q: Can you share the mechanism when working with a brand?
I: Partnership with sponsor mostly in terms of number of blog post and contract. There’s a deadline and / or length of a blog post is live. Some of the post we keep it live even tough already passed the term of contract if we consider its helpful and provide unique information about Indonesia. If we come in contract we must respect the deadline. Basically, when a deadline coincide with our trip, we try to negotiate the time. However, if the sponsor decline it, we do not take the job.
AR: It depend on the sponsor. Is the campaign about traveling so they fund all the event or product review. Everything is negotiable.
D: Mostly without contract. One type of sponsorship is a restaurant or hotel invitation, in return I write about my experience there. Some brand have strict deadline while other is more flexible.
Q: Does sponsor cover most of your trip? Yes or No, and Why?
I: No. We paid for most of our trip. In the last 2 years, approximately 70% of travel expense come from us, whilst before was 95%. Some sponsor decide to fund the whole trip while some in parts such as only accommodation, transport or specific activities.
AR: Not really, because most of my travel I paid by myself. In terms of ratio, maybe 2 or 3 sponsor per year. Well, I hope it’s every month tough.
D: No. I prefer travel using my own expense, so I’m not bound with certain activities.
Q: While traveling how do you manage to divide time between leisure travel and work as a blogger?
I: When on the road we’re more focus on the journey and activities. A country with bad phone signal can be a blessing too, hence making us to prioritize on our trip rather than on our gadget. Our blog kinda being left out but before we travel we already schedule our article so its publish whenever we want. Sometimes this trick can be difficult when there’s job we can’t left behind, so our mobile gadget always come to the rescue.
AR: Monday to friday working office hour. Travelling on the weekend or when I get paid leave. The rest is blogging and go on a date with my girlfriend of course. Blogging is priority than dating. Whooopsss my bad. Of course there’s deadline when working with a brand. Deadline can be in days or month. Depends on how you negotiate.
D: While on the road I prefer to enjoy my trip. Important things I write on my notes or short update on the blog regarding places I went at that time. When I’m at home, I edit the photos and write the full travel story.
Q: Does it possible to work or partner with more than 1 brand in the same time?
I: For full sponsored travel such as media trip, normals we partnered only with one sponsor. Sometimes on one trip we can partner with several sponsor because each sponsor complement the function of the traveling. However, this is seldom happened.
AR: Mostly 1 at a time.
D: I prefer to focus with one sponsor. I believe in quality than quantity.
Q: What difficulties you encounter while working as a travel blogger or being a blogger in general
I: A travel blogger is not a common profession hence we still need to make up with other work to implement our plan. Another obstacle is internet connection in Indonesia can be very challenging sometimes. Yet, slow internet can be an advantage too, as it force us to focus on our journey.
AR: Dividing my time. Especially when its hectic in the office and my girlfriend demand me to meetup.
D: Lazy and procrastinating. I used to put off my writing work. Hence, I always stressed out when the deadline approaching.
Q: What it takes to be a travel blogger?
I: Passion, definitely! A healthy sense of curiosity. The will to learn and understand other culture and people is a must.
AR: Willingness to write and share. Also, one unit of house in Pondok Indah, if there’s sponsor?? haha. joking.
D: Persistence and ability to be present on social media (24/7 if possible :p). It might seem like all we do is having fun. Believe me, it’s not. When travelling, I use my free time for editing pictures, writing new blog post and updating my social media. Honestly I struggle sometimes because after a day of sightseeing or doing outdoor activities, I would rather crash into hotel room. But well, maybe I’m just a lazy blogger, hahaha.
Q: Blogging has become a phenomena now. When do you think this phenomena would phase out?
I: Till forever I hope.hahaha. We’re not sure when this phenomena will continue but we think it become stagnant now. Maybe the trend wouldn’t decrease but will change form in the next 2 years. People will travel more smartly, finding more bizarre places to explore. So, I believe blog will always be there but its content become more specific. This is what we tought.
AR: Actually blogging has been a phenomena quite sometime. I believe this phenomena would keep happening while reading and writing become a habit. lets fight illiteracy!
D: I don’t see that coming in the near future, though. Nowadays people are so attached to the technology and gadgets. A lot of people prefer to search for informations online and blog is one of most visited sources.
Q: Who’s your inspiration for travel blogger?
I: There are many inspiration. Regarding writing style, we like Nomadic matt and Adventurous Kate. Sometimes article from Nat Geo, Vice Travel, or other online news.
D: Yes I several. Actually, from other blog is where I decide to create my own. I used to do blogwalking
Q: Any thoughts or advice for other who want to create their own travel blog or blog?
I: For you who like to travel, when we’re going to travel together? ☺ To become a travel blogger, we encourage you to always remember the purpose of making your own travel blog. When you decide to quit, remember then you would get your spirit back.
AR: Travel more, read more, write more, and don’t forget to make your parents happy.
D:If you want to make travel blogging as a profession, take it seriously. Networking is also important to make a name for yourself in travel blogging sphere. Other than that, just enjoy! 😀
Indohoy by Vira & Mumun
Hello! We’re Indohoy; by Mumun and Vira. We’re a travel blogger who’s focus to share travel information, especially for foreign traveller. Our daily activities consist of Mumun go to (office) work while Vira doing freelance. However, we still continue our blogging because there is many travel information need to share online. We prefer to go traveling frequently, making new experiences. We get restless when we’re not on the road for a long period as we know the world is extraordinary and to just stay put is simply wrong. Of course, traveling does not always bring happiness – other than free traveling with no condition. Eat local food, speak new language or experience the first snow remind us of how the world is vast and maybe endless.
- Blog: www.indohoy.com
- Google+: +indohoy
- Twitter: @indohoy
- Facebook: @IndohoyPage
- Instagram: @indohoy
Backpack Story by Ariev Rahman
Part time blogger, full-time worker, and lifetime traveler. Will write anything to make you smile.
- Blog: www.backpackstory.me
- Google+: +arievrahman
- Twitter: @arievrahman
- Facebook: @backpackstory
- Instagram: @arievrahman
My Time Capsule by Debbzie