Monday, 18 November 2013

7 Traits of a Super Travel Blogger

Of course you are a travel-junkie.  But there are those of us who travel a lot but when asked about a trip they say, “It was nice.” Nice does not even come close to my encounter with a python in a jungle in Maharashtra! So here’s my take on 5 things that make a traveller a super travel blogger.

1. Actualise your Wishlists
A lot of us have wish lists. But have you set a schedule?  I will travel to Ecuador, France, Argentina, Australia, Cyprus, Switzerland and Canada in the year 2014 and I am working towards actualising my travels to these destinations.

2. Observe, be Curious
When you do travel – observe. On a trip to Pondicherry, I walked around markets full of export surplus garments. On further inquiry I discovered that Tirupur, India’s biggest garment manufacturing hub was just a stone’s throw away.  Tourists normally browse by without a thought, but a keen observer can make the connections. So when you travel on work the next time for a meeting in Tokyo for example, notice how there are no trash cans there, find out why.

3. Take Notes
Yes, the human brain is capable of remembering everything we come across each day of our lives. But for most of us mere mortals on occasions when we come across something fascinating, without being recorded it fades away from our memory. I make sure to take notes of interesting names, phrases and striking numbers while on my travels. I also save small souvenirs, may be a flower fallen down just as I pass in a garden in London or a ticket stub of the Louvre on a backpacking trip through France.  This habit keeps my memories strong and helps to add a unique flavour to my travel stories.

4. Though while applying the same to travel photography keep your camera aside for a moment. Sometimes you have to save the image of that gorgeous frozen turquoise water in Ladakh or that royal Jaisalmer sunset in your mind’s eye to feel the magic.

5.  Transcribe in Time
You made your notes diligently during your travels but they are now lying at the end of your pile of books and it’s already been a few weeks since you got back? This sometimes happens to the best of travel writers and bloggers.  Reasons for this range can be many; from having itchy feet to travel to your next destination instead of sitting at a desk and typing it all out, pure laziness or lack of time due to a busy schedule. I avoid this delay by jotting down my memories the moment I get some free time on my trip. As soon I get access to a computer I transcribe them. This way my travel story is ready even before I have arrived back home.

6.  Think Eclectic
It is nice to be part of a network of like minded friends and colleagues. But it is even better to meet people with varied interests, professions, interests and occupations. Imagine sitting in Mumbai at a spiritual convention and being connected to friends sending you updates about a photography exhibition in Delhi and a surf festival in Goa! You can expand your knowledge by just knowing a carpenter in Sweden and an organic farmer in Peru and you never know where the two can connect and lead you to a travel story.

7. Share
Don't be stingy. Share your ideas, thoughts, travel tips, experiences stories with everyone you come across. A fellow blogger needs tips on some coding issues, share your hacks. A friend's aunt needs a trip planned, understand what her requirements are and try your best in scheduling a gorgeous trip for her. Moreover you never know, you will come across something new yourself in the process.

There, that's my two pence on the traits of a super travel blogger. I'd love to hear your thoughts about this.

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