If you take time to search the blogosphere you will realize there are travel blogs reaching as far as the eye can see. And the great thing about that is there is something for everyone. When The Vacation Gals transpired we knew that we would be writing about our adventures, experiences and advice as well as the trips we take together, with our families and spouses. For us, who’ve been at it for a while, it’s pretty easy to scan a blog and figure out the audience, quality and, most importantly, whether we will return as a regular reader. But for those of you who are new to this realm, the thought of finding the perfect travel blogs to follow and trust might be rather daunting. So, how can you tell whether a blog is worth reading regularly?
Here are some tips to get you started as you surf the web for new and helpful travel blogs:
1. Content. Travel blogs come in all shapes and sizes but it’s the content that makes the top blogs successful. Every blog should be easy to read, interesting and informative. Keep in mind that some travel blogs are advice and how-to oriented while others are more about storytelling. Read a couple of posts and the purpose of the blog will be obvious.
2. Design. When it comes down to it, a blog design shouldn’t really make a difference whether you read it or not, but the site should be easy to navigate and comfortable to read. For example, if it’s difficult to read the text, perhaps it’s too small, or the background is dark or pastel with white text, I will leave the site immediately since it’s too hard on the eyes. Whatever the case may be the colors, style and readability should feel natural.
3. Photos. Images alone can make a travel post worth reading. Colorful landscapes will take you to the destination instantly and give you some perspective. For example, I love seeing the inside of hotel rooms before I make reservations. While scenic views of beaches, mountains, food and activities can be tantalizing enough to make me want to pack my bags ASAP!
4. Updates. Since travel bloggers travel, some blog owners have been known to take a break from the blogosphere for days, weeks, months and even years. After returning from their adventures they pick up where they left off and continue writing. Other times, just like some websites, the blogger may decide to quite writing all together, leaving the site stagnant. Since most blogs posts are dated it’s not difficult to tell how recent the posts are. While many of these abandoned sites have good information nothing new is being added while the old content is getting dated.
5. Helpful. You should feel like you’re learning something new when you read a travel blog and it should have a personal twist. While some blogs are fun to live vicariously though, when you’re reading travel blogs because you’re planning a trip you will want writers who will deliver information that will help you plan and improve your family’s experience whether that includes tips for where to stay, restaurants not to miss or how to save money on your rental car.
6. Specialty. The most important thing to look for in a travel blog is a specialty. If you’re traveling with small children, reading a blog by someone who travels with teens won’t be very helpful. If you’re looking for airline miles advice, seek out travel blogs that are run by airline experts who have the insider information. I guarantee that wherever your interests lie there is a travel blog for you.
What it all comes down to is this: If you can relate to the blog and enjoy reading the content so much that you want to return, then you have discovered the travel blog that’s right for you. And that’s all that matters!