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The travel blogging community reminds me a lot of the swing dancing community back in my hometown.

Okay, okay — I realize that comparing travel blogging to swing dancing seems a bit incongruous. But hear me out.

Yes, this is me like 4 years ago...

The first time I went swing dancing, I had no clue what I was doing. I didn’t know any of the steps. I wasn’t too familiar with the music. And I only knew one other person there. But, within those first introductory hours, I realized that it didn’t matter. Nobody cared if I could execute a perfect pretzel turn, or if I could perform amazing aerial tricks with my partner. Most of them were just excited to see a new face, and eager to get a newcomer hooked on swing.

To put it simply, I felt very welcome.

The travel blogging community is very similar, I’ve found. Instead of intense competition for a dance partner (or readership), most travel bloggers are extremely supportive of one another. They don’t care if you don’t have the right shoes (or blogging platform). They could care less if you’re unfamiliar with the music (or Twitter). And aerial tricks (or SEO skillz) are the last things they’ll be judging you for.

The travel blogging community is awesome. It’s full of friendly, helpful bloggers who genuinely do want to see others evolve and succeed with their blogs and in their travels.

This was proven to me last week when I wrote a post about the frustrations of travel blogging. All of us newcomers go through it at some point — that helpless, disheartened feeling we sometimes get when it seems like nothing we do is right, or that no one is out there paying attention.

But the travel blogging community is paying attention.

The outpouring of support, feedback, and “I know exactly what you mean” comments on that post proved to me, once again, that the travel blogging community is more than just a group of people who happen to be doing the same thing at the same time. Just like those strangers who welcomed me into the swing dancing fold, travel bloggers like to support one another, too.

Here are five reasons why the travel blogging community rocks:

  • Everyone is supportive. Have a new blog post or Facebook page? More likely than not someone else from the travel community will Tweet it, Stumble it, or leave you their two cents in a comment. Travel bloggers are very reciprocal when it comes to things like follows on Twitter and comments on blogs, and can make you feel welcome right away. Once you’ve settled in, they’ll probably even console you when you’ve had a bad day or a rough travel experience. Travel bloggers get around, and many truly can relate to just about any crazy experience you throw at them. And, even if they can’t, they’ll probably still send their sympathies your way.
  • People are willing to share what they know. Like I just said, travel bloggers are a smart, well-traveled bunch. If you’re heading to a new destination or just have a question, throwing up a quick Tweet or blog post will likely net you some great suggestions. Travel bloggers in general are eager to share what they know, even if it’s about their favorite best-kept secret in a destination, or tips on how to get great deals or amazing accommodation.
  • They become part of your audience. Reaching out to other bloggers is a great way to build an initial audience, while at the same time getting to know some new people. Regularly reading and commenting on a handful of your favorite blogs will often lead to what I like to call blogger bonding. You get to know the authors through their writing, and they (being awsome travel bloggers) will often mosey on over to your blog to do the same. While it’s unwise to solely rely on other bloggers when it comes to your readership, you don’t want to count them out. Often, they can give you insight on a topic or destination that you may not have encountered otherwise, simply because they’ve been there.
  • Other bloggers can serve as inspiration. There are some great bloggers out there doing some great things — volunteering, traveling with their families, making documentaries, and just enjoying life to the fullest. I don’t care how long you’ve been blogging — if you’ve done something amazing and can write about it in an engaging way, you’ve won my adoration. I’ve added so many things to my bucket list simply from reading about other peoples’ adventures. And when it comes to the bloggers who have made travel their careers? Well, if that’s not inspiration, I don’t know what is.
  • Real friendships can be forged. When you dive so deeply into a community, it’s almost impossible to emerge without having formed some bonds. Blogger bonding can translate into real friendships. And it doesn’t have to stay confined to the cyber world, either. Countless travel bloggers have met up with their peers while on the road, having real-life adventures together and making some wicked memories.

Entering into such a sprawling, close-knit group can seem daunting at first. But just as I melted into the swing dancing community back home, I feel like I’m being accepted into the crazy, wonderful travel blogging community, as well.

And it’s awesome.

——

If you’re a travel blogger, have your experiences with the community been similar? Share your thoughts!

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58 Responses to Why the Travel Blogging Community is Awesome

  1. Thanks for always being so positive! I know I’m not, so it’s good to read posts that make me want to be more that way. I haven’t always felt welcomed by the travel blogging community, but just like in real life, there are people who are going to be your friends and people who aren’t. The one’s who aren’t are not worth worrying about. The great people I’ve met and real friendships I’ve forged make the rest worth it.
    Caroline in the City recently posted..Hanging with Harry

    • DangerousBiz says:

      You’re welcome, Caroline. In general, I’m an optimist. So I try to look at the positive as often as I can!

      I think in every community you’re still going to have your cliques and niches. It’s just a matter of finding the niche where you fit it. And you’re right – the people who don’t care to be your friends aren’t worth your time. Focus on the ones who DO want to support you and form friendships.

  2. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Caroline Eubanks, Amanda Williams. Amanda Williams said: NEW POST: Why the Travel Blogging Community is Awesome http://wp.me/p10Ebd-16I #travel #blogging [...]

  3. Katherina says:

    Nice thoughts and I hope you’re right! I’ve just recently started on the travel community and don’t know myself around a lot… but if people are really that welcoming, I’m sure I’ll feel “at home” very soon! :)
    Katherina recently posted..Fridays Five

    • DangerousBiz says:

      The majority are super welcoming! And the ones who maybe aren’t… well don’t worry about them. :)

      Good luck! Most of all, have fun with blogging.

  4. I’m so glad you wrote this post–and the last one about feeling frustrated. They’re both very honest and very real! I’m happy you’ve found support, and the longer you keep at it the better it will become ;)
    Emily @Travelated recently posted..Top 5 Things to Do in Bonita Springs- FL

  5. Nick Laborde says:

    I have had nothing but great experiences with the travel community, both online and offline. Thanks for reminding all of us just how awesome it is.
    Nick Laborde recently posted..Ya Momma… Was right- ditch the losers

    • DangerousBiz says:

      You’re welcome, Nick. Thanks for reading! The travel blogging community really is such a great thing to be a part of.

  6. Dawn says:

    And an additional point is that travel – in itself – is interesting. If someone writes from the heart about a travel experience whether it be visiting a foreign country or exploring some little know backwater of their own, it’s always of interest.

    So that visiting travel blogs is fun. There are niches out there that would bore the pants of the most dedicated. But travel is always a glorious adventure.

    I’ve never felt anything but welcome on any of the travel blogs I regularly visit even though I don’t have one of my own. I’m not a “real” travel blogger just a “wanna-be” but no-one has ever made me feel less welcome because of that.

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Well said, Dawn! You’re so right – just getting to read about travel all the time makes me go back to certain blogs again and again. And I’m so glad to hear that you feel welcome, even without being a “real” travel blogger, as you put it.

  7. Mitch says:

    I only recently came across your site but I just wanted to say I am enjoying your posts (including this one) very much! I haven’t much of a response from the community so far but am hoping to continue diving in and getting to know other travel bloggers out there!
    Mitch recently posted..Road Trip- The Sequel!

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Thanks, Mitch! If you put the effort in in this community, I think you’ll eventually get something back from it. Welcome to the site!

  8. Sabina says:

    It really is amazing how friendly and supportive the travel blogging world is. Since a lot of people really want their blogs to raise in the rankings rather than just blogging for the sake of blogging, it could be competitive and cruel. Instead, people are interested in helping each other, meeting each other and genuinely being friendly. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a nasty comment on a travel blog from another travel blogger or seen any rude remark on Twitter. It really is a great community.

    • DangerousBiz says:

      I’m also glad it’s not super competitive. I mean, sure, there’s always going to be some small amount of tension here and there, but, for the most part I don’t see that very often. I have seen a not-so-nice comment every once in a while. But the supportive comments are much more prevalent, I think.

  9. Kieron says:

    Hell yeah, we love the travel blogging community! We’ve only been around for just over a month and already feel like we’ve made some great friends… can’t wait to meet some of these amazing people when we start traveling!
    Kieron recently posted..Celebrating One Month of Blogging

  10. Unfortunately I have had a couple of experiences that force me to say the travel community is not always 100% welcoming or supportive. Example, I followed someone on Twitter. Immediately I was sent a message saying “you can do a blog post about me, if you want” It was not an offer to write a guest post for me. It was an offer to write about them on my blog! They had elevated themselves to such a status that made me feel I should be grateful for the follow.

    Others have not responded to e-mails I have sent, asking if I can do a guest post for them, even when they advertise that they welcome guest posts. If they don’t want my work, they should just say thanks but no thanks. To me, no response is so demotivating. ( On a feel good factor though, I would like to say Emily from travelated.com responded to my emails quickly and with clear instructions as to what she was expecting for a guest post. Wandering Earl is also great for replying every single time)

    You are correct when you say, focus on the ones that are supportive and welcoming. Ignore the ones that are not.
    Natalie – Turkish Travel Blog recently posted..Hot Air Balloons Of Cappadocia

    • DangerousBiz says:

      There of course are always going to be exceptions. Because, let’s face it, there are some bloggers out that probably don’t care quite as much about their relationship with their readers and other travelers. I personally can’t understand that way of thinking, but whatever.

      Focus on the blogs who DO pay you attention and get back to your inquiries quickly. Because those are the blogs that are probably still going to have a good following in the future.

  11. JoAnna says:

    All good points! I tend to be an introvert, so one of the things I really love about the travel blogging community is that, when I get to know people online, by the time I meet them in person, we can skip all the awkward “getting to know you” stuff. We have something in common to talk about, and chances are we can pick up a conversation straight from Twitter or recent blog posts. Being social has gotten much easier since becoming a part of the travel blogging community.
    JoAnna recently posted..5 Hotels in Vietnam

    • DangerousBiz says:

      That’s fantastic! So being part of this community has helped you “come out of your shell,” so to speak? Awesome. I haven’t had the opportunity to really meet any fellow bloggers in person yet. But hopefully the same will hold true for me once I do!

  12. flip says:

    indeed, our fellow travel bloggers are a source of inspiration… they sparked my interest to visit places that i have never even heard before… thanks for sharing your thoughts…
    flip recently posted..Meet the Nomads- Akila and Patrick

  13. I agree. Travel bloggers are cool people! Lovely to “meet” you.
    sheila gallant-halloran recently posted..Sh happens- Get Travel Insurance

  14. A lot of the stuff you’ve said applies to blogging-in-general – I blog about a variety of things (probably about 1/3 travel, 1/3 food, 1/3 personal) and I love the communities I’ve found. I’ve met a few bloggers in real life, too, and without exception they’ve been lovely. Glad to have found yours, too :)
    Rachel Cotterill recently posted..Foreign Fields

    • DangerousBiz says:

      I haven’t had much blogging experience outside the travel community, but it’s nice to hear that other areas are similarly welcoming. I’m glad you’ve found my blog, too! Thanks for reading.

  15. [...] Originally posted here: Why the Travel Blogging Community is Awesome » A Dangerous Business [...]

  16. Matt says:

    I’ve met more fellow bloggers in the past month than I have in the past year – it’s been terrific. We’ve shared experiences, stories, advice, and future plans. We’ve traveled together, got really drunk together, and cried together (volunteering in BKK was full-on and life changing). It’s so rewarding to meet people who have such similar outlooks on travel, on life.

    Another excellent post Amanda – you’re on fire. Keep it up!
    Matt recently posted..Experiencing a Bali Cockfight

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Thanks Matt! Hopefully I can keep this up. Haha.

      I hope that someday I’ll be out there meeting and traveling with fellow travel bloggers, too.

  17. It was the travel blogging community that got me motivated to blog in the first place. I wanted to be part of the stories and meet some of these amazing people who had provided the information I was seeking.

    Now that I’ve been doing this for a while I’ve been able to give back that help to new travelers via my travels or just with helping out other bloggers with my IT skills. This community to me revolves around give and take, and everybody is always happy to give.

    I’ve also been lucky to meet a few of the people I regularly communicate with online and its always been a lot of fun. I can’t wait to meet a few more of them.

  18. Joel says:

    When I first started planning my RTW, I was amazed not only by the helpfulness, but by the sheer number of folks who were already doing trips similar to what I was doing. It was a fantastic realization that helped push me out the door.

    And now I’ve met a lot of those same folks on the road, making real world friendships along the way.
    Joel recently posted..Brain Drops XX- Hanoi

    • DangerousBiz says:

      It’s always nice to know that someone else is out there doing the same thing you are, especially when it’s something as awesome as traveling RTW. Glad to know your experiences have been positive, too!

  19. Mike/Bon Via says:

    This is a nice post that just makes me jealous of all you bloggers with word skills! If anyone is interested, I’m starting a new site for travelers, expats and foreigners to sell some of the amazing stuff they find abroad. We’re looking for people to sell things and thing the travel blogging community is an obvious fit. More info at http://www.bonvia.us/. And please email me if you have any questions–we want to keep getting better!

  20. So much love for this post and you, Amanda!

    Want to know something? I have my Facebook chat set permanently for chat with travel bloggers…and that’s it. Nobody else.

    This is probably bad, but I feel closer to a lot of travel bloggers than I do to my real-life friends. We get each other, and I think that makes it easier to open up to each other. And for the ones who I have met in real life…I don’t have to say anything beyond the fact that THEY MEAN SO MUCH TO ME.

    Seriously…no idea what I did for finding this community.

    Thanks for a great post that articulates so well what this community is all about! <3
    Adventurous Kate recently posted..Win An Australia Road Trip From HostelBookers and Oz Experience!

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Aww, thanks, Kate! And I know what you mean about people in this community just “getting” things. I think it’s probably because we have such similar goals and joys, and we love sharing those things with others. I haven’t met any of my blogging friends in real life yet, but I imagine it will be epically fantastic when I finally do!

  21. So true – I am just getting started up, and everyone has been so helpful. Thanks for the great post!

  22. Helen says:

    I’ve found the same thing!!! I think perhaps what makes the difference is that most travel bloggers have a genuine interest in the subject as well as an openness to the world which makes them open to other travellers and bloggers as well. I’ve learn so much about the great experiences the world can offer just by following people on Twitter!

    • DangerousBiz says:

      I think you’re right! In general, travelers are an open, inquisitive bunch. Which does indeed make them open to embracing other bloggers and their content. I’ve learned a lot, too, from being on Twitter!

  23. greg urbano says:

    your post makes me feel welcome as i comment on strangers blogs, being able to travel the world without leaving my pc is a joy
    greg urbano recently posted..Hiking Honeymoon Island State Park

    • DangerousBiz says:

      So glad that my post makes you feel welcome, Greg. Especially when not able to travel myself, I love being able to read blogs of people who ARE traveling. You’re right – it’s a joy.

  24. [...] I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a hundred times — the travel blogging community is awesome. I’m thankful to be part of such a supportive, positive group of people who share a passion [...]

  25. [...] Why the Travel Blogging Community is Awesome (46) [...]

  26. Kate D says:

    Thanks again! The one thing I’m finding at the moment (and I’ve only really just begun) is to keep in contact with people once initially visiting their blogs and exchanging comments… is there a good post with advice on how to keep together all those different ways of following people into some kind of thing that means you’re “maintaining a conversation” or keeping in touch? I’ve signed up to feeds, but then they seem separate from when you comment in each other’s blogs… is there anyway to keep track?

    Realise I’m sounding like a complete noobie – which I am!
    Kate D recently posted..Acting in a foreign language

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Making those connections and keeping up with them can be really tough! There’s not really one “right” way to do it – it’s just what works best for you. Commenting on other blogs is a great start, and you should definitely keep that up! Other bloggers will notice, and we all appreciate conversation on our posts!

      Signing up for feeds is okay, but it’s impersonal; it’s just a way to know when a new post has gone up. You can also subscribe to comments on some blogs (often only for specific posts that you commented on), which can help you keep track of replies.

      I would also suggest getting on Twitter and Facebook to follow some of the bloggers you really like, as these networks are much more conducive to real conversation beyond the blog.

    • Jeremy says:

      Just stumbled onto this article and, as someone who’s hoping to get a little bit more involved in the community, this is excellent news! I’ve been traveling Australia for the past year, blogging lightly, and just opened a new site that I’m hoping will make some headway. Thanks for the reassurance!
      Jeremy recently posted..Wineglass Bay

      • DangerousBiz says:

        Happy to be able to lend you some encouragement, Jeremy! The community really is great, and usually super supportive. Sure, there are going to be those select few sour grapes in the bunch, but ignore them.

        Good luck with your new blog, and if you need any help or have any questions, please feel free to shoot me a message!

  27. So far mine have been the same, it is overwhelming and sometimes I get bogged down by it all. I remember the day I sold my condo and felt so empty and lost until there was an outpouring of support from the community. I was reminded that as I give up one huge community in my life that I need to embrace the new community of my “new” life. I am attending TBEX in June and CAN NOT wait to meet everyone in person! Including yoU!
    Heathers Harmony recently posted..What I didn’t know about buying a one-way plane ticket

    • DangerousBiz says:

      TBEX will be so much fun!! And yes, definitely open yourself up to this new community — there are a ton of great people in it!

  28. Stanley says:

    I’m been blogging for a while and I really want to find some like minded people out there who’s just about passionate as traveling. Good write up!

  29. Hi, I’m a newbie travel blogger myself and love to have found a massive travel blog community online already. Your post gives a great view on the feelings I have too. Very excited to becoming a part of it!
    Nienke | The Travel Tester recently posted..Relaxing On Rottnest Island, West-Australia – A Destination Guide

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Well welcome to the ranks! And good luck with your blog! If you ever have questions, you know there’s a whole community here willing to help!

  30. […] Why the Travel Blogging Community is Awesome // by Amanda Williams http://www.dangerous-business.com/2010/11/why-the-travel-blogging-community-is-awesome/ Why We Need More Travel Bloggers (but not the annoying kind) // by Ramsay […]

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