How To Start A Travel Blog: A Step By Step Guide

Starting a Travel Blog

How To Start A Travel Blog

Blogging Tips

Travel blogging has taken me around the world over the past 5 years. Want to start your own? This detailed guide will show you exactly how to start a travel blog.

I regularly receive tons of email asking me for tips about how to start a travel blog. I know, I get it. Seeing constant photos from my adventures in your Facebook or Instagram feeds makes it look like a dream job.

After all, I get paid to travel the world! It’s a pretty sweet gig.

But travel blogging isn’t easy. Far from it. I rarely share the huge amount of behind-the-scenes work that goes into making this lifestyle possible. It’s taken me years to learn how to become a professional blogger. Today I want to share some important tips about how to get started.

In this article, you’ll learn how to start a travel blog.

Already have a blog? Make sure to read my more advanced post about the secrets of professional travel blogging.

How To Start A Travel Blog

Starting your very first travel blog is actually pretty easy. If you follow my guide, you can have your own blog up and running today. Now keep in mind the following advice is for those who are prepared to take travel blogging seriously, as some of these steps require spending money.

If you aren’t quite ready for that yet, you can always start a simple travel blog for family & friends on WordPress.com. It’s totally free!

Starting a Travel Blog

Adventure & Independent Travel

1: Choose A Good Name

My first travel blog was called YearAroundTheWorld.com. Do you see the obvious problem with that domain name? Well I didn’t, not until 3 months later. I was backpacking through Central America, blogging about my experiences and having a great time — when I suddenly decided I wanted to travel for longer than a year. Shit! What do I do now?

Make It Short & Memorable

Your travel blog domain name should be relatively short, easy to type, easy to spell, easy to remember, and easy to share. I recommend brainstorming by writing down a bunch of words you think will best describe your blog.

Adventure? Food? Culture? South America? What do you want to write about? Who are you? What is your passion? Write everything down and start playing with different combinations of words. Try using a thesaurus. Ask your friends for advice & suggestions.

Avoid Hyphens & Numbers

This can be difficult to do these days, but it helps to avoid using hyphens or numbers in your domain name because otherwise you’ll be forced to explain it to someone. For example:

POTENTIAL READER: “You have a blog? Cool! Where do I find it?”

YOU: “Oh, it’s called expert hyphen vagabond the number 100 dot com.”

As you can see, this type of domain isn’t the greatest for word-of-mouth marketing, which happens to be the best kind of promotion.

Avoid Overused Words

Avoid trademarked company names or words that may be overused in the industry. Sure, you can pick something like Nomadic Bob, Adventurous Wendy, or Wandering Clarence. But domain names like that won’t stand out very much in the travel blogging niche, because those ideas have already been taken by others who are more established than you.

You’ll have better luck in the long-run with something more original.

Think Long-Term

Think good & hard about choosing your travel blog’s domain name, because changing it later on isn’t easy (or fun). Be careful not to pigeonhole yourself either. If you call your blog Twenty-Something Travel like my friend Steph (sorry Steph!), what happens when you turn 30? Branding yourself correctly is pretty important in the business of travel blogging.

I was thinking long-term when I eventually changed my travel blog’s name to ExpertVagabond.com, because at 3 months in I was hardly an expert. Yet I was passionate about becoming a professional travel blogger, and knew eventually this would be perfect. I’d just have to grow into my new name!

2: Hosting For Your Blog

What the heck is hosting? It’s not as confusing as it sounds. Most websites need to “rent” space on the internet. A place to store all your blog’s data, files, and photos so that people around the world can easily access it when they type in your domain name.

Hosting can be pretty cheap. I recommend new travel blogs get hosting with BlueHost. They offer quality hosting for a low price ($6.95 per month for 12 months) and customer service is good too. Plus they give you a free domain name!

Personally, I use WP Engine these days. But it’s not cheap. I pay over $200 a month for my hosting plan. When you reach a certain level of website traffic, it’s totally worth it.

However if you are just starting out, BlueHost is a better value.

Part 1 – Click on the green button that says “get started now.”

Hosting a Travel Blog

Getting Started

Part 2 – Pick a plan.

Hosting a Travel Blog

Pick Your Plan

Part 3 – Check to see if your blog name (domain name) is available.

Hosting a Travel Blog

Choose a Domain Name

Part 4 – Add Extra Features

Most of these you don’t need. However I do recommend Domain Privacy Protection. Otherwise anyone can look up who owns your site, giving them access to your mailing address, email, and phone number. It’s worth the extra few bucks to block that from happening.

Hosting a Travel Blog

Installing WordPress

3: Installing WordPress

You’ll want to set up a self-hosted WordPress account. This means the WordPress software resides on your hosting company’s servers, not on a free WordPress.com account. What’s the difference?

  • Your website is “MyTravelBlog.com” rather than “MyTravelBlog.WordPress.com”
  • You own your data and have full control
  • You can sell advertising on your site
  • You can install plugins & custom themes
  • You can use Google Analytics tracking (important)

Yes, you want to use WordPress too. Not Blogspot, not Blogger, not anything else. WordPress is the king of blogging, and probably always will be. Most professionals use WordPress, even major brands like the BBC & Katy Perry. Installing WordPress with your BlueHost Account is super easy.

Click through the simple installation process on your BlueHost cPanel. When it asks you where you’d like to install it, choose your new domain (ex: http://MyTravelBlog.com).

Once installed, you’ll be able to log into the WordPress dashboard with your new username and password. Welcome to the club! You now have a travel blog. That wasn’t too hard, was it? But wait, there’s more!

Starting a Travel Blog

Pick A Good Design

4: Learning WordPress

Feeling intimidated about WordPress? Don’t worry. Because it’s the industry standard, and has been for years, there are TONS of useful tutorials online that will teach you anything you need to know.

Here are a few of my favorite WordPress training resources:

5: Get A Professional Theme

Your new WordPress blog comes with a couple standard “themes”, or designs for your site. While this is ok for playing around in the beginning, if you want to take this seriously and eventually make money with your travel blog, you’ll want to buy a professional design.

They don’t cost too much and they’ll improve the look of your site big time.

I’ve changed themes a few times over the years, but the current one I’m using is called Hardy by ThemeTrust. I’ve tweaked it a lot using my background in web-design though, customizing how it looks & acts.

Travel Blogging How To

My Travel Blog Plugins

6: Add Some Plugins

You can think of WordPress plugins as third-party apps for your website. They give your blog additional features. Most plugins are free, some you have to pay for. You can download new plugins in the “plugin” section of your WordPress Dashboard.

Here’s my recommended list of plugins to install with your travel blog.

  • Akismet – Protects your blog from spammers leaving comments on your posts. Not perfect, but probably the best one out there.
  • WordPress SEO – Very important plugin for optimizing your articles for Google search, plus integrating Google Sitemaps and Analytics.
  • Easy Social Share Buttons – Nice social media sharing buttons for your articles.
  • WPtouch – Makes your travel blog mobile friendly.

There are others of course, but these will get you started.

Travel Blogging Social Media

Learn How to Use Social Media

7: Embrace Social Media

I hope you love social media. Because if you want to build a successful travel blog, social media addiction is a requirement! Learning how to master social media is a whole different topic, one that I cover a bit more in my post on how to become a professional travel blogger.

Here are some good social media tips from my friend Jodi too. Try to keep your social media username the same across all channels! Otherwise people will get confused…

Social Media Accounts

Starting a Travel Blog

Travel Blog Success

8: Join Travel Blog Success

Like anything in life, if you want to get good at something, investing time & money to be trained by professionals works wonders. The same is true for travel blogging. When people ask me for travel blogging tips, my first recommendation is to join Travel Blog Success.

You can read my full review here.

Why? Because becoming a professional travel blogger, as in someone who makes money with this, is far more difficult than it looks.

You need to learn how to build an audience. You need to learn how to use social media. You need to learn how to market yourself. You need to learn how to work with brands. You need to learn how to implement SEO. You need to know all kinds of stuff that you probably don’t know anything about.

Starting a Travel Blog

Just a Typical Day in the TBS Community!

Learn From The Best

Can you learn everything on your own? Sure. But let me tell you from personal experience, it takes a long, long time. As in years. With plenty of frustrations & wasted effort along the way. Fortunately there is a shortcut…

Learning exactly what works, and what doesn’t, from professional travel bloggers who are making it work, is HUGELY helpful.

I can’t explain SEO to you in an email. Fortunately there is a whole lesson dedicated to mastering SEO (and many other topics) on Travel Blog Success. Plus a very active & helpful community FB page where all the top travel bloggers chime in with answers to your questions each and every week.

If you want to become a pro, this is the best investment you can make.

Travel Blogging

Travel Blogging Work Break in the Philippines

8: Start Blogging!

Now it’s time to begin creating content for your travel blog. When you first start out, I recommend publishing new articles at least 2-3 times per week.

But don’t be sloppy about it, take your time and craft excellent, useful blog posts that have impact.

What should you write about? Well, what are you interested in?

Are you traveling right now? Share your favorite parts of a country, fun things to do, crazy travel stories, beautiful photo essays, video tours, food recommendations, and more. Try writing about many different topics to find your personal blogging style & voice, and to see what resonates with others.

Are you still planning your travels? You can write about that too.

Share the different ways you are saving money for travel, a bucket list of activities you want to try, or write about local destinations.

For an example, let’s say you live in Richmond, Virginia right now. Maybe you don’t think it’s an interesting city to write about, however the fact is there are thousands of people looking for Richmond travel tips online right now. Share what you know with them!

TripAdvisor recommends 225 things to do in Richmond. That’s easily a year worth of blog posts right there.

You could also share your favorite travel movies & books. Write about your packing list. Just remember to create useful & entertaining content. The possibilities are endless!

Read other travel blogs, leave thoughtful comments on their articles, and link to other blog posts from your site where appropriate. At first your only readers will be family and friends. But that’s ok! We all started like that.

It takes time to build an audience.

Travel blogging isn’t as easy as it looks, and you shouldn’t expect to see any large benefits from it for at least a year, probably longer. That’s one full year of blogging on a regular basis, paying for everything yourself, and putting in at least 10 hours a week (most professional bloggers work 30+).

Yes it’s a dream job, but travel blogging is still a job that requires hard work.

Need more ideas? Here are some of my most popular blog posts.

Good luck, and happy travel blogging!

READ NEXT: Professional Travel Blogger Secrets

Anything else you want to know about travel blogging?

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers.

THANKS FOR READING

Hi, I'm Matthew Karsten — I’ve been traveling around the world for over 5 years. Adventure travel & photography are my passions. Let me inspire you to travel more with crazy stories, photography, and useful tips from my travel adventures. Join thousands who receive exclusive email updates and click the green button below...

Comments & Questions

189 Comments

  1. Falak
    July 23, 2016

    It’s really a very nice and helpful article. I got so many ideas through it. Now I am working on them. I wish to learn more from your posts in future.

    Reply
  2. Mishelle
    July 17, 2016

    Great tutorial! I already looking for something like that cause we are starting our blog and it´s really good to know we can do it right.

    Reply
  3. Jimmy D'Amore
    July 11, 2016

    Hi Matt,
    Great article. I am in the process of starting my own travel blog geared towards traveling with my family (wife and kids). My question involves your logo and your cartoony figure in it. Did you design this or did someone else? If you paid to have this designed may I ask who did it? And how much they charged? I also see you have little figure on website tab of yourself. How did you do that?

    I have an idea of having something similar done (cartoon like) of me and my family on one of our adventures to use as a logo but I don’t know where to get that done. Any help would be appreciated greatly!

    Thanks!
    Jimmy

    Reply
  4. Sofia
    July 10, 2016

    Great tutorial, thank you !!
    I can also reccommend the pinnacle free theme, its great.

    Greetings,

    Sofia

    Reply
  5. Liliia Sokotun
    July 2, 2016

    Such a good post! So much information to reflect on, especially where to host your blog.
    I am just starting to write mine, it will be about traveling with a child. We’ve been traveling with our little daughter for 10 months already and still going. Unfortunately there is not much info on internet about traveling with a baby, so I decided to start one and Goooood it is so much work! :)
    You make me want to switch to wordpress.org and now i see all the benefits of it however I feel it would be much harder to take care of it on the road, especially when internet is a luxury. For instance now, i cant even change the theme on my blog :D internet is too weak and it has been like that for the past 3 months of our trip.
    But once we settle down somewhere for a while with good connection, I m planning to go through your article again so thank you very much for this valuable info! And one more thing, your instagram pictures are fabulous!

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      July 14, 2016

      Yeah it can be tough to get work done with a weak connection. I try to schedual a few weeks of hardcore work when I know I’ll have strong internet. Happy you like my photos in Instagram! Good luck with your travel blog about family travel Liliia!

      Reply
  6. Salt in our Hair
    June 29, 2016

    Awesome post! Learn from the best is definitely one thing everyone should be doing!

    Reply
  7. Claire Vautour
    June 28, 2016

    Hello Matthew,
    I’m a beginner graphic designer and just getting into web development. I just started creating my website which will serve as an online GD portfolio and where I also want to sell art prints, but I was also thinking of starting a blog where I would like to talk about arts but also about traveling end exploring (my dream is to travel as an artist).

    Now would it be acceptable to have a blog talking about those subjects on my website? or should I create a separate website for my blog?

    Thanks for sharing your knowledge and experience,

    Claire Vautour

    Reply
  8. Danielle Frederick
    June 20, 2016

    Hello, I just recently started looking into becoming a travel blogger. I’m currently a senior in high school but have plans to spend anywhere from 3 days to a month in a given place as often as possible and document it. However doing so isn’t my first passion. I will have a full time job that allows for time off often.

    I love traveling and the idea of blogging about it, but I would appreciate a honest answer on if I’ll make money off it. Mainly just out of curiosity. I don’t wish to live off only that but I like the idea of the extra income. It would be considered a second job.

    I would be traveling 5-8, 3 day trips and 1 month long trip a year. I am serious about this as more than a hobby but would like an honest, offend-me-please type answer on if that frequency would allow to be more than a hobby.

    Reply
  9. Dennis Krügel
    June 17, 2016

    Hello Matthew,

    I am currently in the process of building my own travel niche blog (I will share the link when everything is set up) and read up on various blogs how to do it. What I am missing in all of them is the hint about legal matters (copyright, terms, disclaimer – as you have it in you footer). Of course the applicable laws depend on the hosting location of your blog. For example if your blog is hosted within the European Union, you need to have a cookie policy disclaimer. In addition to that if it is hosted for example within Germany, you need to have an imprint, privacy policy and declaration how you handle any collected data (and those things are handled extremely strictly in Germany, even for hobby bloggers apparently. Not having all this put in place upfront can trigger huge fines). Luckily I am not hosting my blog in Germany but still need to identify and defuse the legal pitfalls (and that is why I am not yet promoting my blog).
    Do you know of any wordpress plugins which insert all the standardized legal texts automatically into the blog? Or just a website where I can find legal disclaimers valid for various hosting locations would be cool as well.

    Greetings from Poland,
    Dennis
    (PS: Come to Wroclaw this year. It is one of the two European Capitals of Culture 2016)

    Reply
  10. Chris Marie
    June 14, 2016

    Hi! I love your blog. I’ve thought about starting my own traveling blog with my husband. However, we travel only 3-4 times/year, but we do a lot of local tourism in Texas. Is this even possible to start a blog? Or do you need to be a full time traveler in order to have a successful blog?

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      June 16, 2016

      Hi Chris! No you don’t have to be a full-time traveler to run a blog. Local specific travel blogs can do well too. Just try to be the best resource possible about that area.

      Reply
  11. Elyse
    June 12, 2016

    Thanks for the great article! I already started my travel blog before reading this, but it is a great reminder to just write and see where the writing takes you, but in the comments, I also read someone bring up the point about actually treating it like a business! Completely accurate and something I am probably the most nervous about!

    Signed up to subscribe! Thanks for the great information!

    Reply
  12. Emre
    June 11, 2016

    Thats Amazing Article ! Everyone should read this who wants to write a blog. Thank you very much Matt !

    Reply
  13. neha
    June 8, 2016

    This article is a great help for travel bloggers like us who are trying to get started. We are doing most of the things that you suggested here, we started 20 days back. Some days, particularly when we post something interesting the traffic flow increases, at others, it drops to almost insignificant number. The amount of returning users is low (20%) and there hasn’t been a single subscription so far. So, that is the part that I want to focus and build on. If you could guide me a little on this area specifically, it would be a great help

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      June 9, 2016

      Twenty days? Don’t worry about traffic numbers yet Neha. It’s way to early for that.

      In fact, I’d recommend completely ignoring Google Analytics until you’re 6 months in. Just keep pumping out quality articles that will entertain or help people, and learn as much as you can about promoting them.

      Give more than you take. Leave thoughtful comments on other blogger’s articles, share them on social media, visit a travel blogger conference like TBEX and grow your network. Pitch articles to larger websites like Huffington Post, Medium, etc. Study what makes articles go viral, and try to make your own.

      Reply
  14. Rosemarie
    June 3, 2016

    Hi. Thank you for sharing your knowledge about blogging and advices.

    Reply
  15. Thomas
    June 1, 2016

    Thanks! Very useful information :-)

    Reply
  16. sushil williams
    May 23, 2016

    Thank you for this great post and amazing tips. Very helpful info

    Reply
  17. Kristyn Schwartz
    May 21, 2016

    Thanks Matt, this was exactly what I needed to read! I realize I’m coming a little late to the game here but thats not going to stop me. I also realize you are probably far too busy to sit down with every 20 something who wants to be a travel blogger because they don’t know what to do with their lives haha but I would love to bounce a couple things off you if you have a minute. If not I completely understand but you never know if you don’t ask right?? You should have my email address as it was required to comment so I do hope to hear from you!! Thanks! :)

    Reply
  18. Inga
    May 13, 2016

    I am new to personally blogging but not very new to whole environment.
    I have a question, why every top ranked bloggers advertising “Travel blog success”? I know there is an affiliate program for each member so don’t tell me it’s completely unbiased.
    I know its a lot of work to get all the info in same place in organised manner i get it, but i don’t get it when all the travel bloggers to promote it like its a must have. After all everyone made it before TBS and many more will make it without their material. Why can’t i find a realistic review on the program for what exactly it is? I think I will pretty much disagree with commenters and in my opinion all just being nice to get noticed…. I am just being honest. Please don’t advertise it for beginners as its essential. It’s more and more sounding like a pyramid scheme, sorry.

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      May 13, 2016

      Hey Inga, I completely understand, but there is a TON of information, frankly way too much to convey in a single blog post or in a reply to the hundreds of emails I receive asking the same questions over and over again.

      The course is an easy way to point people to all that information. I want to help readers learn how to build a travel blog, but I don’t have the time to put together a 20,000 word handbook explaining it all in detail. Nor do I want to. The guys at TBS have already done that for me. Plus they run a forum that answers ongoing questions/future changes.

      You can certainly build a travel blog without joining the course. Just like you can teach yourself how to play the guitar. Professional lessons just help make that process faster. Hope that helps explain it!

      Reply
  19. Sonali chauhan
    May 9, 2016

    Hi Matt,
    Thanks a lot for the advice. Great tips! This is so helpful.

    Reply
  20. isabella
    May 2, 2016

    Hello Matt!
    thanks for the encouragement. I went through your post and i found confirmation of my thoughts. Awesome.
    I am almost ready to launch my own blog but I am scare to death to publish it. I feel like I will be walking naked in central park. :) I probably need to have more posts to load before going live though. Unfortunately with a regular job to sustain my travels and life it’s difficult to post regularly. this is why i prefer to have more material ready before going live. Are you still in Playa by the way? it would be cool if we could meet! safe travels

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      May 3, 2016

      Glad you found it helpful Isabella! I’d recommend launching it sooner rather than later. Then slowly grow your content from there. I’ll be back in Playa this summer if you’re around.

      Reply
      • Isabella Biava
        May 3, 2016

        thanks I will, by June it’s going to be live! Great if you will be back in summer! I ‘ll be here for sure. Would be nice to meet up. Hasta pronto! :)

        Reply
  21. Nazir
    April 12, 2016

    I love this article. I really wish I’d had your expert advice when I started my website a few years ago! But now I want to start blog on my website, not sure what should I use folder or subdomain?

    Reply
  22. Mitesh Sanghvi
    April 12, 2016

    Hey Matthew, this was helpful for one of my follower and I thought of sharing the feedback. Although, he did have a lot of related questions, which I’m sure your future blog posts will cover. Thanks and keep sharing :)

    Reply
  23. Becca
    April 11, 2016

    Hey Matt, thanks for your tips. I started blogging now by myself about my travel experience, living in Australia as a German girl and beautiful pictures. Thanks for the motivation.

    Reply
  24. RJ
    April 10, 2016

    First of all, let me tell you what an incredible blog series on Iceland! I am planning my vacation next month in Iceland and your blog posts helped me tremendously, be it golden circle or ring road drive. While I was on those posts, I saw under more resources that you actually have an article on ‘how to start a blog’. So thank-you for writing on this topic! I started my travel blog last summer and the biggest challenge so far has been how to technically manage the blog and not so much writing the content. I see that you suggest having one’s own hosting platform however I was able to pay and get my own domain from wordpress without the “.wordpress.com” suffix. Should I still consider hosting separately? What themes in wordpress do you recommend to new travel bloggers?

    Reply
  25. John
    April 9, 2016

    Hi Matthew!

    Do you have suggestions on places to look for different “themes” for a new blog?

    Thanks! :)

    Reply
  26. OitheBlog
    April 9, 2016

    Thank you for this great post and amazing tips! It’s been very useful for us before we started, especially since there are no useful guides for starters like this in Turkish. :) We are also travel bloggers from Turkey and wanted to say thank you.

    Greetings from Istanbul!

    Reply
  27. Two Peas
    April 8, 2016

    Great article about the 101s of starting a Travelblog. Very helpful info. We can’t wait to start implementing your tips to our blog and hope to see results to follow.

    Reply
  28. Vikrant Karande
    April 6, 2016

    Thanks MATTHEW KARSTEN,

    I have just started my own travel blog on wordpress. Its really very easy while starting but about the content part its quite tough. But I will give my best and work hard on it. Thanks for making life easy of all beginners like us thanks.

    Reply
  29. Jagabond
    April 4, 2016

    Great advice! I just started a travel blog and this article really helped.

    Reply
  30. Mister Brazil
    April 4, 2016

    Awesome way of life! I hope to bring you sometime in one of my travels to Brazil, I think you will enjoy the Amazon trip or the Brazilian Wet Lands , here is the video one i recorded in Amazon last year https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4yqYsOJelRo

    Reply
  31. Maddison
    March 31, 2016

    Are you saying to make sure to use wordpress.org and not wordpress.com?

    I know you can add custom domains to either, but not sure of many other differences (other than the ones listed in this article.)

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      March 31, 2016

      Yes. There is a big difference. Who is actually hosting your website. With WordPress.org software, YOU host your own blog. You download software and install on your own web server. You have complete control, and can do anything you want with the site. That is not the case with WordPress.com — they impose restrictions. It’s hosted on their servers, not yours.

      Like the difference between owning your own house or renting someone else’s.

      Reply
  32. Neil
    March 28, 2016

    With so many travel blogs, many people are writing similar things about the same places. These days one should consider investing into advertising to hit the ground running.

    Reply
  33. Fernanda
    March 22, 2016

    I’m starting a travel blog and it’s not easy. But when you know SEO and you have expertise in blogging I think everything can happen faster. We need audience and with SEO it’s really possible in my opinion!

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      March 26, 2016

      Even if you know a lot about SEO, it takes time. One of the most important factors is the age of a site — if you blog regularly for a few years you’ll rank much higher than those just starting out.

      Reply
  34. Cleo Bower
    March 20, 2016

    Everything seems pretty straightforward here, but I guess the main problem is to find the much needed time to blog when you are traveling. It’s not easy to sit down and write your blog posts when you know that everyone else in the hotel you are staying at is partying and having a good time!

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      March 26, 2016

      So true Cleo! If you treat travel blogging as a real business and work your butt off, you won’t have the time/energy to go out every night of the week. It’s a huge filter. Only those who truly treat blogging seriously will succeed.

      Reply
  35. Ritu Sehgal Pandit
    March 18, 2016

    Thank u so much for this post. Before reading this post I just had a idea in my mind that I didn’t even share with anyone but now I am totally excited and ready to make it come true.

    Reply
  36. Mana Want
    March 17, 2016

    Quite useful tips on starting a travel blog. I had a domain name with a hyphen and free hosting on blogger the first year (rookie mistake). Then I realized my mistake bought a new domain name, hosting and theme to go with my blog.

    Reply
  37. Sanket Sawant
    March 14, 2016

    Fantastic post! I found the step-by-step instructions and screenshots to be super helpful. I just made the big switch from WordPress.com to self-hosting this week. Thanks so much!

    Reply
  38. Annette
    March 7, 2016

    Thanks for the tips!

    Reply
  39. Emma
    March 3, 2016

    Thanks for the tips! I recently started a blog about adventures in San Diego (where I currently live), and my current and future travels so I am always looking for tips! Your blog on Iceland was super helpful too since I’m going to drive the Ring Road in 2 months!

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      March 26, 2016

      Nice! Good luck with your new travel blog Emma, and have fun in Iceland!

      Reply
  40. Fernando
    February 19, 2016

    Very nice tips! Is anything better than travel around the world? btw, greetings from Brazil! ;D

    Reply
  41. Clay
    February 13, 2016

    Greetings from Panama City, Panama! Just read your article about theft in Casco Viejo… and it was very timely for me, because I was just having a mojito on a rooftop bar in Casco last night. I’m also supporting my travels by writing, doing some web design, and Google AdWords management. My main reason for coming down was to help a friend of mine start his locally sourced grocery store here in the city, but it’s quickly becoming a lesson in the limits of my Spanish knowledge. Hopefully, by the end of my three months here I’ll be able to express my thoughts with locals a little more coherently.This is my first time traveling internationally and working from my laptop. You can bet I’ll be guarding my computer like a hawk with an egg from now on…

    Your blog has inspired me to take up writing again (I was a creative writing major at the University of Montana a lifetime ago). So, thanks! I plan on releasing regular blogs for the rest of my time here. Cheers from one wandering gringo to another! :)

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      February 14, 2016

      Enjoy Casco Viejo! That brings back memories. You should be fine Clay, just don’t take your computer out to bars. Bad mistake on my part…

      Good luck with your project!

      Reply
  42. Emma
    February 5, 2016

    Hi Matthew
    Thanks for all the great advice, just staring a blog now so the info came at the perfect time.

    Reply
  43. Maja and Boris
    February 5, 2016

    I’m so glad that I found your blog. These are very helpful tips for those of us who have a recently created a travel blog.

    Reply
  44. Ena (kafkatravels)
    February 3, 2016

    Hey Matthew! This article is so awesome that decided to create a travel blog myself! It’s only 3 days old but we all have to start somewhere right?

    Just wanted to thank you for sharing this with all of us!

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      February 14, 2016

      Glad you enjoyed it Ena! Good luck with your new travel blog.

      Reply
  45. Oana Barbu
    February 2, 2016

    Hello Matt,
    What kind of name do you suggest would be better? Something creative, some crosswords like vantastic travelers, freedomesia etc or something realistic like travelinginavan? I wan the blog to be easy to find, even suggested in search results and found by mistake. But i don’t know how a search engine works and what is more relevant the name, the content or the numbers of readers that a blog already has. Please let me know what is your advice.
    P.s. Amazing blog, i love your photos :D

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      February 5, 2016

      Hey Oana! I think it’s better to keep it simple & memorable. Out of your choices, I like “traveling in a van”. Even with a word like “vagabond”, people still sometimes screw up the spelling to “vegabond”, or don’t know what the word means.

      It’s best to not confuse them, and people are easily confused.

      Reply
  46. Roman Turazzini
    January 14, 2016

    Hello Matthew!
    First of all congratulations on your awesome blog, I’ve learned a lot just from reading it and I’m already planning on taking my very first trip as soon as I’m done with college. I have a question that’s not related specifically to this article though, which camera do you use? Your shots are great!

    Regards from Mexico,
    Roman.

    Reply
  47. Joan Ruffins
    January 12, 2016

    Hi Matt,
    I absolutely enjoy reading your post. Great insights on the industry. I have been traveling for 20 years and I am a teacher. I recently left the classroom to travel with my family and “mobile schooling” my children. My upcoming website will focus on traveling while teaching on the road. What do you suggest my first blog post should consist of? Should I discuss how I got to this point in my life or should I just begin to write about life on the road?

    Reply
  48. Jamie
    January 12, 2016

    Hey Matt! I’m trying to start up my blog, but have run into a problem. The name I really want to use isn’t available as a .com name (or .org). Should I go with a .net (or other?) address, or go with another name? Thanks, and keep on rockin’!

    Reply
  49. John Ariz
    January 11, 2016

    Great article!.. I was planning to create my own travel blog I hope I can create as good as your blog :)

    Reply
  50. Rick
    January 10, 2016

    Hi Matt

    I started my travel blog a little bit late – as I have been traveling nonstop since 2011. I have tons of amazing photos that are buried deep in my personal instagram account.

    I noticed that you have only around 500 instagram posts, which are very well thought out. Now that I want to start a blog, I am wondering if I should start a NEW branded instagram account (@apirateslife), and re-use the most relevant of my 1,654 posts with a “purpose” and strategy in mind, or if I should just continue to use my personal account (@rickerrr) which has 1,000 followers and 1,600 posts, but re-post old content to the same audience?

    Thoughts are appreciated! Thanks Matt!

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      January 11, 2016

      Hi Rick! My advice is to just re-name/re-brand your existing Instagram account. Instagram allows you to change the username. Then, concentrate on only posting your very best images, even if you’ve already posted some of them in the past. I occasionally re-post old images if they’ve done really well.

      Reply
  51. Ruchika Shankar
    January 6, 2016

    Hi Matt,
    I am a new reader of yours. Thank you for this article. I am sure I will be ripping through your other articles in the near future :)

    We have recently started a travel blog. To make it easy to build an audience, we have decided on concentrate only on the Indian travellers (we are from India). The number of people travelling in India is at an inflection point right now. Is it a good strategy? Did you focus on global audience from the beginning?

    Reply
    • Nehul
      February 2, 2016

      Hello ruchika. Nehul jain dis side from chandigarh. Wats ur travel blog name as i m very much interested into travelling since a long time. Can v get in touch on fb or whatspp as i too love to travel around india as n when i get d chance. Hope to get a reply from u.

      Reply
  52. Jon J
    January 3, 2016

    Hi Matt I came across your article and found it very helpful but my question is how can I write a 1st blog entry or several about travel if I haven’t done any traveling yet? When I say I’m at step one I truly am at step one into turning my dreams of travel into reality. Any advice would be much appreciated. Thanks! :)

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      February 14, 2016

      Hey Jon! Maybe write about your goal to start traveling more? Or take some short trips nearby where you live? Museums? National parks? World Heritage sites? There is always something to write about. What do people travel to your area for?

      Reply
  53. John Gillin
    December 3, 2015

    Hi, Matthew –

    Great article! Thank you. Getting ready to spend six weeks moving around the African continent and would like to keep family & friends updated. Trying to determine best way to: a) access blog through particular device (trying to determine what is the best to travel with – iPad, laptop, etc.), b) best way to upload photos from my DSLR, and c) relative ease of finding Internet Cafes (with WiFi) on the road.

    Any help you can provide would be much appreciated.

    Thanks!

    – John

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      December 28, 2015

      Hey John, wifi is pretty easy to find these days, but it really depends on where you are. Rural Africa might be more difficult. You should have no problem in cities though.

      As for what device to bring, it depends on how serious you want to take blogging. While it’s possible to update a blog with just a tablet, it’s not as fast or convenient as having an actual laptop. There are more options for editing photos and typing out articles using a laptop. If you’re worried about weight, maybe a Macbook Air?

      I don’t know any serious professional bloggers who get by using just a tablet.

      Reply
  54. Rakesh Patil
    December 2, 2015

    Truly inspiring.. Matt i just started following you from few weeks. I am completely inspired by you and made my decision to have my own travel blog. I am travelling from last 3 years but never think of writing it. Your advice will be seriously very helpful for me and i think for others also.

    Rakesh P

    Reply
  55. Chris
    November 30, 2015

    Matt, what plugin are you using for the right bar and your social media buttons?

    I’ve been trying to find a good social media button in the side bar for a while now. Would really appreciate your thoughts.

    Thanks,
    Chris

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      December 28, 2015

      Hey Chris! The floating sidebar is called “Q2W3 Fixed Widget” and the social media buttons are part of a plugin called “Easy Social Share Buttons for WordPress”.

      Reply
  56. Alex Jacob
    November 30, 2015

    Awesome article Matthew, Thanks for sharing all your great info with us. After 2 years of travel in India me and my friends have started writing a blog which explores the southern parts of India. Movingshoe.com.

    Any suggestions from the “travel king” is much appreciated!

    Reply
  57. Abhishek Behl
    November 30, 2015

    Thanks Matt for this great post & so true with all your tips on starting a travel blog. The name is very important & once bloggers start using that name for all their travels – it creates content on the URL which certainly don’t want to loose in changing the name. For me branding is very important – it helps for people to know about my disability & all your tips are certainly great to know I’m following the right path. Thanks once again for sharing your tips – Best Abhs

    Reply
  58. rohan pandya
    November 27, 2015

    thank you soo much for sharing this tips, i’hv been blogging since quite some time and now would love to explore the world …. a laptop with a internet connection is all you need … thank you for inspiring me !!

    Reply
  59. Christie
    November 22, 2015

    We are at the end of a full year around the world adventure. Finishing up in Mexico because the food is so good and everything is cheaper here than in Sydney. I started our blog in October before we left and we still don’t have an audience. I almost gave up in June but love recording all that we are done. When we get home I can’t imagine not continuing with the blog because there are so many more stories to share. I wish i had of read your article 12 months ago. So many others stop after the hosting but you have talked about the social marketing side that is equally important. Thanks for this information and for not saying that it is easy because it is not. Take care Christie

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      November 26, 2015

      Don’t give up Christie! It takes some extreme dedication to continue once you get to the 1 year mark and haven’t seen great results. But the longer you keep at it, and learn everything you can, the easier it gets.

      Make sure to read my follow-up article too!

      Reply
  60. Michelle Worzalla
    November 18, 2015

    Matt,

    I just had to say, reading a lot of your articles REALLY inspired me. At this point, you are probably my idol. I’m 22, and so far I have been all over the Netherlands and to Paris, France for a brief time. Ever since then, I’ve been addicted to traveling and I am destined to figure out a way to travel all over. Maybe even being gutsy, and dropping a lot of things just as you did, and possibly just see where life takes me. (Perhaps working along the way to receive food/shelter)? Still thinking things out and gonna save.
    I’ve now started my own travel blog, and I know I have a lot to learn!

    Thanks for truly being an inspiration.
    And if you’re in Mexico, you should take some pictures of the beautiful cenotes there!

    -Michelle

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      November 26, 2015

      Hey Michelle! Glad you enjoyed this article about starting a travel blog. Yes I’ll be in Mexico for the winter, working hard on my own blog. Sometimes it’s good to take a break from moving around so you can really focus on the business side of blogging.

      I plan to go scuba diving & swimming in many cenotes! In fact I wrote a post about my last cenote adventure here.

      Reply
  61. Laura
    November 17, 2015

    Great advice. All details are here. Step by step. Once just has to follow to get to the goal. Thanks for the work of putting this together. I can recommend it to friends that keep asking me about “the whole blogging thing”.

    Reply
  62. Dave Fin
    October 31, 2015

    Hi Matt, thanks for a great post. Although I don’t really get chance to travel enough to create a travel blog, I was wondering if it would be an idea to create a travel blog on other people’s travels and allow them to share and contribute their adventures? Possibly collect a few adventure stories from family and friends? As a seasoned traveller would love to hear your thoughts Matthew.
    Thanks
    Dave

    Reply
  63. Tammy Mahon
    October 30, 2015

    Thank you for the insight into this new world of blogging. I have found this blog a great source of information. At this time I only have a wordpress.com free account that I am using to learn a few of the ropes. However in the next month I will be following your advice and switching to a Bluehost account. I am not planning on traveling until 2017. My plan is to start my blog now and hopefully know enough by the time I leave to start making a little money, or at least have some followers. I am willing to invest some time and money into it to start and see how it goes. I have many things to learn and do in the next two years, that is going to be my source of topics along with my past travels.

    Thanks again for the great blog

    Reply
  64. Namrata
    October 29, 2015

    I really liked your article. It’s crisp, concise and very informative. You have not minced your words anywhere. Its really a hard work to keep running the blog. I have started blogging this year on July.. I write about various stuffs like my musings, travel logs, poetry. But travel stories are my favorite ones, as i love travelling.

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      December 28, 2015

      Travel stories are great Namrata, but make sure to include some useful information too, stuff that will help your readers have a similar experience. The more detail, the better!

      Reply
  65. Sydney
    October 17, 2015

    Hi! First and only article I feel I need to read to start! I’m leaving in 4 days for 8 months to Europe (first time!) and am really excited to tell all about it! My question: what do you write about when you are back at home? Thanks in advance!

    Reply
  66. Shamsul
    October 12, 2015

    Nice share and great information. The content is very much helpful. Adios!

    Reply
  67. John
    October 9, 2015

    I really enjoyed your article – I have read a few guides and this one is the simplest and best. With regard to blog names I really don’t know if mine is a great one or a rubbish one – because you have to visit my site to understand the name. It is about a VW Bay that used to be an ambulance – hence SickBayDays.com and my travels in it.

    Reply
  68. Rachel Arendelle
    October 5, 2015

    I’ve started a blog last March this year and since then I’ve been following your blog. It is harder than I thought. Providing good quality all the time–and building an audience is the most difficult of all. Can you provide more tips on how to build your audience and sustain it?

    Reply
  69. Mac
    October 2, 2015

    Thank you for the tips…

    Reply
  70. James Flynn
    September 28, 2015

    Hey Matt! Started a new travel blog after reading your blog! (http://youhaventheardof.blogspot.com/) Thanks to all your post for giving me ideas and motivation for my post!

    Reply
  71. yola
    September 28, 2015

    thank you for these wonderful tips

    Reply
  72. Jillian
    September 20, 2015

    I just started my travel blog ( goseastheday.com ) in the past couple of weeks and your blog post was the best advice I found online! Although not much time has past, I am already seeing success and am very happy with where I am at so far. I couldn’t have done it without you!! Thanks so much!

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      September 24, 2015

      Great to hear Jillian! Good luck with your new travel blog, and remember to keep up the hard work. Learn as much as you can about blogging.

      Reply
  73. Abby Smas
    September 19, 2015

    So interesting! I’m chaperoning my professor husband’s Global Business class “Amsterdam to the Alps,” the first in a series of trips we are planning. Social media is my responsibility and although making money is not the point, I certainly believe optimization can be critical in the promotion, acceptance, and reputation of the class.
    This may be a whole new area of travel blogging!
    Thanks for your help!

    Reply
  74. Jaye R
    September 17, 2015

    You can say that I’ve been blogging and traveling for over 16 years now. As a member and contributor of one of the largest sources (1.3 million users) of unbiased, user-generated travel content in the world, I’ve written and reviewed over 3500 related travel tips about 40 countries in 6 different continents. Recently, after spending plenty of time on Instagram, I wondered why I hadn’t started my own blogging sooner. I already have the bones to venture out and start my own blogging site, but how do I even begin my journey? First, start by searching on how to best start your own blogging, which lead me to your very informative guide.

    Thank you so much for helping me find the tools that I need to get me started on what I hope to be a prosperous venture.

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      September 24, 2015

      Wow Jaye, that’s a ton of content. Which reminds me of something I’m passionate about. Why publish that content on someone else’s website when you could be growing your own brand?

      Don’t get me wrong, there are good reasons for guest posting and writing for other outlets from time to time, but you should really be working for yourself if possible. Save the best stuff for your travel blog.

      Reply
  75. Angela Castanhel
    September 15, 2015

    Nice post! I’m from Brazil and I started blogging this year, showing people how beautiful is our country. Most of my posts are from Santa Catarina, south of Brazil. Thanks for sharing your experience, your are such a good blogger! Congrats!!

    Reply
  76. Martin P
    September 13, 2015

    Hey! thanks again for all the great tips! i just joined travel blog success, i am leaving in a week for as long as i can!
    And very grateful for discovering couchsurfing.com through your site, it will make my trip to India much smoother and less expansive, i already changed my plan from 2 months to 6 months and just graduated last wednesday from a 120h TEFL so i can teach in Thailand for up to a year after India, then Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam…
    Martin P
    P.s I have wanted to do this for close to 30 years now and reading about people already traveling for a long time is very encouraging.Thanks for the inspiration!

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      September 24, 2015

      No problem Martin! Glad you’re finding the blog so useful. Have fun on your new travel adventures!

      Reply
  77. Vanessa
    September 9, 2015

    Great great article..

    Reply
  78. Shailender Kumar
    September 7, 2015

    I have been travelling for almost two years now, but never thought of starting a travel blog. I was scared with all the technicalities involved in designing and setting up the blog. If that was not enough all these terms SEO, backlinking, Social Media etc. kept me away from starting my own blog, until one fine day I came across this post of yours. This clarified lot of doubts. One, setting up the blog is not difficult, second, running the blog will require tons of work and equal tons of patience. Needless to say that you have motivated me enough. I have now finished with setting up of blog, following your step-by-step guide, and it has also gone live last week. Of course, it still requires lot of fine tuning which I will be working upon in the next few days. I hope the blog works out. Thank you Matthew for being a virtual guru.

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      September 11, 2015

      Hey Shailender, glad to hear this post helped you get started! Just checked out your new travel blog, I like the theme. Your logo actually looks very similar to my first logo.

      Reply
  79. Eezah
    September 3, 2015

    Thank you for sharing this one!!! :D Love the article and the tips and the advices! :D

    Reply
  80. Faiz Alam
    September 1, 2015

    this is really helpfull for me as i just started my travel blog right now ….

    Reply
  81. Antonio
    August 29, 2015

    Great info here. It’s important to start a travel blog with a solid base and your guide is spot on. Thanks!

    Reply
  82. Anca | Globaloud
    August 25, 2015

    I’m so thrilled there are people like you who are willing to share these kind of things for free. I would probably skip a lot of things if I wasn’t following your travel blog and some other top blogs while starting my own.

    Keep up a good work and from time to time write more these kind of articles cause they are really helpful.

    Greetings from Croatia,
    Anca

    Reply
  83. Liz
    August 22, 2015

    Thank you so much for this article. Finally took the leap and joined the overwhelming but nonetheless amazing world of travel blogging and your articles have given me some direction and useful tips. Hopefully, I get to be successful or just have fun and meet interesting people in the process. Thanks again, and definitely keeping my eye on this blog. :)

    Reply
  84. Campbell
    August 22, 2015

    Thanks for a great article. I have been traveling for about 3 years and started blogging about my travels about 2 years ago. I blog on travelpod and even when you google for my blog it is hard to find. I am thinking of going a bit more professional, beyond friends and family. Do you know if I can set up a blog on the wordpress software before paying for a host? I don’t know if my little netbook will be able to perform setting up my new blog. Thanks

    Reply
  85. Kay Nichole
    August 18, 2015

    Hey Matt I am an inspiring Traveler. I didn’t think Travel blogging was a job. I just always wanted to travel and blog and blog it on like youtube and my own personal blog (that i didn’t start yet) I was just looking at ways i can get paid to travel because thats what i want to do with my life and came across your blog and I must say I am inspired. I’m planning my first Solo trip for feb of 2016 and that gives me plenty of time get my blog started. I just wanted to say thank you because of you I know now that I can do something I always wanted to do and call it a job. Thank you so much. I look forward to reading all of you other blogs.

    — Your Newest Subscriber/Fan/Best Friend

    Reply
  86. Aditi
    August 17, 2015

    Thanks for this post! Indeed a great help. I just started a blog.

    Reply
  87. Muhammad Hazem
    August 16, 2015

    Thanks Matthew for this great and informative post. I am opening a word file and taking notes while reading. Thanks Man

    Reply
  88. Paige
    August 8, 2015

    Hey Matt! Thanks for writing this post, I’ve been following you for a while now and really appreciate how open and honest you are with your audience!

    Reply
  89. Katie
    August 4, 2015

    Thank you for this. There are a lot of helpful start up ideas out there but I like the way you laid it out there. Very direct and sharing personal experience.
    I am in the planning stages and nearing my trip departure date soon and getting so nervous…I am quitting my job to follow my dream of traveling and still have to meet my quota for savings. I like the idea of writing about my prep work and things before I leave. So thanks for inspiring me to start sooner than later.
    Cheers and happy trails.

    Reply
  90. Rachael
    July 28, 2015

    Just re-read this – it’s SO useful. You’re officially my favourite person right now. A bit of a weird question for you… I’m a writer by trade and am currently trying to get back into magazine freelancing AND get into blogging, simultaneously. Is that a really bad idea? I can’t figure out which is the best route to go down or if I should carry on trying to do both… Your wisdom is greatly appreciated… Rach

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      July 29, 2015

      Sure I’d say that’s a good idea. Magazine freelancing will actually pay bills, blogging takes a while before any income rolls in. I have many friends who balance them both. Some who’ve been able to quit or reduce freelancing when the blog took off.

      Reply
  91. C'est La Vie 3
    July 18, 2015

    I tried to add the plug-ins you recommended, but WordPress is saying it is only allowed in .org and not .com, which is what I have. Do you use dot org then?

    This is such a helpful post! Thanks so much for sharing!

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      July 19, 2015

      Yup, WordPress.com sites are hosted by WordPress, you want to self-host your site using the WordPress.org software.

      Reply
  92. Andy Tran
    July 15, 2015

    Lol, I’ll try these tips to improve my blog.thanks you so so much :)

    Reply
  93. Jana
    July 9, 2015

    Great article! However I was wondering at what time you finally felt like an “expert vagabond” (emphasis on expert ;)) and what you did write about before? I would feel dumb giving people advice at this stage I am currently on (so I’m also sticking to my friends & family so far) but don’t want to wait until I feel being wiser, so I stick to personal experiences so far.
    Would be happy to get some advice! :)

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      July 10, 2015

      After 6 months of travel I felt pretty confident to start sharing advice. The problem I see many travel bloggers making is they are comparing themselves to other travel bloggers. Don’t write for bloggers, write for the average person who knows less than you! Personal experiences are important too.

      Reply
      • Jana
        July 18, 2015

        Ah thank you, actually you’re right… I mean if I compare myself to you, I definitely suck in giving advices, but my average-travelling friends already started to approach me a couple of times to get some advice on cheap air fares and stuff. So I’ll keep going! :)

        Reply
  94. Adam
    July 9, 2015

    You got it all pretty much covered. I am already blogging in the travel niche, but to be honest it is quite difficult to be original without spending some money for a good camera, money to travel here and there, etc etc.

    Reply
  95. Lisa
    July 4, 2015

    Instead of using wordpress.com, what do you think about “wix.com”?

    I just started creating my blog but I’m using wix and am not sure whether I should switch over to wordpress or not.

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      July 9, 2015

      There are all kinds of competitors to WordPress out there. Use whatever you want, but know that most people end up switching to WordPress eventually. It’s not going anywhere, and it’s what most professionals use.

      Reply
  96. Jenneke
    July 2, 2015

    Wow, I searched Google for too long for this information before stumbling across your blog. This is exactly what I was looking for: a detailed, informative article about starting a blog. I followed the steps you outlined (including your links to Bluehost) as I created my first travel blog. Your blog is inspiring, especially to a “wannabe” travel blogger. Now off to read your other posts on this topic…

    Reply
  97. Carly Caman
    June 26, 2015

    Thanks for the advice, I am at the ‘My Mum is my biggest and only fan” stage of travel blogging, but it is nice to dream.

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      June 27, 2015

      We’ve all been there Carly… time & consistency is honestly the biggest factor. Produce great content on a consistent basis and people will start spreading the word. Starting with your family!

      Reply
  98. Christabel
    June 9, 2015

    Great tips, Matthew. My friend and I are just starting out, and it’s definitely not as easy as it looks. There are a lot of travel bloggers out there providing great advice and resources. We don’t want to have similar posts, so research is key (and something I enjoy doing, huzzah!) in providing original content!

    Going to check out Travel Blog Success!

    Reply
  99. Dawn Bayer (aka: the grazie girl)
    June 9, 2015

    Hi there. Loved your feature. I just began my blog a few months ago. I began it on WordPress, and I have the premium plan, so my domain name is thegraziegirl.com. I pay a charge yearly. But, have I done this backwards? I keep hearing about domain hosting, like you suggest here, but I’ve created my blog first. Should I still get a host?

    Reply
  100. Alexey
    June 9, 2015

    Thanks for the ideas . What is probably also important but missing is a breakdown of what to do on different types of blogs , I mean there are photo blogs , others are video blogs etc

    Reply
  101. Katie
    June 5, 2015

    Thanks for all the great information!

    When i saw the price of Travel Blog Success I gasped a little. But you are right, it is an investment. And I know how much work it all is (so much work) going to wait for a coupon code and then sign up.

    Thanks!

    Reply
  102. Philippa
    May 30, 2015

    Hi Matthew, Very interesting read I must say! have only recently started my travel blog and realise I have a long way to go. My husband and I are early 50’s, and plan to travel from next year, but I decided to start my blog now to get it going. I am adding blogs from our recent trip, but will add others this year from where we live (New Zealand) but also on up and coming trips. Many thanks for your inspiring website and advice.

    Reply
  103. sadeq
    May 29, 2015

    hi man
    thanks about your information i have a question! i think that traveling without friends is hard and i am tired in most of the time because i think that i am alone! may u guide me is that true?and what do i do for this problem!?thanks
    sadeq from iran
    be happy

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      May 31, 2015

      Staying in hostels helps a lot with meeting people to travel with. I also meet people through Couchsurfing.com and Meetup.com.

      Reply
      • sadeq
        June 4, 2015

        thanks about your information!

        Reply
      • John
        June 7, 2015

        I read your blog and recommendations it was very inspiring thanks a lot. I was traveling around for more than 3 decades, but just like anybody else, since last month I decide to blog and hey maybe get started my own business as a free man living on the planet guess anybody has a fair chance to do so and any start is not easy but I am quite certain that I follow your advice. I gave up my job, flat, etc, and have my tickets and travel gear ready in two weeks start and I am sure I`ll visit your blog for more inspiration. Tell me if I can help any how in return. So long all the best Matt.

        Reply
  104. Frank Wulfers (Roving Adventurer)
    May 21, 2015

    A good place to begin your travel blog is writing about your local town/city or region. Many blogs make it look so easy but it can take many hours for just one article. It is a good way to see if you actually enjoy doing the research, write, edit and use photography with your articles. And you often already are familiar with the place where you live and have an income so you don;t have to depend on your blog or other activities to make money.

    Getting familiar with blogging software etc also tkaes time and you don’t want to do this when you’re travelling.

    Reply
  105. Emely
    May 18, 2015

    I just thought of starting blogging and have came across this. Very inspiring!
    Now, let me start mine from scratch and let’s take it from there. Kudos, Matthew!

    Reply
  106. Ben
    May 8, 2015

    Very detailed guide and a valuable resource for newbie bloggers. I am looking forward to your next article on this topic.

    Reply
  107. William Elliott
    May 7, 2015

    Awesome tips, Matthew. Hands down, the best article so far. I don’t know why I didn’t stumble across it sooner, since I’ve read so many in the past. I need to switch from wordpress.com to wordpress.org.

    I was travelling for about a year before I got interested in blogging. Do you think it’s wise to write about past experiences and stories? Or will this confuse readers as to what you’re doing at the moment. Also the memories of mine may be a bit foggy. Thanks!

    Reply
  108. Niloy Basak
    May 1, 2015

    As a new blogger i have found ur tips really useful.thanks for the advises.

    Reply
  109. Stephanie
    April 18, 2015

    What an incredible resource. This is by far THE most informative article on starting your own CAREER in travel blogging that I’ve come across to date. I love that you take the time to interact with every person that posts on here. I’m sure your schedule leaves little to no time for that, and it’s impressive that you make the time.

    Visually this page is impressive. I’ve got a Masters in Creative Writing and I’ve been trying to think of ways to use my degree to bring in an income while I spend my time writing my screenplays, which brings a much MUCH slower return on my investment. I’ve spent the last two years traveling all over the US, part of that was on the Pacific Crest Trail, and people have been asking why I haven’t written a book or at least blogged about it. I always laugh, because they have no idea how much work goes into a blog, and I’m not one for doing things if they’re not going to be done right. Suddenly I looked up and realized that I was just traveling and no longer writing (YIKES).

    Your article is refreshing, well organized and the visuals are much appreciated. I’m looking forward to receiving your monthly emails.

    Thanks again,

    Stephanie

    Reply
  110. Derek
    April 16, 2015

    Thank you Matthew for this post, it has inspired me to bite the bullet and start my journey as a travel blogger with my own unique (I hope!) spin.

    You mention blogging about current and future travels. What about (distant) past? I have been traveling all over the world since 1998 (!) but never published anything about those trips, though I’d love to do so now. Is this accepted/encouraged/frowned-upon within the community?

    Reply
  111. mika josefine
    April 3, 2015

    Great article! I just recently started thinking seriously about backpacking solo for a few months, and your blog has really helped me. My original thought has just been saving up a decent amount of money and set a budget for the trip, but reading travel blogs really makes me want to think further and not settle for a few months.

    I do want to start a blog, much for my own and family’s sake, but also for sharing my adventures. I’m also a hobby photographer, so I really want to share my photos. I just keep dwelling on one thing: which language should I write in? I’m from Norway where the travel blogs are many but no one really stands out, but I’m still thinking about writing in english to reach a wider audience and so that people I meet can read about my journey without language barriers. What do you recommend? I guess it’s a really stupid worry, but I just can’t make up my mind. I guess it’s easier to get lost in all the international travel blogs, but also a possibility to really make it too.

    If I didn’t already state so: love your blog, and I definitely will be coming back for more :-)

    Reply
  112. Kenneth
    April 3, 2015

    Excellent article, thanks for all the tips! I just started doing the whole “social media” thing a few weeks ago. I’m currently on tumblr, twitter, and trover (I found out about trover through your site) and my blog is on wordpress. I decided to go with the name “Next Stop Earth”, the one I originally had picked out (which I can’t remember now) was taken. I haven’t purchased a domain name yet, I’m currently concentrating on building content and followers right now and when the time is right I’m going to move to my own domain name, forward the traffic, and keep it going. Right now I’m writing about past travels and local spots, as per your advice I’m working on a few personal Top 10 lists related to travel. Please check out my site if you have a moment and any advice, comments, criticisms you have I will gladly take. This is my dream, so I’m doing everything I can to make it happen!

    Reply
  113. Anna
    March 26, 2015

    Very helpful tips! Thanks Matthew! My partner and I met while traveling and decided to stay together as we plot our next adventures together. We just started our blog so this post is very helpful. Found your blog when I was researching about travel blog success. Will definitely add yours to our list! Happy trails. Anna and Tom

    Reply
  114. Marie Parks
    March 17, 2015

    Great tips–and you’re right about having patience. About 18 months into my blog, all that effort is starting to pay off! I lucked out with the name; Ardent Camper began as a tent camping blog, but when my husband and I joined the community of young, working full-time RVers last year, the name simply started referring to a new kind of camping.

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      March 17, 2015

      Cool! That is a good name, bonus that it works for the new niche too Marie!

      Reply
      • Marie Parks
        March 17, 2015

        Thanks! It’s great that you interface with your readers, too. Once you gain a visitorship, that’s part of what really helps build and maintain a rapport. I’m sure that connection is what has helped successful blogs like yours do so well. Thanks for being communicative!

        Reply
  115. Luke Garone
    March 11, 2015

    I found you blog about a 3 weeks ago and have been envious of your lifestyle. Opens my eyes to the face that you actually have to do a lot of work though! I have a Tumblr with about 10k followers so if I ever do muster up the courage to drop everything and travel the world, the transition might be easier. Keep up the awesome posts though!

    Reply
  116. Brian
    March 8, 2015

    Great post and very insightful information. I have a recently created blog and it’s still a work in progress. Thanks for the tips!

    Reply
  117. Shell
    March 6, 2015

    Great guide and very good point about names in particular!

    My own site is called “Camping With Style”, and in June 2014 that seemed like a great idea, but by October though, when it was too cold here in the UK to camp I quickly saw a problem!

    I am instead planning to transition to “Wander And Be Curious” to give me much more leeway so I can cover predominantly camping and glamping in the summer, and all broader aspects of the outdoors and adventure travel when it’s too cold to camp.

    I’m a professional marketer and really thought long and hard about my name initially, not long enough though! I can’t stress how important getting this bit right, first time is, it will save you a whole heap of hassle in the long run. It’s good to have a niche, but make sure it’s not a seasonal niche! :)

    Reply
  118. David Coulson-Lowes
    March 4, 2015

    It’s been said before but these are great tips, especially about setting your website up. Wish I’d read this earlier!

    Many thanks.

    Reply
  119. Kulani Warner
    March 2, 2015

    Thank you for this step by step guide. I used it and am in the process of working out the details and plan to start blogging very soon. I am new to all social media so I have A LOT to learn and every little bit helps.

    Reply
  120. Hannah
    March 2, 2015

    This is such a great post! Really easy to follow, step-by-step guide ideal for all of us would-be travel bloggers! I’ve just started a wordpress.com site and am thinking about investing in a domain name, so it’s really useful to know what I need to think about once I’ve got one!

    Reply
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    March 2, 2015

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  122. nadaCliche
    February 28, 2015

    Thanks for this! Lot’s of great tips for us lil guys starting out.

    Reply
  123. Jessica @ The Dining Traveler
    February 28, 2015

    Great tips, wish I would’ve had this post when I started. I’m glad you mention how much work it is behind the scenes as many people just think is taking photos and publishing then online. My biggest challenge has been seo, I actually invested in a professional to help me out. Looking forward to your posts.

    Reply
  124. Hana
    February 27, 2015

    Great article! Thanks for writing it. It’s always encouraging/inspiring to read about bloggers who have stuck with it to get to the point you’re at :) Congrats!

    Reply
  125. Robyn
    February 26, 2015

    This is so helpful; thank you! I have a blog already but it’s about travel+feminism+cycling and I’d like to start a more travel-specific one. Well, cycle-travelling to be precise! I only have mine through wordpress too (although I pay for the name without wordpress in the title) and hosting scares the bejesus out of me, so thank you for the careful breakdown. I’ve had a name knocking around my head for a while so I think I’ll get on it tonight.

    That said, a question: do you rate something short and snappy over something original/memorable? If you had to choose (since it’s so tough now; all the good names are gone!) which would you pick?

    Thank you so much :)

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      February 26, 2015

      Hi Robyn! I think I’d pick original & memorable if I had to choose between the two. Good luck with the new site!

      Reply
  126. danny
    February 26, 2015

    Thank you so much for the post! Its just what I needed. I’ve been traveling for a while, but never really thought about writing a blog, until a week ago lol. I’ll definitely use these tips to improve my blog.

    Reply
  127. Mike | VagabondingMike
    February 26, 2015

    Looks like my name ‘VagabondingMike’ is definitely an epic fail then..hahaha.

    Oh well, I guess I’ll have to double down on my efforts to overcome the short-comings of my name name choice.

    Great advice though!

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      February 26, 2015

      Ha! Don’t take it too personally Mike, it’s just a suggestion, not a rule. I quite like the term “vagabond”. I wasn’t the only one when I picked mine either.

      Reply
  128. susu
    February 25, 2015

    Great tips! Even for those of us who already got their blogs up this is great to keep the momentum going! Thanks for sharing

    Reply
  129. David Turner
    February 25, 2015

    Looks great Matt! I might give it a go! Will you travel for many years to come?

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      February 25, 2015

      Will keep at it in some form until I no longer enjoy it, but can’t see that happening anytime soon. I find myself slowing down a bit these days, however I’m always still excited to visit new places & share them.

      Reply
  130. Bex
    February 25, 2015

    Hi Matt,
    Thanks a lot for the advice, I’ve been holding off buying a decent theme for my WordPress site until my readership picks up. Do you think a changing a blog’s theme to a paid one directly relates to an increase in traffic or is content still king?

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      February 25, 2015

      I think a strong design keeps people interested in reading & exploring more of your site. Usability is key too, must be clean, simple, and easy to navigate. First-impressions are pretty important — especially when we all have such short internet attention spans!

      Reply
      • Bex
        February 27, 2015

        Looks like I might just invest after all then, I think you’re spot on. Many thanks for getting back to me :o)

        Reply
    • Frank Wulfers
      May 21, 2015

      I have been using WordPress for a while and went though many free and a few paid themes. This is the best free theme I have used so far and has many more features than many paid themes. I am currently using it on my site and stitill exploring the many features. http://www.kadencethemes.com/product/pinnacle-free-theme/

      Reply
  131. nigel
    February 24, 2015

    Thanks for writing this article! It’s always good to get this type of advice from someone whose been doing it for a while. As someone who I just starting out seems to me 2 major things you need are good content, not just want you want to talk about but what ppl are searching for and engaging with your target audience! Looking forward to reading the advanced tips!

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      February 24, 2015

      Very true Nigel! Content that helps other people is important. For example, even if you’re writing a narrative travel story, including useful tips about how readers can enjoy a similar experience is key.

      Reply
  132. Arianwen
    February 23, 2015

    I love this article. I really wish I’d had your expert advice when I started my blog a few years ago!

    Reply
    • Matthew Karsten
      February 23, 2015

      I’m hoping it will help those who are brand new! Working on another article with more advanced tips for those who already have a travel blog too.

      Reply

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