A quick Google search for ‘travel article’ turns up a rather intimidating 1.2 billion results. It can feel as though every company in the world is churning out travel content… so how can you possibly hope to stand out from the crowd?
The reality is, there are lots of ways you can improve from your written travel content. From employing humour to embracing multimedia, honing your message to signing off in style, here are seven top tips from our expert team.
1. What’s your point?
Before you start writing a travel article, there’s a very important question you need to ask yourself: What exactly are you trying to say? Followed quickly by: Does your audience want to hear it? You need to have a point, or at the very least a premise, and it has to be one that will appeal to your readership.
Writing a travel article is not the same as writing a personal journal. Readers don’t need every last trivial detail. Chances are no-one really wants to hear about your search for a nail clipper in Florence. It’s best to convey a message tailored to your readers’ needs, so sift through the boring minutiae and pick out only what is relevant and interesting to your readers.
2. Make it easy to read
Never underestimate the importance of presentation for travel content writing. If your content is displayed in one monolith of a paragraph, your readers will jump ship as soon as they have landed. Formatting content is akin to feeding a baby: You can’t just serve it up in one big slab; you need to break it down into easily digestible chunks.
(On that note, time for a new paragraph).
The fact is, if your content doesn’t look appetising to your readers, they simply won’t stick around. When writing a travel article, think about formatting it as a list (like this one!), and using sub-headers (like we have) to help your readers navigate through your content. You may also want to add an image or two (like we… you get the picture).
3. Why so serious?
It’s fine to be serious about your travel content – we certainly are – but don’t take yourself too seriously. There’s no need to be permanently po-faced. Remember, travel is meant to be fun. Plus, the people reading your travel content are not robots, so a sprinkling of self-deprecation and humour can go a long way in travel content writing.
4. Add some practicalities
Having said that, your travel content won’t stand out if it’s all fluff and no substance. When you are brainstorming travel writing ideas, try to think of some useful and practical tips to share with your readers. Do you know where you can procure tickets at a cheaper price? Tell them. An app that might help travellers navigate a difficult public transport system? Tell them. Advice on tipping? Tell them. Your readers will thank you.
5. Think beyond words
Words are the tools of our trade – and they’re very powerful ones. But it often takes more than words to generate interest in your travel content. When you’re writing a travel article, try to consider what visual content you can add to spice it up. It might be a powerful image, a gif or a video, or you might even want to turn your ‘Top 10’ blog into an eye-catching infographic. Anything to make your content more appealing and inspiring. Here’s a fact: visual content is shared far more on social media than just black-and-white articles – particularly when a cat is involved.
6. Offer a take away
In the arena of travel content writing, you have to give your readers something to take away from your piece. Think of it as a trade-off: They’ve given over some of their precious time to read your content and now you have to give them something in return.
Maybe you’ll give them inspiration for their next holiday destination, maybe you’ll make them laugh with a catchy headline. Just give something back. For example, the take away from this blog post might be to implement some of the aforementioned points in your travel content writing.
7. Sign-off in style
Last, but certainly not least, comes your sign-off. After writing a travel article and reeling in an audience, you want them to stay connected with your brand. So at the end of your post, remind them who you are. You might also want to link back to your website and to your social media, and perhaps invite reader comments on your content.
And with that, we’re signing-off…
To see some of the winning written travel content we’ve cooked up here at World Words, explore our latest projects. You can also leave a comment below, contact us directly or start a conversation with us on Twitter.
This is an updated version of an article originally published on the World Words blog almost exactly one year ago, in those halcyon days of August 2014. You can read the original article here. And here are the blog image credits: Diary CC image courtesy of Kévin Couette via Flickr; and Cat in a suitcase image courtesy of Fenwench via Flickr.