Drawn by the desire to travel? Do you want to see the world? Why don't you create a travel blog to share your experiences with others?
As much fun as it is to write about your adventures, starting a travel blog could help you earn enough money to finance more adventures.
In this post, we will give you a step by step tutorial of everything you have to do to start a travel blog.
And most importantly, how to monetize a travel blog and earn money!
We start at the beginning of everything before discovering the SEO tricks to get rich with a travel blog.
If you have a hotel with a website to book, do not miss this post about hotel marketing and how to promote your hotel on the internet and on Google.
To complement, you can also see this post from SEO for hotels.
The 5 Things You'll Need to Create an Awesome Travel Blog
Beyond your amazing writing and photography, these are the 5 things you'll need to create your travel blog.
- web hosting – this is the engine that will power your travel blog and make it available to visitors from all over the world. Webempresa is the best web hosting to start if it is your first blog. You're going to need technical support and they have awesome customer support.
- Domain name – the permanent address of your blog. For example, ours is
- The free WordPress software – that we recommend you use self-hosted wordPress, located on wordpress.org. This is different than WordPress.com.
- A WordPress theme – Once you install WordPress, your theme controls the look of your travel blog.
- WordPress plugins – Plugins help you add functionality to your site without the need for technical knowledge. You'll use them to add maps of where you've traveled, travel galleries, and much more.
Once we show you how to set up those basics, we'll also share some tips on how you can create content, promote it, and maybe even make money from your blog.
How to create a travel blog: step by step
This is your step-by-step guide to starting a travel blog:
Step 1: Choose a niche
There are a wide variety of travel blogging niches to choose from: a specific country or area, backpacking, target audience, luxury travel, travel with children or pets, singles, etc.
Your chances of building a high-traffic blog improve if you focus on a few specific areas.
You do not want to make a travel blog covering everything because you are not going to specialize in anything.
Better specialize and be an expert in a specific topic and niche. This list can help you as inspiration.
10 emerging tourism niches with a lot of potential
1. Dinks: English acronym for Double Income No Kids, I mean, two salaries without children. These are couples with regular income who have decided to postpone parenthood.
2. Women's groups: They are women who are passionate about travel who want to have a unique experience, seeking to know the female reality of destinations.
3. BoBo's: a somewhat comical acronym in Spanish but which in English refers to Bohemian Bourgeoise or Bohemian bourgeois. These are people with a comfortable standard of living who flee from the labels and tastes traditionally associated with their social position. Social and ecological sensitivity, taste for knowing exotic cultures in their own environment.
4. Millennials: not without my iPhone. They are the 'now' generation. They seek speed and immediacy. They were born between 1980 and the mid-90s; their world is interconnected, technological and global. They search for information in real time, make comments, they check many different sources before booking and always want quality Wi-Fi.
5. Luxury travelers: the VIP class is emerging as a distinct niche now that the Great Recession has not abated. luxury travelers they are young, well traveled and, for this reason, they accumulate great experience in terms of the industry of the service sector.
6. Families with children: the label "family-friendly» proliferates in many establishments. This identification delimits those hotels that are prepared to receive the little ones: slides, swings, entertainers characterized as storybook characters, tourist routes designed for the whole family.
7.Singles: almost one in four men between the ages of 40 and 44 lives alone, according to the INE. It is estimated that the total number of singles (single, widowed, separated or divorced) is around 8.5 million, between the ages of 25 and 65, if those who live with their families are taken into account. New technologies play a fundamental role when creating products and specific services for this segment.
8.Pank: another acronym for Professional Aunts, No Kids or the so-called "professional aunts". These are women without children who take their nephews on vacation, although it is a more pronounced phenomenon in the United States, it is estimated that in Europe there are 20% of women of childbearing age who do not have children, so it could be a niche growing on the continent.
9. Single-parent families: An important sociological change in recent years has been the increase in single-parent families (one adult with children), which has generated the need to travel with children. In Spain there are more than 1.7 million single-parent homes.
10. Halal tourism: Muslim travelers have emerged as another emerging niche. The term "halal" refers to what is permissible for a muslim in terms of food, layout of the space, people to address, the activities they can do.
Pick the one you're most passionate about, because you're in it for the long haul!
Step 2: Select a domain name
Your domain name should be simple and easy to remember.
Using a brand name on the domain may not be an option for you when you're just starting out.
So you should do the next best thing, select a name that you can turn into a brand. Something that's short, easy to remember, and maybe a little quirky.
Keyword-based names are also good, although you'll see that most are already taken..
You can even use your own name if you are going to maintain a very personal style throughout your blog. Or you can use part of your name in a brand, eg nomadicmatt.com.
We have some general advice on how to choose a domain name. And if you're really stuck, you can try using a blog name generator to get some ideas.
Step 3: Purchase WordPress hosting and install WordPress
Your hosting is important because it ensures that your site loads quickly and is always available to your visitors.
There are plenty of quality WordPress hosting services out there, but a good starting point is WebCompany.
If this is your first experience with a travel blog or you are just starting out in the online world, I recommend WebEmpresa because they offer an excellent service.
With excellent service, I mean that many doubts will arise and they will solve them for you.
In addition to having a very good reputation and good online score on WordPress hosting, WebCompany:
- it's affordable
- Offers you a setup wizard that installs WordPress for you
- Make it easy to buy your domain name
- Has awesome support if you ever need help
you can choose the cheapest startup for a start. Afterwards, you just have to follow the simple registration process.
Once you sign up, WebEmpresa will set up your domain name and install WordPress for you. Which means you officially have a working travel blog!
Step 4: Choose a theme for your travel blog
The topic of your blog issue determines its appearance. Luckily, you'll find several free and premium themes, many of them designed specifically for travel blogs.
If you choose an existing travel blog theme, you'll instantly get a great looking travel blog. To help you find a topic of this type, you can consult the lists of:
In addition to those lists, here are three specific options to get you started:
For example, the Loneliness theme has:
- A travel template
- 32 pre-built featured slider styles
- Elegant lightbox image galleries
- Pinterest and Twitter Slider Widget
All of these built-in features make it super easy to start a travel blog.
To install your chosen theme, visit your WordPress dashboard and click on Appearance → Themes → Add New.
Step 5: Install useful plugins for travel blogs
WordPress plugins help you add new functionality to your travel blog without requiring any technical knowledge on your part.
They are one of the things that make WordPress so awesome. And almost all WordPress sites make good use of plugins.
There are some must-have plugins for all sites, including travel blogs:
In addition to these must-haves, you'll also want some travel-specific plugins. Although this may vary depending on your area of interest, here are some good ideas:
- A good photo gallery plugin like NextGEN Gallery to share your travel photos in a gallery
- Plugins to help integration with Instagram and Facebook
- Slider plugins like Nivo Slider to display awesome full-width photos
- A lightbox plugin like simple light box to allow readers to view your photos in a customizable lightbox
- A map plugin to plot places and routes is a must when you want to start a travel blog. Help keep your readers engaged with you as you move from place to place.
- The Intergeo Maps plugin is available for free (and as a premium plugin) Interactive World Maps Plugin is another good option
- plugins like TravelPayouts helps you add a travel booking feature to your blog. Help your visitors find flight and hotel deals to different places while you earn a commission.
Step 6: Create and add content
Once you've established the foundation of your travel blog, you're ready to start adding content. To write blog posts in WordPress, go to Entries -> Add New in your WordPress control panel.
From there, you can use the button add media to insert images and the text editor to write and format your content:
Step 7: Build and grow your travel blog audience
There are some channels that you can use to increase your blog traffic.
With millions of active users, social networks can help your content reach the right audience.
Adding social sharing buttons makes it easy for readers to share your content.
Instagram and Pinterest are suitable platforms for promoting your blog, and they should be part of your social media strategy.
In addition, you should also learn about SEO and topics like keyword research.
Building an email list is another great way to grow an audience in the long run.
Step 8: How to earn money with your travel blog (summary mode)
We will go into detail at each point below.
Once you start getting some traffic, here are some ways to make money from your blog:
- affiliate marketing: You can have affiliates for almost everything: accommodation, insurance, travel material, web hosting. Every time someone clicks on a link that results in the purchase of an affiliate product, you earn a (small) commission.
- google adsense: Google generates travel-relevant ads on your blog. When visitors click on the offered ads, you earn revenue
- premium content: You can sell digital guides of the places you have visited to save time for other travelers.
- Add a donation button:Obviously, this can only work when you've got a dedicated readership
- Offer personalized advice: Offer travel-related advice for a fee, or offer personalized or guided tours of specific places, or make travel plans
- sponsored posts: Travel-related companies can pay you to write about them on your blog. Just make sure you're transparent.
- Sponsored trips: Tourist offices, private companies or brands may ask you to visit their places and write about them.
- workshops: Accept offers to conduct workshops related to travel
Of all these options, the best is undoubtedly Affiliate Marketing.
Then we will talk about the best Affiliate Marketing programs for travel blogs.
Let's get to what really matters, how to monetize a travel blog?
We go into point 8 in depth. How to monetize a travel blog?
Before answering this question, you should ask yourself how to position a travel blog.
That is, how can I make people find me on Google and my website receive visits. This is the most difficult and here you must focus all your efforts.
How do you want to make money with your travel blog if people can't find you?
I have already successfully started, bought and monetized 4 different blogs. In my experience, the amount of time it takes to earn money, and how much is earned, depends on how much content is posted.
But I already tell you that it is not fast or easy. On average you will need at least 6 to 12 months to receive the first small amount of money.
In this post, I'm going to share with you the best ways to make money with a travel blog, both directly on your site (and through ads and affiliates) and off it, leveraging your blog as a portfolio and finding remote work.
Let us begin. Here are 15 tips for making money with a travel blog in 2023
1. Producing content
When you start a new blog, one of the first things everyone wants to do is spend time styling it so it looks beautiful or adding cool photos to it.
The thing is, most of that time is wasted.
First of all, you have to learn how to write a blog post, and then spend your time writing many posts.
The design or how beautiful the logo or the menu looks, believe me, it is not important.
To make money writing on a travel blog, you have to post content. That means you should write at least 3-5 posts per week to start with and each of these posts should be at least 2,000 words long.
The more content you have on your site, the better chance you have that Google, and therefore new readers, will find your travel blog.
In the age of ads and affiliates (more on that later), the more content you have, the more traffic you're likely to get, and therefore the more money you can make from your travel blog.
Above I have recommended that you look at our SEO specific post for travel blog.
But you can't produce just any content. You have to focus on SEO (Sear ANDngine EITHERoptimization).
SEO is the practice of writing posts based on what people search for on Google, and optimizing those posts so Google bots can crawl them and know exactly what they're about.
Basically, if you write articles on topics that people search for on Google and create the best content possible, you have a very good chance of appearing in the search results.
To make money from a travel blog, you need to write a lot of blog posts and they all need to take SEO into account.
If you want to learn how to become a travel blogger and make money, the number one tip I can give you is to write as much content as you can and make each post the best content you can produce.
Watch this video from Romuald Fons, the best Spanish-speaking SEO:
2. Put ads on your travel blog
In order to monetize your travel blog with ads you need a lot of traffic, a lot.
When you start, forget this option. Later and if you do a good job you can put ads.
How can you make money with ads? You simply activate a plugin on your website and it populates your pages with ads.
These ads are recorded in your ad account and you are automatically paid.
How cool is that!
Ezoic is the best platform to monetize your travel blog with ads. Click below and check it out.
In-content ads are one of the best ways to earn passive income from a travel blog (when you have a lot of traffic).
Do not misunderstand. If you start a new travel blog today and just turn on ads, it won't make you any money.
First of all, Mediavine has a minimum traffic threshold to be accepted into their program, but also, to make money from ads you need to have traffic.
How do you get traffic? We have written extensively on how to get traffic to your travel blog, but basically, you need to learn basic SEO and use that knowledge to write 3-5 blog posts per week.
After doing this for a while, you will start to see your traffic increase. As it increases, so will your monthly income.
The best thing about blog ads is that you make money from your travel blog while you sleep!
The best ad networks for travel bloggers
Personally, I've used a few different ad networks on my blogs, and after much testing, we've settled on Mediavine, mostly for its customer service and high RPMs (how much do you get paid per visit).
When it comes to ads, if you're wondering how much travel bloggers make, it's largely due to their RPMs.
But Mediavine isn't the only ad network out there. Here are some of the best ad networks for travel bloggers.
Mediavine Let's start with our favourite. Mediavine is the best ad network for travel bloggers because it is owned by Conde Nest, a huge travel network with a great brand in the travel industry. They understand travel bloggers and they pay and treat us well.
adthrive For a while, AdThrive was considered a step above Mediavine because they had a higher threshold for new partners (100,000 monthly pageviews). I have friends who have moved from Mediavine to AdThrive and in every case there hasn't been a huge increase in RPM.
Ezoic This company has been improving year after year and lately their RPMs are competing with Mediavine.
We probably receive an email from someone from Ezoic every day informing us of news and new commissions for publishing ads on the platform.
It is undoubtedly the best option to monetize your travel blog with ads.
google adsense This is really only for people who can't meet the traffic thresholds of the above companies. Google Ads will allow you to place ads on your website no matter how small it is, but don't expect large amounts of money. Direct RPMs with Google are painfully low.
3. Join affiliate programs
Affiliate programs are one of the best ways to make money from a travel blog because there are so many travel related affiliates out there.
Many people want to know how to be a travel blogger and earn money. Affiliate marketing is probably at the top of the list.
What is an affiliate program?
Basically, an affiliate program is a tracking system used by almost all of your favorite travel brands. Expedia, Booking.com, Airbnb, and SkyScanner have affiliate programs.
As a travel blogger, you can earn money as an affiliate by creating special follow links on your blog.
Every time one of your readers clicks on those special tracking links and buys from the company's website, you'll earn a commission.
travelpayouts It is the platform that I personally use and that I have tested. What I love about it is that you can use this network no matter where you are and who your audience is.
Here's an example:
You write a post titled “Best Hotels in Paris” and then link to each hotel using your special Booking.com tracking link.
When readers land on that post, click on one of those links, and book the hotel, you will receive a commission that is a percentage of their total purchase.
If they book a $500 a night hotel room for a whole week, you can earn a great commission.
Photo of the TravelPayouts panel, the best platform to have all your affiliates and generate direct links.
This is a great way to earn passive income from your blog while helping your readers choose the best hotels, travel insurance, flights, and more.
When you choose an affiliate program to earn money from your travel blog, you should make sure that it has 2 things:
- Long duration of cookies: The longer the duration of the cookie, the more money you will earn. Sometimes your readers will click on your link, but won't decide to book for another 2 weeks. If the cookie duration is longer than 2 weeks, you will still receive your commission, even if they leave the site and come back 2 weeks later.
- Good commission: The higher the commission percentage, the more you will earn. You just have to be careful with the wording of some travel blog affiliate programs. Some commissions will be a percentage of your commission (for example: booking.com takes a 15-20% commission for each booking. As an affiliate you will get 25% of that commission, not 25% of the entire order)
The best affiliate programs for travel bloggers
If you want to make money from your travel blog through affiliates, you have to choose the right affiliate programs.
Here are some of my favorite affiliate programs for travel bloggers.
The best affiliate hosting for travel bloggers
booking.com This is an affiliate program that has been around for a long time. The commission is 25% of their total commission (15-20% of the reserve) and they have a great 30 day cookie.
Airbnb: This was once the best affiliate program for travel bloggers, but Airbnb canceled their affiliate program at the height of COVID, leaving thousands of bloggers penniless and out of luck. They still have an affiliate program through Impact Radius, so I'm including it here, but you'll need 1 million visitors to be eligible. Airbnb offers a commission of 20% for a 30-day cookie.
VRBO It is the closest thing to Airbnb in terms of affiliation for apartment stays. They offer between 2 and 4% commission for a 7-day cookie.
Expedia.com: Expedia is a brand that travelers have known and trusted for decades. We have made a decent commission with them in the past, but we don't find them to convert as well as Booking or Airbnb. They offer a commission of 3-4% in a 7-day cookie window.
HostelWorld: This was the first affiliated accommodation that made us money as travel bloggers and at its peak we were making over $500 a month from HostelWorld commissions. Nowadays, our blog is not a “budget travel blog” anymore, so we opt for sites more suitable for digital nomads and remote work, like Airbnb and VRBO, but if you write a lot about budget travel, your commission rate of the 40% (of its benefits) and its 30-day cookie are not bad at all.
The best travel affiliates for travel bloggers
GetYourGuide: Especially for travel in Europe, we've been using GetYourGuide as our main travel affiliate for years. They offer up to 8% commission in a 31-day cookie window.
Airbnb Again, Airbnb experiences are the top converting trips online for travel bloggers. Unfortunately, without 1 million readers a month, you're out of luck. It's a total bummer for new bloggers.
Viator: This is the US alternative to GetYourGuide and while it doesn't convert as well, Americans seem to prefer it, so it's best to use these links in posts about US destinations. They offer up to 8% commission in one window of 30-day cookies.
The best travel insurance affiliates For travel bloggers
World Nomads: This was the first travel insurance we made money from through our travel blog. They offer a great commission of 10% for a 60 day cookie window.
SafetyWing Now we mostly make money with SafetyWing as our main travel insurance affiliate because it's the company we actually use and it's the best for truly nomadic people. They have a commission rate of 10% with an incredibly generous cookie window of 365 days.
The best car rental affiliates for travel bloggers
Expedia The same commission as 3-4% in a 7-day cookie. In our experience, Expedia and any car rental affiliates don't seem to convert well for travel bloggers.
Discover the cars: Probably the easiest car rental affiliate for travel bloggers to earn money, Discover Cars offers a 30% commission on your earnings with a generous 365 day cookie.
The best team affiliates for travel bloggers
Amazon As much as you try to make money with other online stores, they will never convert as well as Amazon. I have tried dozens of different online stores and Amazon always gets the best results. Their commission structure depends on the product category, but most travel products, like hiking shoes, backpacks, and cameras, fall into the 4% category, with a dismal 24-hour cookie window.
REI We have tried to make more money with REI, but it doesn't convert as well as Amazon. This is probably because it is not such a well-known brand to buy online. Even so, with a commission of 5% and a 15-day cookie, if you succeed, you could earn more than Amazon.
4. Become a freelance writer
Finding freelance writing jobs and getting paid to write online has multiple benefits for your portfolio and travel blog.
At that time, we didn't have any real experience as freelance writers.
Still, we managed to start a freelance writing business along with our travel blog, and guess what, it helped our travel blog earn more money, too.
As? Because every time we wrote a post for a publication that had more traffic than us, we would link to our travel blog.
That meant that when people read the post on that site, they used to click on our blog and become a regular reader. As I have already established in this post, the more traffic you get, the more your travel blog can earn.
Therefore, writing as a freelance is one of the best ways to earn money with a travel blog. It's genius.
You get paid to write the post, but you also get valuable links.
Publisuites is the best option!
And these links don't just bring readers from the companies you write for.
Once Google sees a bunch of links pointing to your travel blog from authoritative and trusted domains, it will start to rank higher in Google.
This is a great form of link building, which is an important SEO strategy to increase traffic.
Expect to be paid between $50 and $4,000 for an item. In my experience, the average is about $75-$100 for a 2,000-3,000 word article.
If you can write an article in 2 hours, you would be earning about 50 $ per hour.
The best websites to get paid as a freelance writer
We've got a full list of 99 websites that will pay you to write, but here are some of our top picks for 2022:
- Pay: $75 – $150 for 1,250 – 3,000 words
This was one of our first online freelance writing jobs. Transitions Abroad is a bit picky and wants high-quality, unique content, but it's well worth the pay to pitch a few ideas.
- Payment: 0.50 cents / word (usually between 600 and 700 dollars maximum per article)
World Nomads is a travel insurance company, but they do a bunch of in-depth guides from time to time and they've been doing a lot of work on their blog. Keep an eye on their website for freelance writing opportunities, as they pay quite well.
- Payment: 50$ / article with photos
Matador is one of the biggest travel blogs out there and they pay $50 per article to write on their site. They also have some press travel opportunities for travel bloggers so you can get paid to travel.
5. Sell a digital product
If you want to make money from your travel blog, one of the best ways to do it is by selling a digital product.
Digital products include ebooks, courses, videos, photos, and much more.
All you have to do is create the product once, and sell it to your readers. The key here is to make the product as useful as possible. Take your time!
Once your digital product is finished and put up for sale on your site, you will be able to make money from it for years.
In some cases, you will have to update the content if it is based on information, but we know of some bloggers who earn more than 1 million dollars a year from the sale of digital products. Not bad, right?
We have successfully made a few thousand dollars a month selling digital products on our travel blog, such as our ebooks and blogging courses.
We have a free travel blogging course for beginners, and we have also started an SEO course to become a professional travel blogger.
Both of these things are very rewarding for us because we see bloggers leave their regular jobs all the time for a life as a travel blogger.
The best digital products to sell as a travel blogger
There aren't many types of digital products you can sell to make money with a travel blog, but we've tried them all. Here's the complete list:
digital course This is the best way to earn money selling digital products from your travel blog. Create a course on anything from how to travel to how to start a travel blog, and you can sell it through companies like teachable.
E-books We have been selling ebooks for years and have made thousands of dollars doing it. Since ebooks have a low entry value compared to eCourses, they probably won't earn as much, but they're still a great option. Considers E Junkie and Amazon to help you sell your ebooks on your website.
6. Sell merchandise and products
Selling merchandise like t-shirts, hats, iPhone cases, and photography isn't as easy as selling digital products.
To do this, you'll have to deal with customer returns, shipping, and manufacturer defaults.
We launched our own online store within a few months of starting our travel blog and were able to earn a few hundred dollars from it (mostly through friends and family).
But we never spend a lot of time trying to sell products to our readers. But some bloggers earn tens of thousands of dollars a month selling merch to your readers.
These companies will take care of all the annoying stuff like customer returns, customer service, shopping cart sales funnels, and much more.
All you have to do is come up with great designs and sell them to your audience.
I've done a lot of research on creating an online store selling t-shirts, and while it's never been a massive part of our overall business, if you'd like to make it a part of yours I highly recommend checking out Wholesale Ted on YouTube.
He is very successful in selling products and teaching his viewers how to make money selling online in his YouTube videos.
The best products to sell as a travel blogger
Not all products are sold equally. Did you know that studies have shown that black t-shirts sell better 9 out of 10 times?
Likewise, you'll probably sell a lot more t-shirts than hats. So are the things.
Here are some of the best selling items you can sell as a travel blogger:
Tshirts That's how it is. Selling t-shirts is the best way to earn money selling merchandise as a travel blogger. But don't just sell T-shirts with your brand name on them. Consider including funny travel quotes, cool travel illustrations, and funny travel jokes.
hats Yes, you can still make money selling caps, although they probably won't sell as well as t-shirts unless you promote them better. Keep in mind the same strategies as for selling t-shirts.
Backpacks Very few online stores allow you to sell custom designed backpacks Printed has a good system for it and you may find that your travel blog readers love receiving a personalized package from you.
travel photos I know of some travel bloggers who have made good money selling their travel photos, but generally selling physical photos is a tough business. If you want to go this route, consider using companies like etsy either Shutterstock to help you sell both physical and digital photographs.
See also: How to improve your travel photography
7. Paid press trips
Paid press tours are a great way to literally get paid to travel.
Usually, the company will invite you to fly, stay in a hotel and organize excursions, and on top of all that, they will pay you.
Once the trip is complete, you need to complete a series of deliverables for the campaign, such as blog posts, videos, social media posts, photos, and posts on your travel blog.
The key to getting press trips is to always exceed the results.
We take our collaborations with the press very seriously and if our partners did not see the ROI (Return on Investment) we would be very disappointed in ourselves.
Always make sure that you create the best possible content for your press partners and that you highlight their product or service in an honest and genuine way.
Another way to get more press trips is to participate in conferences attended by big brands. Bring your business cards and press kit and get ready to mingle and network.
Just like with ads, it will take time and a lot of traffic to get paid to post content on your travel website.
The best tourism fairs in Spain to get paid trips and press posts
Getting press trips is not easy. Many times you will need to meet marketing representatives in person and the best places to do this are at tourism fairs and conferences.
Here are some of the best ways to get leads:
fitur 2023: Fitur will be held at Ifema Feria de Madrid Madrid from January 18 to 22, 2023, presenting the news of Spanish and international companies related to the sectors of Hotels, Adventure tourism, Airlines, Tour operators, Tourism Organisms, Tourism.
B-Travel: B-Travel will be held at Fira Barcelona – Montjuic Barcelona from March 10 to 12, 2023 presenting the news of companies from Spain and internationals related to the Automobile, Travel, Tourism, Leisure sectors.
8. Get sponsorship
We'll talk about other forms of sponsorship later, like sponsored links and sponsored videos, but first I want to talk about actual sponsorship.
A full-time sponsor who pays you an advance for promoting their product or service.
We have had quite a few such sponsors over the years.
This is the best way to earn money with a travel blog through sponsorship, because income is constant and practically guaranteed for the life of the contract.
Getting long-term sponsors is not easy. You will need to find the right marketing contact to deal with this type of press relations and make your case.
Sponsors usually work best when they are super niche. If you have a travel blog about hiking in California, for example, you could get a sponsor like California gear company Patagonia®.
When you ask for a sponsorship, be sure to explain why your travel blog is super relevant to their brand, how you can help them, and why your audience is more engaged than other bloggers.
Be sure to submit examples of your work, such as videos, photos, and blog posts, along with your media kit showing your social numbers, traffic, and traffic demographics.
Top Travel Brands Sponsoring Travel Bloggers
Not all travel brands are willing to send travel bloggers a check every month. Here are some brands that are known for patronizing travel bloggers:
Kathmandu: It is a hiking and outdoor brand that sponsors some travel bloggers to create blog posts and videos for them.
GoPro: GoPro is known for sponsoring many travel bloggers over the years.
Vanguard: It is a backpack company that sponsors travel bloggers to create videos, post on their blogs, and take photos of their products.
Airlines: I am not talking about a specific airline here because it will totally depend on where your travel blog is based. A travel blog about Europe probably won't earn any flight sponsorship deals from AirAsia, for example.
9. Sponsored Posts and Paid Reviews
Sponsored posts are a very common way for new travel bloggers to earn a bit of money from their travel blogs.
Here's how it works: As your blog grows and gets a bigger audience, so does its DA (D.omain Aauthority). The DA is a number from 1 to 100 that is a rough estimate of the overall SEO health of a website.
The higher that number is on your blog, the more valuable your blog will be to potential advertisers.
As your DA goes up, you will start receiving emails in your inbox from companies asking you to pay them to add links to your site.
When your blog starts gaining authority, sign up with Publisuites and create an ad to get paid to review with a backlink.
Below is a screenshot of my profile at Publuisuites where I offer writing and a 500-word post for 35 euros.
google is very clear in their guidelines you must mark the link as no-follow and tell your readers that the link is paid.
Where to find sponsored post opportunities for travel bloggers
The days of sponsored posts are almost gone. Google has cracked down on this practice, and with good reason.
Too many people were breaking the rules and adding sponsored do-follow posts to their blogs without disclosing the sponsorship.
However, there are still a few places where you can find sponsored post opportunities.
publisuites for travel blog Excellent option to earn money when your blog begins to have some authority. You can sell sponsored posts with backlinks.
Facebook groups There are still some Facebook groups where bloggers share their contacts for sponsored posts.
These groups are usually very VIP and you will have to apply with enough of your own contacts to be accepted.
your inbox As your blog grows, you will organically start receiving emails with sponsored post opportunities.
Unfortunately, many of them are emails from spam companies that want you to break Google's rules. If you take the time to filter them, you will often receive a few that are legitimate each month.
10. Sponsored links
Sponsored links follow the same principle as sponsored posts. The bigger your travel blog is, the more people will want to pay you to link to their website from your blog.
The difference is that with sponsored links, you won't have to write an entire post to add your link. They will only ask you to place the link in a post that you have already published.
This will take you a fraction of the time, and the pay is still decent. It tends to be around $100-$500 per link, depending on how established your blog is.
Apart from sponsored links, you can also invest in backlinks and links to improve your position in Google.
11. Monetize your YouTube channel (if you have one)
Growing a YouTube channel is a lot like growing a blog. You will have to spend a lot of time creating content and marketing your channel to get views.
Unless you're lucky with an incredibly viral video you'll probably be in it for the long haul.
To monetize on YouTube, you will need to follow their guidelines and reach 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 viewing hours.
Once monetized, you just have to activate the ads on the approved videos and start earning money through your Adsense account.
In my experience, YouTube is a pretty tough way for travel bloggers to make money, because you need a LOT of views to make a decent income.
Our main channel has 20,000 subscribers and even at its peak, we were only making a few hundred dollars a month from ads.
Even so, the the highest paid YouTubers they make millions of dollars a year, so it's clear that there are plenty of opportunities to make money on YouTube.
The best ways to monetize a YouTube channel
YouTube channels can be monetized in more ways than ads and this is how you can start earning more money through YouTube.
Advertisements First of all, ads are the main way to earn money for most new YouTubers. By placing ads on your videos, you will earn a percentage of the advertising revenue that Google Inc. earns from the ads.
sponsorships Although I haven't made a lot of money through YouTube ads, the channel I started in 2020 was making money from sponsors after less than a year.
selling merchandise Just like with your blog, you can make a lot of money selling merchandise on YouTube. Think of t-shirts, hats, backpacks and all the same clothes that you have in the store on your website. In most cases, you'll link to the same sales pages from your YouTube videos and video descriptions.
12. Monetize your Instagram
It's no secret that you can get paid VERY well to post on Instagram, with some of the highest paid influencers earning up to $1.5 million per post.
I'm not saying you're going to monetize and make millions, but if you grow your Instagram and work to build your brand on the platform, it can really be a very solid side business for your blog.
Unlike YouTube, Instagram doesn't have a one-click solution for advertising. There is no minimum number of followers to apply for their ad platform because they don't have it.
Instead, you'll have to grow your Instagram page organically and then brands will approach you (or you them) to post on Instagram in a sponsored way.
Goats On The Road's Instagram isn't one of the most popular, with just 26,000 followers. But still we have been able to sell some sponsored posts on the platform.
These are photos of destinations or products that we have used or visited and that we are happy to share with our readers.
How to monetize Instagram
There is no simple answer to this difficult problem. Gone are the days when you could spam people with comments to follow you or follow and unfollow multiple accounts to gain thousands of followers a week. Now you will have to be more organic in your efforts to grow.
Grow your account first First of all, you will have to grow your account organically. You can do this by posting regularly and using all the features of the platform, such as posts, stories, videos and, in particular, Reels.
Find out what works and what gets the most likes and double down. Also, follow accounts in your niche to see what they are doing to grow quickly.
Lastly, in this crash course (too short) of growth on Instagram, try to appear on bigger accounts. You can pay influencers to mention your account on theirs, or if you have influencer friends, you can ask them to collaborate.
Introduce potential sponsors Once you have followers, if you're still not receiving emails from sponsors, you can contact them yourself. Create a media kit and send it out explaining why you think your audience is a good fit for your brand.
Sell merchandise Another way for Instagram influencers to make money is by selling their own merchandise. Just like on your blog and YouTube, on Instagram you can take your merch and promote it in some of your posts.
sell filters This is a bit of a cliché nowadays, but there are still Instagrammers who make money selling their photo and video filters. If your photos are unique and eye-catching, people will want theirs to be the same. Sell them your Photoshop photo filters for a nice income supplement.
13. Take your own tours
This is an aspect of our business that we have always considered but never carried out.
However, some very close blogger friends we know organize trips and have earned over $20,000 for a week of travel with a group of like-minded readers/followers.
If you are an expert hiker, you can plan hiking trips where you take your people on an epic hike through the mountains.
Do you like wineries? Why not plan a 7 day adventure for your fans in Tuscany?
The options are endless. Even writing this now I'm wondering again why we haven't done this yet.
We've done meetups all over the world where we just say we'll be in a bar and meet some of our readers there, but I think it would be a lot of fun to travel with them.
Having this community is one of the great advantages of travel blogs, and organizing your own trips can help you better connect with your audience.
How to monetize your travel blog through your own trips
How does it work? Basically, you first have to create an audience, and then you have three options:
- You can create your own tour completely from scratch. To do this, you will have to visit the destination, stay in all the hotels, try all the experiences and literally plan the entire tour from scratch.
- You can work with a local travel company on the ground. This is the way we have considered doing it. You hire a local tourist company that already performs all the experiences you plan to do. You use their already established transport and accommodation network.
- Work with an influencer travel company. Some of these companies have contacted us and this year we have almost got one. Basically, these companies work with influencers who have an audience and help them organize trips for their followers. They take care of all the logistics, marketing, customer service, online orders and the trip itself, which makes this option the most free. Of course, they also take a bigger part.
14. Work as a VA for other bloggers
Work as a VA (Vvirtual Asssistant) is another service we have personally used to earn extra money as travel bloggers. As you build your blog, you will gain incredibly valuable knowledge about blogging and running a business.
This knowledge is useful to other bloggers and they will hire you to help them run their own blog.
You may end up creating Pinterest images for them, running their social media, or being their main editor.
While working as VAs for other blogs and websites, we managed and learned how to grow Pinterest, wrote their blog posts, edited, and more.
We joined a few Pinterest Facebook groups for travel bloggers which helped us get the pins seen by more people and in turn our employers were very happy with our work.
We were definitely not the highest paid VAs in the world. There are VAs that make over $10,000 a month working from home. not a bad job
How to find virtual assistant jobs
We've got a whole guide on how to find virtual assistant jobs, so I won't go too deep into this post, but here are some of the top places to look:
FlexJobs This huge online database has more than 5,000 companies and offers thousands of jobs for virtual assistants. FlexJobs has made a name for itself as a trusted platform for connecting hard-working virtual assistants with real, verified employers.
Upwork We have personally used Upwork dozens of times to hire our own staff. It's an incredibly intuitive and easy to use platform where you can post jobs that you need to get done, or request jobs that get posted. You'll find thousands of virtual assistant job opportunities and assignments on Upwork, and it's easy to apply.
Freelancer This site is one of the largest online marketplaces for finding freelance jobs, virtual assistant jobs, and crowdsourcing in general. They have more than 31 million users spread over 247 countries. With so many users, there are plenty of opportunities to find a freelance virtual assistant job.
15. Develop your own travel product
This is going to be a little more difficult. Finding a manufacturer, customizing a product to make it your own, branding it, and marketing it to your audience is a whole business in itself.
But imagine if you could make the travel products you love even better and then brand and sell them to your audience.
For example, every backpacker knows how to create a better backpack. Whether it's adding a better exterior pocket to store a water bottle or waterproof zippers to keep your stuff dry.
You can find backpack manufacturers on sites like Alibaba and then put together all the aspects that make up a great backpack and customize it enough to make it your own product.
You would not be the first influencer to sell backpacks and earn money, with some earn more than $76,000, but you would be developing a product that could really help your readers and followers, which is a very rewarding way to monetize a travel blog.
How to develop and sell your own product
To do it correctly and on a large scale, you will have to go to the country of manufacture to nail down the details.
You will also need to adjust the economics of the product to ensure that your margins are high enough.
From there, you'll need to work with the manufacturer to create a high-quality, yet profitable product that your audience loves, and then promote it through your online platforms, like your travel blog and social media.
Like I said, it's not an easy process, but the rewards of making money from your travel blog while providing your audience with a product they use and love is priceless.
Tips to make money with your travel blog
Earlier in this post, I talked about the fact that I've built numerous profitable travel blogs over the years, and a couple blogs in other niches as well.
What I have learned is that if you follow a few simple tips, you can learn how to make money from a travel blog and find success when you set your mind to it.
This was number 1 on this list of how to make money with a travel blog, but it is very important. If you are not able to post 3-5 times a week, then you should expect it to take much longer for your blog to earn money.
This is a bit more difficult if you write on a travel blog on the go, but if you sit still every once in a while and work hard on your site, you should be able to write this amount or more.
If you can't post that often, consider hiring writers. Search sites like Upwork for expert freelance writers in your niche.
Typically, you can pay around $50 for a 2,000 word post. If you can afford to invest a few thousand dollars in your travel blog up front, you should be able to see a good return on investment over time.
Optimize your productivity
I have always been a firm believer that you should never stop optimizing.
As you get better at writing blog posts, try to find ways to speed up the process that don't diminish the quality of your work.
One of the best ways to do this is by using productivity apps, but you can also write your processes down to make them easier to visualize, and then try to see how they can be improved.
Consider creating a schedule for your travel blog and a schedule for your social media so they grow as quickly as possible over time.
See also: Updates that save time for digital nomads
Write lucrative posts
What do I mean by lucrative posts? Not all keywords are the same. If you write a post titled "How my dog Fluffy got from Amsterdam to Bangkok," your readers might like the whimsical title.
But no one Googles that, and if they did, what affiliates could they put on that post to make money from your travel blog? Probably none.
Instead, a post like “How to travel with a dog from Europe to Asia” might be a much better term. There are probably more people searching for that on Google than for your specific dog, Fluffy, and there are ample affiliate opportunities in that post as well.
You could link to pet-friendly airline affiliates. You could link to Amazon for the best kennels for travel. You could put a link to a GPS tracking affiliate for the tracker you put on Fluffy's neck to make sure you know where he is during your journey.
When you write content, you should always think about how you can monetize it on your travel blog.
Some great post ideas are:
- Things to do in These are great for members of tours like GetYourGuide and Viator.
- Where to stay: Perfect for hotel and apartment affiliates.
- How to get from A to B: Here your travel blog can earn money through airline and bus affiliates.
- The best travel products: There is no better affiliate than Amazon and these lists of travel products like “best waist packs for travel” tend to have high search volume and convert very well.
- Travel Product Review: Again, the perfect place for Amazon affiliate links. Review the travel products you use and love.
Update your old content
Nobody likes to arrive at a post to discover that none of the links work anymore, that all the products are sold out and that the tourism companies that appear in it have gone bankrupt.
The funny thing is that Google hates this too.
As important as creating new content for your travel blog, you need to make sure that you go back to your old posts and update them.
This is an important aspect of making money from travel blogging, because if your affiliate links point to products that are out of stock or to hotels and tour companies that are out of service, then you are losing money.
Try to go back to 2-3 of your oldest posts and update them every week.
Learn SEO, we have said it but we insist: VERY IMPORTANT
SEO is the most important thing to learn if you want to make money from travel blogging.
Learning SEO will teach you how to write posts that actually show up in search results, and how to market your blog properly so that it grows organically in search engines.
I won't go too deep here because we have a free hour-long SEO training video on our website, but here are the basics:
keyword research Use tools like KeySearch or free tools like keyword finder to find the topics your audience is actually searching for on Google. The difference between writing a post titled “Hotels in Prague” and one called “Best Places to Stay in Prague” could be thousands of readers for your site. These tools can help you identify these high-volume keywords and phrases, and which ones aren't too difficult to rank for.
Write SEO content You have to write content that Google can understand. Now that you have your keyword, write a post that best answers the user's query. Include the keyword in the post title and throughout the post and do your best to create a better article than the one that currently appears in the top 5 of Google search results.
Interlink Once you have a few posts on a topic (for example: Places to visit in thailand), it's time to link to other posts you have on your site that are relevant (for example: Things to do in Bangkok). Make sure all your posts link to each other. Not only is it good for search engines, but your readers will be better able to navigate your site and find the information they need by using these links.
Build organic backlinks: Now it's time for the hard part. You need to start reaching out to your fellow travel bloggers and building relationships with them. Don't just spam them Try to help them and see if you can get a link to your site's posts in return. Often in the form of a guest post. To make money from travel blogging, you'll need to build a few links each week.
be super niche
You may have realized that everyone and their dog have a travel blog nowadays. Don't be discouraged. This just means that you have to be more specific in your brand identity.
Don't just be a "budget travel blogger." She blogs about cheap travel in Bozeman, Montana.
Don't just be a "Couples Travel Blog". Blog about romantic overwater bungalow destinations for couples.
I think you understand me. Gone are the days when you could just be a travel blogger. Unless, of course, you're outrageously attractive or charming.
Today you have to nest. Write a travel blog about the city you live in, about your unique travel disability, or about traveling to a specific destination with pets. For example, how to travel around Europe with a dog.
To find a more specific niche, just take the current popular travel blog niches and add 2 additional identifiers.
Travel blog for couples + Eastern Europe + Luxury
Food Travel Blog + Street Food + Latin America
Budget Travel Blog + Beach Cabins + Southeast Asian
Make sure your travel blog is fast
One of the fastest ways to to lose money in a travel blog is because of having a website that takes time to load. The longer a page takes to load, the more likely your readers will click through to another site.
Luckily, nowadays some WordPress themes and plugins make it quite easy to have a fast-loading travel blog.
In our Beginner Blogger Course, we show new bloggers how to start a blog using the fastest themes, and build it to be lightweight and load super fast.
If you already have a blog and see it loading slowly on speed test sites like PageSpeed Insights, GT Metrix and pingdom consider changing your theme to Astra either GeneratePress, removing unnecessary styling and animations and caching with the WPRocket plugin.
be genuine and honest
This is probably my #1 tip for any travel blogger who wants to make money from travel blogging.
People on the Internet can smell lies from a mile away. Always be honest with your readers. Disclose every time you work with a company. Tell them the truth about what the trip is like, the good, the bad and the ugly.
They will appreciate your sincerity and it will endear you to them.
Just because you never see their faces, doesn't mean they aren't real people. Every time you write a post on your website, try to imagine your reader as a person in front of you.
This will help you write better content and build the best travel blog possible.
How to make money with a travel blog Frequently asked questions
How much money can you earn with a travel blog?
Travel blogs earn between 0 and 1 million dollars a year
Some of the best travel bloggers earn as much as $100,000 a month with their blogs.
We also have a post on how much travel bloggers earn that goes into more depth on this topic.
A travel blogger's salary will largely depend on the work they put into the blog and the quality of content they produce.
Is it worth creating a travel blog?
In my opinion, yes. 100%. Starting our first travel blog (this one you are reading) was the best decision we made.
He has given us a life we could only dream of. We travel full time, often for free, and make a decent living while doing it.
The benefits of this job are almost unbelievable. Will it be easy to create a successful travel blog that makes hundreds of thousands of dollars a year? No. You will have to put in some time and work hard at it.
It will be fun? Of course. If you enjoy traveling, writing, and taking photos, none of your time building your travel blog should feel like work.
How long does it take for a travel blog to make money?
In general, it takes at least 3-6 months for a travel blog to start making money.
How quickly your travel blog makes money will depend on how much content you write and how monetizable that content is. If you write SEO content for potentially lucrative key terms, you could be making money in a few months.
It took us 9 months to earn income with this blog. But on subsequent blogs we've built since this one, we've been able to start making some money in 3-4 months.
I started another blog in 2020 and after 1 year I was earning a good monthly income. This is largely due to choosing a good niche and following proper SEO strategies.
We made a few mistakes along the way, and you will too, but luckily there are plenty of ways travel blogging can help you maintain a nomadic lifestyle.
By following a few basic first steps, it will probably take at least a year for you to be able to replace your full-time income with a travel blog.
See also: 5 Stages All Bloggers Go Through When Creating a Successful Travel Blog.
How much does it cost to create a travel blog?
Starting a travel blog costs about $2.95 a month or about $36 a year.
In our How to Start a Travel Blog guide, we recommend that people start their blogs with Bluehost.
We've tested many hosts and Bluehost is our favorite because it's affordable, has great customer support, and has fast-loading servers.
What do I need to start a travel blog?
To start a travel blog you will need a laptop. At least a tablet (I don't recommend trying to blog from a smartphone.
You will also need a camera (a smartphone camera is ideal), and a good internet connection.
Hosting and domain to start writing and uploading content.
Is it easy to make money with a travel blog?
No. I want to be 100% honest here. Do not expect that just by publishing a blog post you will earn money.
To make money as a travel blogger you will have to work long hours and write many blog posts, market your blog, and work to improve your skills over time.
The good news is that much of the money travel bloggers make can be passive, which means that once your blog is established, you can earn money from ads and affiliates without having to be actively on your laptop.
What are the advantages of having a travel blog?
The benefits of having your own travel blog include income, free trips, helping other travelers have wonderful travel experiences, and having your own fun project to work on and build on.
Starting this travel blog really changed our lives and we are so thankful that we recognized the benefits of having a travel blog early on.
See also: 10 reasons to start a travel blog today.
Final Thoughts on How to Make Money With a Travel Blog
As we have discussed in this article, there are many ways to earn money with a travel blog.
This is not a get-rich-quick scheme. You will have to work on your travel blog to get it to the point where it can make money. But it can be a fun and exhilarating journey.
We've been doing this for over a decade and I still sometimes pinch myself when I look at the life our travel blog has helped us create.
We work very few hours a week and our days are full of travel, experiences and joy.
If you like travel, photography and writing, the job of a travel blogger is for you.
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I am a passionate traveler with an innate desire to discover the world. To date, I have had the privilege of visiting 31 countries and most of them have left an indelible mark.
During my travels, I have gained valuable knowledge on how to travel efficiently. I have perfected itinerary planning, accommodation selection, and making the most of each experience. I am proud to share my tips and tricks with you so that you can enjoy hassle-free and unforgettable trips.
On this blog, you'll find a carefully curated selection of destinations, practical tips, and honest reviews of hotels and tourist attractions. My goal is to inspire you and provide you with useful resources so that you can plan your own adventures with confidence and peace of mind.
May travel fill you with joy and open you up to new possibilities!