Why We Hate Travel Bloggers

We can’t tell you how many people we’ve met while travelling who tell us that they blatantly despise travel bloggers. Different types of people from places all around the world. Usually, they’re travellers or expats who believe that the travel blogging industry as a whole has really messed up their favourite places. Through these chats and through some observations of our own, we've come up with a list of the reasons why people hate travel bloggers. 


The travel blogging industry is one big pyramid scheme. Kind of like those motivational speakers and self-help gurus who make a shit ton of money off of people who need to be told what to do and how to do it. Travel bloggers easily sell their readers on the outrageous (and outdated) idea that "you can do it too". The truth is, they're well aware that you probably can’t or won’t. In the meantime though, you’ll buy their ebook so you can get a glimpse into the big "blogging secret" (Spoiler: there isn’t one. It’s usually just regurgitated BS of what all the other travel bloggers have already written). At the end of the day, we all just want to feel like we belong and they know it. So, they work their magic by selling you the idea that you’ll be welcomed into the blogging world with open arms. If you buy their ebooks and online courses, as well as attend their overpriced travel conventions… you too will get a chance to be friends with all the top travel gurus! Maybe they’ll even let you sit at their table for lunch.


Truth is, many of the travel bloggers dominating the industry today are really fortunate they started back when they did. The industry wasn't as saturated and competitive like it has become today. They pretty much came up with a cute travel-related name, a broad niche, and started blogging when it was something "new". Before it was super trendy and everyone else with a laptop and iPhone called themselves bloggers. They're considered “pioneers”, while today you’re just another selfie-crazed, narcissist. Not to mention the fact that travel bloggers write with such a basic lack of grammar. Sorry, truth hurts and so does our brain every single time we try to get through one of your fifth-grade level articles. Last, but certainly not least, is that so many of bloggers conduct themselves unprofessionally. We've spoken to so many businesses in the last few years who feel like they got sold on the social media audience count of a blogger. Meanwhile, their brand was not represented in a way that defined their vision honestly and effectively. 


How many times can you describe everything as "totally amazing" or "so beautiful"? What about the things that completely SUCK about being a digital nomad and backpacking your way through places that people would sell their souls to escape? Why do they refuse to take a stance and act wishy-washy over important topics that demand a clear position? To be honest, I think it’s pretty obvious why. I mean, how could they sell you their ebook and courses if they were actually being real about all of the disadvantages that comes along with being in the industry? They're so cheesy. They’re always grinning from ear to ear, giving thumbs up signs, and posting pics of "doing hard work" on their laptops while sitting on a pristine beach. They start most of their posts with "our amazing readers, we couldn't have done this without you." So, they’re either constantly wearing rose-coloured glasses, ignorant of the issues real people face in the real world, and complete dorks…. or, they’re just faking it. You decide, but we think it's more of the latter. 


Not only are they selling you their products, but they're constantly trying to convince you that all of the products they do reviews for are worthy of your purchase. I mean, they “only do honest reviews…things they have tried and would sincerely recommend”. They only do sponsored posts for places or products that they truly "believe in". So, what do you think? Do they really really love a bunch of stuff that they just so happened to be paid really really generously to review? Hmmm. It's important to remember that these people are not only travel bloggers, but they're marketers! So, please, you guys tell me when was the last time this profession hasn't simply fabricated, or at the very least exaggerated, the benefits of the product they’re trying to sell you. Sell your soul. Make some money. Hello, Capitalism!


Let's get real. Every single travel blog niche has already been covered a million times over. These bloggers just keep writing a regurgitation of articles that are the same as the dozens that came before. The top ten things to do or see in said place. Ten reasons to start a travel couple blog. I'll give credit to a few bloggers who aren’t just copycats, but most travel bloggers don't personalize their stories. Probably ‘cause they don’t even know who they are. They’re just following the latest craze and capitalizing off of it. They write about what they know will get them the SEO hits and then re-post the same articles all over their social media pages time and time again. They easily build upon their viewership from the success they've already had, rather than reaching beyond their comfort zone and offering readers something original. Come on, Mary, it’s time to herd those sheep.


They consider themselves "experts" on people and places, even when they haven't spent a substantial amount of time there. A few days in Laos? Omg, totally going to share my top twenty-seven things to do! A week in Bali? Time to tell you guys all the secret spots that people who’ve lived here for years couldn’t possibly already know about. One of the best example that comes to mind is an article that is still one of the top hits on google when searching about travel in Vietnam. One of the leading “pioneers” in the industry wrote a shallow and disparaging article on his experience in the country. He was there for a few weeks and visited about three locations in the northern to central part of Vietnam. It was a bunch of BS from someone who didn't understand the culture and allowed a few bad experiences to shape his views on the country as a whole. The negative impact on tourism that occurred as a result was completely unfair and not representative. Another know-it-all who doesn’t know shit.


Follow. Unfollow. Follow Again. Wait for it….Unfollow Again. Buy followers. Buy likes. Buy comments. You get my drift? When we were starting out, I compiled a list of about a hundred different travel bloggers who would use these social media methods to gain followers, without actually ever having to engage with their audience. Social media is a game to them. And like we said before, they're marketers before anything else. Their end goal with these channels is always "more followers" and "more likes" so that they can get contracts and invites based solely on the size of their social media audience. As if Instagram wasn’t phoney enough already, here come the travel bloggers, ready to rock this game best.


Time for some bitter truth. You. Me. Us. We're all a bit envious of travel bloggers and the life they have managed to build for themselves. Whether or not we feel like it's deserved, these idiots found a way to live a life full of freedom that we all wish we had too. With the tiniest bit of work, they are invited to luxurious places and resorts. They make enough money to sustain their lifestyle as full-time globetrotters. Even if their Instagram-worthy lives are fabricated or exaggerated, they found a way to market it brilliantly. We'd be lying if we didn't admit that we are just jealous we can't (or refuse) to do the same. You know what they say, haters gonna hate. 


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