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I’ve always described travel blogging as “the best job in the world” to anyone who will listen. Yes, there are the typical pitfalls any freelancer faces like never being able to shut off, prioritizing work over sleep and food, and having next to no stability or routine.
BUT the benefits almost always outweigh the negatives and I wouldn’t give this gig up for anything… even when a global pandemic shuts down the travel industry almost overnight and I’m left with numerous canceled or “indefinitely postponed” trips, projects and contracts.
The world economy has been devastated by COVID-19 and realistically, I think it will be a long while before travel resumes, and even then, things will never go back to the way they were. We hear the term “new normal” often nowadays, and when I think about the “new normal” for travel I envision less international travel, more restrictions, and increased prices to fly.
It took me a while to come to terms with this reality and to be honest, I wasn’t ready to face it for the longest time. The truth is, most of the traffic from our blog relates to international travel. When that all stopped, so did the traffic and our numbers dropped drastically – to less than 20% of what we had been receiving in months before.
As a travel blogger, when the majority of your income comes from getting a certain amount of traffic, this type of decrease in traffic hits you right where it hurts… the wallet. I was obviously worried about maintaining my credit score should things get so bad I would need to take out loans or be unable to pay my mortgage. As a freelancer, these are very real and scary possibilities and definitely one of the downsides to travel blogging.
While I’ve outlined all the benefits having a good credit score can have here, having a bad one does not do you any favors. Especially as a business owner. Luckily, your credit score is never written in stone and it’s actually quite simple to improve if you get ahead of it and take the right steps.
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Long story short, I’m not ready to give up travel blogging yet. And here’s why:
- I see an increase in spending by tourism boards on the horizon. Once it becomes safe to travel again, destinations are going to want to broadcast that to the world. Who better to communicate that to their audiences than travel bloggers?
- An increase in domestic travel means we get to visit places we wouldn’t normally get a chance to see. I’ve always been convinced that I would see the rest of the world before I saw the rest of North America. The lure of new and exotic destinations was always too much for me. Now that international travel is paused, people are looking for “staycations” and choosing to explore their own homes which equates to more domestic/local trips for us.
- I love a challenge and this abrupt halt has led me to strategize and redesign my business so that I’m less dependent on things that are out of my control.
If you’re thinking about getting into travel blogging as a business, I think now is as good a time as any to start. In fact, since choosing to refocus on our business, especially writing about local destinations and staycations, we’ve seen traffic shoot up past our previous numbers and continue to grow. All this while international travel has continued to remain paused. If you’re an expert in your local area, it’s the perfect place to start!
There are no doubt thousands, if not millions of people (depending on where you live) in your home city googling what to do this weekend. I’m really glad we took this chance to not only explore our backyards, but redefine ourselves and grow our blogging business! We now know that if international travel shuts down again, our numbers are not solely based off far-off destinations and we’ll be ready to weather the storm.
I’m now taking the time to restructure our blog, but also focusing on the financial health of our business so that if things were to ever come to a full-stop again, I will be prepared. Let’s be honest: Now that I’ve experienced life with great credit, I don’t think I would ever want to give that up. The ability to borrow money to grow our business at extremely low interest rates is invaluable, and probably saves us thousands of dollars in interest fees overall.
These little tips and tricks are why it’s a good idea to have advisors like those at CreditRepair.com or a financial mentor help you achieve your financial goals. They will help you know your credit, repair your reports, and live your life.