What's next for travel journalism? Survey Says....

Louis Karno & Company Communications took a survey of 100 American editors, writers and freelancers. The question was simple: Where is travel writing headed in the short term, and what were they working on.

When we asked what they were planning to report on and write about in the near future, only 10% mentioned the “Summer of 2020” as a topic they want to focus on. However, one of the respondents said how 60% of bookings for this summer — made by an upscale adventure tour operator in the American West - are still on. Many of those are private families staying in one house, indicating that people might just want to keep their travel plans local but with safety measures in mind.

In addition, 3 out of 10 responders said what they are writing is about “where people will travel to when all this is over.” Their biggest concern indicated that safety will matter when traveling is possible again, so around 33% are predicting a new trend of staycations and road trips, instead of overseas vacations.

Throughout the replies, 25% said they don’t intend to write more about Covid-19 or do virtual travel posts. On the other hand, 10% are still doing some sort of “Covid tales” and reading-for-entertainment stories in order to create new and different and more relevant content for their blogs and websites.

Also in this survey, one of the darkest sides of the crisis made itself standout since 20% of the responders revealed to either be not working at all because they have their company laid off, or to have very few projects to work on at the moment, due to the barely existent dynamic around tourism.


Even though a low percentage of the respondents (10%) said their news coverage for the future will be about places they’ve been before - since it’s harder to create new travel content at the moment, another 30% are looking forward to writing about new projects and interested in the adaptation of travel to the new world that is approaching. With new projects, they mean stories like what are hotels, tour companies, airlines, destinations, or travel agents doing now in preparation for future reopening, and topics about healthy measures, international travel, and stats about what travelers will be looking for.

The overall message was clear - most surveys are orienting their work towards the post-Covid era. The majority of the editors and writers who replied are tired of writing anything that is related to the pandemic and are more interested in talking about a world that - partially or entirely - has got rid of the Coronavirus, looking at the new projects and trends that are arising as being the recurrent theme of future travel writing.

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