Travel blogging can feel isolating. Instead of sitting behind the computer screen all day, going to a conference can help you network with travel bloggers and representatives from travel destinations while learning a ton about blogging. Today, you can learn so much online and can even find the content presented at conferences online, but nothing beats the face time you gain at a conference. Here are some of the travel and blogging related conferences to consider.
Travel Blog Specific Conferences
TBEX is probably the largest and most well-known conference for travel bloggers. Each year the conference is hosted in several locations including North America, Europe, and Asia Pacific. It is an excellent opportunity to meet people from all around the world including DMO’s travel brands, PR firms, and the most influential travel bloggers.
Each conference is full of speakers covering everything travel blog related including social media, influencer marketing, SEO, monetizing your traffic, how to improve your writing and much more.
The next TBEX conference will be held in Harare, Zimbabwe Africa at the Rainbow Towers Hotel and Conference Centre, followed by TBEX North America in Billings, Montana Septemeber 11-13, 2019.
For travel bloggers, registration is currently $197 for travel bloggers. I think this conference is worth the price, especially for bloggers who have a growing blog and want to take it to the next level. I personally have not been yet, but am hoping to make it there in the near future.
The Travel Media Showcase is a conference that brings together PR, marketing professionals, and travel writers. Registration does not cost anything, but you have to be prescreened and approved to go. Meetings are one on one and prescheduled with each destination, allowing bloggers to get the most out of each meeting. You can gather new story ideas learning about destinations and get to know their representatives personally. Before and after each showcase are additional FAMs you can participate in nearby. For networking with destination, this is the best place to be.
This year the International TravMedia’s IMM Showcase will be in New York, NY, from January 24, 2019.
Traverse started as a conference only for UK travel bloggers but has since grown to be a conference any blogger can learn from. The conference starts with midweek events in the surrounding areas. For two days, the conference is then in full swing with workshops and panels. A brand new video conference called KeyFrame 19 will be held this year in Hamburg, Germany from February 28 – March 3, 2019
and prices start around $200 USD.
In 2019, Traverse 19 will be held in Trentino, Italy. Tickets are currently around $139.
Sessions 8 – 9 June 2019
Midweek Experiences 4 – 7 June
Post Event Adventures 10 – 14 June
You may not learn about blogging, but travel shows are a great place to meet representatives from destinations and possibly meet up with other bloggers.
The New York Travel Show is huge, showcasing over 100 destinations in over 500 exhibits. I have been invited to come as press for two years but have not been able to make it there yet. Bloggers should be able to avoid paying an admission fee. You can also attend travel seminars and meet tv travel personalities.
January 25 – 27, 2019 and it’s held at the Jacob K. Javits Center in New York City, USA.
Open to public: Yes, certain days. Bloggers are encouraged to apply as media and will have access to the entire conference.
I went to the Travel & Adventure show last year and it was my first opportunity to go to a travel-related event. It was wonderful to meet so many people from different destinations. They are trying to market to the public at the event, but can often give you the contact information for whoever deals with travel writers to arrange media trips later. I was also able to meet up and go to lunch with a group of travel bloggers. It was great to put faces to names I knew well from Facebook groups.
Digital Marketing Conferences
There are dozens and maybe even hundreds of other digital marketing conferences that are extremely relevant for travel bloggers. If you can’t make it out to a travel blogging conference, find a digital marketing conference close to you where you are sure to learn plenty and network with people who work in digital marketing full time.
My preferred conference is held annually in Las Vegas with regional conferences throughout the US. This February, I’ll be attending the regional conference in my hometown of Austin. The one-day regional conferences are affordable, especially when you book early, they usually start around $350 then go up as you get closer to the day. The disadvantage with most digital marketing conferences is the price. For most people the business they work for is paying for the conference, making it easy for them to charge more.
Annually, there is a conference in Las Vegas. It is a three-day event full of panels, keynotes, and workshops. These events bring speakers from Google, Facebook, and many top industry professionals. Dates for Las Vegas are scheduled for October 7-10, 2019.
Pubcon starts off this year in Florida March 5-7, 2019 at the Fort Lauderdale Convention Center.
Local Conferences and Workshops
I’ve listed some of the largest conferences, but look locally for even more opportunities to learn. You can find local groups like Travel Massive, Wordcamp, and tons of others on Meetup.com. At a local level, you can get more involved for better networking and learning.
Conferences are a great way to learn and get motivated to take you to the next level in travel blogging, but it is only one way. Until you can make it out, look for local events, Facebook groups and digital marketing blogs to keep in the know and keep learning.