The Danger in Reading Travel Blogs

You should be careful about the advice you take from travel bloggers. Yeah, I said it. But let me explain.

I love travel blogging and sharing my perspective with my readers. I do my best to explore where I am to offer tips and suggestions in order for others to learn from my successes and failures while traveling. But that's just what they are. My successes and failures.

When I went to Martinique - on a sponsored press trip - I had a wonderful time. The proverbial red carpet was rolled out for me. Great dinners, lux hotel stays, and locals' perspectives to guide me around the island. But that isn't always the case when you book and pay for trips on your own. In fact, it's the exact opposite. You're responsible for creating your own itinerary and making all decisions that will ultimately determine if your trip was everything you wanted it to be and more...or not.


At the time, Norwegian Air was offering very low-priced flights to Martinique and Guadeloupe from a few east coast cities, which means everyone and their mother were booking flights left and right to escape to the French Caribbean. That means I received a ton of questions about what to see, eat, do and where to stay in Martinique. And I gave great advice. Or so I thought.

After one of my friend's returned, she told me she had horrible service at a restaurant I recommended. So much so that they ended up leaving without even being served. That was the first time someone gave me negative feedback about one of my suggestions. And I felt pretty bad about it. Until I didn't.

I realized that my experiences were mine alone and I can only offer my perspective. This is the case for my travel blog and any others you read. And believe me, I take my own advice. I have a few travel bloggers I enjoy following and even check out others from time to time if I see an interesting article. But travel bloggers are people too and they are only sharing what they've experienced. There's a high probability that my experiences will be different.

For example, several well-known bloggers have documented their experiences in Zambia, home to one side of Victoria Falls. I spent nine months in Zambia last year, so I am pretty familiar with Zambian culture. One particular blogger made comments that I could tell were supposed to evoke reactions about travel through Africa from their followers. And they did. But their comments weren't genuine to me or indicative of Zambian culture (albeit being positive) and as I was reading, I was reminded that they were only sharing their own experiences. I hope that their comments inspired other people to visit Africa, despite me slightly disagreeing with them.

I'm not saying don't read travel blogs (don't put me out of business!), but I am saying to read them with a grain of salt and check several sources before making any travel-related decision. However, if I make a recommendation or suggestion and you take it and it wasn't everything I said it was and you thought it'd be, please let me know! I am always open to hearing other people's experiences and to create a more realistic, inclusive travel blog.