12 Travel Blogs & Mags that Pay for Personal Essays & Narratives

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Here is list of magazines, websites, and blogs that pay writers for travel narratives and/or personal essays. Included is a variety of publishers, covering a wide range of angles related to travel writing.

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The Smart Set is an online magazine published and supported by the Pennoni Honors College at Drexel University. They cover “culture and ideas, arts and science, global and national affairs.” They publish high quality writing in a broad range of genres which include reportage, personal essays, critical essays, memoirs, travel writing, and stories. Payment reports suggest that they pay up to $0.09 per word. To learn more, visit this page.
World Hum publishes travel stories, videos, and slideshows of travel experiences. Their stories have even been republish in “The Best American Travel Writing.” Payment is negotiated. To learn more, read their submission guidelines.
Adventure Cyclist is a bicycle-travel magazine that inspires and empowers people to travel by bicycle. They generally use two types of stories (i.e. feature-length stories and The Final Mile essays) from freelancers. The feature-length stories are about specific areas, whereas The Final Mile essays are “less about locale than about a singular experience while on a bicycle trip.” They generally pay $0.25 to $0.50 per word. To learn more, visit this page.
Charleston Style & Design is a local magazine that publishes articles about architecture, fashion, businesses, food, and travel of interest to people in Charleston, South Carolina, and the surrounding region. They pay $200 for personal essays that offer a relatable story and good insight. To learn more, read their submission guidelines.
Travelers’ Tales Collection accepts nonfiction travel essay for consideration in its anthologies. Editors look for personal nonfiction stories reflecting “that unique alchemy that occurs when you enter unfamiliar territory and begin to see the world differently as a result.” Previously published essays are considered. Shorter pieces have a better chance of being accepted. Payment is $100. To learn more, read writers’ guidelines: http://travelerstales.com/submission-guidelines/.
Hidden Compass is a literary travel magazine, published online. They want true stories, that push “the travel genre and delves into the spirit, culture, history, ecology, perils or residents of a place. They pay $300 for features; $200 for other departments. They’re very much going against the contemporary “click-driven” media that dominates so much of our attention these days. They want “all the nuanced, narrator-driven, non-listicle stories that need to be told. We want a tribe of storytellers who journey together.” This seems like a worthy goal –– and one well worth supporting. To learn more, read their submission guidelines.
France Revisited is a web magazine that provides information, insights and impressions about travel, culture and life in France. The types of work that they publish include “journalism, review, analysis, experience, interview, opinion, essay, humor, vignette, video, photography.” They pay up to $50 per article, but this amount is subject to change. For details, refer to their contributors’ guidelines.
World Nomads provides travel insurance to independent travelers from over 150 countries. They are looking for personal stories regarding life-changing trips and experiences. They want stories that fall under the categories of love, fear, discovery, connection and transformation. They pay $0.50 per word for written stories and $350 to $600 for photo essays. For details, visit this page.
Let’s Travel is a bi-monthly travel magazine that focuses on “articles with a twist that offer first person accounts of travel in New Zealand, Australia and the South Pacific Islands.” They also publish a few stories from far flung places like, South East Asia, Europe and Americas. Their “readership demographics is luxury”, so if the pitch is about getting by on a few dollars, they would probably not be interested in it. Their feature articles are of 800 to 1,200 words. They pay a flat fee of NZ$300 per story to unpublished writers. While, to previously published writers, they pay NZ$500. To find out more, refer to this page.
PassageMaker Magazine covers all aspects of trawlers and ocean motorboats and welcomes articles from around the world. Articles should be a combination of personal experience and the technical/ informative aspects. General, travel, how-to pieces about the boats and their systems, the crew, and the places they travel are welcome. They also accept articles for Channels, their e-newsletter. Word count: 800-4,000 for the magazine, up to 1,200 for Channel e-newsletter articles. They pay: $300-950 for the magazine, $150-400 for newsletter articles. Details here.
Common Ground accepts articles on health, wellness, the environment, transformational travel and personal growth. Articles are usually between 600 and 1500 words. They pay $0.10 per word and prefer that you query the editors before sending in submissions. http://commonground.ca/contributors-guidelines/
International Living publishes articles on living overseas. They’re looking for unique, personal articles from international writers. They pay $75 for “daily postcards,” which share stories from expats. They also pay up to $400 for other articles. To learn more, read their submission guidelines.

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