So, you’re going on a gap year and you want a way to tell everyone–from your mom to your camp friends, to your weird uncle–everything that’s going on without having to reiterate the same stories over and over again.
Blogging is the most efficient and easiest way to do this, but where to start?
Here are 5 tips and tricks for your gap year blog!
1. Add pictures!
Hopefully you’ll be taking thousands of pictures while abroad, so you might as well add them to your blog! By doing so, you’ll not only create a deeper connection with your reader and likely bring more traffic to your page, but you'll also make it easier to connect different experiences with a visual.
2. Do research.
One of the best parts of traveling abroad is being able to visit countries, cities, and towns that you have never been to before, and likely know very little about. Doing research before you go will not only help you with your blog, but will make the city come alive as you explore! The cobblestone streets will tell a story as breathtaking cathedrals share their rich history.
Research also provides an extra level of interest that will take your writing to the next level.
3. Write with detail.
Many people reading your blog will be family and friends wanting to know what you’re doing, so write with your senses: explain how it felt to eat tapas after working during your internship in Sevilla, what the elephants smelled like during your service learning in Thailand, the sound of you instructor's voice during your language module in Paris–in doing so, people will become more invested in your journey as they are invited to live vicariously through you on your travels!
Additionally, people looking to travel will want to know what to expect and will be looking for details to see which destinations grab their attention. Write about the sound of the vendors yelling the deals of the day at the Columbia Road Flower Market in London, the graffiti on the walls around Belfast, or the smell of fresh croissants in the mornings in Paris. Get inspired by what's around you!
4. Include other voices.
You’ll be traveling with friends, and making even more along the way–make sure to listen to what they are saying about their you’re traveling! This will not only help your blog, it will give you a different perspective and you may notice things you wouldn’t have otherwise. Talk to the locals, too: the local coffee shop barista or the man selling art on the street might have interesting stories and favorite spots in the city you wouldn’t have found otherwise. Be sure to include those instances on your blog!
5. Let your personality shine through.
Unlike travel websites, blogs offer a personal note to the experience and the opportunity to grow your voice. Remember that you are the interpreter of the experience and place! People are reading your blog to find out what your time was like, so be sure to stay true to you. Whether you’re funny and sarcastic or quiet and reserved, let your voice take center stage on narrating your experience.
In the end, blogging is an amazing way to remember an incredible experience! Bonus? It looks amazing on your resume!
Have fun with it and use it to remember your amazing and transformative time abroad.
Helen, seasoned traveler and EF Gap Year alum, offers her advice on how to live in the moment while traveling abroad—advice that she practiced personally…