As a travel writer, I often get things for free in order to write a thorough article, I often include affiliate links in posts, there’s advertising on this blog, and sometimes I get paid to mention a travel company or a product I use. I talk about books I have for sale or courses I run.
For a more long-winded look at my opinion on this subject, please see this post:
Long before “influencers,” “native advertising,” and “content marketing” entered the marketing discussions, I put up a blanket disclosure policy. That was 2006, but it hasn’t changed much. If you trust me, I won’t take advantage of it by recommending something crappy. If you need to see every relationship every time I mentioned a place or product though because I might have some kind of financial connection to them, go elsewhere.
Disclosing who bought me a drink or who sprung for dinner every single time a post or tweet goes up is unneeded and just plain annoying. It’s as if every time an athlete goes out to play they should have to wear a sign about who gives them shoes or cars. Or a red carpet Academy Awards nominee should have to make a statement about what’s in her goodie bag and who supplied the jewels she’s parading around in. (“That’s a lovely necklace: please disclose for all our Oscar night viewers whether you bought it or not and if you paid full price.”) Influencers get paid to share things with their followers—what else is new?
So here goes:
– Often I get things for free and don’t bring up every single one every time. This includes, but is not limited to, tours, hotels, flights, admissions, meals, drinks, travel gear, books, apps, music, and travel clothing.
– This site accepts advertising in many forms, some of it direct and some of it via an ad network. I control ads for the former, but not for the latter.
– I often link to or mention publications or services I run myself or that are run by people I know personally. I only do that if they are useful or entertaining.
– I may link to or mention companies I have a working relationship with because without them this blog would not exist.
– Links to companies mentioned in articles may be affiliate links, meaning I get a commission if you buy after clicking. You will not pay more for that purchase, however, than if you went direct. You can still sign in with your normal account before checking out (such as Amazon Prime) and receive your regular benefits.
– I maintain several opt-in e-mail lists for this blog and other sites. I do not add anyone without their express permission and newsletters always have an unsubscribe button.
– Sometimes I pay for my travels, sometimes I don’t. Sometimes I mention a product I bought, sometimes I mention one somebody gave me. In every case, I’m going to talk about it because I want to, warts-and-all if justified.
If none of what you read in the Cheapest Destinations blog is helpful or interesting, I assume you won’t return. That’s okay—it means we’re not a good match.
My main goal is to produce articles that are useful to real travelers who want to get the most out of their travel budget. If I can do that in an honest fashion, I will attract more readers and please the ones I have. If you don’t trust that I’m doing that, let’s just part ways.
If you do, thanks for your support!