Submission Guidelines

a travel blogger writing

DO NOT contact me about posting SEO or “guest” articles.

Links within articles will be set to “nofollow.” If this makes you sad, do not continue reading.

There…now that the spammers are gone, we can get on to why you are here: contributing quality content.

The Old Stuff

Startbackpacking.com was once plagued with low-quality content in its earlier years. Everyone was allowed to contribute. Good social concept — bad outcome.

The site was launched in 2007, and much of it was written in smoke-filled internet cafes around the world with slow connections. By internet standards, it’s a damp dungeon with dark, musky corners.

We have changed that. Fortunately, some very talented travelers have begun contributing their stories and experiences. As the old stuff gets faded out, nothing but high-quality goodies enjoy the glory of going LIVE.

Our Mission

To put it simply, the mission of this site is to help people from all walks of life to know the joy, thrill, and benefit of long-term backpacking travel.

From cubicle dwellers in Corporate America to gap-year students away from home for the first time — we want to get them all on the road in an inexpensive and sustainable way.

The formula is simple: Traveling helps people to develop themselves and gain life experience. Smart, experienced, and happy people help make the world a better place.

Submissions should have not been published online elsewhere. Previously printed content is fine.

We don’t care for rules either, but there are a few:

Moral Guidelines

  • No amount of hate, bigotry, bullying, racism, or sexism is acceptable. Choose words wisely when talking about locals or sharing a romantic encounter.
  • Please attribute quotes accurately.
  • We currently publish nonfiction content only.
  • You retain the rights to your content and photos once published. But please do not ask us to remove it later.
  • Think of your audience. Capture them, then take them for a ride.

Technical Guidelines

  • Please send articles in the email body or in an attached PDF file.
  • DO NOT send any document in Microsoft Office format. We do not use their products — for a reason.
  • Articles should be a minimum of 750 words, with the sweet spot between 900 – 1500 words.
  • Supporting photos (JPG or PNG format) for your story would be great. You will be credited; photos may be used by you elsewhere. Just send one or two if you have them. Minimum size for a photo is 1500 pixels wide.
  • Provide inline links if you believe they contribute to the piece. We will review and “nofollow” when needed.

Style Guidelines

  • We default to AP Style but won’t fault you for using the Chicago Manual.
  • We opt for Merriam-Webster’s choice on debatable matters.
  • Single spacing between sentences.
  • Please use the Oxford/Harvard (serial) comma in series of three or more.
  • Break up large blocks of text so our readers don’t go blind.
  • Good grammar is sexy.
  • Both Oxford English and the American perversion are fine. But by default, backpackers are usually referred to as “travelers” rather than “travellers” on this site.

After Publishing

  • You will be asked to send a headshot photo of yourself (optional) and a short bio (2 – 3 sentences) for the “Meet the Author” block. You may link your blog, homepage, or social media in this block.
  • Help us promote! We will do the same for you.

Send your stories in PDF format to greg@startbackpacking.com

Some other methods of contact can be found on the Get in Touch page.

Thank you for your interest in being a part of this revolution!

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