Aspiring Travel Writers of the Week: Brian & Amanda Heath
Blog Name & Start Date: Brian & Amanda Heath launched Eat Work Travel in April 2015.
Bio: We took our first international trip together in 2009 and have had serious wanderlust ever since! We both work full-time corporate careers and have worked hard at fitting in vacation without sacrificing our ability to climb the corporate ladder. We view work as an enabler to our passions of eating and traveling and that is how Eat Work Travel was born.
We started our blog to show others that you can work hard at the office and still make time for adventure. We want to reverse the trend of unused vacation days in the US and hope we can inspire others to make the most of their time outside the workplace!
We consider ourselves Part Time bloggers. Amanda is an engineer and I work in sales. We started as travel photographers who are now sharing our images as part of our blog. We have been traveling and photographing together for nearly 8 years and have been blogging for 1 year.
Home for us: We live in Houston, TX but grew-up in Pittsburgh, PA which will always be our home.
Countries visited: 23
Continents visited: 5
Top 5 destinations on your travel to do list: Japan, Antartica, Thailand, Patagonia (Chile & Argentina), Tanzania
Earliest travel memory: Neither of us really traveled much as kids which is why we feel that we have so much ground to make up now! Both of our early memories include road trips to Northern PA as each of our families had cabins in the woods.
Favorite Travel Photographer: Dave & Deb from the Planet D
Favorite Travel Website: www.projecttimeoff.com helps give us statistics to support our reason for inspiring others to make time outside the office.
The trip that turned us from vacationers to a travelers: We took a trip to Australia in 2009 and had been working our jobs for about 3 years at the time. We felt burnt out and needed some time away from the office. We scheduled 2 weeks off and were surprised by how many of our co-workers were asking us how we could take 2 consecutive weeks off work even though it was within our allowed vacation limits. While in Australia, it was the first time we felt immersed in a new culture and we loved every second of it. Towards the end of the trip, we climbed the Harbour Bridge in Sydney and at the top we both decided that we needed to add more adventure in our lives. On the flight home we made a promise that we would always make time for international travel regardless of our job status. Ever since that trip, we have made time for international vacations each year.
The trip that turned us into travel bloggers: The reactions that coworkers, family members and others still give us about our ability to travel while having careers still shocks us. For us, it is as simple as prioritizing and setting expectations in order to get the time off. Additionally, we read the statistics about unused vacation days and hear others say “I can’t break away for a vacation.” We wanted to share our experiences to help inspire others to break away from the office and use their vacation time!
Our first steps to become a travel writer/blogger/photographer: For us, the blogs that really inspire us have the best photography therefore we knew that would be an important component of our blog. We bought our first DSLR in 2009 for our trip to Australia. We quickly learned that having a fancy camera did not mean our photos were any better than our point and shoot. We spent several years trying to learn more about photography and take better pictures. Honing in our photography skills continues to be a journey for us, but we decided to share our photography along with our traveling tips to start the blog.
The social media platform driving the most traffic to my site is: Twitter. Join twitter chats which get you added to lists and help others follow you and click on your content.
My favorite tool/app for social media: Snapchat – it’s real time and there is no pressure for the “perfect shot”
Favorite Travel Twitter Chat: #WeekendWanderlust Thursdays at 8pm CST
#1 Organization I recommend for new bloggers: We attended TBEX last year just 4 months after we started our blog. It helped us learn more about the business of blogging and make initial contacts.
If only I had the time, we’d be more active/engaging on social media during the week. That’s the tough part of working full time and growing the blog.
Top tip for aspiring travel writers and bloggers: Joining smugmug and linking our blog pictures to that site versus posting directly to WordPress has helped our pages load faster and ensures the best photo quality (a tip we learned by attending TBEX last year).
Best travel tip for travelers: Travel your own way. All of the blogs and media can create a pressure to travel a certain way or visit the “best” hotel, attraction restaurant etc. Use them as guides and resources but ultimately travel so you are fulfilled and can get the most out of the destination.
Connect with Brian & Amanda!
SnapChat: Amanda: eatworktravel Brian: eatworktravel2
Brian & Amanda Heath’s article 7 Great Things To Do In The Atacama Desert Of Chile was just featured on 52PerfectDays. Please check it out here: http://52perfectdays.com/articles/7-activities-atacama-desert-of-chile/
Nominate a friend (or yourself!) as our next Aspiring Travel Writer of the Week!
If you have been blogging, writing or taking photos for less than 2 years or have less than 10,000 unique views per month to your website, I invite you to be a featured ATW (Aspiring Travel Writer) of the week. As ATW of the week you will be featured on my travel website, 52Perfectdays.com and the BreakintoTravelWriting.com website! Here are all the details! breakintotravelwriting.com/aspiring-travel-writer-of-the-week-guidelines/