There are many lessons that are learned when you travel. When you travel by yourself there are even more lessons that you learn and sometimes you wonder if you are doing the right thing or if you are walking the right line.
I decided to come to TBEX Europe this year instead of attending other conferences that I had attended in the past. I will not be going to Blogher this summer and likely not going to Blissdom this fall. I wanted to add something to my life that would expose me to new bloggers, new experiences and new adventures. I wanted to make sure that you I met new people to enrich my life. I love that TBEX was in Lloret de Mar in Costa Brava this year.
The conference has just wrapped up but the hits just keep on coming with the events that are part of the post-conference. Tomorrow is a trip in the Catalunya region and then one more night here. On Monday, I am headed off to Barcelona for my “Barcelona for Barcelovers” three day tour and meeting up with my daughter.
We sometimes make decisiions that are confusing to some and logical to others but I now know that this was the right decision for me and for my blog. I realize just how much I have missed being in Europe and being surrounded by Europeans. Although there are still a lot of North Americans here, it is refreshing to see that so many Americans and Canadians are based in Europe: Madrid, Barcelona, Paris, London… all trying to make their lives richer for it.
I have learned that travel bloggers are devoted to creating experiental content for their audiences. It is not about them or their travels but about what their travels do for others. Its about how they can help, inspire, motivate or move you to take a journey of your own.
Travel bloggers come from all sorts walks of life (lawyers, accountants, moms, dads, straight, gay, older, younger, experienced or newbies). As much as I love my parenting and lifestyle blogging community, I have found that Travel bloggers are so varied and bring a fresh new way of looking at the world. It is a global view. A collaboration and sharing community.
I am encouraged to work towards a goal of travelling with a small budget (but with a big wish list). I have been given ideas on how to make trips more affordable and interesting. I enjoyed my ‘speed dating’ experience talking to Visit Britain, Tourism Ireland, the Jordan Toursim Board, and the charming people from Poznan in Poland.
I love that all these destinations are opened to working with bloggers in one form or another. That they are looking to play in my world. So many places don’t understand what value I (and my colleagues) bring to the table of PR, advertising and new media. But these organizations do. They were all open to future collaborations or to open a dialogue with bloggers.
I was really impressed with new and enthusiastic companies like Viz Eat (a company that matched local residents to travels for a home cooked meal), I love meeting Context which provdeds walking seminars of the world’s cultural capitals.
I also loved, loved, loved the girls from Flipkey that were full of great information and were a lot of fun to hang out with at the EuroRail cocktail party. I’ve learned that you can find a place to stay in hundreds of locations in the world. I think I’ll be checking them out for our trip to Paris.
I appreciate sharing my enthusiasm for train travel with renfe/SNCF as I plan my one way first class trip next week from Barcelona to Paris. I am excited to be traveling on a TGV (Tres Grand Vitesse) bullet train. I look forward to sharing that with you next week.
Laslty, I have to say that the Toursim board of Costa Brava, Catalunya and Lloret de mar have been welcoming, and generous as they welcomed almost 500 bloggers to this beautiful part of Spain. They know how to wine (literally) and dine (literally) their guests. They have shown hospitality that has reached beyond any conference that I have ever attended.
Next year the conference will be in Stockholm, Swedne in July and I think it will be just as dynamic and exciting as it has been these last few days. Ihave to say, I am busy trying to figure out what its going to take to return to TBEX in 2016.