One Year as a Full Time Travel Blogger and Writer

As I write this from my bedroom office it’s a year to the day I put down my pen at the end of my last exam of my university career. A month and a half, a trip to Australia, and several exam passes later I graduated from The University of Glasgow with an honours degree in English Literature. 

That also means I’ve been a full time travel blogger and writer for a year!
Portofino, full time travel blogger

Towards the end of my degree I knew more than anything that 9-5 office life wasn’t for me. Offices are not for me. I couldn’t bear to have a job that would tie me to one place and not allow me to travel. That’s when I decided I’d make something out of this little thing you’re reading now – my travel blog.

After I finished my last exam I started putting all of my effort into my travel blog and my other freelance travel writing, and one year later I’m still doing it. But it hasn’t been easy, actually it’s been harder than I ever imagined. 

Most people assume that travel blogging and writing is easy. Everyone thinks it’s all glamour – planes, trains, automobiles and visiting new countries every week. Well, at times it is like that, but most of the time I’m sitting in front of my laptop working more hours than the majority of office staff do. It’s an exciting prospect for travel to be your work, but you have to remember that this includes finding time to work while you travel, which can be tough.

Blogville Emilia Romagna, Full Time Travel Blogger

It might look to readers like all I do is write blog posts here, but actually I spend an incredible amount of time responding to emails from potential advertisers and clients, editing photos, pitching travel and tourism contacts, writing for other websites (I also have my other blog Emma on Board), working on my site design, budgeting, link building, doing keyword research, and building my social media following. It’s a time consuming business!

Athens, Full Time Travel Blogger

But whilst it’s time consuming and harder than I’d ever imagined, travel blogging and writing has opened up some of the best life opportunities for me.

In the past year I’ve met some of the most incredible people and made some great friendships. I’ve visited 12 different countries. I’ve been to a music festival in France, I’ve stayed in a castle in Scotland, I’ve seen some beautiful sunrises on the beach in Italy, driven Australia’s Great Ocean Road, seen dolphins frolicking off the coast of Perth, taken cooking classes in Lyon, taken part in a torchlight procession in Edinburgh, ridden a Segway and a beer bike through the centre of Berlin, been on a party boat on a lake in France, watched the sun set over Sydney Opera House and so much more. I’ve got thousands of memories and it’s definitely been the best year of my life so far.

Segway Berlin, Full Time Travel Blogger

Segway fun in Berlin with Nadine of The Nad Work and Sebastian of Off The Path

So, whilst I might not be earning as much money as I would in a steady, reliable, 9-5 office job, my metaphorical bank balance is consistently in the black , I’m happier than I ever could have imagined and I wouldn’t change it for the world. I followed my heart and, for now, I’m living my dream and that’s something money could never buy.

Sydney, Full Time Travel Blogger

42 Responses to One Year as a Full Time Travel Blogger and Writer

  1. jeanette

    Go, Emma! Good work!

  2. Monica

    Well done Emma, I can’t believe how much you’ve done in just a year! I wonder where you’ll be this time next year…

    • Emma Gray

      Thanks, Monica! Hmm I wonder…time will tell :)

  3. Emma @ GottaKeepMovin

    From one travel blogger named Emma to another – congratulations! You’re really living it and you should be proud of yourself. I know what you mean about the hard work we put in to all of it, but it definitely does pay off and all those memories you’ve collected are priceless! Good luck for everything in the future!

    • Emma Gray

      Thank you, Emma (great name!). So kind of you! Good luck to you too!

  4. Frankie

    Go girlie go! I love your honesty in highlighting that you don’t need to earn a load of money to feel rich or live a rich life…

    • Emma Gray

      Thanks, Frankie! Money isn’t the be all and end all. There’s more to life than that! No point earning a truck load if you don’t have any time or freedom to enjoy it :)

  5. Emily

    Awesome! Glad to see that you’re doing what you love despite societal norms. :) I also strive to do something a little different. I want to start traveling even more and get inspiration from reading your posts.

    • Emma Gray

      Thanks, Emily. Love that you get a little bit of inspiration from my posts :) get out there and travel girl!

  6. the lazy travelers

    congrats, emma! you were one of our earliest jetsetters, and that was OVER a year ago! have loved following along since then :)

    • Emma Gray

      Thanks ladies! Aw, that was back when I was still at uni – seems like forever ago!

  7. Clare

    Congratulations Emma! Love reading your blog!

  8. Scott@Big World Small Budget

    Congrats Emma! You’re an inspiration!

  9. Beth

    Way to go! I hope to read about many more amazing adventures in the years to come!

    • Emma Gray

      Thank you, Beth. Plenty more adventures to come I’m sure!

  10. Polly

    Really insightful post, Emma. It’s great to hear how you’ve found your first year of freelancing, and it looks like you’ve managed to accomplish some amazing things in that time – visiting 12 countries is an achievement in itself! Looking forward to reading about more of your adventures.

    • Emma Gray

      Thanks, Polly. Great to have you following along :)

  11. Cacinda Maloney

    Congratulations Emma for your one year anniversary! Looking forward to reading another year of travels.

    • Emma Gray

      Thanks, Cindy! Congrats on getting picked for the next bloghouse – you’re going to love it!

  12. May Martinez

    Thank you for sharing your inspiring story! :) If only I could make the big leap as well into becoming a full-time blogger! In any case, your post really encouraged me. Thank you!

    • Emma Gray

      Thank you for commenting, May. So glad you feel encouraged by my post :)

  13. Brittany @ Paws for Beer

    Congratulations on your one year anniversary! Your post is inspiring and you should be proud that you have the courage to not take a 9-5 job. So true your comment about the truck load of money not being worth it if you don’t have the time to enjoy it. Life is too short!

    • Emma Gray

      Thank you, Brittany. Life is definitely too short :)

  14. Andreas

    Magnificent site. I love how you are chasing your dreams! I hope the next year is just as amazing for you.

  15. Harriet

    Awesome post, such an inspiration!

  16. Martin Solly

    Nice one Emma. Great to see you just as enthusiastic about it all now as you were when you started out a year ago. Keep it up!

    • Emma Gray

      Thanks, Martin. Will do – the travel blogging world isn’t getting rid of me that easily!

  17. Jerald

    Hi there! I really admire what you’re doing here and how you are chasing your dreams. Good luck with everything.

  18. Natisha

    Great story. I like that you are honest about not making as much money as you could in a steady job. So nice that you value life experiences over a wad of cash!

  19. Chris

    congrats emma!
    It’s heaps more time consuming than people realise but the rewards are definitely worth it hey?!

    • Emma Gray

      Thanks, Chris. Absolutely worth it. Wouldn’t change it for the world :)

  20. Marian

    A little late Emma, but congrats!

  21. Ethan

    I like your honesty in this post. You’re doing something amazing, keep it up :)

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