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News  /  8th July 2021

The travel media and the pandemic: where we’re at

A screenshot from the Social with Media webinar.

The travel media and the pandemic: where we’re at

On June 22, National Geographic Traveller (UK) editor Pat Riddell took part in a Social with Media webinar to discuss the current travel situation and how travel PRs can promote their clients during this period. Read on for some of his top takeaways:

  1. The travel media industry still isn’t where we hoped it’d be. “We hoped writers and photographers would be able to get around a lot easier, and that obviously hasn’t quite been the situation,” said Pat.
  2. Travel publications are more reactive. “There’s a lot of wait and see,” he said. “Can we get somebody to this destination? Can we find someone there? If we can’t cover this destination, how can we fill the space?”
  3. We can still cover destinations people can’t travel to. “Places like Australia are, for most people, a long-term plan, so we had it in the last issue,” said Pat. “That’s not something we worry too much about.”
  4. Lead times mean magazines stick to their plans. “Newspapers can plan their weekend sections on a Wednesday and if they need to change to add something they can, but we plan months ahead,” he said. “It’s pointless trying to second guess the government at the moment.”
  5. If there’s a story, there’s something that people can lose themselves in. “The whole ethos of National Geographic Traveller is inspiration and escapism,” said Pat.“Subscribers have gone up massively in the last year, so I like to think our readers come to us for the photography, for the long reads and that sense of sitting down in an armchair and escaping lockdown in their heads.”