How Writers Can Score Press Trips: Part 2 - Things to Keep in Mind
Before Attending

 © Roy A Barnes - All Rights Reserved


If you haven't already done so, read Part One first


Accepted, Do Your Absolute Best To Attend

Remember, the CVB/PR firm has spent a lot of time and especially money (if they paid your airfare to come) in arranging your trip. The least writers can do is make sure they show up, sans something extreme. A number of CVB/PR firms are now making writers sign/acknowledge agreements to where if they don’t show up, they’ll be responsible for paying the airfare. This does make the writer accountable. But one thing a writer should never agree to is to sign an agreement guaranteeing publication nor would I ever sign such an agreement which I’ve heard does come up in rare instances. 

The reason is this: a letter of assignment itself doesn’t guarantee publication. What it does is signify that you’ve had works published, that the editor likes your past work, and has faith that your press trip will be able to produce at least one article for the publication as long as the writer’s work falls within the editorial guidelines. But sometimes things happen, like the publication ceases or goes on hiatus, the editorial staff changes, and the new editor may not be interested in publishing articles that were commissioned from the previous editor. Your article(s), even with rewrites, might not impress the editor enough to justify publishing it. CVB’s do know that these things can happen, but for the most part, the letter of assignment is like a stronger assurance that they’ll see an article(s) in publications that cater to their desired audience.


Get To Work On Those Articles As Soon As Possible

I make sure I use my press trip down time at the hotel to catch up on my emails, draft and write the articles from the current press trip I’m on. Don’t procrastinate. Show the CVB/PR firm that believed in you that you are reliable. The longer it takes to submit an article, the longer it could take to see it published and the longer it will take to potentially re-sell your work elsewhere if you are allowed to after publication.


A Warning To Schemers

Believe it or not, I’ve read via travel writers’ message boards about schemers out there who manage to sweet talk their way onto a press trip without any intention of writing or submitting articles. Not only is this morally wrong, but those who do that won’t get away with doing this very long. CVB/PR officials are a part of a big grapevine, and those people who misrepresent themselves or who don’t do their best to see that an article(s) gets published will have their names zipped around on that grapevine.


Closing Thoughts 

Press trips are a wonderful opportunity for writers to take advantage of because travel expenses are covered in much the same way a corporate business traveler’s are for his line of work. It’s just that the corporate suit is spending time in a lot of meetings while travel writers can savor interesting and colorful foods, people, activities, and venues around the globe! But to repeat, there are really no free lunches in this world, and press trips apply in this regard, too. They are a means to gather more writing ideas and getting more travel articles published, which can put more money in your pocket. But they should only be sought after if you’re responsible enough for the task!



About the Author: Roy A. Barnes writes from southeastern Wyoming. His travel-related articles for pay have appeared at such venues like Transitions Abroad, Live Life Travel, Associated Content, Go World Travel, Northwest Prime Time, and The Traveler. He’s contributed to writing-themed publications like The InkSpotter News, Absolute Write, The Willamette Writer, The Dabbling Mum, Writing for DOLLARS, and more.


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