Let’s talk about Travel. Not Politics. Travel blogs shouldn’t be discussing political matters because it upsets readers who read the blog for Travel related reasons. And if those people leave or unsubscribe, it hits us where it hurts, right in the pocketbook.
Travel, and the niche of Travel Hacking allows us to experience different cultures, to discover more about the world, and in turn, about ourselves. I love hearing stories about how families are able to take their children overseas on trips to see the world, or about people in the US who are here for work or study that can go to visit friends and family from their home countries.
I do think, and have stated, that there’s a risk that comes from Travel Hacking that it can devalue the benefits of travel. If it is so easy to fly to Paris that you can do so any weekend, you might not immerse yourself in the culture in the same way, but that doesn’t make Travel Hacking inherently bad.
Travel at its best speaks to the soul. Truthfully, not every trip I take, or want to take does this any more, sometimes I just want some beach time. But the times when I’ve walked around rural Japan on 4 hour treks between remote Dojo were spiritual. Japan for me was a wonderful experience. It was one of the first times I felt like an outsider, and subjected to racism. A lot of this stemmed from their immigration policy and cutting off their borders, which happened under the Sakoku Edict of 1635. This occurred under the Tokugawa shogunate, and is known as the Edo period. It lasted 250 years, and came to an end with the Meiji restoration in 1868. This period of history has greatly shaped the Japan of today, and the feeling towards outsiders remains clear, and present.
It was with a tired body, and tired mind that I would walk through Japan, knowing that I would be treated poorly by many residents, be them officials, or just everyday people. There were also many warm hearted people, but the baseline was that you were a Gaijin, a foreigner, and undesirable. This isn’t a bad thing to experience, because it is a lesson in life, and can help shape your understanding of the world. Seeing it through the eyes of an outsider can teach empathy, along with sadness, and sometimes the hard lessons are the best ones.
Travel, with an open mind, and heart, can teach us much about the world. But when we open this conduit that travel creates, we change. Travel, allows you to see a different culture, experience different food, drinks, sights, and people. It allows you to feel what they feel. Ultimately, therefore anyone who writes on travel will be inclined at times to talk about their feelings, their fears, their desires, their hopes and dreams for their families.
Travel is the conduit. But the heart, mind, or soul must be open in order to receive it’s lessons. For this reason, I beseech all travel bloggers, both on Saverocity and elsewhere to avoid talking about politics.
If you do, it will offend some people, who don’t want to hear about issues surrounding us today, that your heart, mind, or soul cry out against. They don’t want to know that you are worried as a woman, a gay person, a person of color, or just some lefty weirdo. They just want to hear about trip reports on the latest airplane, ideally one operated by a largely Islamic state. There are bonus points for photos of snacks and pre departure beverages.
Let’s not forget, Travel Blogging is a business. And these people are your customer. They have the money, the very best money, and if they unsubscribe you will suffer, that’s just not smart business.
Now – let’s go make some money!