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Traverse 2017 Recap – attending our first travel blogger conference

posted by Liza 2nd May 2017 0 comments
Traverse 2017 Recap - attending our first travel blogger conference

Traverse 2017 is officially over now, and it’s time to tell you, how it was. Traverse 2017 in London was the first travel blogger conference we ever attended and we’d like to share our experience with you.

What is Traverse?

First of all, what is Traverse? Traverse is an annual travel blogger conference, which connects bloggers to tourism boards and industry professionals. This year Traverse happened to be in London, which is just one 4-hour train ride away from Edinburgh, so without any hesitation, we decided to attend it.

Next year Traverse 2018 will take place in Rotterdam, Netherlands and let’s see if we’re able to attend it again. Hopefully, we will.

Traverse 2017 – How it was

This year Traverse 2017 lasted for a whole week – from Monday 24 to Sunday 30th of April and it was especially helpful for those based in London. However, the official opening party was on Friday and all the talks were during the weekend, so in case you’re working full time, don’t worry, you don’t even need to take any vacation days.

Opening party

We were able to make it to the opening party on Friday, which took place in the Skyloft Bar at the Millbank Tower. Even the view was worth coming there already, not speaking of delicious canapés from the sponsors of the event and almost unlimited alcohol – prosecco, white and red wine and beer. The opening party was all about exchanging business cards and talking to sponsors – Visit Malta, Zafiro Hotels, Jet2holidays, Greece, Costa Daurada, Costa Blanca, and Lanzarote.

The music at the event was a bit loud, so it was quite challenging to talk to the sponsors and meet other influencers. However, we managed to meet some amazing people.

Saturday events

The next day the conference started at 10:30 (it was possible to enter the venue, Ravensbourne college, as early as 9 am to grab a piece of strudel and network with other influencers and sponsors). There were plenty of amazing talks in the schedule, you could choose one of 4 speakers to listen to. I went to hear more about World Travel Market by Paul Nelson and Pepe was really excited about the talk from Macca Sherifi – how to get out of auto on your camera. Since Saturday, Pepe was testing different modes on the camera (and that’s what I wanted him to do the whole last year, so thank you, Macca!).

The second session started at 11:45 and we both chose to listen to Nicola Easterby from @polkadotpassport. She gave some interesting insights on Instagram, but I feel like her talk was more for Instagram newbies, so I didn’t learn that much from it.

At 1 pm there was lunch at the conference, but the sandwiches disappeared before we even came back from the talk, so we had to discover few places near the venue (there were plenty).

We networked with the sponsors of the event from Cheapflights, Visit Ireland, the Donkey Republic and Trip.com.

At 2 pm we attended a really great session from Monica Stott (from @thetravelhack), who was really honest about her blogging experience and success story and shared some amazing tips, which we tweeted during the conference.

Unfortunately, we didn’t attend the last session or the amazing cruise which was the main event of Saturday and everybody really loved it.

Day 3 – Sunday. The closing party

On Sunday, we just couldn’t wake up early enough, so we were terribly late for the sessions, so we only could hear the closing of Alex Jimenez talk about establishing your own brand.

At 12 I went to listen to Julie Falconer from @aladyinlondon, who told us about ways to monetize your Instagram and about different ways to charge brands for your work.

Pepe listened to Kylie Bawden’s talk about working with brands and negotiating.

After lunch we couldn’t make it to the sessions in the afternoon, so we just popped up at the closing event in Iberica London. The closing event was the best part of the conference – we had plenty of amazing cava from Vilarnau UK and delicious tapas in Iberica restaurant. Also, it was possible to network with many bloggers and meet new people.

Competitions at Traverse 2017

While the first day’s competitions looks a bit strange to me, honestly, you just drop your business card and then brands choose the one who wins the prize, the second day’s competitions were pretty great and transparent. I recommend you to participate in all of them, they are pretty fun.  You lose nothing and you have a chance to win some nice prizes. We won a bottle of Magnum from Vilarnau by posting this photo on Instagram and 2 tiny bottles of prosecco by posting this photo on Twitter. We are still waiting for the results of CathayPacific *fingers crosses, but the competition was pretty tough, so no big expectations.

 

Tips for attending Traverse Conference

If you’re a beginner travel blogger, Traverse Travel Blogger conference is just what you need. You will learn plenty of things as well as have a chance to talk to Big bloggers and ask them anything you want. If you’re a mid-size blogger (just like us), you can talk to brands and see how you can collaborate with them, which is really useful, too.

Don’t forget to print some business cards for the conference, too – there will be plenty of opportunities to exchange cards and network.

And finally, be active on Twitter! 

Hopefully, our experience at Traverse 2017 will help you to decide, if you want to attend the Traverse 2018 in Rotterdam!

Traverse 2017 Recap - attending our first travel blogger conference

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