by Carmen Allan-Petale
2012. What a life changing year. It was the year we got married and started this blog. And it was the year we change our attitudes to how we live our lives.
Sometimes you go on a journey that changes you forever, and for us that was our trip in September to the TBU conference in Porto.
We met so many inspiring people and realised we could actually incorporate our passion for travel into our lives in a more fulfilling way.
So with the aim of spreading the inspiration, here are 10 bloggers we met in 2012 who inspired us, in no particular order.
1. Andy of Grown Up Travel
Dave and Andy first bonded over their love for James Bond and to this day Andy has been the blogger who has helped us the most on our journey. From tips on how to make money from our blog to how to get the best accommodation, Andy has guided us and asked for nothing in return.
Andy is an inspiration because he often travels with his two young children and his wife, and has earned a lot of money from his blog – a testimony to how good it is.
2. Victoria and Steve of Bridges and Balloons
We haven’t yet had the chance to meet Steve but we became friends with Victoria at the TBU conference. Victoria and Steve spent the best part of 2012 travelling South America and Steve is a film maker who has just released a brilliant documentary about The Overview Effect, which you can watch and read more about here.
Victoria made the decision to quit her writing job for a life on the road after she lost a loved one and the strength and courage she has had to take this life-changing journey is both impressive and heart-warming.
3. Janice of Solo Traveller
Janice also decided to go travelling – on her own – after losing a loved one. Her journey since then is fascinating and although Janice may travel solo, she has made her mark on the travel blogging world by creating collaborations with other travel bloggers.
Janice was the force behind a series of books on travelling – The Traveller’s Handbooks – which came out towards the end of last year. Janice demonstrates the positive way in which the travel community can work together and is truly inspiring.
4. Deb and Dave of Planet D
When Deb and Dave opened the TBU conference with their uplifting and high-energy speech, we were blown away. We could see so many parallels between their old lives and our current ones and it made us take time out and really ponder on what it is we want from life.
They said that because they worked in Hollywood, everyone always told them how amazing it must be to have such brilliant jobs. But inside they didn’t feel fulfilled. So they quit it all and now live on the road 24-7. They also happen to write one of the most successful travel blogs of all time too.
5. Kate of Adventurous Kate
Kate certainly has some adventurous stories to tell. Here’s one – she was shipwrecked off the coast of Indonesia on one of her press trips. But aside from her fascinating stories, Kate taught us a lot about pitching for press trips and complimentary accommodation at the TBU conference. Since then, we’ve put a lot of her advice in to action, with great success. So thank you Kate!
6. Dan and Audrey of Uncornered Market
What I love about Dan and Audrey is that they don’t just travel for their own pleasure – they genuinely want to make a difference to the places they go and the people they meet. They’ve been to some far-flung places like Azerbaijan and they make a point of giving money to the local people – hand-to-hand – when they travel, benefiting the local community directly.
I love the photos on their blog, they’re really beautiful. But one of the biggest things about Dan and Audrey that I love is how humble and down to earth they are, especially after how much they’ve achieved. An inspiration to us all.
7. Michael of Time Travel Turtle
When we met Michael, a fellow Aussie, we quickly realised we had some mutual friends, which isn’t too unexpected when you meet an Aussie on the road. Michael is a journalist by trade and we love reading his blogs because they’re always written to a very high standard and tell interesting stories.
But judge for yourself – I especially like this blog about an interesting character (the oldest backpacker in the world?) he met at a hostel.
8. Chris of Aussie Nomad
Chris is another selfless blogger who isn’t just set on his own agenda – but is keen to help other bloggers too. He’s been doing just that recently – aiding us in launching our new website. He’s had a lot of patience with my lack of web design knowledge and I’m very grateful!
Chris has a computer programming background and says he’s not a very good writer, but I don’t agree! He wouldn’t be one of the most popular travel bloggers in the world if he wasn’t a good writer. The quality of his photos is impressive, especially because he takes them all with an iPhone! Just goes to show you don’t need fancy equipment to produce high quality content.
9. Erin and Simon of Never Ending Voyage
Erin and Simon are softly spoken but then again, their achievements speak for themselves. They’re currently in the process of launching a new phone app for helping you with your travelling budget, which Simon has designed.
I cornered Erin at a TBU party and chewed off her ear with a million and one questions ranging from photo editing software to travel insurance and she gave me invaluable insight into the travel blogging world. We’re very grateful for all their helpful tips!
10. Jodi of Legal Nomads
Jodi may be tiny but her passion for living life is immense. She dropped her job as a lawyer to travel the world and writes about travel and one of our other passions – food. She wrote The Food Traveler’s Handbook as part of Janice’s collaboration and we’ve been reading and enjoying it.
But don’t read her blog on an empty stomach – it might have you drooling!
Dave and I would just like to say a big thank you to all the above travellers for continuing to inspire us. Many of your stories have given us the motivation to make our blog into what it is today. When we first started writing Double-Barrelled Travel we had no idea it would be as satisfying as it has been and it has opened the doors to so many great opportunities that we’re very grateful for. Meeting the above people is just one of many.