So I’ve finally bitten the bullet. After 17 years working in tourism, 13 in online travel marketing and development (mass market, mass media, online travel agencies and specialist tour operators), 6 years in Responsible and Volunteer tourism, 3 years of an MSc in Responsible Tourism Management and 6 months of a dissertation on Responsible online web content marketing of Volunteer tourism, I’ve succumbed to writing a blog. Why now?
Firstly, once my dissertation is complete, never thought I’d say it but I think I might miss writing a bit. I can’t say I will not be relieved to finish the academic process of it all (I think I’m more creative, entrepreneurial and forward thinking in bent; academia I just find so retrospective and, well, academic!) But I like learning, I spend hours musing and it’s probably about time I had my Carrie Bradshaw moments channelled for positive change. I’ve learnt so many things in my MSc, I’d like to share and understand how others relate to and apply those.
Secondly, as with many other tourism professionals, I’m in it because I’m passionate about it. I don’t want to see people or destinations negatively impacted by it. I want to savour and enjoy authentic experiences and interaction. I want to support local people’s tourism initiatives that focus on retaining their natural advantages for a long-term sustainable future, not pillaging them or being taken advantage of by others for short term gain. I love the natural world and the fascinating and diverse cultures it supports, but many places in the world rely on tourism for economic benefits, and thus court its consequences. It’s a fragile situation.
Thirdly, I’m big on online. Like tourism, it has its downsides and negative impacts at times and it’s a crazy fast moving world to keep up with (I don’t think I do any more to be honest but I try!) but equally I love the way the Internet connects, facilitates, creates communities across the world. I like to see how offline communities can be positively supported by the opportunities that tourism and online offer.
Finally, by nature I am an open, considerate, altruistic, compassionate, caring and sharing kinda gal.
Honesty (sometimes blunt, always true to self), taking responsibility and volunteer tourism are natural inclinations given the above. Blogging on the other hand, is not. I’ve always found something egotistical about it. But hopefully that’s it for writing about me, now I shall get on with writing about subjects dear to my heart, hopefully there will be interest and insight for other people too.