Secrets to World Travel (and Blogging About It)


Note: The Secrets to Successful World Travel e-book reviewed in this piece is no longer available.

There’s a lot to know — or rather to learn — about traveling the world. Whether the trip is a month long, a year long, or a lifetime, winding your way around the world requires some skill and a whole lot of knowledge if you want to travel — and blog about it — effectively.

Having been on the road since 2007, I’ve become somewhat complacent about the travel knowledge I’ve amassed over the last few years. For example, although I feel like I’ve known about “WWOOFing” forever, I only heard about it a month before I started traveling. I forget that there was a time when I could barely define what a travel blog was, much less create and maintain one. I’ve come a long way since then, through a lot of trial and error, and a little bit of luck.

However trial and error doesn't have to be the way you cut your travel teeth. If you’re tenacious enough, you can become an expert by sifting through blogs and books, but it’s a time consuming process.

If you’ve decided you want to do a big trip (for example for a month or two, or around the world, or even to adopt travel as a lifestyle), there are two e-books that may help you cut through the fat in your journey of research and education: Secrets to Successful World Travel and
">How to Build a Travel Blog.

Both are authored by Nomadic Matt, who is a fellow full-time traveler and location independent entrepreneur. He’s been on the road since 2006, and learned all his lessons about traveling and blogging the hard way. Now, he’s condensed his knowledge into some easily digestible e-books. Let’s take a look at each of them.

Secrets to Successful World Travel

This book has three main chapters: Pre-Trip Planning, On the Road, and Coming Home. There is also a short FAQ chapter at the end that is pretty useful (for example, I learned something about visas for my upcoming trip to Europe that would have been a shock had I not known about it in advance).

Each chapter further breaks down into sections that follow along your own journey: planning, executing, and concluding your own trip.

If you are relatively new to the travel scene and like the idea of backpacking, this book is for you. You’ll learn things like:

  • How much it costs to travel in various regions of the world on a budget
  • What to look for in luggage and what to pack
  • How to organize your finances
  • Tips for booking Round-the-World flights
  • Frequent flyer plans, and how to maximize their usage
  • Hostel etiquette
  • Transportation options and recommendations for each region of the world
  • How and where to do your travel research
  • Finding work overseas (including Teaching English, WWOOFing and Volunteering)
  • And how to reintegrate on your return

This e-book is not, however, for you if you have a huge amount of travel experience already, of if you are interested in a financially higher echelon of travel. Nomadic Matt flavors the book with his valuable personal slant of experience, which is that of backpacking on a (relative) budget as a solo traveler. He lives life to the fullest on the road, but also does it frugally (how very Wise Bread!). I appreciate his ability to know when and where it’s worth spending the extra money, instead of cutting every corner he can. And this is the sort of knowledge he shares with his readers in the book.

On a picky note, I would have liked more page breaks in the format. Chapter 1 and 2 take up most of the book (120 of the 135 pages), and although you can navigate to each subsection from the table of contents, there aren’t any page breaks or white space between the subsections.

Matt also includes an interesting section on possible itineraries and time frames (which is beautiful if you want to know what to see in various regions of the world and how long you should plan for it), but it’s not entirely inclusive, omitting the whole of Asia and Canada for example. Being based on personal experience, maybe he didn’t feel right about covering places he hasn’t toured himself (I’m not sure). I value the fact that everything in the book is truly experience-based.

Overall the information provided is concise and very practical. If you have decided to hit the road, this book will help you do it step-by-step, while saving money and avoiding many of the typical mistakes we tend to make when we start out on the road.

Secrets to Successful World Travel

Length: 135 pages (jam-packed!)

Cost: $9.99 (a fabulous introductory price, but only for a limited time)

How to Build a Travel Blog

So your departure date is looming, and you’d like to keep in touch with your family and friends with a blog, while documenting your trip. Or maybe you have even higher aspirations of reaching a wider audience and making money with your travel blog. But you’ve got to start somewhere, and right now you don’t know exactly what to do to set up your travel blog.

You can find out everything you need to know if you spend long enough researching the internet. But if you want to cut through the fat and get to the good stuff, this e-book will help you do just that.

If you want to build a self-hosted Wordpress blog, this book will take you through the process step by step. Diagrams are even included to ensure you don’t get lost along the way. The book was written as an answer to the flood of questions Matt received after publishing his e-book How to Make Money with Your Travel Blog (here's my review). A lot of people who want to make money with travel blogs bought his first e-book, but realized amidst the html jargon and advertising lingo that they don’t even know the basics of setting a blog up. How to Build a Travel Blog is a rudimentary supplement to How to Make Money with Your Travel Blog.

You will learn:

  • How to get a domain name
  • How to integrate your domain name with Wordpress
  • Recommended Wordpress plug-ins, and how to install them
  • Various options for themes, and how to install them
  • Tweaking your blog settings, with miscellaneous SEO tips

Although the title of this book has a travel theme, the contents therein can apply to any kind of blog. There is very little (if anything) that limits this book to the travel genre, aside from Matt’s own expertise in the travel — and travel blogging — realm.

How to Build a Travel Blog

Length: 39 pages

Cost: FREE with the purchase of How to Make Money With Your Travel Blog ($37), or $4 on its own

In the cases of both e-books, Matt adds value by inviting readers to email him with any questions they have. This accessibility makes the e-books interactive and adds even more value. If you’re ready to travel the world (and blog about it), these books may be just the impetus you need to get going.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of the e-books for review, and there are affiliate links in this post.

Disclaimer: The links and mentions on this site may be affiliate links. But they do not affect the actual opinions and recommendations of the authors.

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Guest's picture

The re-integration part is often overlooked.  I've had numerous friends (including myself) who have gone through withdrawal upon return.

These were only multiple month long trips, but I can only imagine the longer you stay abroad - the harder/more difficult it becomes to re-integrate yourself.


Nora Dunn's picture

@Finengr - I went back to Canada for a 6-week visit last year, and had a small taste of what re-integration could be like. However I avoided the crux of it because it was more like a visiting vacation than a full-on re-integration into a previous full-time life. I think that instead of (mentally) trying to return to something you had before, it's good to view each day and experience as a new one (even if you are returning to an old job or routine).

Guest's picture
Gwen Benson-Walker

Hello Nora
I am going to retire in 2 years and plan to travel europe until I get tired two - three years at least. I want to blog to my friends and people who might be interested in knowing how I did it and who might want to do it themselves. As a senior traveler I need to know about everything. Some I have already learned but could use help in getting started
I want to rent apartments not stay in hotels, want to stay in some countries 3 to 4 months and just visit others. Want to live like a native and enjoy life that these countries have to offer. Any times you can give me would be helpful

Nora Dunn's picture

@Gwen - Sounds like you have quite an adventure in store! The best places I can guide you for tips would be a recent post about services that allow you to rent apartments:

...and this post which shares most of my secrets to full-time travel:

I'll also be publishing a post on Wise Bread soon with ways for travelers to tap into local knowledge, so keep your eyes peeled on this site!

Lastly, if you still have questions, feel free to contact me through my site here: