Finding Your Way Around

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Welcome to the Travel Magazine Database, presented by Dream of Travel Writing and The Six-Figure Travel Writer!

Already registered? Log-in here.

If you want to break into travel writing or expand your portfolio, you’ll find hundreds of print magazines listed here that accept travel articles for professional rates.

For each magazine, we include:

  • the magazine’s editorial focus
  • what type of magazine it is (custom, consumer, trade)
  • where the magazine is based
  • relevant editors for travel pitches
  • several years of covers to give you a sense of the magazine’s style

Full access members also receive access to a detailed breakdown of the magazine, including:

  • which sections are open to freelancers
  • the length of each section
  • examples of what has been covered previously in each section
  • the magazine’s target readership traits
  • the percentage of travel-related content in each issue
  • where to read full issues online
  • editors’ email addresses
  • pay rates to the best of our knowledge
  • and much more

Basically, everything you need to write a successful pitch!

And if there’s a magazine you want to see and don’t see listed, let us know and we’ll add it soon.

Check out a full demo of the database:

There’s already hundreds of travel magazine breakdowns in the database that you can access in addition to the 30 magazines new breakdowns a month for $20/month. (You can also save two months’ membership fees when you opt for an annual subscription.)

We upload a new magazine to the database every day. Even if our monthly $20 subscription just covered those new magazines, you’d be paying for just 66 cents a magazine for each breakdown…far less than you’d pay to buy an issue, or even drive or subway over to a bookstore to read them in person for free.

Not sure if you’re ready to plunk down that kind of change? All Travel Magazine Database subscriptions are backed by a powerful, money-back guarantee:

If you use the Travel Magazine Database for three months to pitch regularly and get no responses whatsoever, not only will we give you all of your money back, we will also give you three pitch-letter critiques and a coaching call to get your pitching on track so you do get responses from editors.

Want to get started? Register here!

Why Does the World Need a Travel Magazine Database?

Hello travel writers and future travel writers!

When I quit my job and started travel writing, I scoured the internet for lists of websites and magazines I could pitch travel stories to.

There were quite a few names that kept coming up over and over again:

Respectively, they paid $25 and $40.

There was even a great set of posts created by students of the Matador travel writing program highlighting seven places they wanted to write. Even in here, I’d find the usual suspects or newsstand magazines I knew about but didn’t feel ready to pitch like Backpacker and AFAR.

So I took my list of all the same low-paying publications everyone was sending article ideas to and thought, “if this is how you have to start, then this is what I’ll do.”

The Paradox of Low Paying Pubs

I pitched, I waited for responses, I wrote stories for those outlets, and then I waited for the articles to actually appear so I would finally have published travel articles to show to the world and for the check to arrive so that I could earn a living.

In case you haven’t guessed, those last two things can take a long time to happen. Even online. And that’s a tough way to earn a living.

So I started searching the deepest recesses of the internet for travel magazines looking for stories, or at least, that had submissions guidelines outlining what they were looking for from writers interested in writing stories for them.

I printed each one, stapled it together and put it in a neat file on my desk so I could read through them all and dream up stories to pitch. And pitch I did, and I got assignments from those opening shots (or second or third shots in same cases), but a pattern emerged. None of these places paid very well, and they often took a while to get back to me.

It’s easy to extrapolate from here that travel magazines simply don’t pay well and that the editors are swamped and take a long time to get back to you, but then a curious thing happened.

I went on my first ever press trip.

We had an unexpected opportunity to tour Turkish tea plantations and production plants and sit down for tea with the head of Turkey’s biggest tea company in his wood-carving filled office scented with the fragrance of constantly steeping apple tea.

When I came home, I knew there was a story here, and so I scoured the web for magazines about tea. I found a couple, but I couldn’t get my hands on copies, just the articles that were online. And I couldn’t find the editors’ email addresses, only info@magazine.com black holes.

But I pitched them nonetheless, and never heard back.

Months later, I found a magazine database (that is now sadly defunct). They had been collating all sorts of publicly available information about thousands of magazines for years. I was super excited to find new magazines I’d never heard of, but then I realized they also had those tea magazines I tried to pitch after my trip.

And they had the direct email addresses for the editors. So I resent my pitch.

Does Enough Access to Info About a Magazine Make All the Difference?

I got a response in just a few minutes. And after some back and forth, an assignment from the tea magazine. And after some other emails, assignments from many other magazines I didn’t even know about until I discovered the database.

But even when that database was still around, it didn’t give me everything I needed to get assignments.

It gave years and years of a magazine’s editorial calendars, but it didn’t tell me what the names of the magazine’s recurring sections were and how they were formatted so that I could craft a pitch based on knowing what they’d covered in the past and what they would like to cover in the future.

The contact information section gave me the name of just one editor—the editor-in-chief—who is not, unless the magazine is very small–the one that reviews pitches.

And it had the magazines classified according to pay rates that I often found to be complete estimates or unfounded and not reflecting the rates editors were actually offering, making it hard for me to know if it was really worth my time to pitch a given magazine. (We’ve got a neat trick for this based on 100% up-to-date, verifiable information.)

Most importantly, it focused on magazines from North America for more general journalists—not the travel magazines from other English-language markets that I knew existed and weren’t getting a lot of pitches but I just didn’t know how to find.

So, when I was traveling, I started to keep an eye out for interesting magazines or magazines that feature travel-related stories so that I could have my own personal magazine database. I picked up adventure travel magazines in Asia, dozens of in-flight magazines in Europe, and wine-focused pubs in Sonoma.

That was more than seven years ago. These days, we’ve got so many magazines that I hide them in closets, under our coffee table, and under the benches at our dining table so our friends don’t think I’m a crazy magazine lady (the journalist version of a cat lady—keeping cats is far more expensive than keep magazines!).

Sharing the Love

When I started coaching people to reach their own travel writing income goals, I wanted to give them access to all these great magazines that I knew about and few others did to help them get lots of fun, well-paying assignments from them as well. So I looked at my piles and my scanner, shuddered for a moment, and thought of a better way.

Now, I’m excited to share it with all of you. Not just the huge stacks of magazines, but a processed form of them. My coaching clients have me walking them through how to analyze a magazine to ensure assignments and helping them identify what sections their ideas fit into. We’re going through all of our magazines and doing this work for you.

For every magazine with a full entry available, you’ll find:

  • which sections are open to freelancers
  • the length of each section
  • examples of what has been covered previously in each section
  • the magazine’s target readership traits
  • the percentage of travel-related content in each issue
  • where to read full issues online
  • editors’ email addresses
  • pay rates to the best of our knowledge
  • and much more!

My apartment is only so big, so we only have several hundred magazines in our hands at the moment. But that doesn’t mean that’s all you get!

We know about more than 1500 magazines that are looking for travel articles, and we’re putting those all into the database with a more basic set of information so that you can find more magazines for your articles. For each of these magazines, we’re showing you:

  • the magazine’s editorial focus
  • what type of magazine it is (custom, consumer, trade)
  • where the magazine is based
  • relevant editors for travel pitches
  • several years of covers to give you a sense of the magazine’s style

And if you prefer to check out magazines yourself and just need our help discovering new magazines to pitch you can also get limited access to all of our magazines for half the price of the full subscription.

Take a look around at what we’ve been doing (here are some full entry samples to start with), and join us when you’re ready to take the pitching plunge and stop saying that you don’t have more travel writing assignments because you don’t know who to pitch.

gabi-logan

Gabi Logan
Founder, Dream of Travel Writing

Tour the Travel Magazine Database

Upon logging into the Travel Magazine Database, you’re greeted with our “Welcome” page, which offers multiple options for exploring the database.

On the “Welcome” page, we offer direct links to some of the most popular categories of magazines, both geographic distinctions and topical ones.

Welcome Screen

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Scrolling View (Homepage and internal pages)

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As you continue scrolling down, you’ll see the posts most recently added to the magazine database.

We add at least one post to the database every single day, so whenever you log in, there’s something new to find to fuel your pitches.

Each entry is titled with the name of the magazine covered in the breakdown as well as the level of depth the entry goes into.

The Travel Magazine Database includes two types of entries: limited posts and full posts. Full entries include detailed breakdowns of all sections of the magazines open to freelancers and what they cover along with more goodies we’ll show you below.

In the scrolling view, you’ll see three covers of each magazine to give you a sense of its style and a very brief description of the magazine’s geography and topics, along with a full list of tags expanding on what the magazine covers generally and specifically along with the type of articles it features.

If you see a magazine that looks close to what you need, but not the right geography or style, click on one of the tags to get pull up a full list of closely related magazines with a similar type of coverage.

Detail of Entry Previewrelated-tag-search

When you find a magazine you’d like more info about, click read more from the preview view to access the complete entry. Depending on the type of entry, you’ll either find four tabs (for full entries) or two tabs (for limited entries) of information about each magazine.

Magazine Entry View

entry-view

In the “Description” tab, you’ll find several fields:

  • Type of magazine: Whether the magazine is a consumer, custom, or trade magazine. More on what those mean is available in our FAQ here.
  • Publication frequency: Whether the magazine comes out weekly, monthly, bimonthly, annually, or on a more irregular schedule.
  • Percentage of travel content: The approximate amount (as it can vary per issue) of text in the magazine devoted to travel and travel-related topics that you, as a travel writer, could be interested in pitching.
  • Language: If the magazine is published in an additional language besides English, we mention that here. If we determine that a magazine is primarily written in another language and only translated into English, we don’t include it in that database, as it doesn’t make sense for you to spend time pitching it!
  • Publisher: The company that produces the magazine.
  • Location of editorial: Where the magazine’s main editorial office is located, so you can keep the time zone in mind for deadlines and other time-sensitive communications.
  • Website: The primarily online home of the publication.
  • Editorial positioning: Directly from the horse’s mouth, this section highlights how the magazine differentiates itself in the market place.
  • Read online: Where (if possible) you can find full issues of the magazine online to aid in your pitch prep. If these are only available with payment, we note that, otherwise everything listed here is free. We also include links to sample articles in the “How to Pitch” tab to illustrate the styles of the magazine’s departments and features.

Description Tab View

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In the next tab, “Demographics,” you’ll find a wealth of information on the magazine’s readers. What we include here depends on the publication, and can include information about different regional editions, the age, wealth, and habits of the reader, and anything else we can find to help you target your pitches.

Data points like the size of the magazine’s circulation can also help you in your rate negotiations. Also keep in mind that magazines that are highly targeted, particularly to big spenders, whether corporate travel managers or ultra high-end travels, also bring in more ad revenue and pay better than “larger” magazines with a more general audience.

Demographics Tab View

demo-tab-full

The “How to Pitch” tab is where the magic happens. This is where we take hours to break down every single section of a magazine, figure out which are open to freelancers, tally up the section lengths, list past examples of what each section has covered, and give you all the nitty gritty tools you need to make your pitches shine and show editors that you really get their magazine.

In the “Editorial Structure” section, we lay out the names and frequencies of each section in the magazine, including the average number of features.

The “What to Pitch” section is where you’ll find details on each section listed in the “Editorial Structure” that is open to freelancers with the length and article style for each.

At the end of the “How to Pitch” breakdown, we let you know if there are additional sections to pitch online, which, FYI, often pay a lower rate than their print counter parts, and what we’ve been able to discern about the magazine’s pay rates. For more information on the pay info situation and our special trick for finding out if a magazine is worth your time even without a listed pay rate, check our our FAQ.

How to Pitch Tab View

how-to-pitch-tab-full

You get the cherry on top of the ice cream sundae in the “Contact Info” tab. Here we not only give you the names of every editor relevant for your pitches, but also the exact email format so you reach out to those editors directly.

Contact Info Tab View

contact-info-tab-full

Even if you have a full access membership to the database, you’ll still see many limited entries in your scrolling view. Any time you have access to a limited entry with a full access account, it means we haven’t yet put together a full breakdown of the magazine, but we want you to know about it and factor it into your pitching plans.

Limited Entry View

description-tab-limited

Limited entries have two tabs, the “Description” and “Contact Info” sections. In the “Description” tab, the main difference is that we don’t include information on where to find full issues of the magazine online. In the “Contact Info” tab, we don’t include the email format for the magazine’s editors in the limited entries.

contact-tab-limited

You can also find our full list of categories for navigating the database, as well as search by title name, keyword, category or location at the bottom of every page of the database:

categories

Travel Magazine Database FAQ

Frequently asked questions about our Travel Magazine Database, pitching, and travel magazines:


 

Why do we analyze magazines?

One of the biggest complaints editors have about pitches they receive is that the writer is clearly not familiar with the magazine he or she is pitching.

There are the comical editor horror stories about someone pitching an article about hunting one’s first chicken to a vegan food magazine or a report on local archeological digs to an interior design magazine.

But more often than not, writers are pitching stories that sound—if you only know the title of a magazine—like they could be a fit, but if you took the time to dig into the tone and structure of a publication, would obviously be a little (or a lot) off of what the magazine actually covers.

In a pitch, showing an editor that you understand his or her publication and its audience is more important than the idea you are pitching or your background—it’s what inspires an editor to write you back and encourage you to send more pitches rather than write you off.

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How do we analyze magazines?

We’ve got a whole post on how we analyze magazines—and how we recommend you do it when you’re analyzing a magazine on your own—on our parent company site, Dream of Travel Writing.

For every full entry here on the database, we work from a full copy of the magazine and double check all of the advice we’re giving you against the most recent masthead (the list of editor’s names) and media kit on the magazine’s website.

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How many new entries are added to the database every month?

We add at least one new magazine to the database every day!

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How do I know if the information in the database is up-to-date?

Since our website is in its first year, you can be assured that everything in the database is quite fresh; however, publishing is a volatile business, so sometimes things change quickly. We’ve even found while working on the database that we may write a full breakdown of a magazine only to find out that it is ceasing publication the next month.

Whenever we find out updates like this, we incorporate them into the database, and we’re adding more ways to capture more updated information everyday.

For each magazine, we provide links to the magazine’s website (limited entries) or the magazine’s website and a full copy of the magazine (full entries), so that you can reconfirm what we’re telling you before you pitch. But you can always tell how current the overall information in any given entry is by looking at the entry’s publication date, which will tell you when we first performed the magazine breakdown.

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Why can’t I see all of the entries in the database?

There are two types of database memberships: limited and full.

If you have a limited access membership, you will only have access to limited entries.

If you have a full access membership however, you will see full entries for some magazines and limited entries for others. The limited entries you see are for magazines that don’t yet have a full breakdown, and the limited entries you don’t have access to correspond to magazines that have full entries, which you should be able to access.

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How do I know if I have a good story idea?

A “good” story idea is a completely moving target, but it always depends on one thing: that the idea exactly fits an existing hole in a magazine. There is no such thing as a good article idea independent of a place for it to be published.

Outside of that, several ways to know if you have a “good” article idea are that it is:

  • specific to a definable audience
  • addressable in the length of the article
  • addressing an issue of interest to the audience
  • addressing a topic relevant to the magazine
  • definable in a single sentence

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How should I structure my pitch email?

There is a tried and true formula for successful pitches:

  • draw the editor in and communicate why your idea is interesting and appropriate to his or her audience
  • articulate how your idea would fit in the magazine and what your article would cover
  • show the editor why you are the best person to write the story

It’s really that simple! But executing each of those things is not so simple. We’re got more resources on writing great pitches here:

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Why do we not list pay rates for many magazines?

There are two big reasons why you won’t see a specific pay rate listed on many of the full entries:

  • magazines are notoriously opaque about their rates, in part because…
  • magazines pay different writers different rates

We can go through databases in which freelance writers anonymously self-report what magazines have paid them and places where editors self-report what their rates are, but the unfortunately truth is that these things often have little relationship with the rate that any particular writer will get when receiving an assignment from a magazine, and even less to do with how much a writer who pushes for more money may receive.

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How can you tell how much a magazine pays?

To help with the fact that most magazines simply won’t be clear about their pay range because they want to get articles for at the low end of their pay range as much as possible, we have created a handy (though a little sneaky) metric for ballparking how much a magazine pays writers and whether it is worth your time.

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Check out our handy pay rate estimator trick here.

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How can you tell which editor to pitch?

This is a tricky one. In our full entries, in which we list all of the folks on the editorial staff that might be useful to you in your pitches, we don’t say exactly who to pitch for which stories. This is for two reasons:

  • it often changes over time, and often frequently
  • there is no rhyme or reason to which editorial titles correspond with various positions

In small magazines, with an editorial staff of four or fewer, the editor-in-chief is often the one accepting pitches. In huge newsstand magazines, like Travel + Leisure, there is absolutely no point in writing to the editor-in-chief and often several levels below him or her as well. You’ll need to go to an assistant editor or section editor with your pitch.

Mid-sized magazines use titles in unpredictable ways, sometimes having an assistant editor, associate editor, editorial director, and editor-in-chief with the assistant editor functioning more like an editorial assistant (i.e. no decision making power), and the editorial director handling projects but not necessary magazine assignments.

Across the board, the people that we list in the “contact” info tab are ones that you should try reaching out to. If you have a good pitch and it simply goes to the wrong (but not *super* wrong) person, editors typically just forward it to where it needs to be. You won’t see us list the following positions, even if they’re on the masthead under editorial, because these are positions that don’t assign articles:

  • editorial assistants (more assistant than editor)
  • copy editors (more proofreader than editor)
  • contributing editor (a freelancer who writes frequently but doesn’t assign)
  • publishers (unless they are the only person on the masthead, they don’t assign)

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What are trade, consumer, and custom magazines?

One of the fields in our main magazine overview classifies magazines as trade, consumer or custom.

Trade magazines are not available to buy on the newsstand or online. They are delivered to a qualified circulation of people who work in a particular industry. In travel, there are many different areas of trade magazines, from magazines for travel agents to people who run hotels to people who plan group tours.

Consumer magazines are available in the bookstore, airport, and other newsstands, and these are the travel magazines you are probably most familiar with. They include major titles like Travel + Leisure and Conde Nast Traveler as well as smaller regional pubs like Edible Columbus and New York Family.

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Should I pitch a story before I’ve traveled to a destination?

This depends on one thing (how sure you are that you will be able to deliver the story you’ve pitched), which in turn depends on three things:

  • how experienced you are
  • how much prior research you’ve done
  • how much control you have over your own schedule

If that made you nervous just reading the phrase “how sure you are that you will be able to deliver,” the answer is probably no, but we’ve got a whole post about when you should and shouldn’t pitch before your trip.

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Should I pitch the same story to more than one magazine at a time?

Yes! Absolutely. But not the exact same wording. Magazine editors need to know that you understand their publication and audience, so you should reslant each pitch you send to make sure that your pitch resonates with each editor.

And when your story gets accepted, make sure to let the other editors you reached out to know that the story has been picked up elsewhere.

The only time I don’t advise doing this is when you already have a relationship with a magazine. Let that editor have priority and follow up before you submit the idea elsewhere.

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What about when a magazine says it doesn’t accept unsolicited manuscripts?

There is a difference between an unsolicited manuscript and an unsolicited pitch. An unsolicited manuscript submission is when a writer sends in an entire story that is already written with a “pitch” that more or less says, “Here’s a story. Would you like it?”

A pitch, on the other hand, says something more like, “Here’s a story that I could write for your magazine. This is what it would be about. And I would write it in this format.” Then the editor has the chance to say, “I already have a story just like that, but could you make it a profile instead of a narrative piece?” or “I don’t have anymore feature spots, but could you do that as a round-up as five places for this section in the front of the magazine?”

Being flexible in this way not only shows the editor you are a professional, but also gives you more of a chance of being published.

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How do I change my password?

You can change your password in two places. In the menu on the right side of the page, mouse over “Your Membership” and then click on “Edit Your Profile.”

You also have a lot of different options regarding passwords, log-ins, and managing what devices you are signed in from by going into your WordPress user backend by clicking on your user photo (or the grey blank face if you don’t have a user photo) in the upper lefthand corner of your screen where it says, “Howdy, [your name].”

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How do I cancel my membership?

You can cancel at any time while logged in by accessing your membership page from the menu on the right-hand side of every page. You’ll see a link to cancel your membership on the “update your billing information” page.

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