Last fall, Canada’s G Adventures reached out about joining a new programme called Wanderers in Residence, whereby the Wanderers (a group of fellow long-term travelers) would partner with G Adventures to promote learning through travel and experiencing far away places and foods. Their new (super shiny!) Wanderers in Residence blog has just launched and I’ve confirmed my first trip with the programme: two weeks in Morocco in mid-October.
What does being a Wanderer in Residence mean?
The programme provides opportunities for the Wanderers to join G Adventures on a trip per year to destinations of our choice, as well as promoting travel and spirited adventures through other channels – their sustainable tourism arm (Planeterra), conference opportunities and branding panels, as well as writing for their site occasionally.
Does this mean I work for G Adventures?
I’m not a G Adventures employee, I’m a brand ambassador. I’ll be able to share my experiences from their trips with their audiences, and with mine. And I will help them promote their core values, ones that I agree with: to inspire people to see the world sustainably.
Why G Adventures?
Well, for starters – they’re Canadian! But apart from this initial bias, they’re also a great company and I’ve been recommending them to friends and family alike for years now, long before the days of the Twitter and their new push toward social media. My own cousin Bradley joined a trip in Asia last spring as it was his first foray alone, and then continued onward for a few months after the trip had ended, having already gotten his “travel legs” in place. I’ve spent time at their offices and their emphasis on sustainability, respect for the environment and flexibility within a tour’s framework is impressive.
But most importantly: they value travel as an entrepreneurial, educational experience. The company is full of people who both care about travel itself, and travel as a way of bridging gaps (see what I did there?) between countries and people. Instead of hiring celebrities to endorse their brand, they went with real travelers who have years of gallivanting to back up their core values.
But you’re a solo traveler – why work with a tour company?
This is a very good question. I want the platforms I use to be ones I respect and can stand behind, and if they go far toward inspiring others to travel, then they’re ideal for my needs. As I said in my 3-year anniversary post, I decided not to monetize Legal Nomads because I wanted it to be a place for me to share the things I loved, and sponsored posts or text links detract from that. This is the same reason that I’ve been very selective in choosing which press trips I join, because I genuinely want them to be experiences that I want to do regardless, and ones that I can write about here with authentic enthusiasm for the destination.
In associating with G Adventures, I not only get to write about the places I visit, but do so with a company I like. And in sharing my experiences, my aim is to hopefully demystify the idea of travel to exotic places in a way that inspires people to go out and get there themselves. Whether it’s a group tour or a backpacking trip with friends or a solo trip, seeing and living (and eating) is what matters. As a WiR, I hope to impress upon the people I meet on the trips or those who read my posts on the WiR blog, that even within the framework of a tour there’s a huge amount of room for independent discovery.
Will things change here at Legal Nomads?
Negative ghostrider. When posting from a G Adventures trip, I’ll include a disclaimer at the bottom, the same way I did with my travels through Jordan, and add a new category for WiR. I will be primarily posting on their blog, however, and my fall plans – Morocco then a stay in the country for an additional week, and a trip to Turkey – will be done independently. I suspect some of those posts from Morocco and Turkey just might involve edible items. I know you’re all surprised.
That’s it for the moment! Back to regularly scheduled programming with more to come from Newfoundland, Chiang Mai and my hometown of Montreal.
33 thoughts on “Fall Plans and Being a Wanderer in Residence for G Adventures”
You’ve lost a subscriber here I am afraid.
I started reading your blog a long time ago, I enjoyed your personal travels. However over the past year I’m afraid I look at your posts and don’t see the passion anymore. I see yet another commercial blog.
While you say no ads etc, signing up to sponsored corporate travel agencies for free trips in return for advertising them is much the same thing.
I understand you’ve decided to try and make a living with this blog, or through it. But along the way it’s become just another blog. Something that’s been that way for a long time now.
I’m sorry if this doesn’t sound nice. But it’s the reason I’m unsubscribing and I thought the feedback would be helpful.
If you’re feeling lost in your direction, I encourage you to read, and remember what you were doing a few years ago. You were a corporate lawyer who broke free, only to end up as just another corporate looking blogger today.
I wish you the best in your future endeavors.
Hi Maria, thank you for your comment. I welcome both good and bad feedback, so there’s no need to apologize for your opinions. However, I don’t see how the site has become a commercial blog, especially given that there has been one press trip in the past year. I am actually happiest with Legal Nomads in the last twelve months – I’ve finally had a chance to sit and write about Burma, improve on my photography and do a complete redesign. Moreover, the posts from last fall in South America remain some of my most emotional since I started LN.
I’m going to respectfully disagree with you – the terms of this partnership are not congruous to putting ads for cheap hotels on my site. More importantly, though, I’m curious as to how this arrangement detracts from my usual writing. Whether or not I’m on a paid-for trip a few times a year doesn’t affect what I write or the spirit of my prose, nor should it somehow wipe the slate clean from years of independent travel, both present and future. I’m sorry you feel I’ve lost my direction, but I feel the opposite way: this site began, and remains, an expression of the things I feel passionate about.
Gorgeous photo, and I’m excited to see what you discover and the things you uncover in Morocco. Love the place, and you’ll have so much more time there than I ever did.
And I second Johnny as to “Maria”. I don’t expect you to be a millionaire because you followed your passion, so if you partner with companies who can send you to the places you already wanted to go, that’s a win for us all.
We all know you’re a straight shooter, and I look forward to being mad and jealous that I’m not eating the things you photograph, or experiencing the Atlas Mountains, etc.
Actually, yes, I’m with Maria — unsubscribing because I’m so jealous!!
Awesome news, Jodi. Two great places, and the program sounds excellent as well. Morocco is where the original how to draw camels ebook was born, inspiring country it is. I can’t wait to read about your new travels and wow, you are going to enjoy the dining possibilities!!
Thanks Phil. I suspect I’ll have to draw a few camels of my own on this trip…or maybe start the Tarsier Drawing Ebook we’ve been discussing for so long? ;)
Ha, I’ve been meaning to email you to ask “So, what next…?”
I suspect India, come January. And Sri Lanka after that. But we shall see! Hope you and La Vie Soleil are well!
What an awesome opportunity to see new places and have new experiences! Particularly nice to take part in these trips every once in a while as a solo traveler–great chance to meet some (potentially) awesome people.
Thank you Christine. I’m looking forward to meeting people on the trips as well, and hearing more about what led them to travel and what they hope to learn in doing so. Hope Tasmania is treating you well – those photos from Hobart were gorgeous.
Congrats! And don’t listen to Maria — She’s either jealous or delirious.
Congratulations, Jodi. Helluva company to be associated with.
Regarding Maria’s comment, there’s one point I’ll half-agree with before respectfully disagreeing with everything else she said: over the last year, your posts have changed. Clearly. You sound more comfortable in your own skin, more excited by the world and you write better. For those reasons, I won’t be unsubscribing anytime soon.
I also thoroughly find Maria’s implication that allying yourself with a large company in any way, no matter what you’re doing and no matter how internationally well-regarded that company, is selling out…*ridiculous*. Especially when you’re so up-front about everything you do. Automatically equating seeking a larger platform with diminished credibility is always an example of sloppy thinking. And in this case, I believe it is too. Respectfully.
– A subscriber.
Thank you Mike. I’m glad that you’ve enjoyed the evolution of the site and thanks for your support.
Sorry I’ll miss you in Morrocco! I can’t believe we were almost on the same trip.
Congratulations Jodi! I can’t wait to hear about your travels in Morocco. It’s one of my top five places to visit in the world right now.
Excited to read about your adventures in Morocco and Turkey. Please do post pictures of delicious food!
You should give bellydancing a try while in either country. I’m planning on making my way to those countries in 2013 to study some dancing and indulge in their culinary delights :)
I’m sure there will be plenty of food photos! I’ll take good notes for you as well for your future travels.
Exciting stuff! Have to admit I didn’t expect this from you. Was expecting more of a long term trip back to Asia but this is different and exciting as well. I’ve got nothing against tours and think that some of them can be good provided they are the right environment and respect an individual’s time and freedom. Gap Adventures sounds like a great way to go with some exciting trips! Good luck!
Thanks Jer. I’m certainly not done with Asia and can’t wait to get back, but it’s very exciting to visit a different part of the world (and learn about the food there too). Hope all is well with you!
Ah, congrats lady! How about making some of those wanderings come back to NL? :)
Congrats, Jodi! I think this is a wonderful move for you. (And I am jealous, and readily admit it.) :-) I will say, though, to your own question about “what would a solo traveler be doing on a tour group” – Lots of solo travelers travel with tour groups on occasion. The reason they can still call themselves solos is that they don’t know anyone in the group before the tour. (It’s a paradox: Both group travel and solo travel.) The difference is that they are not independent travelers for the duration of that tour, which is what you’ve always been. I don’t think that going with a group once in awhile somehow disqualifies you from calling yourself a solo traveler. :-)
That’s a very good point, thank you – we’re not wedded to a mode of travel. Like you, I’ve met people on the road who have hopped on a tour at certain points in their travels as they wanted to not have to handle logistics or planning, but still get a feel for a new place. Hope to see you in BTV sometime this fall!
Good for you Jodi and remember: Nirvana continued to make great music even after they got a major label record contract.
Ah. So, I almost booked a layover in Morocco on my way to Egypt in mid-October. Almost.
Someday, Jodi, we *will* cross paths!
One day, Cheri! We need to make it happen. Maybe in early 2012 – I can fly out to Asia via SFO….Let me know if you’re around?
Congrats and I’m sooo excited to read more about Morocco, a country that I adore!!!
Cool news Jodi! More to talk about at WDS 2012! I’m generally a non-tour guy (but I did take a VERY independent one in Peru a few years back), but GAP seems like a great company with the right outlook/philosophy. Looking forward to reading about your adventures with them.
Exciting news, Jodi. I’ve travelled with Gap a few times (most notably in Tibet on their incredible Mt Kailash itinerary last October) and when I first started travelling years ago I took a few trips with their competitors and Gap hands down was the better experience.
I strongly disagree with the first commenter here. In fact as I think I’ve said in comments previously, your posts are just getting better and better. Your writing has always been intelligent and inspired but I think, especially since the stronger focus on food began, the amount of passion in your writing has increased tenfold.
Audrey and Dan from Uncornered Market came out with some great writing after their Gap trips in Bali and Africa and I’m looking forward to seeing similar stuff from you out of Morocco.
GAP adventures is a great organization and I’ve experienced a GAP adventure myself personally in Costa Rica. There’s not shame in associating yourself with another company that inspires travel the way GAP does. Kudos to you. I hope 1 day to be apart of this program.
Fantastic news Jodi!!
As a fellow Canadian I am a supporter of GAP as well, I traveled with them in South America last year.
I’ll be touring with them in Morocco mid-October as well, would be neat if we were in the same group!
Looking forward to reading about your trip.
Congrats Jodi! Great news.
What a great sounding website. :) And Morocco? Ooh, I’m so jealous – my friend’s over there right now. :) Can’t wait to hear all about it from both her and you.
Dearest Jodi, this sounds like an amazing opportunity — one I, too, would take if it presented itself in my life. I am very excited for you and I’m really looking forward to reading your posts and seeing the photos. Should you find yourself in or near Jerusalem this fall, you always have a friend there. Until then, sending you a big hug from Greece!
Congratulations Jodi! What an amazing opportunity.