We’ve released the Traveler IQ outside of Facebook… not only on TravelPod but you can now add the challenge to any website you’d like!
Simply add the code at the bottom of this page to your site to play the challenge on your own website!
We’ve released the Traveler IQ outside of Facebook… not only on TravelPod but you can now add the challenge to any website you’d like!
Simply add the code at the bottom of this page to your site to play the challenge on your own website!
Technically I’ve been writting our “TravelPod Blog” for years. It used to be called “Lucky’s News” … and calling this a blog is confusing seeing as we’re a travel blogging site SOoooo…
To keep it simple, we’ve moved our company blog to WordPress and are calling it “TravelPod News” … partly because more people are going to be contributing to the blog than just me now.
Welcome to our new TravelPod News Blog from the TravelPod Team!
The TravelPod Team
(Left to right: Clayton, Carmella, Rod, Luc, Shaun )
|New TravelPod Blog
Dec 25, 2007
I just realized that we never posted here about our new TravelPod News blog which has replaced Lucky’s News.
If you somehow landed here, you can find our new blog at blog.travelpod.com
|Small update to photo weaving
Oct 25, 2007
We received several messages from members that disabling the automatic weaving didn’t put the thumbnails back at the top of the entry like it used to be.
We agree that it makes sense that when disabling the new feature it should go back to the old way so we’ve updated TravelPod to do just that.
Now, if you choose to disable automatic weaving, the old-style thumbnails will show up at the top of the entry again.
|Automatically weave photos & videos
Oct 24, 2007
Automatically weave photos into your entries
We’ve had lots of feedback on how difficult it is to weave photos into entries over the last months. To make this easier for everyone, TravelPod now automatically weaves your photos into your entries.
To make sure we don’t mess with many of our member’s great layouts, if you’ve added any photos to your entries, TravelPod won’t weave any photos into it.
If you prefer that TravelPod doesn’t weave photos into your entries, you can disable the new feature by editing your photos for the entry and unselecting “Automatically weave photos & videos in this entry?”
|Embed your TravelPod videos on other sites
Oct 15, 2007
You can now embed your TravelPod videos in others sites.
|Happy 10th Birthday TravelPod!
Oct 12, 2007
TravelPod turns 10 years old (young!) this year.
Drag the timeline below to take a trip down memory lane and have a good laugh at the old TravelPod designs … what was I thinking?
|The Traveler IQ Challenge in USA Today ( Today… )
Oct 12, 2007
The Traveler IQ Challenge in Today’s USA Today
Here’s what they had to say:
“At TravelPod’s addictive Traveler IQ Challenge ( http://apps.facebook.com/travelpod-challenge ), Facebook players are given a world map and told to find a city or landmark, then awarded points on how close they get to the actual location and how quickly they can find it. The 12-round game gets progressively more difficult.”
|September TravelPod meetup in Ottawa
Oct 11, 2007
We had a small TravelPod meetup a few weeks ago…
We had a chance to meet some members and to get some great feedback.
This post is a little late but better late than never right?
Thanks to everyone for coming!
For pics, check out the forum post
Sep 21, 2007
New feature – Your guests can now comment on your photos
Hmm… I think I’ll toss this one in the “It’s about time” category too…
It’s been on the roadmap for a while… now you can finally accept comments on your photos.
So the next time you see a cool pic, post a comment and let the member know. Once you start commenting it gets a little addictive… so watch out.
|Large profile photos
Sep 20, 2007
Now when you upload your profile photo to TravelPod, we’ll keep a large copy of it too rather than just a small thumbnail.
When your guests click on your profile photo from your profile page, they’ll actually see a bigger photo rather than a small one again.
Seems logical that it should work this way, but we avoided this to save disk space in the past.
Delete and upload your new profile photo so that we can show your guests a nice big photo of your mug!
Sep 6, 2007
Check out the August newsletter if you haven’t yet:
|We’ll remember you!
Sep 5, 2007
New feature – We’ll remember you
“It’s about time” would be how I’d describe this new feature…
Oddly we’ve never received a request for this but this year we’re spending a good amount of time looking over TravelPod and making updates to make sure that TravelPod is as easy to use as possible.
So, we’ve added a new “Remember me from this computer” option on our login page. When selected, you’ll stay logged in to TravelPod on your PC so that you don’t need to enter your TravelPod ID and password each time you need to edit your travel blog.
If you’ve got a peave or an idea that would make TravelPod easier to use, please let us know. As always, we’re all ears…
|Plaxo Pulse and TravelPod
Aug 22, 2007
Integrate your Travel Blogs on Plaxo Pulse
You can now integrate your TravelPod travel blogs onto another social network. Plaxo Pulse ( a new social network ) now supports adding TravelPod travel blogs.
|Video and Photo enhancements
Aug 17, 2007
|TravelPod video streaming|
Video Streaming: New TravelPod videos are much more fun to watch now. We’ve made some enhancement so that you no longer need to wait for the video to be downloaded before starting to watch it. We’ve also released a much better video player too.
Videos are in the process of being converted, I’d expect all videos to be taking advantage of this late next week.
New upload option: Based on your feedback, we’ve added a new option to the uploader. Check the new box when uploading to have your uploads added to the bottom of your photos rather than the top.
Thanks for the feedback everyone,
Aug 6, 2007
I’m a little late with this post ( Thanks Carmella for the reminder ).
|Site of the day – TravelPod’s Traveler IQ Challenge
Jul 30, 2007
His posts includes a wise warning that if you have any work to do, avoid playing the challenge! I guess we’re not the only ones who’ve experienced the addictiveness of the challenge.
If you haven’t yet, give it a try
|Press release: TRAVELPOD’S TRAVELER IQ CHALLENGE ON FACEBOOK REVEALS WHY MEN DON’T ASK FOR DIRECTIONS: THEY’RE BETTER AT GEOGRAPHY THAN WOMEN
Jul 30, 2007
We’ve just issued a fun press release that highlights some of the statistics we’ve gathered from over 2M Travel IQ Challenges played.
The press release has some interesting stats and is titled:
TRAVELPOD’S TRAVELER IQ CHALLENGE ON FACEBOOK REVEALS WHY MEN DON’T ASK FOR DIRECTIONS: THEY’RE BETTER AT GEOGRAPHY THAN WOMEN
|New! Photo upload & editing improvements
Jul 23, 2007
The new TravelPod photo editing & upload system is here!
Here are a few of the features:
- Album Editor – you can now edit all your photos for an entry all at once! No more editing one image at a time.
- Photo Sorter – you can sort your photos by dragging and dropping them in place, no more wacky numbered titles.
- Video thumbnails are now created for videos automatically after you upload them.
- Media Player – we have a new player for MP3′s and windows users can now view your videos in an embedded media player instead of downloading the video first.
- Photo Uploader – finally a drag and drop photo uploader that allows you to upload files from your hard drive by dragging and dropping. Photos are automatically previewed, resized and optimized *before* being uploaded for lightening fast uploads. You can even rotate them before you upload. We’ve also improved photo handling so that you should very rarely see any errors with uploads.
- Photos with duplicate titles are now allowed – no more “Ooops you have a dup title” errors
- Now you can upload as many photos as you want, no more “5 at a time limit”
- That’s just a taste of what we’ve released, the upgrade infact includes many more features. Our goal was to make it very easy to use so we took the time to rework everything to make it easy as possible for you to upload and edit photos, videos and mp3s.
We’ve tested it as much as possible but please let us know if you have any problems. You can always switch back to the old uploader if you’re having problems too.
|It’s the little things… More updates that make TravelPod easier to use
Jul 6, 2007
We know that when you’re on the road and updating your travel blog you rather be traveling about than in an Internet Cafe… that’s why we do everything that we can to make TravelPod easy to use.
Today we’ve launched 2 small updates which should help. We’ve added popup calendars so that you can quickly set the dates of your entries. We’ve also added a cool “City Autosuggest” feature that will suggest city names as you type them.
Edit or create an entry to check it out…
|Auto-suggest city names|
|June newsletter is out
Jul 1, 2007
Carmella just sent out the June newsletter … check it out!
|More map enhancements
Jun 29, 2007
We’ve just updated the TravelPod maps. The “Show Trip Route” button on your entries now shows the entire trip route without opening a new window.
You can still view the enlarged map by clicking the “Enlarge Map” button.
This gives your visitors an easy way to see the entire trip route quickly while reading your blogs.
|Challenge! Try our new Traveler’s IQ Challenge on Facebook
Jun 24, 2007
|Try our new Travelers IQ Challenge on Facebook!|
If you’ve traveled a bit ( if you’re reading this you probably have ) you’ve most likely played one of those games where you try to guess the location of a city or where a country is on a map.
Personally, I can remember spending hours waiting for the bus in Bolivia playing “name that city” with other travelers, or killing time on the long bus ride to Palmyra in Syria guessing capital cities as other travelers tossed country names at each other.
That was the inspiration behind this challenge… We thought we’d whip this up to let you compete with other travelers on Facebook.
Try it for yourself to see what your “Traveler IQ” is. Watch out though, it’s a little addictive.
Don’t say we didn’t warn you!
|Send notifications of new TravelPod entries to your Facebook friends!
Jun 11, 2007
New TravelPod feature: Automatically send entry notifications to your Facebook friends
Since we launched our Facebook application 2 weeks ago, we’ve been busy working on new enhancements. Today we’ve launched a new one we’re sure you’ll like.
Now you can send a notification to your friend’s newsfeed whenever you post a new entry!
It’s simple, just install the TravelPod Facebook application and whenever you send future notifications, you’ll have the option to notify your Facebook friends too.
How cool is that!
|Map enhancements – Another big batch of o’features
Jun 10, 2007
We’ve just launched another big batch of map enhancements. Yes, this is what we do on Sunday mornings …
Here is a quick overview of what we’ve launched:
- The maps now load faster, big time. Thanks to some great work by the team the maps are lightning fast now.
- We’ve updated the maps to be more consistent throughout the site and made it easier to set map pins by changing some of the colors and interface options.
- We’ve updated the maps to make it easier to set the pins in several ways like actually defaulting the pin to the city that you enter when creating an entry.
As always, thanks for the great feedback. I think we’ve addressed almost all of the email requests you’ve sent in but keep them coming.
May 31, 2007
The May Newsletter is out. Check it out!
|Facebook + TravelPod = your next trip!
May 31, 2007
Link your TravelPod and Facebook worlds!
We’ve been working long hours to integrate TravelPod into the new Facebook platform that launched last week and are happy to announce that TravelPod members can now link their TravelPod blogs onto their Facebook profiles!
TravelPod is the first Travel Blogging site to launch on the new Facebook platform and we’re still working hard and rolling out new features. Expect more integration in the next days and weeks.
Here are some links to try it out:
|Major upgrades to TravelPod & a new home in Washinton DC!
May 24, 2007
After several months of planning and prep work, we’ve completed a massive upgrade to TravelPod.
You may notice TP running faster thanks to some seriously beefy hardware in our new data center.
This marks the 9th TravelPod move since we started TP in 1997. This time, our servers are located in Washington DC where we can take advantage of the top-notch facilities that TripAdvisor has setup down there.
Although the upgrade should be transparent to everyone, let us know if you bump into any bugs and we’ll jump right on em’.
|Big batch of site updates…
May 11, 2007
We just launched a batch of site updates that we’re sure you’ll enjoy:
- Many mapping enhancements ( and a few more to come ) which increased the performance & speed of the maps by 300%!
- On member profile pages, you’ll now see how many other travelers have added you as a favorite. Check out your own page to see how many people have added you! I have 25 but Carmella takes the prize with 114!
- On your profile page we now list the total number of favourites that your favourites have.
- We also added the “Bookmark” option to the list of tools for all of your photos.
|TravelPod on FaceBook.com
May 11, 2007
Join the TravelPod FaceBook Group!
If you haven’t yet, join the FaceBook TravelPod Group and find out more info about other TravelPodders…
|TravelPod is now part of the TripAdvisor family!
May 8, 2007
Not only does 2007 mark the 10 year anniversary since TravelPod’s humble beginnings, it’s also a year of big news. Today I have the pleasure of announcing something very exciting. As you may have already heard, TravelPod is now part of the TripAdvisor.com family of websites.
Along with TravelPod, TripAdvisor has added 4 other top notch web properties ( bookingbuddy.com, smartertravel.com, travel-library.com and seatguru.com ) to their family and although all of this excitement started several months ago for us, we’ve been patiently biting our tongues until the official announcement had been made… and it wasn’t easy, believe me!
The TripAdvisor folks, who are based out of Boston, have been great to work with and are excited about helping us make TravelPod better than ever. TripAdvisor already has the largest travel community on the Internet and is a great fit for us.
So, you may be asking yourself, “what does this mean for me”? The good news is that TripAdvisor “gets” travel blogging and is happy to see us continue adding new features to the site to make sure we give everyone better tools for your travel blogging needs… and we have a whole lot coming up.
Myself and Carmella ( aka. Whereshegoes ) aren’t going anywhere and have been busy growing the team. Now that we’ve joined TripAdvisor, we have more resources to help us out so you can expect to see many of those requests you’ve emailed to us added into the site a lot faster.
Be on the lookout for great new enhancements to TravelPod this year.
We couldn’t have made it to where we are today without all of you passionate travelers who’ve been with us along the way. Thanks everyone for your support. As always, if you find yourself traveling through Ottawa, make sure to let us know and we’ll make sure to buy the first round.
Luc Levesque aka. Lucky
|Silent Update for photos
May 7, 2007
A “Silent Update” update option has been added to photos. Now you can choose to quietly update your photos and videos without alerting your guests.
|More map enhancements
May 7, 2007
Your map type preference ( Hybrid, Satellite or Normal mode ) is now used when setting your map pins.
May 1, 2007
|Choose Satellite, Hybrid or Normal default map views
Apr 28, 2007
Choose a default map view for your guests
Thanks to some feedback from our members, we’ve added a new feature that let’s you pick which default map view to show your guests.
Choose between Satellite, Normal and Hybrid mode.
Apr 27, 2007
We just released a batch of site updates based on your feedback.
There are too many to list but major ones include:
- Moving the map to the top of the entry page
- Bigger photo thumbnails on the entry page
- Several enhancements to our mapping system including making the Satellite Maps available for everyone.
|New map enhancements
Apr 13, 2007
Satellite Map Enhancements
First off… thanks everyone for the feedback… several changes were added / fixed today.
1) Searching for map pins in the UK works now! Yep, search throughout the UK without a problem.
2) We made a few enhancements to speed up the Google Maps load time. Should be faster and more detailed now.
|Attract more visitors to your travel blog – New bookmark button on your blogs!
Mar 5, 2007
Attract more visitors to your blogs with the new “Bookmark” button on blog entries.
Encourage your guests to submit your entries to various sites by clicking the “Bookmark” button on your entries to get more exposure and more visitor to your travel blogs!
|“Best Travel Blog” of the Net awarded to TravelPod!
Mar 4, 2007
TravelPod named “Best Travel Blog” of the Net!
TravelPod was crowned the “Best Travel Blog” of the Net!
Here is a snippet from the article:
“Our award: Travelpod.com
This year Travelpod will be 10 years old. It’s great because anyone can join in and it deftly edits such a wealth of contributions.”
Check out the article here:
best Travel Blog of the Net – Guardian Unlimited March 3rd
|“Remember Me” – New feature for protected travel blogs
Mar 1, 2007
We’ve just launched a new feature for our protected travel blogs this morning.
Now, when your guests login, they’ll have the option to save their login for a week or a month so that they don’t need to login each time.
|New TravelPod gear is now available… check it out!
Feb 27, 2007
New swag in the TravelPod shop
If you’re in need of a new travel shirt have a look!
|New photo page layout!
Feb 19, 2007
We’ve just launched a new cleaner layout for the photo page…
The old layout was a little clunky and was in desperate need of an update. We’ll be fixing up some more pages in the coming months too.
You can see what the new layout looks like here.
|Best TravelPod photo of the year calendar!
Feb 15, 2007
Best TravelPod photo of the year
Check it out!
|The January newsletter is out!
Jan 31, 2007
Check out the January Newsletter
|How we select featured photos…
Jan 29, 2007
Ever wonder what we look for when we feature a photo?
|How can your photos be selected as a TravelPod Featured Photo?|
| Every day we select a photo as a feature on our main TravelPod home page. The following guidelines are by no means comprehensive but should give you a general idea of the judging criteria. If you believe your photo is of quality, you can request it go through the selection process.
To request your photo to be featured, use the “Feature Request” link next to the photo you would like submitted in your photo album under the “options” column. Please be careful to submit each selection only once or it may drop from the queue.
Here are some tips on what we look for in a Featured Photo
- DO be in focus. We like sharp clear photos unless there is an intentional, artistic use of blur.
- DO be balanced using the Rule of Thirds when possible.
- DO show pleasing colors using correct exposure.
- DO show an artistic eye making the most of the unique and inspirational
- DO be creative and experimental to show interesting effects. Notice lines, patterns, shapes, forms and colors.
- DO consider the overall clarity of meaning and focus of statement. Show your intention and main subject as obviously clear as you can.
- DON’T submit photos of yourself or your travel buddy waving at the camera.
- DON’T submit photos with morally questionable content.
We have so many amazing photographers among our members. Due to the volume of photos submitted, unfortunately many excellent entries are eliminated. Overall, we are looking for beautiful, truthful, and creative photos.
So, grab your camera, get out there, and give it your best shot.
|Minor enhancements to TP
Jan 28, 2007
A few small tweaks were released recently which you may not know about.
We’ve tweaked new entries to default to the province / state of the last entry which was created. We’ve also launched a new rich text editor for creating entries which included updates based on all of the feedback we’ve received from you since its launch.
Thanks for the feedback everyone!
|Whereshegoes in the Vancouver Sun
Jan 28, 2007
Whereshegoes in the Vancouver Sun
Check it out:
“On the road with the blog at your back
When Carmella Lesiuk set out to travel the globe, little did she realize ‘the entire world’ would go whereshegoes on travelpod.com
Rebecca Osler, Special to The vancouver Sun
Published: Saturday, January 27, 2007
It used to be a lonesome road for travellers. When homesickness, a rotten day or the creeping “what have I gotten myself into?” feeling struck, a backpacker had a limited arsenal of tools to relieve isolation. A battered journal, a stack of postcards or a coin-gobbling phone booth — that was about it.
But now, an explosion of travel blog websites is enabling travellers to join virtual communities that stay put no matter their physical whereabouts. More than just platforms to showcase trips, these sites enable instant communication with family and friends as well as the opportunity to forge new relationships with like-minded wanderers.
Carmella Lesiuk is well-acquainted with the ups and downs of being on the move. In 2002, the Edmontonian quit her IT job, sold most of her possessions and embarked upon a four-year odyssey to discover not just the world, but her own destiny.
“I realized I didn’t want to become a computer,” says Lesiuk, now 30. “I didn’t know where my fingers ended and the keyboard began.”
Not wanting to assault loved ones with obnoxious group e-mails, Lesiuk joined TravelPod, a free Ottawa-based site that claims to be the Web’s original travel blog.
As she journeyed across Europe, Africa, Asia and South America, Lesiuk posted religiously under the username “whereshegoes.”
She wrote not just of her journey, but of the emotions she met along the way. FOR INSTANCE:
“I’m sitting on my sunny rooftop patio in Riomaggiore. My freshly washed laundry swaying lightly on the line as I nibble on toast with Camembert from France and vine-ripened tomatoes. I look out beyond the terrace dotted with flowerpots spilling over with pink and purple blooms and notice a lemon tree with what seems like hundreds of plump neon yellow lemons.
“In the past, I have been so caught up in trying to anticipate the next moment that I have forgotten to breathe in this one,” she wrote.
At first, Lesiuk assumed only her mom was reading her photo-laden missives.
“Then I started receiving these random e-mails from people … strangers from all over the world commenting on my blog and how they were enjoying it,” she says.
“There were actually people who sent me messages saying: ‘Okay, you’ve inspired me. I’ve quit my job and I’m going to travel around the world now.’ “
The cheerleading went two ways, especially on those occasions when Lesiuk felt down and very much alone.
“It was almost like having a friend that was always there to listen to me and to be there for me. It was like therapy,” she recalls. “The days that I considered quitting and was having a bad day and just wanted to go home, I would get an e-mail like that and it would just change my whole view.
“It’s probably one of the biggest reasons I stayed out travelling for so long,” she says. “The entire world would encourage me.”
Furthermore, Lesiuk says the blog provided stability when everything around her — location, people, cuisine — was changing daily.
Four years later, Lesiuk is now TravelPod’s top-ranked user, as whereshegoes has garnered more than 400,000 views. TravelPod itself has mushroomed since its inception, having tripled its membership (which currently sits at 65,000) in the past year alone.
And unexpectedly, Lesiuk — who found herself back in Edmonton struggling with reverse culture shock — was offered a job moderating TravelPod’s forums, which she gladly accepted.
Like many sites, TravelPod is not limited to virtual connections. It also enables users to search for specific destinations, allowing members to meet in person if they so desire. Lesiuk says she met 10 to 20 members on her trip, including a guy from Calgary who saw that she was in South Africa and asked to converge.
“We ended up meeting and working in the same hostel for a month or two and becoming really good friends. The guy is one of my best friends now,” she says. …”
|TP in Shape Magazine
Jan 22, 2007
TravelPod in Shape Magazine
|“5 best ways to leave it all behind”
Jan 7, 2007
Two long time members wrote an article titled “5 best ways to leave it all behind” which was published a few weeks ago. The paper describe them as:
“– Gerry and Sharon Channer, who sold their home, farm and business just outside of Ottawa, and who have been travelling throughout Central and South America in an ’87 VW camper van since January, 2004. Travel vicariously with them at www.Travelpod.com/members/thymeoff“
Their #4 tip is to use a travel blog like TravelPod, we couldn’t agree more of course … have a read.
|TravelPod’s Video Bloggers in the Press
Jan 5, 2007
The Michigan Daily posted an article on 2 of our Video Bloggers ( aka Vlogabond ) today as they start their video blogging adventure.
|The Washington Post & TravelPod – December 31, 2006
Jan 3, 2007
TravelPod in The Washington Post
They loved the new text editor but were a little turned off by the long registration page which we’re fixing up as we speak.
Ohh yeah, if you haven’t noticed, we’ve also removed some of the ads on our member’s blog entry pages, we agree, it had one too many.
Here is a small chunk from the article:
FIRST IMPRESSIONS: Formed in 1997, Travelpod claims to be a “proud founder of travel blogs on the Web.” It has plenty going for it, but we were turned off by the market research-esque registration process: Personal information such as sex, age, nationality and marital status is requested. The basic service is free; for $39.95 a year, posters can disable ad displays and add a password protection feature.
PROCESS: Once again, our login name was part of the URL. To write a travelogue, we selected a trip ID and a title and wrote a welcoming message. You can choose what sort of guest options you’d like (we opted to let guests leave comments), as well as a map style (classic or satellite) and a photo-by-way-of-mobile-phone option, good for posting on-the-fly snaps.
WHAT WE LIKE: The spell-checker is a top feature, as are the italics, bold and underline options. You can preview your page to catch any typos and create an e-mail list to send updates. It can take a while to go through the process of posting, but there’s an “update express” option that’s great for when the clock’s ticking at an Internet cafe.
|December Newsletter is out!
Jan 1, 2007
Check out the December Newsletter!
Happy New Year!
|Feature your photos, even the ones without stories!
Dec 11, 2006
|Cool new editor
Dec 7, 2006
Cool new travel blog entry editor
Nov 29, 2006
|The Sydney Morning Herald – Article on Travel Blogging
Nov 18, 2006
They talk about travel blogging a little and even refer to our very own Whereshegoes as a “travel celebrity”
Oct 31, 2006
|Cool new way to weave photos into your entries!
Oct 15, 2006
Another great feature was just released this morning! We’re sure you’ll love this one. Now on TravelPod you can add your photos, nicely framed anywhere in your entries. This is an improvement to our previous clunky way of letting you add HTML tags into your entries.
Now weaving photos into your entries is easy, really fun, and I have to admit, just looks freaking cool!
You can go edit your entries right now to start adding your photos in right now. Just click the new “Weave photos into your entry” button on your “Edit Entry” page.
Oct 13, 2006
Previously, members could choose to view their travel maps on our classic or the satellite maps but could only set their pins using our classic maps. Now, when you set your trip properties to use Satellite maps, you’ll be able to set your pins using those same maps as well.
- Full 100% coverage of the globe ( no problems pinning small islands in the pacific )
- Search for a city, country, or even a street address and we’ll place a pin there for you.
- Better accuracy when placing pins.
|A bigger and badder TravelPod for all!
Sep 30, 2006
|TP Sponsors a member on the “Water for Life” Challenge
Sep 26, 2006
Aurelien Jondeau, 27, from France is about to set on a 2000 km cycling journey to link Darwin to Ayers Rock through the Stuart Highway. He will ride to raise awareness and money for “Water Aid Australia”, an international charity dedicated to helping some of the world’s poorest people escape the stranglehold of poverty and disease caused by living without safe water and sanitation.
Darwin, Northern Territory, September 26, 2006 – One of our TravelPod nomads is on his way to cycle from Darwin to Ayers Rock to raise awareness and money for “Water Aid Australia”, an international charity who has been working for the past 25 years to help people from under privileged countries to get out of poverty caused by living without safe water and sanitation.
He will start the ride on the 1st of October 2006, cycling on average 100 km a day to follow a regimented schedule, stopping at every town on the way to promote the charity organization and planning to reach Ayers Rock by the 23rd of October.
The wet season starts to build up slowly but surely, so he will cycle under rough conditions, fighting against the elements of Nature, desert heat, heavy rains, sand winds…trying to keep up with a tight schedule to reach safer areas where to sleep at night through the Tanami desert.
If you want to support the challenge by making a donation to “Water Aid Australia”, you can find all the information on their website at www.wateraid.org/australia. Once you’ve made a donation, please send an email with your name, surname, email address and amount donated at email@example.com so you’ll be among the great supporters of the challenge and will be updated with all the adventures that would have happened during the trip.
Aurelien Jondeau through the “Water for Life” challenge is proud to present the partners and sponsors: Greenspeed Tricycles (www.greenspeed.com.au) TravelpPod, the Web’s Original Travel Blog (www.travelpod.com) Worldnomads Travel Insurance (www.worldnomads.com)
Aurelien is planning to make this “Water for Life” challenge becoming an annual event where people from around the globe would join together and cycle through the same path to raise awareness and money for “Water Aid Australia”.
Should you or your organization be interested in becoming a partner or a participant of an annual “Water for Life” challenge in the future, which would mean a greater exposure and impact, please contact Aurelien at firstname.lastname@example.org.
|Members in the news!
Sep 23, 2006
Looking good Dave!
|New Feature: More personal info on your profile page
Sep 23, 2006
What’s your profession?
Where were you born?
Which languages do you speak?
What are your interests and hobbies?
What’s your favourite book?
What music do you listen to?
What’s your favourite movie?
What’s your favourite quote?
What’s the most amazing moment in your life so far
What’s one thing you want to do before you die
Your friends would describe you as
|New “Jump to latest entry” link
Sep 13, 2006
Thanks for the feedback!
|New city level browsing
Sep 6, 2006
Instead of just getting “Canada” level results, you can drill down to Ottawa.
You could search for this before but now the browsing interface allows you to easily get to content.
This should make getting to our photos, travel blogs and videos much much easier
|Radio spotlight on TravelPodder going from London to Australia by car currently in Iran
Aug 28, 2006
She called into a radio show ( ABC Local Radio – Australia All Over ) in Australia from Iran for an interesting interview about her adventures.
Jenny Kelly calls in at 26:18 into the show and speaks until 29:50 at which point there is a break for weather, news etc. She then comes on again at 42:30 and speaks until 48:00.
She is in Iran now and reports that gas is: 2.4 cents per liter, woa!
Looking forward to her next update next Sunday… stay tuned.
|South American Starter Kit
Jul 27, 2006
|New Feature: Find other travelers!
Jul 27, 2006
|New Feature: TravelPod Friends
Jul 22, 2006
|New Feature: Find other travelers near you!
Jun 19, 2006
I’m happy to announce that a long awaited feature has arrived. We’ve added a new “neighbourhood” to TravelPod but this one doesn’t show you other travelers LIKE you ( we show you that ), but rather other travelers NEAR you.
Now, when you login to TravelPod we will show you a list of other travelers near you at this very moment. Many of you asked for this feature as a way to meet other travelers while traveling and also while back home.
So, how does it work? Well it’s pretty simple. Just login and you’ll see a new gray box on the right named “Travelers near you”. In that box you’ll see travelers in and around the city you are currently logged in from. You can also see when they logged in last to see if they are still near you.
We would also love to hear about your experiences meeting people using your TravelHood or any other neat ways you have found it useful.
|What is the TravelHood?|
| Have you ever been somewhere and want to meet up, share info or just chat with another TravelPod member who also was traveling where you where right then? With your TravelPod TravelHood, which is sort of a Geographic Neighbourhood, you can do just that!
Your TravelHood lists travelers who are near you which you might want to get in touch with!
How do we do this? When you login we try to determine your geographic location using some snazzy tools we’ve spent a lot of time developing. We then match up your location with the location of other TravelPod members who are geographically close to where you are.
We show you who these travelers are and when they last logged in from that spot.
From there it’s up to you to get in touch with them and take it from there!
What better way to find a travel partner, get travel info or just meet new interesting people with similar interests who might be sitting right next to you.
Give it a try. You’ll be surprised just how many other travelers like you are right around the corner!
|Charlotte to Croatia
Jun 5, 2006
Here’s a cool one. TravelPod Member Chuck Horton, better known as chuckh is featured in a story posted to the Charlotte Observer site today (June 5 2006). Chuck is travelogging from Croatia. Check it out.
|Site Upgrade – Single Sign-On
May 24, 2006
Site upgrade and maintenance efforts never end in this business. While there haven’t been any major happenings that you would notice in a while, you can be sure that there’s a team of plumbers hard at work on the pipes nearly every day.
Having said that, there is a change that will impact some Members coming down those pipes in about a week’s time. TravelPod is moving to a new unified login scheme that will mean one ID and password for access to the whole site including the TravelPodium, that is: the TravelPod Forums.
Briefly, this change will require a quick ID and/or password reset for a small group of Members. The notes below explain things and formal email notification, complete with all the details, is forthcoming.
IMPORTANT NOTE: TravelPod.com will be unavailable for approximately 2 hours, between 2 and 4 PM EST on May 31, 2006 while we cut-over to the new unified login system.
|Single Sign-On – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)|
|What is single sign-on?|
| Single sign-on (SSO), aka “Unified Login”, is the ability for a member to login to TravelPod once, with a single user ID and password, and get access to all the services of TravelPod, including the TravelPodium discussion forums, aka “the Forums”.
|So what’s the big deal?|
| The TravelPodium discussion forums are powered by Invision Power Board. This purchased software comes with its own database and management of members. We were so eager to provide the Forums to our members that we initially took a short cut and did not integrate its members database with the existing TravelPod members database. This means that a TravelPod member had to separately register in the Forums, and also log in twice.
This was confusing and inconvenient. Many members thought the Forums did not work and so did not participate. Quite understandably, many members complained. There are many great topics and active discussions in the Forums, and we don’t want anything to stand in the way of our members from participating. So enough! Lets do the work and unite the members databases!
|When does single sign-on take effect?|
|We will cut-over and unite the members databases on Wednesday, May 31, 2006.|
|What will change with single sign-on?|
| Members will notice the following changes:
• You only have to remember one user ID and password for all of TravelPod.
• A new TravelPod member is automatically registered with the TravelPodium forums.
• When you log in, using the Login link in the TravelPod banner, you are automatically logged in to TravelPodium.
• If you were not previously registered in TravelPodium, you are automatically registered when you first log in after the cut-over.
• The Join and Login links, as well as your login status, are now displayed in the TravelPod banner displayed on the Forums pages, just like on other TravelPod pages.
• We have removed the Forums-specific links for Log In, Register, and Log Out; just use the common ones in the TravelPod banner instead.
|What stays the same with single sign-on?|
|You should realize that behind the scenes there are still two members databases, we just make sure you have the same user ID in both. TravelPod and TravelPodium forums still provide separate pages to manage your profile information. If you make a change to your TravelPod profile, say change your e-mail address, it does not affect the TravelPodium profile, and vice versa.
Also, TravelPod and the Forums still use different browser cookies to track your login sessions. Your TravelPod and Forums login sessions expire at different times. If you return to the site after being away for a few hours or days, you may notice that you are r Forums session is still active but not in TravelPod.
|Will current members need to change anything when TravelPod cuts over to single sign-on?|
|Yes, some members will need to make changes to their user ID or email address. We had to make minor changes to the membership rules so that we could bring the two member databases together. We sent e-mails to all members that are affected by these changes, but it is possible that some e-mails did not get delivered.
• You must have the same user ID in both TravelPod and the Forums. So if you registered in the Forums with a different user ID than your TravelPod user ID, your Forums user ID must change. In many cases, we have been able to match your Forums account to your TravelPod account and will change your Forums user ID during the cut-over. After the cut-over, just login with your TravelPod user ID and password.
• In some cases, we were not able to match your Forums account to your TravelPod account. When you first login after the cut-over, you will likely get re-registered in the Forums with your TravelPod user id. However you’ll also have a new profile and posting history. Don’t worry, we can fix things up for you, just send an e-mail to email@example.com and tell us your TravelPod user ID and your old Forums user user ID.
• TravelPod user IDs must now be at least 3 characters long. If you have a shorter user ID, you will be prompted to change it to a longer user ID when you first log in after the cut-over.
• Each TravelPod account must have an e-mail address. If you have an account with no email address, you will need to add one, using the Personal Settings page.
• Each TravelPod account must now have a unique e-mail address. If you have more than one account with the same email address, you will need to change the e-mail address in the other accounts using the Personal Settings page. It’s OK for you to have multiple accounts, you just need to have a different e-mail address in each one. Alternatively, you can send us e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org and ask us to delete an unused account or even merge together the contents of multiple accounts.
|I registered in the Forums with a different user ID and password than in TravelPod. Which one do I use?|
|After the cut-over, only your Travelpod user ID and password are valid. If you had a different Forums user ID and password, they no longer work. We tried very hard to match your Forums account to your TravelPod account so that you can access both after the cut-over.|
|How did you match my Forums account to my TravelPod account?|
|Well, it wasn’t always easy, and we weren’t always able to do it. Mostly we tried to match on the e-mail address in your Forums and TravelPod profile. If the e-mails were the same or similar we likely had a match. We were even more certain if the user IDs were the same. However if you had the same user ID but completely different e-mail addresses in the profiles, we didn’t think this was a match. If we made a mistake in your case we apologize, just send us an e-mail at email@example.com and we will correct it.|
|I was registered in the Forums but not in TravelPod. How do I log in after the cut-over?|
|No wonder we couldn’t match your Forums account to your TravelPod account! First, you need to join TravelPod – its free! Then send us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org with your Forums user ID and your new TravelPod user ID, and we will match the two accounts. You won’t be able to access the Forums until you do this. Note you may not be able to keep the same user ID, it may already be taken in the TravelPod members database. Please ensure you send us e-mail from the same address that appears in your profile so we can verify we are matching the accounts from the same person.|
|Why does the Login page have a “Login to Forums” check box?|
|This box is checked by default so that you automatically get logged in to the Forums when you log in to TravelPod. But just in case you cannot or don’t want to be logged in to the Forums, you can uncheck this box before pressing the Login button. If you are having a problem, please let us know at email@example.com.|
|Why don’t I see my old Forums profile and posting history when I log in?|
|Perhaps we were unable to match your Forums account to your TravelPod account. If so, we likely re-registered you in the Forums with your TravelPod user ID the first time you logged in after the cut-over. Don’t worry, we can restore your old Forums profile and posting history. Just email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell us your TravelPod user ID and original Forums user name, and we’ll fix things up for you.|
|I liked my Forums user ID better than my TravelPod user ID. Why can’t I keep it?|
|For single sign-on to work, we had to pick one members database to be the master, and that was the original TravelPod members database. However, if you really liked your Forums user ID better, you have two possible options. First, your Forums display name can be different than your user ID, you can change it to whatever you want – as long as that name isn’t already taken. Or you can e-mail us at email@example.com and ask us to change your TravelPod user ID, as long as it isn’t already taken.|
Travel, in the younger sort, is a part of education; in the elder, a part of experience.
May 24, 2006
You already know that TravelPod is headquartered in Ottawa ON Canada. We’re pleased to draw your attention to some flattering hometown attention in the form of two stories in the Travel Section of The Citizen (Ottawa’s main daily newspaper) on Saturday, May 20, 2006.
The use of travelling is to regulate imagination by reality,
and instead of thinking how things may be,
to see them as they are.
|BBC, DeKalb Daily
May 12, 2006
TravelPod Members continue to the make news around the world. Last week, Members Ray and Jan Ott were featured in the DeKalb (IL, USA) Daily Chronicle. Seems the footloose Otts have been hankering to return to the Peace Corps for about 25 years, and the time has come. You can read about Ray and Jan’s excellent plan and maybe drop them a line of encouragement at rayandjan.
Meantime, halfway around the world, our own Steve James has achieved yet another moment of fame. Steve’s writing on TravelPod is cited in the current Weblog Watch, a new feature in the BBC’s online Magazine. In a world where there are hundreds of millions of blogs, Steve’s has risen to the top. We say Congratulations! and you can do the same at stevejames.
I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.
Apr 10, 2006
Some more media coverage to report, folks. This time it’s the Edmonton Journal in Alberta Canada (which just happens to be home-base for TravelPod Community Manager Carmella aka whereshegoes) and this time, it’s not one but two articles that together consume all of the front page of the Saturday (April 4, 2006) Travel Section and spill over on to page 2.
In the first story, entitled Travel blogs keep wanderers in touch you’ll read the familiar TravelPod.com rags to (maybe… someday…) riches story. As a bit of an aside, I continue to be fascinated with what reporters and editors choose to include in their published pieces. The facts in the article are completely correct (as checked and double-checked by the Journal’s fact-checking department) but it is almost amusing to note that there is always far more discussed in a preparatory interview than makes it to the printed page.
Some of that can be attributed to the finite amount of space available to many competing writers and their stories, but I suspect the same thing happens in longer forms of journalism including magazines, closely managed on-line media outlets, and even book-length travel memoirs. Knowing how many words are enough to get the point across in an engaging, entertaining and informative manner is valuable knowledge, but it always requires that something be left out of the story.
Not so with travel blogs. How many words are enough? Exactly the number you use to have your say your way. Self-editing has a place and we all do it to some extent, but what I find most compelling about TravelPod members’ writing is the serendipity: the almost accidental moments of revelation; the characters and the local colour that are revealed when we just let the words flow into our travelogues. Yes, there will always be newspapers, magazines and books stuffed into my backpack, but nothing compares to the magic of an earnest TravelPod raconteur’s tales from foreign roads, typos and all.
But wait! I haven’t told you about the second story in the Edmonton Journal. TravelPod is mentioned (in passing, more or less) but the real subject is Carmella her very own self! It’s entitled She quit her job and hit the road. This may be the first time (and let me know if I’m wrong) that a TravelPod member has parlayed a passion for travel into a Warholian moment of fame.
We are justifiably proud of Carmella’s tireless efforts to make TravelPod the best travel blogging site on the Web (in addition to being the original and first) but the Journal profile reminded me of one of the very most valuable things about Carmella: she has been and continues to be an inspiration to others. To quote from the paper, Carmella “… has inspired some people around the world to follow her bold move and tread their own path….”
Yes indeed. That is what Carmella and every one of you TravelPod travel bloggers is really all about.
Do read the stories. They’re inspirational in themselves.
|Connections That Inspire
Mar 28, 2006
Regular readers of this space know that we like to call attention to any and every mention of TravelPod that we come across in the media: magazines and newspapers, television and radio, and anywhere on World Wide Web.
In the magazine department, one of the latest examples can be found in the March issue of Outside magazine. Here’s a link to the on-line version of the Outside article and that’s one of two points we want to make: there is precious little that appears in the traditional media that isn’t also available in some electronic form. Does that mean we no longer need the good old paper-and-ink version of “the news”? As travellers, we don’t think that to be the case.
Internet access may be what some folks call ubiquitous but as travellers we know that there are many, many, many places on earth where we cannot and may never be able “log on”. And the truth is, much of what we enjoy most about travel comes from not being connected. To some extent, we hope that never changes. No on-line magazine article can ever tell the kinds of stories you’ll hear on a long and dusty bus ride through the Andean foothills.
Our second point? Well, we admit to being just a bit conflicted. Obviously, TravelPod is an on-line medium itself and the internet is essential to our existence. So how do we all strike a balance? We strike a balance by recording the stories we hear on the buses, in the cafes, and on the streets. We post words, photos and videos, share them with the entire TravelPod community and the connected world beyond… and inspire others to climb on board the next bus heading for the hills.
On the topic of media and the connections that inspire, I would be remiss if I didn’t put in a good word for our very own TravelPod Newsletter. Subscribers know that we made some exciting changes in the February issue (check it out) and the feedback has been nothing but positive (and thanks very much for that.) With the March issue of the TravelPod Newsletter, we’re at it again. To get your copy of the TravelPod Newsletter delivered right to your inbox:
1. Visit the TravelPod home page. Look for the frame dubbed “Join our Newsletter” on the left hand side of the page.
2. Type your email address in the spot provided.
3. Click on the button with the arrow and that’s it.
‘Writing and travel broaden your ass if not your mind
and I like to write standing up.’
|WELCOME FORUM MODERATORS
Mar 13, 2006
The TravelPod Forums have been serving up expert travel guidance for some time. Forum membership gives you a direct connection to fellow members and an easy way to ask pointed questions about specific travel destinations, about the ins-and-outs of TravelPod itself, and about travel in general.
Until recently, staying on top of the Forums was a task that fell to Carmella (whereshegoes) but with both membership and forum activity levels on the rise, your tireless Community Manager sent out a wise call for help… and a few truly dedicated Members have answered that call.
Today, we are pleased to welcome and tip our hats (all the way) to a new slate of TravelPod Forum Moderators. Without further ado, let’s meet them, shall we?
These folks give of their time and wisdom to support the entire TravelPod Community and we can’t say THANK YOU often enough. On the other hand, all of you Members at large can say thank you by dropping in to the TravelPod Forums right now . You’ll discover an ever-expanding body of trusted travel advice. You’ll connect directly with travelers who share your unique interests and concerns. And you’ll find ample opportunity to contribute your own travel wisdom.
Please note that TravelPod.com Membership and TravelPod Forum Membership are not, at present, one and the same. We are redesigning our member registration facility to streamline the process and we appreciate your patience. To register for the TravelPod Forums now, click here.
The travel writer seeks the world we have lost—the lost valleys of the imagination.
- Alexander Cockburn, Harper’s, Aug 1996 -
|Millions Of Visitors Can’t Be Wrong
Feb 23, 2006
In 1997, when TravelPod.com was first launched, there was one “member”. That member was me. And I could just about count the number of monthly visitors to the site on two hands and a foot. Truth is, I could even name those visitors, every one being family or friend.
It wasn’t that long ago that TravelPod welcomed its millionth visitor (on a cumulative basis, that is.) Today, TravelPod.com is approaching one million visitors every month. While that in itself is a wonderful milestone, the real story is in the timing.
One was the explosion in interest in blogs of every kind. Looking back, I could have chosen some other technology or format for TravelPod, but I think I made the right decision. There is no doubt that a full-featured blog site is the very best way to capture and share our travel experiences.
The other thing that changed in 2005? The media caught up with the revolution in travel blogging, specifically. Newspapers, radio and television, and on-line information and review outlets all came knocking to find out what it was all about. I bet a good number of you found TravelPod through some of that media buzz. (You can take a look back at all the great coverage TravelPod has enjoyed right here.)
These two developments have had a tremendous impact on TravelPod.com, and not only on the number of visitors. In fact the TravelPod Team is very proud to announce here and now that membership has tripled in only 10 months. Active travelers and armchair travelers, travelogue writers and travel photo bugs and travel videographers: all are joining the TP family at a furious rate!
For the more visually inclined among us, I’ve drawn this little graph to illustrate.
My point? Simply this. Thank you all for elevating TravelPod to a whole new level.
Travel on, friends… a world of wonders awaits.
|Zoom In On TP’s Backyard
Feb 16, 2006
If you’re not familiar with Ottawa, let me just say that for a metro area of close to a million people, we still enjoy a comfortable small-town feel and most Ottawans like to know what’s going on in our own backyard.
Read the OBJ article here and let us know what you think.
Jan 31, 2006
The winners of December’s Post-To-Win contest have been announced and as you might guess, our panel of experts wanted to reward every member that posted in December but they couldn’t come up with the dosh, so we had to stick with the original plan.
Well done, good friends.
|Travel With Care
Jan 26, 2006
There are as many reasons to travel the world as there are world travelers. Like many of you, TP member Maggie Cashdollar has found hers in the desire to help others. Yesterday, the Arizona Republic ran a nice story about Maggie and a group of Rotarian friends, traveling India with a splendidly simple objective – caring for children.
Follow Maggies’ TravelPod posts at mcashdollar.
|TP On The Air
Jan 23, 2006
The interview aired on KPAM in Portland OR on December 24, 2005 and Carmella did a great job of summing things up for the uninitiated. Bravo, Carmella.
Grab your copy and give it a listen. Then spread it around among friends, family, and anyone considering a travel adventure.
Happy Trails, to one and all.
|Pints with Barrett – TravelPod meets with a member.
Jan 18, 2006
Andrea, Lucky and Carmella meet with a long time member in Ottawa!
Luckly, Carmella ( whereshegoes ) was in town too. It was great to get his feedback about his experiences with TravelPod and we got a real kick out of his enthusiasm for TravelPod and traveling in general.
Barrett recently ended a big trip and posted a great blog about it on TP.
|Which maps are right for you?
Jan 9, 2006
Which map type should you choose?
First off, you can always change the default map type at any time so feel free to try one and then to try the other to see which one you like best.
So, which should you pick? To some degree it’s a matter of personal preference but there are some differences you should be aware of before picking a map type.
|Detailed Satellite Maps||Original Classic Maps|
• TravelPod based maps
|Your Blog In Ink?
Jan 4, 2006
It’s happening more and more often: Traditional media outlets like newspapers and magazines are discovering that on-line travelogues are a great source of unique material that their readers really enjoy. I couldn’t agree more and here’s an opportunity for you to see if you can get some national “ink”.
Canada’s Globe & Mail newspaper invites you to “Sound off and share your travel tales from the road.” Just copy some of your best travel blog words (200 to 800 maximum) and paste them into an email to the Travel section at the Globe and Mail.
I’ll be watching for it.
|TP In The News
Jan 4, 2006
Interesting angle: the writer didn’t start with travel in mind, but simply wanted to find some information about far-flung places. I think this underlines the fact that TravelPod is a great source for more than wanderlust inspiring and the thanks go to all you TP members – an extraordinary community of in-country documentarians, if I do say so myself.
Dec 28, 2005
Ever wondered what the picture of all of the connections you have made while traveling would look like? That’s what Jeff Axup, author of a new University of Queensland research study has been working on and he is asking for our help.
Which one makes the most sense to you? Get involved in defining the future of social networks. It’s a quick sign-up and contributors will be entered into a contest to win quality TP gear. (Details to follow.)
|THE VERY BEST
Dec 23, 2005
|5 TAKES Wants Your Video
Dec 21, 2005
Calling all TravelPod V-loggers! Discovery’s Travel Channel wants to audition your best travel video. If you make the cut, you’ll become a first-hand travel journalist (TJ) for the hybrid internet/television series 5 Takes. Very cool.
Now, we know that TravelPod video hounds are among the best anywhere so hurry on over to the 5 Takes at the Travel Channel site page and get your entry into the hat.
|Scheduled downtime for upgrades
Dec 16, 2005
It’s time for another upgrade ( yup, another one ). We expect about 1 hour of downtime during this upgrade which will occur tomorrow at 9am EST ( Saturday December 16th ). Apologies for the inconvenience, Cheers!
|Right here! Right now!
Dec 13, 2005
What does this mean for you? For one thing, it means no more waiting for a spot at the internet cafe before you can “send” photos home. If you travel with a camphone, you can now upload your photos complete with captions right from your mobile communications device.
Learn more about the TravelPod.com Mobile Photo Uploader and get snappin’.
|New easier registration
Dec 12, 2005
|New TravelPatch Style Available
Dec 9, 2005
To grab your own TP TravelPatch now, login to your TravelPod account. On Your Profile page, you’ll see the Extras frame in the upper right hand corner. Click on Your TravelPatch and follow the simple instructions.
|Post To WIN
Dec 2, 2005
We’re running the Post To WIN contest during the entire month of December. All you have to do to enter is post to your TravelPod.com blog. With every post your name will be entered into the big draw in January 2006 when we’ll select five winners of $100 each.
But hey, maybe for you it’s not about the money. Maybe you do it to share, warn, and inform fellow travelers. Maybe you value the first-person accounts of the people, places, and wonders that have meant so much to you in planning your own travels.
Nothing new to write about? How about sharing some stories from your past travels. Let your readers know what to look for and what to avoid.
Whatever inspires you to write, just Post To WIN in December!
|The TP TravelPatch – New and VERY Cool
Nov 29, 2005
When preparing to set out on one of my travel adventures, I often patch a flag onto my backpack to let people know that I’m from away. It’s a great way to invite folks to approach me and ask about my journies.
I started wondering if an online version of a backpack patch wouldn’t be a great way to invite people to visit my travelogues and get the answers to their questions, and here’s what we came up with – the new and very cool TP TravelPatch.
The TP TravelPatch is like an on-line calling card that you can leave on a personal website or the special interest blogs you keep somewhere other than TravelPod. It’s a miniature webpage alive with thumbnails of your travel photos and maps. It even comes in four different versions so you can select the one that works best for you.
How to get your TP TravelPatch:
1. Log in to your TravelPod.com account
2. Click on Your TravelPatch
3. Follow the simple instructions to Select one of the four TP TravelPatch types and Copy the supporting code to your clipboard.
4. Switch to your personal website maintenance environment or alternate blog site, paste that code into place, upload and…
5. Viola! You have created your first TP TravelPatch.
Hope you’ll agree that this is the coolest way ever to attract attention to yourself and your TravelPod.com travel blogs… and what a great cross-community bridge-builder, too.
|The New York Times and TP
Nov 26, 2005
TravelPod in the New York Times
|New Country Info Capsule
Nov 24, 2005
The TravelPod enhancement team is still working overtime. (We’re very serious about TravelPod being the best travel writing place on the web.) Some changes are small but helpful (we hope) like the additional info you now get when you use the Destination tab (at the top of the page) to start your research on a country you would like to experience. You can even see how many others have written about that country on TravelPod.com.
Remember: some TravelPod members have upgraded their accounts to keep their blogs private for family and friends. They will still be counted as travelers to that country in the Country Info Capsule, but their blogs might not be accessible to you.
|From Search to Slideshow
Nov 22, 2005
We’ve added a very cool capability to see the results of a TravelPod Photo Search in a slideshow. It’s a great way to get a hands-free view of every TravelPod photo that matches your search criteria. Using the Search (upper right-hand side of the TravelPod.com header), enter your keyword (city or country, usually), select ‘travel photos’ and click on the Search button. You’ll get a photo Album View of the results of your search. To switch to the slideshow view, click on the Slideshow View button, sit back, and enjoy the show.
Nov 15, 2005
Sometimes we build our own great travel blogging widgets. Sometimes we build in the great stuff we find and that’s the case with our new Google satellite maps. Haven’t noticed? Go to your blog or that of one of your Favourites and check it out. We’ve added more satellite maps and are going to be slowly adding the satellite option to all of our maps.
NOTE – If there are more than 50 ‘been there’ pins in a map, the default will be the TravelPod classic map. Why? Well, without getting too technical about it, it simply takes too long to load a 50-pin satellite map and we don’t like to make you wait. If you have the patience, though, you can click on the map header to switch back and forth between classic and satellite maps.
Nov 10, 2005
|Who Are Your Favourites?
Nov 7, 2005
Is there a fellow TravelPod blogger you would like to recognize as an inspiration or a good writer or just plain fun? Add them to your new Favourites list by going to their profile and clicking the “Add to favorites” link. You have to be logged on to your account of course, but that’s all there is to it. Go ahead. Make their day. (Note: You can always change your Favourites through your Admin page where you’ll find the option to remove links.)
|All That We Survey
Nov 1, 2005
We Need Your General Feedback
We like this stuff the best. We read it over and over again. Some of you are eager communicators and you let us know what you think without hesitation. Others not so much. We’re asking for general feedback in the survey because if we don’t ask, some of you won’t tell us how we’re doing.
We Need To Stay On Top Of the Advertising Thing
Advertising is a necessary part of TravelPod and every other free-to-use website. The survey results will give us the kind of information that helps us decide who gets to advertise on The Web’s Original Travelblog.
We Do It All For You
The survey results will tell us what kinds of features and enhancements are important to you and help us prioritize them. The fact is, we’ve been getting some positive comments on the things we’ve added in the last month or so. Besides making us feel good, these comments tell us we’re on the right track and your survey reponses will help us stay on the right track.
Sincerely hope you can take the time.
|Just say I DO with TravelPod
Oct 28, 2005
|Upgrades on TravelPod
Oct 25, 2005
|Match your travel styles in your neighbourhood
Oct 24, 2005
You may have noticed our new Neighbourhood feature. It’s the first of a bunch of neighborhood-builders we have planned; ways to help make connections between TravelPod members. To check it out, login to your account or have a look at your profile. You’ll see “Your Neighbourhood” followed by a personalized list of others whose TravelStyles are a close match to your own: it’s your own neighbourhood of fellow travelers you might find interesting
And future neighbourhoods will be even cooler. Be on the lookout for the neighbourhood that is literally a neighbourhood. That’s right. You’ll be able to see the list of TravelPod members who are physically nearby right now. (This makes us wonder if on-line technologies aren’t finally catching up with traditional social structures like neighbourhoods. If you have any thoughts on how you would define your own TravelPod Neighbourhood, we want to hear them.)
What’s a neighbourhood? Your neighbourhood is made up of people with similar travel styles which you may find interesting. Everyone’s neighbourhood is unique and reflects your own personal travel tastes.
We use various bits of information which you’ve given us to find your neighbours. The more information and entries you post, the better we can do to find other travelers which match your travel style just right.
Your neighbourhood is a dynamic place, as you submit more entries and do more, we’ll update your neighbourhood to show you other travelers.
So go ahead and check out your neighbourhood often, you never know what interesting adventures and travelers you may find!
|TP on TV in the Bay Area
Oct 20, 2005
TravelPod on Bay
News 9 TV
Here is a little snippet they wrote on their site about the review:
“Great site for the traveler or the traveler want to be.
While you’re on the road you can post a travel diary for your friends and family to follow. If you’re trying to put together a great travel vacation of your own read the blogs from other word travelers just like you. The pictures and stories are real, not hyped like some travel magazines.”
|Mobile Travel Blogging with Rabble & TravelPod
Oct 16, 2005
TravelPod Map on a Rabble enabled Verizon phone
Rabble is a leading mobile blogging application that enables its subscribers to post blog entries and photos from their mobile phones on selected mobile networks.
We’ve partnered with Rabble as part of our big push to bring mobile technology to you, our members at TravelPod. By integrating with Rabble’s mobile application, you can now synchronize your TravelPod travel blogs with a Rabble blog.
|Travel Blogs + Rabble = Mobile Travel Blogging|
| Rabble is a leading mobile blogging application that enables its subscribers to post blog entries and photos from their mobile phones on selected mobile networks. We’ve partnered with Rabble as part of our drive to bring mobile technology to our members. By integrating with Rabble’s mobile application, we’ve enabled our members to synchronize their travel blogs with a Rabble blog.
If you have a Rabble.comaccount, it’s easy to set it up to work with your travel blogs, just login to Rabble.com and setup your Rabble blog to synchronize with your travel blog from there.
If you aren’t signed up for Rabble yet, when you download and register Rabble on your phone, you will be asked for an offer code, be sure to enter “travelpod” so that you will be able to take advantage of all the special features offered to our members.
Click on the links below to find out how to get it on your mobile phone.
And there’s more to come! For starters, we are supporting synchronization from TravelPod to Rabble but we’ll be rolling out more features and capabilities in the coming months that will allow you to update your TravelPod blog from Rabble, too. Stay tuned!
|How to upload photos while you’re on the road
Oct 13, 2005
|Google Maps are here!
Oct 12, 2005
Click “Satellite” to see your map in satellite mode. You can still view your original map by clicking “classic map”.
Oct 10, 2005
One of the biggest new enhancements is the ability to search all of TravelPod’s photos. Did you know that we have over one quarter of a million photos on TP? And that number is growing by thousands every day! To search for photos, just select “travel photos” in the search tool and type in your search keywords. Give it a shot, but be warned – it’s a little addictive…
You’ve always been able to search for members through TP’s advanced search and also in the “Our Travelers” page but to make it drop-dead easy to find a member, we also added this search to our new search tool.
Several members noted that searching by keywords wasn’t always producing the most useful results, so we have changed all of the ‘under the covers magic’ and searching TravelPod now produces much more accurate and relevant results. Give it a try and let us know what you think.
|USA Today Weekend Edition
Oct 9, 2005
TravelPod in today’s USA Today Weekend Edition
Three of the more popular sites — TravelPod.com, MyTripJournal.com and TravelPost.com — feature automatic itinerary mapping, address books to notify friends when you’ve posted a new entry, as well as photo galleries for browsing.
Most sites are free (they make money from ads that appear on your page) but may charge for extra photo storage. Others have yearly fees. MyTripJournal.com costs $59 to $89 annually after a 45-day trial, but your page is ad-free and has ample storage.
Oct 8, 2005
|New slideshow photo albums!
Oct 3, 2005
Sep 19, 2005
|New browsing and searching
Sep 17, 2005
Aside from adding the latest entries on TravelPod to our homepage and a few new “top members” lists to the “Our Travelers” page, we’ve also added a new tab in the toolbar which let’s you browse our photos and stories by clicking on maps. Click the “Travel Blogs” tab to reach the new browsing.
|Car Rentals – Find the best deals on the Web
Sep 14, 2005
|Donate to TravelPod
Sep 9, 2005
Note: Donations are appreciated but do not enhance your accounts priviledges. If you would like to go ad-free or to enable private travelogues, please purchase an enhanced membership.
|FireFox syndication supported
Sep 7, 2005
Download Travel Stories with FireFox Syndication
When you use FireFox on TravelPod, you should now see a new orange icon at the bottom right of your browser.
Click this to subscribe to our TravelStreams™ directly in your FireFox browser.
|Upload unlimited photos @ TravelPod
Aug 31, 2005
One resounding request came through in our survey which was for higher upload limits. So, we decided to remove the upload limits all together. We now allow all of our members to upload as many photos, mp3s and videos. Yippee!
This FAQ should answer most questions, but don’t hesitate to contact us if you still have some questions you would like answered.
Frequently Asked Questions:
In a nutshell, we’re no longer accepting donations and have removed the upload limits for everyone! That’s right, upload as many photos, MP3s and videos as you want. We’ve also added an enhanced account for members who would like ad-free and private travelogues.
What can we expect next from TravelPod?
Expect the same ferocious rate of innovation, new features and an even better service. Here are some examples of what we’ve done in the past months:
- Moved our servers to a new home with very FAST Internet connections,
- Added TravelStreams ( RSS/ATOM ) feeds to your travelogues,
- Added tons of new features like “Our Travelers” and the “New Photos Gallery”,
- Reworked our interface based on your feedback,
- Added a new Travel Search Engine,
And there is much, much more to come!
We’ve also beefed up the team and brought in a few key industry leaders like Stowe Boyd from corante.com to help us out and to make TravelPod even better for you.
Why is TravelPod doing this?
It’s our intent to continue to offer the best travel blogging service without having to charge our members for it. We don’t want to become a pay site. The one time donations we received in the past helped but really didn’t make much sense in the long run.
For members who rather not have ads on their travelogues, we understand and now offer an enhanced account which removes ads from member travelogues.
Hey, I donated already, what happens to me?
We recognize that our members who originally donated are very important to us and are considered our founding members, we truly value them. If you donated in the passed 8 years, you’ve been given a special status on TravelPod and here is what you get:
- Unlimited uploads,
- “Founding Member” badge on your account for all to see,
- A place on our founding members hall of fame,
- If you donated over $20, we’ll never show ads on your travelogues,
- If you donated over $50, we’ll never show ads on your travelogues and you’ll also be able to create private travelogues forever without ever having to give us another penny.
We think it’s a pretty sweet deal and a great way to acknowledge those of you who helped make TravelPod what it is today!
Will my special “Founding Member” status ever expire?
Nope, you’ll always be special to us
What am I losing with this change?
Nothing, nada, zip… Actually you’ll be gaining an unlimited supply of disk space to document your trip in every way, shape, and form. This includes unlimited photos, videos and mp3s!
So, if you aren’t accepting donations any more… how are you making money to support the site?
Through advertising, paid memberships and a few wacky ideas we have. It’s our goal to continue offering the best free travel blog service on the Web.
Does that mean that TravelPod will be loaded with annoying ads now?
No way… we believe that a few tasteful, travel-related ads are ok but are dead set against pop-up ads and other annoying advertising tricks.
Members who rather not have any ads at all on their travelogues can upgrade to the new enhanced membership.
Will I lose my privacy privileges?
Of course not. We respect your privacy and will never disclose your private information without your explicit consent.
How many MP3s or movies can I post?
As many as you want.
Can I pay in monthly installments?
No. Currently you’ll need to pay for a yearly upgrade.
How will this affect my current involvement with TP? It won’t… in fact, other than being able to upload as many photos, MP3s and videos as you want, you won’t notice a difference.
You mean I can put as many pictures as I would like? Yep, no more limits. Upload away!
What kind of advertising will go on my travelogue?
If you donated $20 or more in the past or are an enhanced member, no advertising will appear on your travelogue at all.
Otherwise, TravelPod will continue to show the ads it always has and we may consider adding in new non-intrusive ads where appropriate.
TravelPod has been, is and always will be “for the travel community” service.
|Flights & Hotels – Find the lowest priced deals on the Web
Aug 11, 2005
|TravelStream™ – Have TravelPod streamed right to your PC
Aug 11, 2005
|Texas Upgrade completed!
Aug 7, 2005
Aug 3, 2005
|TravelPod @ the World Youth Congress 2005
Aug 1, 2005
Travelpod @ the World Youth Congress 2005
|The TravelPod Toolbar
Jul 29, 2005
The TravelPod Toolbar
We’re happy to offer a customized TravelPod Toolbar to our guests and members. We’d like to ask our community to download the toolbar and install it. Not only is it a great toolbar which will let you quickly access TravelPod, search Alexa and block pop-ups, when you install it and visit TravelPod, it helps us out by letting Alexa know just how much you love our site .
So, if you’d like to install a cool new search bar ( even if you already have one installed ) and you’d like to help out TravelPod, please take a minute or two to download and install the TravelPod toolbar.
|New “top” travelers page on TravelPod
Jul 26, 2005
This new page allows you to search for TravelPod members and, most importantly, features 4 new “top” traveler lists.
1) Top Traveler by # of visitors
2) Top Traveler by total countries traveled
3) Top Traveler by # of photos uploaded
4) Top Traveler by # of entries
Have a look to see where you are on the list!
|Winners! The TravelPod Survey ends.
Jul 19, 2005
Amazon.com Gift Certificate Winner
We were happy to see that both randomly selected winners were TravelPod members. Again, thanks to all for participating.
Congratulations Julie & Alicia!
|New Look @ TravelPod
Jul 18, 2005
|Get a chance to an iPod by taking our survey
Jun 18, 2005
|New search type
Jun 15, 2005
This should help your friends and family find your blogs
|CNN & TravelPod
May 27, 2005
“Forget sending postcards back home while on vacation. Specialized Web sites cater to the traveler who wants to create an online journal that includes pictures, maps and more. Before signing up for one, it’s best to know how it works and who has access to your writings.
Online journals are often referred to as blogs. There are certainly many places online where you can set up and maintain a blog. Travel blog sites, however, provide tools generally not available on generic blog sites.
For example, visitors can follow your itinerary as you write and upload pictures during a trip. There is also a mapping feature that traces your route. Some sites also let you upload video and audio files. And you can do all this from the road with a Web-connected laptop or from an Internet café. More about that later.
At TravelPod, you can upload video (MPG, AVI, WMV and MOV files) and photo (JPG, GIF, PNG, BMP) files. You can also upload MP3 audio files. Storage space is limited to 5 megabytes. TravelPod claims this is enough for 600 compressed photos.
TravelPod is free to use as long as you like. However, if you make a one-time donation, your storage space increases. Each $1 gets you another megabyte of photo storage. For $20, the ad banners go away. If privacy is important to you, spend $50 for a password-protected travel blog. This way, only people you authorize can view it.
You can send automatic notifications to friends and family when you post a new entry. Visitors can post comments, but they must register first. Comments can be disabled and posts deleted, if you choose. In the site’s terms, TravelPod retains the right to use your travel blog for promotional purposes. ”
|TulsaWorld News & TravelPod
May 17, 2005
Not only was the article published in TulsaWorld but, through syndication, it also appeared in dozens of North American newspapers such as the Asbury Park Press, the Denver Post and the Cincinnati Enquirer.
|Comments on your entries
May 16, 2005
What are entry and photo comments?
Comments are short messages which allow your guests to give you some feedback regarding your entry or photo. Each photo and entry you create can accept comments, which are shown at the bottom of your entry or photo.
If you select “Open” as your comment status then you will be notified of any comments made on your photos or entries. However, if you prefer to not allow your guests to post new comments, you can change your travel blog’s comment status to “Closed”.
Thanks to all of our members who wrote in to request this new feature.
|USA Today & TravelPod
Apr 29, 2005
“Web logs, or blogs, have become indispensable to travel enthusiasts planning a vacation or seeking a quick escape during their workday. More personal than Fodor’s, some travel blogs provide unique, irreverent reviews of lodging, restaurants and sights. Others are more like a diary, inviting readers to join adventures vicariously as writers post from the road. Romantically juicy or richly informative, the following blogs are recommended by USATODAY.com travel writers:
TravelPod.com: This is one of the first travel journal sites and an excellent start for someone new to the blogosphere. TravelPod.com has “Top 5″ lists, a “quick search” list of 199 countries, clickable maps and more. ”
|Add more contacts to your address book
Apr 22, 2005
|Earn extra money from your travel blogs!
Apr 15, 2005
|What is Support My Travels™?|
| Support My Travels™ is a system that assists our members in raising funds for their travels, soliciting donations from friends and family, making extra money while traveling and to also earn some cash after a trip is over. Let us explain how.
Believe it or not, people want to give you money! It could be friends, family or simply fellow travelers reading about your experiences. By enabling Support My Travels™ on your travel blogs, you can begin to accept donations from these people who want to give back and also want to help support your travels.
The better your travel blog, stories and photos, the better of a chance you have that someone will donate so it’s important to put a little extra effort into your travel blog too.
All you need to do is create a PayPal account and Donation Button ( detailed instructions are available to help you do this ), and then you can enable Support My Travels™ on one or all of your travel blogs. When your guests send you a donation, you will receive an email informing you of the amount.That’s it, we’ll take care of the rest for you!
|Cool site of the day – The Kim Komando Show
Apr 13, 2005
The Kim Komando Show, a popular US based radio show, has selected TravelPod as their “Cool Site of the Day”.
Check it out!
“Summer’s approaching quickly, and many of us will be taking a much-needed vacation. Why not use technology when you share your experiences with friends and family? For instance, you can post your very own travel blog – for free!
Once you get it set up, you can upload pictures, audio and video, and send notifications to friends and family. They’ll be able to view what you post immediately. Plus, they can trace your route on an interactive map. It just doesn’t get any cooler than that!
My mother is taking my nephew to Europe this summer for a six-week cruise. I have asked Chris to keep one of these travel blogs. So, if you know someone who might want to do something like this, pass this Cool Site on.
I’ll see you tomorrow with another great site! Kim “
|Top 100 – TravelPod is a PC Magazine pick!
Apr 11, 2005
“Read the diary of someone who drove across the Sahara from Tombouctou to Addis Ababa – or about a confrontation with a balky customs computer in Kazakhstan. You’ll find it all in this compendium of travel blogs.”
|TechTV talks TravelPod!
Apr 1, 2005
Amber talks TravelPod!
>> Leo Laporte: IF YOU’VE EVER SUFFERED THOUGH A BORING FAMILY VACATION SLIDE SHOW, AMBER’S HERE WITH A NEW AND INNOVATIVE WAY TO PUT PEOPLE TO SLEEP. KEEP YOUR FRIENDS UPDATED WHILE YOU’RE AWAY AND SHARE YOUR WILDEST ADVENTURES BY CREATING A TRAVEL JOURNAL ONLINE.
>> Amber MacArthur: EXACTLY, SO IT’S A DAILY JOURNAL, SO THE DIFFERENCE HERE IS THAT YOU COULD USE SOMETHING LIKE BLOG, BLOGGER OR TYPE PAD OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT TO CREATE A, JUST A DAILY JOURNAL WHERE YOU HOST YOUR OWN PICTURES ON YOUR OWN SITE, OR — BUT THIS ALLOWS YOU, THIS IS, IS CUSTOMISED SPECIFICALLY FOR PEOPLE WHO ARE TRAVELLING, SO IT HAS A LOT OF INFORMATION HERE THAT WILL HELP PEOPLE AT HOME KEEP TRACK OF WHERE YOU ARE, LIKE PINS IN A MAP —
>> Amber MacArthur: YEAH, I KNOW, PEOPLE TRAVELLING IN MEXICO, TWO WANDERERS WITH THEIR BACKPACKS IN BANGKOK, THAILAND, LITTLE BIT OF VOYEURISM HERE, BUT IT’S KIND OF FUN TO CHECK IT OUT, SO HERE IS MY TRAVEL BLOG FROM —
>> Amber MacArthur: AND IT PLOTS THE COURSE, SO — AND ALSO YOU CAN KEEP A PHOTO ALBUM HERE, SO WE’VE UPLOADED A PICTURE OF US, THIS IS ACTUALLY ON UNION STREET IN SAN FRANCISCO, WE WERE SITTING ON THIS BENCH, I THINK WE WERE THERE FOR 2« HOURS AT JAVA JUICE OR SOMETHING RIDICULOUS LIKE THAT.
>> Amber MacArthur: YEAH, JUST A LITTLE BIT, NOT, NOT TOO MUCH. SO YOU CAN CONTINUE THROUGH HERE, AND THIS IS THE HOME PAGE OF MY TRAVEL BLOG, SO I HAVE A PICTURE HERE AND MAPS OF PLACES THAT I’VE BEEN ON MY TRAVELS, SO THIS IS KIND OF A NEAT FEATURE, AS WELL. AND THEN ALL YOU DO HERE TO UPDATE YOUR TRAVEL BLOG IS, IS ADD A NEW ENTRY OR EDIT THE EXISTING ENTRY OR SEND A LINK TO FRIENDS AND EVERY TIME YOU DO THIS AND YOU UPDATE YOUR BLOG, YOU CAN ACTUALLY GET AN EMAIL SENT OUT FOR THE PEOPLE WHO ARE SIGNED UP TO RECEIVE YOUR TRAVEL BLOG.
>> Amber MacArthur: YEAH, SO THIS IS A REALLY GOOD IDEA, SO YOU JUST ADD A NEW ENTRY, ANYONE CAN USE THIS, IT’S REALLY SIMPLE, SO YOU DON’T NEED A LOT OF TECHNICAL SKILLS, YOU DON’T NEED TO BE AFRAID OF ANY OF THAT, SO YOU BASICALLY ADD IN YOUR DATE, THE TITLE OF YOUR ENTRY, YOU CAN ADD IN PICTURES OF WHERE YOU’RE TRAVELLING —
>> Amber MacArthur: AND IT HOSTS IT ON THEIR WEB SITE, SO YOU DON’T NEED TO WORRY ABOUT ANY OF THAT. I JUST WANTED TO SHOW QUICKLY, A FRIEND OF MINE, ANJALI AND ROBERT, WHO ARE MARRIED AND WHO ARE TRAVELLING THROUGH ASIA RIGHT NOW, THEY’VE CREATED A BLOG AND THEY ACTUALLY DO UPDATE IT, SO, YOU KNOW, THEY’RE ACTUALLY MAKING AN EFFORT TO UPDATE IT ON TIME.
>> Amber MacArthur: STARRING ROB “WHERE’S MY PASSPORT” SAWATZKY. SO THIS IS A MAP, THIS IS REALLY FUN, BECAUSE ALL OF OUR FRIENDS ARE SIGNED UP TO RECEIVE THIS TRAVEL BLOG, SO YOU CAN SEE HERE THAT THEY’VE STARTED IN TORONTO AND THEY’RE TRAVELLING ALL OVER THE PLACE. AND THEY’VE ACTUALLY UPLOADED A TON OF PHOTOS AND RIGHT NOW WE KNOW THAT THEY’RE IN, IN THAILAND. SO THAT’S WHERE, THAT’S WHERE THEY ARE AT THIS TIME AND THIS IS THEIR ENTRY FROM THAILAND AND WE’RE ABLE TO POST COMMENTS HERE THAT THEY’RE ABLE TO READ WHILE THEY’RE AWAY, AS WELL.
>> Amber MacArthur: YEAH, IT’S REALLY NEAT AND THEN AGAIN, SO THIS IS THE, THIS IS THE, THESE ARE THE ENTRIES DOWN HERE ON THE LEFT OF ALL OF THE DIFFERENT POSTING THEY’VE DONE, WHEN THEY LEFT TORONTO, FRANKFURT, KUALA LUMPUR, GEORGETOWN, AND THEY’VE GONE ALL OVER THE PLACE AND THEY ALSO HAVE PHOTOS ASSOCIATED WITH EACH OF THEIR ENTRIES. SO YOU CAN CLICK ON THE PHOTOS AND YOU CAN CHECK OUT WHERE THEY’VE BEEN AND AGAIN, YOU KNOW, POST COMMENTS AND THERE’S A LITTLE STORY OF ALL THE PHOTOS THAT THEY’VE TAKEN AND SO IT’S A REALLY FUN WAY, ‘CAUSE THEY’RE GONE FOR SIX MONTHS, TO BE ABLE TO KEEP IN TOUCH WITH THEM AND KNOW WHERE THERE ARE AND SO THEY DON’T HAVE TO SEND INDIVIDUAL EMAILS TO ALL OF THEIR FRIENDS.
>> Amber MacArthur: EXACTLY, EXACTLY, SO WE’VE ALL BEEN POSTING HERE AND IT’S, IT’S BEEN A LOT OF FUN, SO IT’S travelpod.com AND IT’S REALLY EASY, IT TAKES PROBABLY FIVE MINUTES TO SET UP AND WHEN YOU GO AWAY, YOU CAN JUST GO TO AN INTERNET CAFE AND UPDATE YOUR BLOG.
|Community Article – “Updating your Travelogue on the Move”
Mar 28, 2005
If you are looking for a little fame and would like to contribute to TravelPod by writing a Community Article, write to us!.
|TechTV and TravelPod
Mar 28, 2005
On the show ( Episode 169 ), Amber MacArthur spends some time telling its viewers about TravelPod and all of the great things it can do. We’ve been hunting down the video for you but for now, here is the TV Guide style description:
When you sign up for your own account on Travelpod, you can create an online travel journal so you can post adventures and pictures of your travels. If you’re stuck at home you can search through thousands of stories and dive into a world of wanderlust!”
|Team Canada & TravelPod in South Africa
Mar 18, 2005
Team Canada & TravelPod
|Show off your best travel photos with TravelPod
Mar 6, 2005
If you have some great shots you would like featured, you can recommend them to us by simply logging into travelPod and navigating to your photo. There, you’ll see a new button called “Feature Request”.
|WebSoup’s Spotlight on TravelPod
Mar 3, 2005
WebSoup.org has selected TravelPod.com as its March 3rd 2005 spotlight website.
|A long awaited mapping enhancement has arrived!
Feb 28, 2005
You can now add every little pit stop and side trip you visited to your TravelPod travel maps. TravelPod has enhanced its mapping engine to allow members to create multiple map pins which do not contain entries and photo albums.
|TravelPod in Travel + Leisure Magazine
Feb 28, 2005
| TravelPod was spotted in this month’s Travel + Leisure Magazine.
Here is a sample from the article:
“Dispatches from bloggers in 192 countries are sortable by place, popularity, keywords, or newest post. Bloggers pin a map so you can follow their progress. Readers rate entries; TravelPod editors pick favorites, too.”
|Bandwidth upgrade success
Feb 21, 2005
Feb 20, 2005
|The TravelPod Guided Tour is ready!
Feb 12, 2005
liquidPearl Design Studio
|The TravelPod Guided Tour is ready! A big thanks goes to the talented people at liquidPearl Design Studio for putting this very impressing demo together for TravelPod.|
|“Web Site on edge of big time” Ottawa Citizen
Feb 7, 2005
Photo from the article
|The Saturday Feb 5th edition of the Ottawa Citizen featured a flattering full color story about TravelPod on the front page of the business section.
Here is a sample:
“Ottawa website on edge of big time
It was an idea that was ahead of its time, but time has finally caught up with a once-globe trotting Ottawa man’s brainstorm, writes Andrew Mayeda.
Luc Lévesque was blogging before blogging was even on the map.
Nearly eight years ago, when nobody had heard about web logs, or blogs, the young computer engineer went backpacking across Europe.
Before he left, he built a makeshift website so he could recount his travels to friends and family.
“I thought, wouldn’t it be neat if I can put a website together so I can post stuff from abroad,” said Mr. Levesque, 29
These days, barely a month passes when he doesn’t get a call from newspapers or magazines looking to tap into the blogosphere.
The site, TravelPod.com, has become a mecca for travellers who want to chronicle their adventures, and a window to the world for the Internet denizens who want to live vicariously through them.
The story goes on to talk about the site and it’s features.
|TravelPod in the Bottom Line Personal
Feb 7, 2005
| Thanks go to a new TravelPod member, Eldon, for letting us know about a recent feature in the Bottom Line Personal magazine.
Here is a sample from the article:
“TravelPod.com for enthusiastic postings about the joys of travel.”
|The January Newsletter is out!
Jan 29, 2005
|TNT loves TravelPod
Jan 14, 2005
| TNT, once again sings the praises of TravelPod.com, check it out:
“Blog websites, and especially travel ones are 10 a penny nowadays, but six year-old Travelpod looks like one of the better ones. Sign up so you can tell everyone at home how AMAZING!!! your adventures in Australia are – ha. Visit http://www.travelpod.com”;
PS: We’ve been around for 8 years, not 6
|TravelPod Messaging is here!
Jan 9, 2005
Finally, it’s here!
The first release of the TravelPod Messaging System. What is it? It’s your very own trip forum which will let your guests communicate with you and amongst each other.
Check out your travelogues today to have a look. Use the 3rd tab at the top of your travelogue page to reach it.
We aren’t 100% sure about the name “Guest Book” and are open to suggestions. We wanted to pick a name which would let people know what exactly it was without having to educate them ( ie: TravelPodium was a great suggestion but didn’t really let people know what it was. )
We are considering “Message Board” and others… suggestions are welcomed.
Thanks for all of your feedback.
|TravelPod in the latest Lonely Planet guide
Jan 7, 2005
|TravelPod needs your help, donate today!
Jan 5, 2005
|TravelPod Flood Relief
Dec 30, 2004
As you have all heard by now, a terrible earth quake and an ensuing Tsunami have devastated much of the coast from East Africa to Indonesia. It’s estimated that the death toll may be as high at 100,000.
|TravelPod in the Washington Post (Dec 12, 2004)
Dec 24, 2004
| TravelPod was spotted in a recent edition of the Washinton Post.
Here is a sample of the article:
“On TravelPod.com (www.travelpod.com), visitors can trace bloggers’ journeys on clickable maps that take you right to the entries about that particular destination. Now here’s a valuable warning to travelers who’ve been wearing the same pair of socks for 83 days:
Milan is like the Beverly Hills of Italy. Very rich and very fashionable. This is no good when you are a backpacker and your nicest pants are a pair of jeans and your nicest shirt has a Nutella stain on it and smells like B.O.”
Thanks go to Andrew Lance Beath for taking the time to send in this news snippet.
|Maps now wrap around the Pacific Ocean!
Dec 16, 2004
|Hide lines on busy maps
Dec 1, 2004
|TravelPod review at Lovemark.com
Nov 19, 2004
|New “Silent Update” feature
Nov 18, 2004
This enhancement was brought to you thanks to feedback sent to us by tina.
When you update an entry or a photo, it is flagged to your guests in your Table of Contents with the label “Recently Updated!”. This informs your users of recent changes which they may be interested in reading.
Although this is informative for your guests, sometimes you may want to make minor updates to your entries ( like fixing a typo ) that you rather not alert your guests of.
The “Silent Update” check box, allows you to do just that. When you submit changes to an entry with the Silent Update check box selected, TravelPod will not show the “Recently Updated” label when guests view your travel blog.
|New Quick-save option
Nov 16, 2004
|TravelPod in the Sydney Morning Herald (Nov 4, 2004)
Nov 9, 2004
| For the second time, we’ve been spotted in the Sydney Morning Herald!
Here is a sample of the article:
“TRAVELPOD is one of the best sites around for travellers. Set up by an itchy-footed Canadian called “Lucky” it offers free web space to log your adventures and favourite travel photos. …”
TravelPod in the Sydney Morning Herald
Thanks go to Mal Colledge for taking the time to scan and send in this news snippet.
|Fresh map enhancements!
Nov 5, 2004
Entry-level maps now show all of
your travels, not just your
Thanks to your feedback we’ve changed the zoomed-in maps which are shown inline with your entry. They now not only show your current location, but a also your other travels relative to your current location.
When you select your map pin placement, you’ll also see your other pins on the map. This will make it easier to see where to place your pins relative to your others.
|New photo upload tool!
Nov 5, 2004
Our new progress bar gives you accurate
information on your upload progress!
We have received many requests for a new upload tool which provides accurate feedback of your upload status over the past months.
Thanks to a recent request from plasticrover we’ve realized just how much this was needed and moved this enhancement to the front burner. We are happy to say that we’ve now added a new advanced tool which gives you accurate feedback on the progress of your uploads!
No more waiting around in Internet cafes, wondering when your upload will be finished!
|New tools for placing map pins!
Oct 30, 2004
Thanks to your feedback, we’ve been packing in tons of tweaks and enhancements to the map system.
Today, we’ve released yet another enhancement which let’s you copy map pins between entries. This allows you to place new map pins to the exact location of an existing map pin.
This can be very useful if you have visited the same place multiple times in the one trip and want the map to show this accurately.
When you add a map pin, a popup is shown with a map where you can select the exact location of your entry. This provides a quick and easy way to place a new map pin.
This flexibility can also make it very difficult to place a map pin at exactly the same place twice. For example, if you start a trip in Paris and end it in the same city, you probably want the two pins to be exactly at the same spot.
To make it possible to do this, when you place a map pin for a trip which has other entries from the same country as the entry you are working on, TravelPod will present you with a list containing these entries. By selecting one of these other entries, you can quickly copy the exact same pin to your new entry.
This “copy a pin” feature also enables you to quickly place pins by simply selecting the placement from the list rather than placing it onto the map yourself.
Note: The list is only shown if you have other entries within the trip you are working on with already placed map pins from the same country. If you do not, the list is not shown.
|Country-level maps are here!
Oct 29, 2004
Expect more maps to trickle in over the next 12 months until we finally finish them all off.
If there is a specific country you would like to see sooner than later, let us know and we’ll put it at the top of the queue!
|More cool maps!
Oct 29, 2004
|Mapping system is 100% live! Update your map pins today!
Oct 22, 2004
With the new “Set Map Pin Button” you can set the precise location of your entry!
This final upgrade to the mapping system gives TravelPod members the ability to set the precise location of their entry on travel maps. This is easily done by simply clicking on localized maps which sets your map pins for your entries.
|What is a map pin?|
When you create an entry, a map pin is automatically placed on your travel maps to indicate your location.
These pins are used by TravelPod to plot your trip on the travel map shown with your travel blog and also on the map which is shown with your profile to show a summary of all of your travels.
By default, TravelPod will place a pin on the capital city of the country you select when you create the entry. If you prefer, you can change this at any time.
By making the location of the pin more precise, TravelPod can better illustrate your travels to your guests. We highly recommend updating your maps to the exact city of your travels.
If you prefer, we’ve also left the option for members to default the entry location to the capital city of the country which your entry is from. So, if you’re slightly geographically challenged, don’t worry, simply keep your entries set to the capitals and your maps will still be generated for you!
So, it’s finally time for you to do some work , all of your entries need to be updated. We suggest that you update your entries to specific map locations. This will give your travelogue guests a much more precise view of your travels.
In true TravelPod-style, we’ve done our best to make this easy for you. The next time you login, you’ll be shown a menu which let’s you easily update your existing entries.
|The October Newsletter is out!
Oct 20, 2004
|TravelPod in National Geographic Traveler ( October 2004 )
Oct 1, 2004
|As if a mention in the Wall Street Journal wasn’t enough, the October edition of National Geographic Traveler goes on to recommend TravelPod to it’s reader who are planning to travel in a fold out 4 page section on travel advice!
Here is a sample of the article:
“It’s an online journal you can share with friends (or the whole world if you prefer). Websites such as TravelPod (www.travelpod.com) let you post your travel experiences and photos for free from your Web-connected laptop or from an Internet Cafe.”
|TravelPod named “Best for inspiring wanderlust” by the Wall Street Journal!
Oct 1, 2004
| TravelPod receives special mention in a Wall Street Journal article on Travel Blogs.
Among other details, the lengthy article mentions how TravelPod is growing fast and specifically names the site “Best for inspiring wanderlust”.
A title we were honored to accept!
|TravelPod gets a speed boost after a successful upgrade!
Sep 19, 2004
As we mentioned in our past newsletters, we have been working at increasing the bandwidth of TravelPod’s connection to the Internet for a few months. After a lot of hard work, we have successfully upgraded our link to give you a much more reliable connection and DOUBLE the original speed!
|TravelPod makes it easier to find updated entries!
Sep 17, 2004
|New advanced photo optimization feature
Sep 16, 2004
|Can I disable the automatic photo optimization?|
|WARNING: This is an advanced feature! Choosing to disable the automatic optimization is not recommended and will result in larger file sizes which means that you will be not be able to upload as many photos. Only enable this option if you are very familiar with photo compression and are sure that you do not want TravelPod to compress photos for you.
TravelPod automatically optimizes the JPG photos you upload in several ways:
– removing useless information attached to your photos which digital cameras add ( like exposure and camera type )
JPG photos store a lot of information and can be compressed at various levels ( 0-100% ). As a best practice, photos compressed at levels above 95% are considered to be wasteful in the file size they consume. As an example, an photo compressed at 90% compared to the same photo compressed at 100% will have minimal difference in quality but a huge difference in file size.
Although photos compressed at 92% retain a very high quality, if for some reason you prefer to compress the photos yourself before uploading them and not have TravelPod compress them for you can disable this feature by selecting the “Do not optimize photo” option when uploading the photo.
When this option is selected, TravelPod will not optimize the photo, leaving the original compression ratio intact. This may result in photos consuming more space than they need to and taking a longer time to view. Make sure you are knowledgeable in this area before disabling optimization.
|More new dynamic maps on TravelPod!!!
Sep 3, 2004
Woa! We didn’t expect to roll out these maps so quickly but it took us a lot less time to put them together than expected.
TravelPod is proud to announce the release of the dynamic travelogue maps on your travelogues today! That’s right, what you’ve asked for is finally here… a dynamic map, on your travelogue which visually shows your travels.
This is only the first release of the maps, expect more accurate map points and localized ( continent, region and country level ) views soon.
|TravelPod spotted in another newspaper!
Sep 1, 2004
|New maps on TravelPod!
Aug 30, 2004
| ( Give us your feedback on this new feature! )
As you know, we are rolling out our mapping system in small phases to make sure that you have access to the new features as quickly as possible ( ie: not waiting until it’s done in all of it’s glory before releasing it ).
We are happy to say that phase 2a is ready and live!
In this phase, a new world map which shows hyper-links to your travels is shown on your profile page, just like the map on the right!
One thing to keep in mind is that TravelPod will put a little circle on the capital of each country you have an entry for ( not the actual city you visited! ). Don’t be worried if the map seems slightly off ( ie: an entry to Vancouver would show a dot on Ottawa, the capital of Canada ). This is temporary and we’ll be rolling out the next phase that will let you pin point your entry location to a specific city. This will let you make the map more accurate.
The next phases will also bring some awesome maps which will show your travels on localized maps!
|TravelPod in Art Frommer’s Budget Travel Magazine
Aug 5, 2004
|TravelPod in The Economist Magazine
Aug 5, 2004
|Better handling of failed uploads at TravelPod
Aug 2, 2004
Dodgy Internet connections and crusty old computers at Internet Cafes sometimes cause image uploads to your travelogues to fail. Although we can’t do anything about that, we’ve added a new feature to TravelPod which maintains your upload settings ( Title and story ) should such an event occur.
|Better image compression at TravelPod
Jul 21, 2004
|SpamSafe messaging at TravelPod
Jul 19, 2004
We’ve implemented a new web form ( here is a sample ) which replaces the previously shown link to member email addresses on their travelogues ( This is only shown when enabled from the “Trip Options” menu. )
This makes your email address safe from crafty spammers who harvest the Internet looking for email addresses!
|TravelPod takes a member out for pints!
Jun 19, 2004
Last year, Justin Breen ( modernoddyseus ), a long time member, and 3 of his friends crashed at TravelPod HQ ( My apartment ) while hitch hiking across Canada. I’ve also had the pleasure of meeting up with Justin Cormack ( jrcormack ) in London, England as we criss-crossed each other’s paths while traveling.
So when Joey Rayner ( mrjoey ) emailed to let us know he would be in Ottawa as part of his 20 month trip, I jumped on the opportunity to show one of our long time members some hospitality and gladly met up for pints.
Check out mrjoey’s travelogue for more on his travels.
Are you going to be passing through Ottawa, Canada on your trip? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and, we’ll be glad to show you some Canadian hospitality as well!
|Easier Image Editing
May 18, 2004
|New TravelPod Mapping system ( phase 1 ) completed
May 15, 2004
Be on the lookout for dynamically updating maps ( which show your travels ) this summer. Cheers!
May 4, 2004
Some of the new enhancements are:
- 1500%+ speed increase
- Enhanced security
- Enhanced backups
- Increased capacity
- New functionality which will make it easier to add your suggested features into the site.
|Improved Searching at TravelPod
Apr 11, 2004
|Import your Outlook Express contacts to TravelPod
Mar 21, 2004
|Can I import my current address book into TravelPod?|
| To keep your friends and family updated, TravelPod can send out notification messages when you update your travel blog. To do this, simply fill in your TravelPod Address Book and we will prompt you to send out notifications when you finish your entries.
To add addresses to your address book you can type them in manually ( 10 at a time ) or you can import them from your email system. TravelPod uses a great import wizard from Plaxo that is able to import addresses from most email systems, including Yahoo, Hotmail, Gmail, Outlook, and Outlook Express.
|WMV movies now supported at TravelPod
Mar 19, 2004
|TravelPod in USA Today newspaper article
Mar 18, 2004
|TravelPod in the News ( March 19th, 2004 )|
|Add bold and underlined text to your entries!
Feb 4, 2004
|Spell Check your photo stories
Feb 3, 2004
|New feature: TravelPod now let’s you save your entries as drafts, you choose when your entries are ready to be published
Jan 31, 2004
|What is a “Private Draft” entry?|
| Entries that are set to “Private Draft” are not readable by visitors to your blog. Set an entry to “Private Draft” if:
- Your entry isn’t finished yet ( once your entry is ready you can uncheck this option )
- Your entry if your eyes only. Sometimes, you need to write some things that aren’t for your guests. This could be some private feelings, thoughts or opinions that you rather keep to yourself.
When you check the “Private Draft” option, instead of showing your entry when your guests select it from your travel blog, we’ll show a message indicating that it’s a “Private Draft”.
This way you can make sure your entry is just perfect before making it viewable to your guests or, you can keep it like this is you rather not share that one entry.
|TravelPod is voted Best of the Web on Bonweb.com
Dec 20, 2003
Add your comments to the bonweb blob at:
|TravelPod is written up in the Sydney Morning Herald
Nov 19, 2003
TravelPod has been spotted twice in the Sydney Morning Herald. Check out both snippets below which were scanned and sent in by our members!
|Syndey Morning Herald – Nov 2004|
|Syndey Morning Herald – Feb 2003|
|JPE images now accepted at TravelPod
Nov 5, 2003
|Check out our first monthly newsletter
Oct 16, 2003
|Is your travelogue Auto-Subscribe enabled?
Sep 19, 2003
|Check out our new Travel Discussion Forums
Sep 13, 2003
|TravelPod receives tons of great feedback from our members
Sep 13, 2003
If you would like to send us your feedback, please send your emails to: email@example.com
|The TravelPod Sri Lankan Relief Fund has sent out over 100 packages to children in need!
Aug 28, 2003
|TravelPod receives a 50$ donation from whereshegoes, thanks Carmella!
Aug 28, 2003
|Upload MP3s! Let your guests hear the sounds of your adventures with this new TravelPod ability!
Aug 18, 2003
|Can I upload videos and sound clips to my travel blogs?|
|TravelPod members can upload both videos ( MPG, AVI, WMV and MOV ) and sound clips ( MP3 ) to their travel blogs. This allows a richer experience for your readers by allowing them to not only read about your adventures but also to see and hear them!|
|TravelPod now offers premium travel insurance made just for backpackers and adventure travelers like you!
Jul 18, 2003
|TNT Magazine readers find out about TravelPod!
Jul 16, 2003
|TravelPod in the News ( January 2005 )|
|“Blog websites, and especially travel ones are 10 a penny nowadays, but six year-old Travelpod looks like one of the better ones. Sign up so you can tell everyone at home how AMAZING!!! your adventures in Australia are – ha. Visit http://www.travelpod.com”;
PS: We’ve been around for 8 years, not 6
|What people are saying about TravelPod|
|TravelPod in the News ( June 30th, 2003 )|
|TravelPod receives a 70$ donation from David Manning, thanks David!
Jul 4, 2003
|Check out the new Top 10-100 rankings.
Jun 21, 2003
|The TravelPod Sri Lankan Relief Fund: Help the children recover from the floods.
Jun 19, 2003
|The TravelPod Sri Lankan Relief Fund: Help the children recover from the floods.
Jun 19, 2003
TravelPod, an online travelogue hosting service, through it’s ties in Sri Lanka, is trying to help local Sri Lankan children get back to school as quickly as possible. Through our travels, we’ve all seen poverty and, in some way or another, we’ve helped by giving, sharing and also by simply telling others back home how people live and the hardships they survive everyday. TravelPod has been helping travelers do this online for over 7 years. [...]”