As is standard practice, our group of talented and experienced travel writers will often accept hosted stay invitations in order to facilitate more detailed reporting. The economics of travel media do not allow more than a few top-tier magazines to cover their writers’ expenses and those you can now count on one hand. Some forbid writers to accept hosting, but then don’t pay them enough for their work to even cover one night of a hotel. So that leaves only the independently wealthy writers or those who cut corners.
We don’t like either of those options.
So our writers will sometimes stay at hotels at no cost because they are researching a review, with the hotel company comping the room or the local tourism board paying for it. This allows the writer to see what a guest sees instead of doing a quickie property tour that ignores the parts the person giving the tour doesn’t want a writer to see. They can evaluate the service and how hard it is to get a pool chair. They can see if the bed really is comfortable and if the Wi-Fi actually works. They have time to shoot photos or video that give you what the guests see instead of what a professional photographer with perfect lighting and wide-angle lenses sees.
We will always attempt to be truthful and point out the obvious negatives, whether we paid to stay there or someone else did. Unlike the major escapist magazines, we don’t feel a need to be 100% positive 100% of the time. That’s not reality.
We will disclose any hosting relationship at the end of each review. If you don’t see a statement there, you can assume that the writer paid because he or she was on vacation or it’s a round-up story where a personal visit wasn’t necessary.
We also accept advertising, though most of it is not direct. In other words, the ads are fed by a 3rd-party provider. Others are affiliate ads whereby if you book a hotel through a link you clicked on with us, we get a small commission—but you pay the same price as you would if you just typed that company’s name in your browser.