15 months in Asia: my Polish blog turns 7 years old!

Today is 15 months since I left Poland. I do not know if I will ever stop counting because I’m just proud of myself. In the end, 15 months ago I am making my dream of living on the road come true. And these little monthly-versaries remind me of this. 馃檪

Last month I complained that August and September were dull. I have a feeling that I was a bit overworked, and I put pressure on myself to work and just forgot to live, and not only to exist. The routine and the monotony quickly irritate me.

Fortunately, October was terrific. Another visa run (applying for a new visa) forced me to leave Vietnam for a few days, so I left Saigon to visit Manila and visit friends in the capital of the Philippines. Although I changed a city for a city, I managed to recharge my batteries. That how the change of environment works – it gives incredible energy to act.

with Kenneth Surat, travel blogger from the Philippines

And I had to go to Manila to remind myself that. Now even in the calendar, I mark the weekends when I can go out and recharge the batteries. November will be fantastic, but December will be calmer – I’ll say more about it in a moment. In January I have my next visa run! This time I will pick something from my bucket list – maybe Angkor Wat or Hong Kong,? 馃檪

But let’s go back to October. After Manila, one more weekend I got off to Mui Ne beach and spent the rest of the month preparing for my sister’s arrival in Vietnam! In practice, this means merely shutting down as many inquiries聽from customers as possible. So I’ll have less work when my sister arrives. 馃槈

Chinatown in Manila, pic by Kenneth Surat

So October passed very quickly and without complaining that I was bored and drowned in a routine.

November will be even better – we are with Marta now in Mui Ne, from where I write this post. After Mui Ne, it’s time for Hanoi and 3-day Quest Festival! Then a few days back in Ho Chi Minh City and Marta returns home. And I work with charged batteries. 馃檪

Then in December, I will also work on blogging (and teaching Vietnamese children English, as you remember), and in January it’s time for another visa run. I think I will choose Angkor Wat. 馃檪

The next months will be very intense, and I will use it well! 馃檪

And now let’s change the subject!

surfing in Mui Ne, Vietnam

Seven years of my Polish travel blog

November 1, 2017, my Polish blog turned seven years old. Wow. WOW. I can hardly believe that it was seven years ago when I launched on WordPress blog Backpack and Suitcase. How has the blog changed over the years?

First of all, from diary-style posts about hitchhiking, I changed the style of the blog to more practical posts, covering specific places and attractions. But I have not stopped writing personal posts because I know that readers like them. And I’m very happy with it. 馃檪

In the beginning, I wrote about everything I experienced. But I came to the point where I had to eliminate many topics. With time, the blog has grown, and with him a list of things to do connected with the blog. Unfortunately, my day didn’t stretch.

Three years ago in November, I decided to move my blog to a higher level. I saw in it the opportunity to realise my greatest dream – life on the road.

So I started learning everything I needed in professional blogging – marketing, SEO, social media, what it means to have a niche and what niche is mine, and above all, I started to meet new people who do聽what I do – blogging about travelling.

I guess I learned the most from them and received many useful tips and travel opportunities.

Chinatown in Manila, pic by Kenneth Surat

I left Poland 15 months ago. When I was leaving, I decided that the blog would help me in travelling. Today I can say that I am in 1/3 of the way to maintain myself only from blogging.

Why am I writing about it?

Because I get more and more emails and Facebook messages from people who want to travel full-time, too. They see in blogging a way to make or save money while travelling. Readers ask me what the best and fastest way to monetise a blog is.

The problem is that I do not really know.

pic by Kenneth Surat

I do not know what to do best because I still make a lot of mistakes. So far, my products and services work for me – and many travel bloggers agree with that.

But to make money on your own product, you need to have a group of readers who will want to pay for this product. And it lasts to gain them – some can achieve it faster, others slower. In my case, it took seven years, although I started to act consciously three years ago. Some people work more quickly and more efficiently.

So I say I do not know what the fastest way to monetise聽a blog is. I just think I got there pretty slow.

It took me four years to reach the point where I decided to blog professionally and consciously, not hobby. The next three years took me to learn how I can pay for my living and travel聽with blogging, and I still do not know many things.

As a curiosity, I will tell you that in January 2015, two months after switching my mindset about blogging, my blog was visited by only 2200 people. A year later – about 6000 people. In January 2017 more than 16,000 people visited my Polish blog, and last month (which is statistically one of the weakest) 23,000.

There are, of course, blogs that in a shorter time have reached much higher numbers. But these statistics are mine.

beach life in Mui Ne in Vietnam

At this point, I’m still not at a stage where I can live from the blog, and that is my goal. I can say that I’m somewhere in 1/3 of the way. Over the past three years, I’ve had several smaller and more significant blog successes, and I’ve made a lot of mistakes and missed a lot of cool stuff.

I do not know the best and the quickest way to get to where I am now. I know how to get here the way I went.

Therefore, although I usually like answering readers’ questions, I do not like聽this particular question. I just do not have time to go into details of everything I know, because writing only “you need to write regularly and travel a lot” is not enough.

I’m writing about it because I think the seventh birthday of the blog is a right聽occasion for this. I wonder if you would like to know what life and work (because it’s connected) of a travel blogger looks like? If so, I would love to write about it! 馃檪

My Polish blog is seven years old now. I’m glad I’m where I am. I have the knowledge and ability to achieve what I want. Now I just have to work even more efficiently, and maybe the next birthday of the blog I will be celebrating under the palm trees!

Oh, shit. I forgot that today I’m already celebrating under palm trees! 馃榾

LongSon MuiNe

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