I write a lot of trip reports. I mostly write trip reports because I personally find them helpful when I’m preparing for trips, and I enjoy reading well-written, well-photographed reports by other people even if I’m not. I’m not going to lie: it also helps for SEO, and some of my most frequently visited posts over the lifetime of my blog are trip reports.
But I’ve been told that some people think of trip reports as easy/filler posts. This is false. You might not like them, but trip reports are some of the most time-consuming posts to write. When I brought up trip reports amongst a group of bloggers at BACon, there were groans and the collective sentiment was that trip reports were helpful for readers but took way too long to do.
Think about it: not only do you have to make sure that you’re taking good photos while you’re on the trip, you also have to take good notes so that you can write about the trip coherently and comprehensively at some point in the future. And then the actual write-up can easily take an hour or more when you consider choosing the photos, doing any sort of edits necessary, the writing, and fact-checking to fill in any gaps that you forgot to record.
Yes, there are lots of bad trip reports out there. But I am totally forgiving of occasionally bad photos and inane captions (the only reason I usually put captions is because my formatting can get messed up if I don’t include them) because it’s frankly hard. And yes, we don’t need yet another trip report of Cathay Pacific or Lufthansa first class (although the latter will likely become much more rare now that the rest of the United tickets have been flown). But there are tons of products out there that I think are underreviewed, and if you’re not interested in a given product, just don’t read the post. I essentially x out any hotel reviews on my Feedly since they’re almost always irrelevant to me as I very rarely stay in hotels.
Summary: don’t read a trip report if you don’t like it, but don’t underestimate the amount of time and effort that goes into a decent trip report.