Offline travel blogging: Unless you’ve got loads of money to pay for International 3G coverage, you’re gonna be dependent on WiFi hotspots wherever you go.
However, WiFi hotspots are not always free or not readily available. Heres’ how to overcome these burdens with a few tactics that I’ve learned myself.
1. Learn to pre-write.
Back when I wrote for Berry Review I would always write my articles right in the WordPress backend editor. I’d finish up my post and submit it. But I was always connected to the internet back then and didn’t have to worry about finding a hotspot; because I wasn’t traveling.
When you travel you can write your articles in Microsoft Word (or Open Office it’s free) and save your progress when you’re not online.
Using tags to remember things is the best way to work offline. Sometimes you need to find a publicly available image to use in your blog. Well, if you don’t have an internet connection then you can paste a tag where the picture should go like <pic> or <img>. Or maybe you need to do more research on a particular subject then maybe <res> will do. I love to use tags to bookmark my article.
3. Use time wisely
There’s gonna come a time when your only option is to use a paid internet cafe. These places can be located in a cellular phone store, coffee shop or even a computer repair store (there are many of these in London due to the high cost of the rent. I saw one that was a computer repair store, internet cafe, and restaurant). In these areas prices can range anywhere from one Euro to 3 Euros per hour or half an hour, depending on the locale. This is when pre-writing comes in handy! Simply log on, submit your article and you’re done. Now you can spend your time catching up on emails, chatting with friends, and updating your Facebook.
4. Research hotspots
Next Monday I’ll be in Rome. I made sure to research where some free WiFi hotspots are. Well apparently there is a city-wide network publicly available and I’ll be using that. For other countries you can just do a Google search for “Free Wifi in XXXXXXX” and you’ll come upon a number of websites with various details on a WiFi availability. In some locations, there is free wifi everywhere, like in the US or London, for example. Sometimes you have no choice but to pay for it, occasionally due to local laws concerning privacy.
5. Download a free dictionary/thesaurus program
You will occasionally need to look things up or write a word differently to make your article more interesting. There are tons of free programs downloadable for Windows, Mac, and Linux users to make your life easier while writing. In this instance, you can use tags again if you’d like to change a sentence or word later on.
When you do have net access, don’t spend too much time researching otherwise you’ll fall into an endless loop of browsing. You’ll look one thing up and next thing you know through a number of clicks you’re nowhere near where you first began. Usually, it ends at YouTube when you realize after the 10th funny video you watched that you’re not getting things done. This is an added benefit of writing offline, you can’t be distracted by the internet.