Kia ora! If you’re reading this I’m going to assume you came from the stuff.co.nz article about being quarantined on a Philippine island last week. Yes, it was as insane as it sounds!
As you will have seen, I’m a travel blogger and I was part-way into a huge trip around the globe, with the aim of showing how I make my money and time go further. You can read about all my adventures right here on this blog, or pop on over to my Instagram @findingalexx to see all my photos (and give me a follow for when I’m back out on the road).
Now I’m staying with my parents’ for the foreseeable future, trying to finish content from the past eight months of travel throughout Europe, the Middle East, Asia and Australasia, doing lots of online courses and trying not to think about how long I’ll be here for.
Are you self-isolating too? Sign up for a two month FREE trial on Skillshare and choose from thousands of online classes! There’s never been a better time to learn a new skill.
The virus has caused devastation not just from a public health perspective, but from a tourism perspective around the globe. My freelance contracts have been put on hold for the foreseeable future, my travel agent and flight attendant friends are terrifyingly close to losing their jobs, and there are destinations all over the world who are going to suffer immensely from the sudden and extended drop in tourism. And that’s just tourism, I know the impact will be felt by people from all industries.
If you want to help freelance creatives, small businesses, travel agencies and destinations while the world struggles with this pandemic, here are some things you can do.
Share them on social media
Small businesses tend to survive off a small number of customers, so when those customers stop buying, it’s a problem. Share your favourite small businesses and creators online so they can reach a new audience, and hopefully gain some new customers too.
Don’t cancel your travel, postpone it
I know this is tough when we don’t know how long this will last, but if it’s an option for you to postpone your travel or be refunded in credits instead of getting your money back, this is a lifeline for travel companies.
I understand this isn’t possible or realistic for people who need to dig into their savings at a time like this, but if you have the option and you don’t need the money, a company credit could be the difference between that company being able to keep their staff or let them go.
Read blogs and engage online
Travel bloggers and digital creators make a lot of their income through affiliate links, advertising and freelance travel writing or photography, all of which has stopped abruptly. In the meantime, one thing you can do to help which costs you nothing, is to engage online!
Read travel blogs to inspire your next adventure, comment on posts, share your new favourite accounts with your friends, send them a nice message to let them know you appreciate what they do.
If you’re still able to get out and about in your town, it’s super important to try and spend your money with local businesses who are going to be feeling the pinch much more than big corporations.
Hit the butchers, bakers, candlestick makers, fresh veggie stalls, get some flowers from the local florist and pop into your favourite café with a keep cup to get a takeaway brew.
Don’t forget to check Asian supermarkets too, the racists have been staying away so that means more frozen dumplings, fresh veg and essentials like rice and noodles for you!
Are you on lockdown? Check UberEats to see what local eateries deliver to your house.
Review them online
If you’ve engaged with a small business recently, why not use your extra time at home to leave them a review online? Head to their Facebook to leave a review of your experience or Google them and rate them there.
Consider booking an NZ adventure later in the year
International travel is completely up in the air (pun intended) but we can at least have some confidence that we’ll be able to explore our backyard in the future, hopefully sooner rather than later.
Loads of NZ companies are offering brilliant deals for future bookings, like Bay Tours who are offering two for one wine tours for bookings in the summer of 2020/2021. Get in quick!
Lend a hand to a neighbour
Do you live near elderly citizens? Is your neighbour a critical healthcare worker? Do you have families in your neighbourhood with young children? Offer to do a supermarket shop, look after the kids if their parents have to go to work, or look out for local organisations who need volunteers or donations to help support those in need within your community.
The most important one of all. This is all unchartered territory, we’re all out of our comfort zone, and a lot of us are in a really scary place in terms of financial security and future plans. Don’t be a dick!
Loads more content around self-isolation, travel hacks, packing tips and more coming at you in the next two weeks, because let’s be honest, there’s nothing else to do!
Stay safe and healthy everyone xx