About The Stories We Publish

Writer’s guidelines

Destination Uganda Traveler’s blogging goals are to find the new, to showcase fresh travel opportunities in Uganda, and to be an advocate for travelers. DU Traveler’s tag line is “Untamed Uganda, Where the Journey Begins.” Accordingly, each story captures a place’s essence in a way that inspires readers to follow in the writer’s footsteps—and equip them to do so with useful destination information.

Types of stories we publish

Destination Uganda Traveler stories are precisely about Uganda travel. Generally, we are interested in places in Uganda accessible to most travelers, not just the intrepid or wealthy. The types of destinations we cover vary widely, from mainstream to adventure travel.

DU Traveler features are usually narrow in scope; we do not cover politics or other countries. Subjects of particular interest to us are national and state parks, historical places, cities, little-known or undiscovered places, bus & train trips, cruises, and driving trips.

Service or guide information is generally given separately at the end of each blog in a section that includes how to get to the destination, things to see and do there, and where to obtain more information. The writer is expected to send along as much service information as possible with the article to help us prepare this section.

We also publish several regular service-oriented blog stories, emphasizing meaty, practical information like “How-to” blogs. Story subjects include photography, food, lodgings, ecotourism, adventurous learning experiences, and short getaways. Essays offering reflections on the travel experience get a massive readership.

Who can write for DU-Traveler?

We accept content that meets DU-Traver’s standards from tour guides, travel consultants, travelers, freelancers, and self-made travel bloggers. Story ideas are generated by the staff and freelance contributors, including writers who want to develop their travel writing skills.

We also assign stories to professional travel writers and those we’ve not used before, but only if their published clips demonstrate the highest writing skill.

We do not accept phone queries from writers, but writers can email us their feature articles or article propositions.

Matooke Bananas on a bike in Uganda - Traveler Guide

How to write for DU-Traveler?

If we have to get readers to consume our content, writers must create with more than just notions and place names. So please do not send us any unfocused articles or how-to blogs.

Restrict each submission to one or two well-developed articles or proposals you have exceptionally crafted for us. A carefully considered submission combines your experience traveling to a particular destination with the excitement you get from consuming your narrative.

A good post has a title that suggests what the story is, an introduction that amplifies that, a strong body, subheadings, and great original images to represent the story.

A carefully considered proposal for a travel story should combine support for doing a particular destination with some premise or hook. A good query has a headline that suggests what the story is, a deck that amplifies that, a strong lead, and not much more than 500 words that clearly set out the premise and approach of the piece. The query should represent the writer’s style and answer these questions about the story: Why now, and why in DU Traveler?

Check the Travel Guide to ensure we have not recently run a piece on your proposed topic. Please include your credentials, relevant links, and contact details.

Email your story or proposal for a story to media@destinationuganda.com with the subject “MY DU-STORY.” You will receive a reply from the editor about whether your story is publishable.

Destination Uganda Traveler - Man reading newspaper

How long should DU-Traveler’s stories be?

Most Traveler stories range from 1,500 to 2,500 words, depending on the subject. Traveler photo stories or travel guides generally run from 750 to 1,500 words.

We don’t compensate for guest posts or traveler reviews but offer linkbacks and exposure.

Compensation for professional pieces varies depending on the type of story but is competitive with industry standards. Payment is made upon acceptance. We pay for all rights to the script and visuals, although the author can use the material online with reference to the publication.

What we look for in your writing style

There are no limitations on style, as long as the writing is lively and exciting, although a sense of discovery should be at the heart of every DU-Traveler story. We want our writers to project a curious and knowing voice that captures the experience of travel—the places and personalities, the insights and idiosyncrasies.

Writers who work for us must see destinations with fresh eyes and genuine insight. We place a premium on surprise and good storytelling—the compelling anecdote, the colorful character, the lively quote, the telling detail.

And we prefer that our readers be allowed to experience a destination directly through the words and actions of people the writer encounters, not just through the writer’s narrative.

Beyond being intensely evocative of place, our articles attempt to speak to the soul of traveling. No matter how seasoned, every traveler wonders what awaits at a new destination, and it goes beyond weather and accommodations and language and scenic and museums.

There’s a certain frisson of expectation: How foreign is this destination? What new experience will I have? That is travel as texture—the feel of a place, its essential differentness, its look, its flavor. We seek that texture in every story we publish.

Photo guidelines

DU-Traveler stories usually include photos of people involved in and enjoying the activities of the place being featured. This doesn’t mean tourist pictures in the pejorative sense. Generally speaking, we are trying to show a destination from a number of different points of view: overviews from a distance, medium-length views, close-ups of interesting details, intriguing people, street scenes (where relevant), interiors, restaurants, and interesting inns or other lodgings, cultural sites, scenics, and anything else that helps give readers a sense of what a place is like.

DU-Traveler stories feature places that are accessible to the public. Thus, we seldom go behind the scenes. The general rule is: If the average visitor can’t do it, then don’t shoot it.

National park personnel occasionally object to activities being shown in photographs because they violate park rules or constitute a hazard to the visitor, the environment, or the wildlife. Please check with park officials and advise the illustrations editor if a potential problem exists.

Photographers must furnish complete caption information, including who, what, when, and where. Failure to comply will result in holding back on publication. Please jot down any quotes that could be used in captions to illuminate the photographs, and obtain telephone numbers of any persons prominently featured in case the caption writer wants to interview them.

Offset printing generally reproduces a slightly lighter exposure better than a dark, highly saturated one. The “right” exposure is difficult to define and varies greatly due to many factors, so subjective judgment is required. Flash may help fill in dense shadows.

DU-Traveler pays all field expenses for anyone on contract. Photographers must work with the DU-Office to find complimentary transportation, lodging, meals, admission fees, or activities for which a charge is usually made.

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