Welcome to BATW...

New Member Frequently Asked Questions . . .

1.  How long does it take for an application to be approved?
This can take several weeks, depending on the Membership Chair’s travel schedule. If you have not heard back after 10 weeks, feel free to contact the Membership Chair at membership@batw.org.

2.  Where are your meetings held?
Our meeting venue changes monthly, depending on our program. Meetings are usually held at Bay Area hotels, restaurants and attractions. This gives our members a chance to get a first-hand look at a variety of different venues. Our hosts usually give us a tour of their property after the meeting.

3.  What kind of speakers or programs do you have at your meetings?
Our programs vary from year to year and they have included our very popular Editors’ Panel, round robin discussions, presentations by CVBs and tourism professionals, a photographers panel and a guidebook writing panel, as well as presentations by Corporate Members and their clients. We've also had some great press previews including a visit to Mare Island, a behind-the-scenes tour of Marine World, and advance looks at blockbuster art exhibits. We are very responsive to our membership and our meeting planners try to craft programs to suit the changing needs of members.

4.  Can I attend a meeting before I decide to apply for membership?
Yes, prospective members are welcome at most of our meetings, but you must RSVP in advance. Contact the Program Chair program@batw.org. if you are interested in attending a meeting.

5.  What kind of networking opportunities will membership in BATW give me?
     Will it help me network with editors and publishers?

We have excellent informal networking at the meetings. In fact, the networking that stems from just getting to know more journalists is well worth the price of membership. Some members are able to get leads and assignments from BATW contacts. Many of our members are editors and publishers. To be honest, BATW gives folks the networking opportunity -- what they do with it is up to them. If you don't attend meetings or just sit in the corner, you won’t have much of a networking opportunity.

6.  Will my bio be added to your website if I am approved for membership?
We do not have bios of members on the BATW website. After you are accepted for membership, you will, however, have a detailed professional profile where you can also add a link to your own website.

7.  Is the BATW directory sent to editors and publishers?
Your profile will be published in our online directory, which can be viewed by members only, and a brief article about you will appear in the online BATW newsletter after you officially become a member.

8.  Does BATW actively market members' work to editors and publishers?
No. That is up to each individual member. Each person knows what kind of editor or publisher they want to approach, and everyone has different preferences. Members often exchange this type of information with one another.

9.  Does BATW have press trips?
We generally offer at least 2 to 3 BATW-only press trips per year. These are hosted by CVBs and PR Professionals who approach BATW for the opportunity to share their destinations with our membership. Membership in BATW in itself does not guarantee you a space on BATW press trips, as journalist selection is ultimately left up to the host. Industry-wide press trips are often disseminated on the Yahoo forum or in the online newsletter.

10.  Why do I have to submit clips with my application?
So that the membership committee can determine your eligibility and decide which membership category best matches your qualifications. General Active Membership is appropriate for published travel writers, while a Provisional Membership is available to those who have not published travel-related pieces but who are actively seeking to learn about the industry. Corporate Memberships (which do not require clips) are appropriate for CVBs and other PR professionals.

11.  I've been a writer for a number of years but I've never written any travel articles. Do I qualify for membership?
You would qualify as a Provisional Member, as mentioned above. Provisional membership allows you to be part of BATW for two years, after which you would be expected to have published travel-related material, and would then upgrade to General Active Membership. Those who remain unpublished after two years would be invited to reapply for Active Membership if their publishing status changes in the future.

12.  What is the difference between a Provisional member and a General Active member? Are the benefits the same?
Both Provisional and General Active members are invited to attend monthly membership meetings. Both receive the monthly newsletter and both are invited on press trips at the discretion of the party hosting the press trip. Guests are rarely invited on press trips (but again this is at the discretion of the press trip hosts).

13.  How will being a Provisional member help me become a travel writer?
Networking opportunities, educational meetings and our newsletter all offer great ways to become more informed about the travel writing industry.

14.  Do you provide one-on-one mentoring or do you have travel writing classes?
Neither, although we do have a professional development section on the members only section of our website that will help new writers. BATW focuses on the business of travel writing, rather than the business of "teaching" travel writing. New members are fully encouraged to take up writing classes or correspondence courses, many of which are available though colleges or on-line courses. We have all been new writers and are always happy to answer the odd question about writing when it arises. For this reason we have presented seminars in the past on such subjects as basic photography, guidebook writing, blogging, and many more topics.

15.  I have a membership question which is not answered here. Where can I e-mail my question?
Send your question to the Membership Chair at membership@batw.org.

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