Responsible Travel Writing

The storytelling platform prides itself on publishing articles that are rooted in sustainable travel efforts and centred around local communities. We achieve this through responsible travel writing.

We aim to publish only articles that adhere to our responsible travel writing checklist and pass our publishing screening process. Readers of Resonate content should rest assured that stories on our platform are about sustainability efforts; responsible and ethical tourism practices; or places that are welcoming to visitors and indeed want to promote, and will benefit from promoting, their culture, community, environment and way of living.

The Resonate mission

To nurture local pride as the most sustainable asset in any community. We do this by offering space for local people to share their own stories, and we let the narrative be driven from within their communities.

How we do it

We empower local people to centre themselves, their communities, and their destinations in the travel conversation. They tell their stories — written or visual — on their terms, receiving viewership from people interested in hearing their voices.

We create a space for readers for whom this concept resonates. This is their opportunity to join a growing, mindful community that enjoys getting deeper into destinations, learning about the challenges and solutions facing tourism, and fostering travel experiences that are intentional, respectful, and captivating.

We invite destination promoters to connect with this engaged audience. Through the Resonate platform, they can promote what destinations and communities want; not only what the market demands.

We provide travellers with inspiration and practical information so they can journey around the world with consideration, courage, and an open mind.

Our screening process

At we believe responsible travel is the way to experience, learn about and understand the world. This informs the way we talk about travel, promote travel and inspire readers — with ethics at the centre, and respect for people and the planet. All stories on Resonate are rooted in this belief.

We value our stories and appreciate our storytellers. We acknowledge who the narratives belong to, and provide a stage to let locals tell their own stories. Contributing from their own backyards, and capturing what happens inside their own communities, they can share their voices with a larger audience and get fair payment for doing so.

To honour these principles, a rigorous editorial review process is in place and stories must meet our acceptance criteria to qualify for assignment. To be published on Resonate, before submission of pitches, articles must go through a screening process to ensure we publish only ethically sound content.

Potential contributors should follow these steps:

  1. With your story in mind, first look at the Writers Guidelines, then complete the following screening checklist and carefully read through all the content guidelines provided in this document to ensure that your story is suitable for the Resonate platform;
  2. When you believe that your proposed story meets all of the criteria, you can send in the pitch;
  3. If you are in doubt, you can send our Content Manager an email at and request further guidance;
  4. When your pitch has been approved by the Content Manager you will receive the assignment contract; by signing the contract you will affirm that you have completed the screening checklist, read all the guidelines and that your story meets all of the criteria. You will acknowledge that the story fulfils our mission of promoting responsible travel through local narratives.

Screening checklist for pitches/articles on Resonate

In general, is the story one that…

  • highlights local pride?
  • is honest and true, not made-up or fictional?
  • covers only individuals, companies, organisations and destinations that follow best ethical practices (unless it’s ‘proving a point’ regarding Burning Issues etc.)?

People and the community

  • The story is respectful of the place and its people
  • It is your narrative, represents your local area or a place you have visited yourself and the content is within your ownership 
  • You are allowed to tell the story, and it is yours to tell
  • The people in the story have given permission to tell their story and where relevant, share their photos
  • The story encourages only appropriate forms of tourism that are ethical, responsible and beneficial
  • The story will have the potential to have a positive impact and benefit the community and its people
  • All enterprises, products and services included practice sustainable principles
  • The story is not harmful to the community or its environment
  • The story does not feature a place that does not want visitors

Nature and the environment

  • The story does not promote captive animals in zoos, parks, animal shows and similar (unless it is about animals in tourism, rescue facilities etc. for Game Changers or Burning Issues)
  • The story encourages ‘leave no trace’ and ‘no harm to nature’ messages;  is mindful of protecting habitats and respectful of the environment
  • The story promotes natural diversity sustainably, and where appropriate details efforts to restore it
  • The story promotes wildlife in the wild 

Copy guidelines for Resonate

We encourage contributors to pitch stories that include elements of…

  • local pride in a community
  • appropriate forms of tourism that benefit the community
  • local resilience and innovation in responsible travel and otherwise
  • local or global game changers who are making a difference
  • best practice stories and examples
  • education and awareness for sustainable development
  • education on ways of reducing waste and overconsumption
  • support for sustainable agriculture and food sources
  • slow food, locally and sustainably sourced food and seasonal eating
  • climate change, its impact and local responses 
  • respect for the integrity of vulnerable ecosystems and protected areas
  • conservation of clean fresh water 
  • sustainable use of our oceans
  • sustainably managed forests, mountains, biodiversity
  • sustainable and reusable sources of energy 
  • sustainable production, creating job security and local economic growth
  • sustainable consumption and positive give-back contributions
  • inclusive communities for sustainable development and transparency
  • gender equality and empowering women, girls and minorities
  • social and cultural diversity
  • accessible travel for all

We do not publish stories…

  • from over-crowded places that have reached (or exceeded) their capacity and do not need more travellers;
  • where the communities or people are not interested in being exposed;
  • that do not protect human rights;
  • that involve projects and organisations (particularly those involving children) where we do not have enough insight to vet their sustainability and ethics;
  • which include irresponsible voluntourism that does more harm than good — in particular, voluntourism where children are involved;
  • of a place or product where nature and the environment have had to suffer or have been spoiled for an enterprise or activity to be established;
  • that promote companies, are self-promoting or are paid placements.

Image guidelines for Resonate

We do not publish…

  • images of children
  • images of activities etc. which we would not condone (i.e. unsustainable products or unethical practices, unless it is to ‘prove a point’ regarding Burning Issues etc.)
  • images of people in inappropriate situations. Ask yourself — if it was me, would I like this image to be used in a public forum?
  • close-up photos of people’s faces (unless permission has been expressly granted to the photographer)
  • anything culturally insensitive or inappropriate
  • images that can inspire others to put themselves in dangerous situations (like handstands on a cliff edge)
  • images that show people being careless of the environment in protected areas
  • nudity or people in revealing clothing
  • images that can be considered inappropriate or inflammatory — i.e. depicting potentially offensive views regarding gender, race or political inclination
  • images that are copyrighted or owned by others and being used without permission of the owner or copyright holder

Before pitching a story idea to us, we ask writers to review and take into account everything in the checklist and guidelines above to ensure their idea meets our criteria. Potential writers for Resonate should also check out the Writers Guidelines for an explanation of our article types, and tips on what — and how — to pitch.