The training agency for travel writing and travel photography
Inspiring excellence
by sharing experience
 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Click on any question below to find an answer.

If you can't find what you need, please email us for a personal reply.

The course experience

What makes Travellers' Tales different from
other writing or photography companies?

Very few companies specialise as we do in travel writing and photography. Of the few that do, we are the field leaders. Why? Firstly, our tutors are more distinguished, and we employ more of them, to cover more topics with greater expertise. Secondly, our range of courses is wider, creating a progressive learning programme rather than a one-off experience. Thirdly, each course is highly structured, with tuition provided at all times and a clear purpose to each activity, so that your learning and growth are maximised. We don't just take you there, we teach you.

What's it like on your courses and holidays?
Travellers' Tales courses are friendly, practical and fun. Our guiding principles are excellence and inspiration. You can get a feel for our courses by listening to a BBC programme made on our Marrakech Writing Holiday. Read detailed statement

What will I get out of Travellers' Tales training?
You will get an inside track on the creative and commercial secrets of the trade, imparted by professionals working at the top of the industry. Different courses are is tailored for different levels of experience, and in some cases for specialist topics, so you can choose exactly what you want to get out of this. You can also progress through various courses, developing your skills and confidence each time. Wherever you are, creatively, we aim to take you up a level or three: and if you want career direction then we will help with that too. We can’t create success for you, but we can seriously assist you along the road.
If you click on our Students’ Successes button, you can see what some of our past students have done with their training.Many email us to say how we have changed their career – or even their life.  
How do I know Travellers' Tales is any good?
You can listen to what the BBC think of us, on the podcast here. Or google any of our tutors or corporate clients to see that they are of outstanding quality. Or click on our Students' Successes button.

What have your past students achieved?
Click on the our Students’ Successes button for recent news.

What kind of people attend your courses?
Our courses are very inclusive and participants range across all ages and backgrounds, from college students to retirees. They are united by a passion for travel, an independent spirit, and an interest in their creative medium. The excitement of what we are doing breaks down most barriers, and one of our greatest pleasures is enjoying the camaraderie of kindred spirits working together on something they love to do. At that point, where you come from has long since faded into the background.

What's your average group size?
Groups average 10-12 people – a size that is friendly but buzzy, and allows plenty of personal attention. Groups may go as high as 16, but this is unusual.

What hours are your courses?
We don't waste your time. In London the courses are 1015 am to 530 pm unless otherwise stated, and fairly busy during that time. On the Creative Holidays, hours vary but will typically be 930 am to 6 pm, during which time we might be out on location, learning in the classroom, enjoying a delicious lunch or taking some free time. On the Creative Holidays you are free to attend or miss whichever sessions you like, and evenings can be spent dining with the group or doing your own thing, as you like.

Choosing a course

I'm not sure which course to choose.
To suit your level of experience and aspiration, there are courses of differing kinds, and these are identified throughout the course pages. For beginners there are London weekends – a great way in – and also Creative Holdiays. For 'improvers' and advanced students, there are masterclasses on specialised topics, mainly in London: and Creative Holidays are the ideal way to take your learning further. Because our groups are small and personal, we can adjust to people's needs: our approach is to provide support and challenge at every level. If you are unsure, please email us for advice.

I'm a total beginner - will I be OK?
You'll be fine on the courses indicated as beginner-level, and also on the Creative Holidays. No experience whatsoever is required for these, and they are very much for amateurs or those who just want to know 'how it works'. You may well be out of your depth on the masterclasses: if they interest you, we recommend booking yourself into a quick beginners' weekend as well, to get a good grounding.

I'm fairly experienced - will the level suit me?
The Creative Holidays and masterclasses will suit you perfectly. These are designed for regular hobbyists, semi-professionals, professionals from related sectors, and Travellers' Tales veterans. They offer a powerful step up, through insider information and professional tips. In particular the Creative Holidays let you learn a huge amount in a very short time, by working in the field with an experienced professional, developing key skills and facing real challenges. Many students come back to these over and over, learning more each time and building their confidence and momentum.

I want to learn both travel writing and photography.
We have designed our programme to allow you to study both subjects back-to-back. On the beginners' London courses, photography happens on the Saturdays and writing on the Sundays of two weekends, allowing you to do both courses while you are in town – and there's a package discount for doing so. Meanwhile the Creative Holidays are designed in pairs, so you can do 3 days of writing and 3 days of photography in neighbouring locations, one straight after the other.

Booking in

How can I check if there are places available?
Each course page states its availability as of the day you view.

What payment methods do you accept?
You can buy online using a credit or debit card, or you can pay by posting us a cheque. Options for both are listed on each course page. Online payment is by Paypal, but you don't need to open an account with them – just click the non-account option on the first Paypal page.

How do I find out where to go and what to bring?
We will email you full joining instructions four weeks ahead of the event. For Creative Holidays, a travel plan is shown on the course page. We do not disclose the names or details of our venues until after booking. If you have any pressing questions, please email us for advice.

I've booked a course but not received an acknowledgement
or joining instructions.
Online bookings should end with an automatic Paypal confirmation of your booking. If this has not happened, please email us at once, stating the course and price you booked for, and we will check the booking.
We do not send any further confirmation at the time of purchase, but will email you joining instructions four weeks before the course date.Postal bookings are acknowledged by email within a week of receipt: if this has not happened, please email us to check it has not got lost in the post. We will need your email address to for this and all other communications.
What is your refund policy?
Please see our terms and conditions.

The course I want has already happened, what shall I do?
If you join the email list we will let you know next time that course is run. Not all courses repeat, however, so do grab them when you can.

How do I find out about future courses?
Click the Join Our Email List button at left and we will send you priority information on all new courses and events, including exclusive special offers.

Creative holidays


How do I find the right trip?
All our Creative Holidays differ from each other, in terms of the tutors and locations, so you can attend several and gain more from each one. Your choice will partly be guided by what suits you in terms of dates and places, but do bear in mind that the longer you can be with us, the more you will learn.

What's included in the trip price?
Unless otherwise stated, our Creative Holidays include accommodation on a B&B basis at carefully selected hotels, expert tuition, and all transport while on the course. They do not include flights/transport to the course location, lunches, dinners or travel insurance. We leave these to you, since they may be discretionary, and this allows you more flexibility as independent travellers to make the trip your own. We treat you as an independent adult, not a package tourist.
It is an absolute condition of booking that you take out full travel insurance for any courses outside of your home country, including medical cover, course cancellation, any losses and public liability. This is to protect yourself, as well as ourselves. By booking, you are agreeing to do this, and we will assume you have done so.

Can I have a single room?
Yes: prices for this are listed on each course page.

Can I bring a friend?
Yes: prices for this are listed on each course page. You can bring a partner or a friend, and they share a twin room with you. They are eligible to accompany us on any major excursions, and for evening events, but they do not attend teaching sessions. You are free to miss any sessions or evenings that you like, so you can slip away and enjoy the trip alone together as well.

How do I find the right flight?
You’ll find a suggested flight plan on each course page. All our Creative Holidays are planned to allow easy access by budget flights on the relevant start and end dates.

If my plane arrives earlier/later, can I stay on?
Yes, once you have booked we can give you contact details for the hotel, so you can arrange extra nights as you wish. We cannot guarantee these are available, so early booking will help.

I don't like group events: what shall I do?
You can request a single room on the Creative Holidays. But do be reassured that we create a relaxed and respectful atmosphere in which anyone is welcome to attend or miss whatever sessions or meals they like, and we make a special effort to make everyone feel comfortable. Group sizes are small and friendly, and there is time for individual attention.

Special needs

I have special dietary needs: will I be OK?
You should be fine, provided you state them when booking. In the Paypal purchase window there is a special field which you can click on to enter any dietary needs. If your diet is very unusual, please email us to check before booking. On Creative Holidays, most meals are chosen by you a la carte, so you have total control of what you eat.

What disabled facilities are there?
We regret that the venues we hire both in London and overseas are not accessible for wheelchair users and do not have induction loops. On Creative Holidays we spend a lot of time walking around historic or landscape sites, and the terrain is not suitable for wheelchair users or the infirm. We are also not able to accommodate guide dogs. We apologise for these limitations.


What's it like on our courses?  
BBC programme on us  
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