Press Room: What the Press Is Saying About GoNOMAD Travel
The Recorder in Greenfield MA published a feature story about GoNOMAD's business and how we have adapted in 2016 to the web 2.0 climate.
It can be difficult making a profit through a strictly online business model; however, it’s not impossible.
Max Hartshorne, owner of online-based GoNOMAD Travel, said his business is successful. “We’re taking advantage of what’s happening,” he said about the digital era, while sitting in his home office on Mountain Road. “Just like everyone else, we’ve had to renovate, innovate.”
GoNOMAD Travel hosts travel stories on its website, gonomad.com, written by a variety of authors ranging from professional writers to English teachers living abroad. “We’re a top of the funnel site,” he said. “In order to get people into the funnel, you’ve got to create content that people want to read.” Read more...
Where was the first place that you traveled that made you think WOW—travel is amazing (think history book come to life or …..)
My very first travel experience that meant something to me was waking up in a tent in Normandy, France at 5 am, stumbling out of the tent in the mist and marveling that, at age 16, I was actually in ANOTHER COUNTRY. I walked through a deserted village and saw a farmer riding his bike out into a field, with the shroud of the mist. And I was hooked, France is still the country I’ve visited more than any other. Read more
Interview with Pin the Map Project
What’s the funniest or weirdest cultural idiosyncrasy you’ve either witnessed or experienced?
You mean like an old priest in Cyprus talking on a cellphone
What keepsake do you have to get at all your destinations?
I always buy a little thing, a statue, or a little toy, that’s about 3” high, I collect these on my mantelpiece above my fireplace. But it’s all full so I need to find a new place—I always like something that is clearly from the destination, sort of a symbol that I can remember my trip by looking at. Read more
We were delighted to see GoNOMAD listed as a top travel resource in Brad Tuttle's Trip Coach Column on Budget Travel:
Top Three Resources
Book: The Practical Nomad: How to Travel Around the World, by Edward Hasbrouck
Advice about everything from when to buy plane tickets to which countries are ideal for train journeys (travelmatters.com, $22).
Firsthand accounts from countless destinations (where else can you read about spending the summer solstice in Scotland's Orkney Islands?)
Profile of GoNOMAD in Business West Magazine
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Travel for Tomgirls
Tomgirl Raves about GoNOMAD!
Conversations with the women of Tomgirl Tours, a firm specializing in girlfriend getaways that blend outdoor adventure, culinary exploration, boutique experiences and upscale pampering.
"When it comes to travel, GoNOMAD gets it right. GoNOMAD explores all areas of travel—every destination imaginable, along with specific insight for women travelers, family travelers and tours. They also offer a handy reference to travel tools and support, like books, travel insurance and various other resources."
Here's a recent review of our site on the Taking off website:
We were delighted to see this enthusiastic review from Eric Gauger's Notes from the Road, another great travel website.
Explore The World With GoNomad.com
"One of the travel sites that I have been enjoying is GoNomad.com. Interestingly, GoNomad defines itself first by what it is not - and that’s a travel agency. Instead it’s a ‘resource center, designed to provide independent and alternative travelers with all the inspiration they need to plan their travels’. That’s a big claim, and I set out to see what the site had to offer.
Design And Content
While I am not over-impressed with the design, it does provide space to highlight the different sections of the site. The world map on the home page is a great way to navigate to different areas of the globe and find out what the site has to offer. I decided to test it first by exploring the Caribbean. There was an impressive array of articles there, and I thought the find your trip’ menu that appeared at the top of the page was a nice touch."
Using The Site
I decided to give it another try by looking at the UK. There was even more information here, contained within the European section, and I enjoyed the article on London titled Looking For Two Queens. Some of the articles include information on where to stay and what to do. These make a good starting point for any trip.
GoNomad includes some great travel writing, both on the main site and on the blog. There’s also a newsletter, which is attractive and interesting. To round out the offerings, there are practical travel tips on the travel desk, as well as links for booking flights, hotels and more.
It’s hard to do justice to this site in a short review, but whether you want to plan a trip or simply read about exciting destinations, you will find something of value on GoNomad."
GoNOMAD editor Max Hartshorne got prominent mention in a story about travel blogs by MSNBC travel columnist Christopher Elliott:
Seven tips for blogging your way to a better trip
Problems with your last trip? Fire up your PC and post something online
Becoming a travel blogger may be easy at first — all it takes is a computer and an Internet connection — but it’s a lot of work over time. Max Hartshorne, a blogger who edits the travel Web site GoNomad.com, says only a few rules apply. “Don’t write blog posts longer than 300 to 400 words, or about four paragraphs,” he says. “Make sure the headlines are specific, and aren’t misleading. Post at least three to five times a week — or don’t bother.”
Travel blogging takes some discipline, but if you feel as if you’ve got something to say, Hartshorne says you should get started now.
The Recorder in Greenfield Massachusetts, published an article in January 2009 about editor Max Hartshorne's trip to Iran:
DEERFIELD-- Max Hartshorne became the envy of his traveler-friends when he spent eight days in Iran around Thanksgiving. Everyone else thought he was crazy."Why would you willingly spend the money and time--and possibly put yourself at risk--traveling to a country that is hostile to Americans?" they asked.While there is widespread anti-American sentiment, he suggests Iran is quite welcoming to Americans. "Nothing bothers them more than the perception that they hate us," he said.Contrary to what most Westerners think, he says, Iran is a modern and wealthy country.
"This is not Afghanistan, this is not Iraq."Hartshorne, owner of GoNOMAD Cafe and editor of the travel web site GoNOMAD.com, has traveled to about 30 nations. Iranians, "are noticeably more friendly and more trusting than any other country," he said. "As a traveler that makes you feel great."
Local Travel Website to Join Exhibitors at the New York Times Travel Show
The prestigious Paris-based International Herald Tribune recently included GoNOMAD's article on freighter travel on the list of resources in Roger Collis's travel advice column:
Frequent Traveler Q & A: Finding Shipping Information By Roger Collis
Published: June 21, 2007 Where can I find information on trans-Atlantic lines, schedules and fares on passenger or merchant ships from France, or a neighboring country, to New York, in August or early September? Jean-Pierre Gernay, Boulogne-Billancourt, France
...If you have the time and a flexible schedule, consider taking a freighter cruise. Trips tend to be longer and less predictable - no good if you are in a hurry, freighters sail at their own convenience, not yours. But the cost is a lot less than a conventional cruise ship - as little as $100 a day. Voyages can last from 7 to 100 days. A freighter might take 12 days to cross the Atlantic, with unpredictable ports of call..
Useful Web sites include... www.freighterworld.com/; www.freighter-travel-review.com (all you need to know about freighter travel); FAQs on freighter travel around the world; and www.freightercruises.com.
GoNOMAD Editor Max Hartshorne was interviewed by Business West's Jaclyn Stevenson for an article about business blogging.
March 5, 2007 Posting to Greatness
Blogs Are Becoming a Primary Business Driver
By JACLYN C. STEVENSON
Max Hartshorne, who owns the alternative travel Web site GoNomad.com as well as the GoNomad Café in South Deerfield, is blogging about Starbucks coffee and bad karma this week at ReadUpOnIt. Morriss Partee, owner and ‘chief experience officer’ of EverythingCU.com, a business based in Holyoke that provides marketing support and services for credit unions, has broached the topics of brilliant Super Bowl commercials and Burger King Frypods on his blog, Everything CU Brand Adventure.
And Tish Grier, a freelance editor, journalist, and media consultant, is talking about the advent of ‘Webisodes’ — videos produced for Internet viewing at The Constant Observer, her own blog, but one of five to which she contributes.All three are the principals of their own businesses, and even with such a wide array of topics posted this month, each views blogging as a key part of their growth strategy.Indeed, blogs are moving to the forefront of many a marketing plan at companies of all sizes — sole proprietorships, major corporations, Web-based firms, and small niche businesses alike...
GoNOMAD was selected by Dragonfire as a recommended site for summer travel. This was picked up in the Utne Reader for the June 2006
If I could go anywhere in the world...
by Kara Ashe in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
GoNOMAD is all about helping tourists become travelers, embracing the unique cultures to be found off the beaten path. The site features articles by travelers, documenting their personal experiences in various countries, and their impressions of them. It also offers lodging recommendations meant to help travelers immerse themselves in the cultures of their host countries, including traditional sleeping arrangements. There is also information about alternative transportation options, like trains, boats and animal rides, as well as guided tours, and travel geared toward women and families.
The editorial staff at GoNOMAD was truly tickled to come upon this entry by Liz y Brian in her blog I Tend to Wander. It sums up our entire philosophy in just the kind of punchy prose that warms the cockles of our hearts.Sunday, January 08, 2006
Go GoNomad: A Whirlwind Tour
Like somebody you'd like to go on a long trip with, the alternative-travel web site GoNOMAD at www.gonomad.com is both no-nonsense knowledgeable and packed with a giddy enthusiasm about the trip it's going to help you take. On top of that, this web site tells great stories.More than just a vast clearinghouse of travel nuts and bolts (which it is) of flight price comparison calculators, huge vacation/cruise package lists, find-a-car/rent-a-car links, and hundreds of hostel sites, Go Nomad provides off-the-beaten track themes that run the inspiration gamut from French ethnobotanic culinary vacations and pink Brazilian river dolphin tending, to nude hiking and freighter hopping advice that make this site worthy of being a home base from which to launch even the most improbably foray.Like a good traveling companion, it's tidy. Easily navigatable: even the Special Interest vacation search engine Booleans you through 14,000 vacation packages and 1300 top travel suppliers.
You can imagine the editors and interns giggling maniacally as they add yet another Bike Togo link or more guidance on riding Javanese ponies in Lesotho; whooping it up as they find ways to help you reserve beds on trains, barges, organic farms, castles, join wolf and grizzly bear safaris, or (way off the beaten track) build trails through Siberian taiga.Like a unflagging travel companion, its very url eggs us on with its frolicking feature articles. "Go, nomad," it calls. Go! You can do it,' it says in David Rich's report from beyond-remote Kashmiri valleys full of strange and stunningly beauty on "knees past their 'use by' date" (Spiti Valley: The Middle of the Mystic Himalayas).
Those stories and amazing photos call us to loll in the rose-scented bathtubs of Tuscan spas, storm the ramparts of thousand year old Syrian fortresses, and meander through Croatian Zinfandel vineyards. Go Nomad!
We're delighted to see that Jane Wooldridge of Knight-Ridder Newspapers counts our GoNOMAD.com newsletter among her favorites. This review appeared in numerous Knight-Ridder publications including:
Some e-mail newsletters worth the clutter
Sure, they clog your mailbox. But e-mail newsletters also feed your wanderlust -- and help you ferret out deals that might otherwise go unnoticed.Most travel e-mail newsletters are delivered weekly, though a few go out monthly. To sign up for them, just go to the company's Web site listed below; the e-mail signup feature is usually obvious. You can cancel your subscription at any time.
Here are a few faves:GoNomad, www.gonomad.com: Delivered monthly, this letter delivers editorial articles about adventure travel. The site itself includes both articles and booking links, but the emphasis is on information.
This Associated Press story appeared in newspapers all over the country:
SOUTH DEERFIELD, Mass. (AP) — Far from the world of all-inclusive resorts, motorcoach tours and standard top-10 itineraries is a totally different type of travel.
Here you’ll experience places and cultures through activities, interactions and tourism that involves doing instead of just seeing.
To help you plan such a trip, check out www.gonomad.com, which bills itself as being committed not just to alternative travel, but to participatory travel.
You’ll find a searchable database of unusual lodgings, events, tours, activities, and opportunities for working, studying and volunteering around the world, from weaving courses in Guatemala to staying with a family in Africa to helping a community in Nepal.
Even in places as familiar to many travelers as western Europe, GoNOMAD’s miniguides recommend unusual experiences like horseback riding tours of Ireland and a pilgrimage along El Camino de Santiago, in the Basque countryside.
There’s also a link to www.untours.com, a tour group that doesn’t have buses or guides taking you around by the hand but that can help you feel like a local by providing a fully furnished apartment and a customized itinerary.
Other recommendations from the Web site include a relatively affordable trip to Antarctica — $3,000 — and a trek to Bolivia to hunt down the legend of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, who may have ended their days there (depending on which legend you believe).
GoNOMAD also also offers links to Web sites where you can obtain air tickets, visas, passports, travel insurance, rental cars, and lodging.
And while you can use it to explore exotic and unusual places, the Web site is edited and run from a small New England town — South Deerfield, Mass.
Affiliate newspapers that ran the story include:
The New York Times Travel Section, Sunday April 6, 2002.
Site to See: www.gonomad.com
"Promotes low impact, interactive, adventurous tourism. A resource for exotic destinations, volunteering, alternative transportation and tours. Articles, photos and sound clips. Some links are paid for by sponsors."
September 11, 2005
For a different take on travel, browse www.GoNomad.com, a searchable database that rounds up untypical info and links. Subjects include lodging (with options including monasteries, farmsteads, boat hotels, rock caves), modes of transportation, destination mini-guides, and women's travel. The info is for various budgets. One article, for example, explained driveaways, the term for companies that match insured, responsible drivers with cars that need to be transported from one U.S. region to another. You basically agree to pay the gas, put down a deposit and arrive at the destination on time.
New Sunday Express
The New Sunday Express in Chennai, India, has more than 1,000,000 readers. On July 1, 2005, in a review of travel websites Colin Todhunter writes:
"One of the best all round sites on the Internet. A US-based magazine, offering good, informative articles on global destinations, lodgings, getting there and organised tours. There are special sections on travel for women and for travelling with the family. This is a free-to-access site but, unlike most sites, actually offers payment for articles and ensures only quality pieces make it onto the site. GoNomad has a very guide-book feel in terms of offering specific information about destinations. It also offers information on alternative travel and encourages travellers to gain a deeper understanding of cultures and places by taking part in activities such as volunteering."
On Sugarloaf Street in South Deerfield, there is a small, red-shingled building, in keeping with the area's quaint, New England architecture.
Inside, though, is a gateway to the rest of the world. The building is the new home of GoNomad.com, an online travel resource for 'alternative travelers' — those in search of a thrill, an education, or a one-of-a-kind experience while traveling.
GoNomad.com's owner, Max Hartshorne, calls the site "a comprehensive resource center," designed to provide alternative travelers with both inspiration and information to plan virtually any trip.
The most prevalent aspect of the site is its editorial content — essentially a Web-based magazine, GoNomad features hundreds of articles describing unique trips that stray from the more common Disneyland, Vegas, or cruise ship vacations.
GoNomad includes travel guides, links to travel-based companies such as travel agents, airlines, tour companies, and volunteer organizations, and key information for alternative travelers, ranging from unique places to stay to the latest recommended immunizations, and how to find a bathroom — quick — in any country.
On any given day, GoNomad could feature a motorcycle tour of Bulgaria or the top 10 ëbare beaches' worldwide. It could also extol the benefits of teaching English in Paris, Tokyo, Spain, or Ghana, or of volunteering in the Himalayas.
But the site also offers details on an historical weekend in Richmond, Va., and of an English garden tour.
And as the business grows, so does its notoriety. GoNomad has been featured in a number of publications, including the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times, and Hartshorne has served as a guest expert on travel and the state of the tourism industry for several media outlets including CNN, on which he appeared twice recently in the wake of the Asian tsunami that hit Indonesia, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, India, and the once-booming vacation spot of Phu Ket, Thailand.
Having kick-started his business after the tourism industry, and in many ways the U.S. as a whole, suffered its most devastating blow in September, 2001, Hartshorne is indeed an expert on the fragility of the travel and tourism industry.
Yahoo Internet Life
New, notable and Fun-What's hot and cool on the web this month...GoNOMAD
"If traditional sight-seeing makes you yawn, consider planning an alternative vacation that emphasizes "sustainable and responsible tourism." Suggestions here include learning Mayan weaving or volunteering in Nepal. Special tabs are devoted to solo female travel and adventurous families."
Websites to visit
"GoNOMAD.com offers information on alternative travel around the world. The tours and programs listed include volunteering in Kenya and teaching English to Tibetan refugees. The site also provides tips on women's travel safety, long-term travel and more."
American Way, Trends for the Modern Traveler (American Airlines)
Click it: GoNOMAD.com
"You decide: Go back to the office, or gonomad.com, a web site devoted to alternative travel. Gonomad is loaded with creative, uncrowded destinations, from treehouses in Thailand to cooking classes in Europe--far away from your working world."
Daily Hampshire Gazette,
"It's packed with articles, practical tips, links, and a searchable database of 1300 travel resources all geared toward people who want to see the world, but not as typical tourists. These are people looking for rare, inexpensive, personally enriching, often adventurous and socially responsible travel experiences off the beaten path all over the world."
Recommended websites for Ecotourism: GoNOMAD.com
"Gives information on alternative tourism projects and trips worldwide in both urban and non-urban destinations. Provides a small searchable directory of alternative tour operators, lodgings, learning and volunteer programs. Includes “how to” miniguides for the independent traveler. "
soul of America.com travel magazine. March 2001
One good source to tap into is Go Nomad at www.gonomad.com.
Question: What exactly is "Alternative Travel?"
Answer: Alternative Travel is usually unique travel experiences that are departures from the "typical" beach, island, or mountain hotel or resort sightseeing trips. They can be anything from sustainable and responsible tourism projects such as building artificial island reefs, to enrolling in a foreign language or cooking course in Greece, to volunteering with children in Indonesia, to community development in parts of Mexico, to participating in an archaeological dig. Adventure Travel is a rapidly growing segment of the Travel and Tourism industry, and Adventure Travelers definitely seek something out of the ordinary. These types of trips can be incredibly educational and enriching, and can be fantastic ways to provide children, not to mention yourself, with personal, hands-on, real-world experiences which can't be found anywhere else.
The Recorder, Greenfield, Mass.
Local Internet Travel Site Hopes
To Give Adventurers the World
Deerfield man says service is for people who prefer ‘active travel'
By Arn Albertini
SOUTH DEERFIELD---A local man who has taken the helm of a World Wide Web site aimed at expanding the horizons of travelers.
Max Hartshorne runs his internet
travel site from his office in South Deerfield
The site, GoNOMAD.com, is a clearinghouse for travel information geared toward travelers who want to “get out of the comfort zone,” of travel, according to Max Hartshorne, the South Deerfield man who now runs the site. “As opposed to what most travel is, going to Disney World or lying down on a beach and winding down,” he said. “Alternative travel is involved travel. It is learning travel. It's active travel. It's making an effort to engage with the people who live in the countries” you visit.
Renting a motorcycle to cross the Himalayas, spending a week manning a lighthouse in Rhode Island or going to cooking school in Tuscany are among the trips the site chronicles.
Besides stories and information on how to go on these exotic trips, the site includes cultural tips, listings for tour companies, listings for small hotels and youth hostels and links to sites to purchase plane tickets and tour companies.
Eventually he hopes to add travel book reviews, a traveler's discussion board, video and sound clips and more local writers.
“Right now, I'm just trying to throw things up and let them stick,” Hartshorne said.
Hartshorne, 43, took over the site started by Lauryn Axelrod of Vermont on March 1. He most recently served as managing editor for Transitions Abroad, a travel magazine based in Amherst. His daughter, Kate will be as assistant editor for GoNOMAD.com.
For Hartshorne, the business combines all his life's interests: travel, his experience, advertising and the Internet. “It's my first foray into my own company. I am really excited.”
He hopes the site will help turn around the downward trend in travel after Sept. 11. In fact, he says, traveling again is important after the attacks.
“We've got to say to heck with these damn terrorists,” Hartshorne said. “We need to travel to share our cultures. Travel is the great equalizer. You see the depths of poverty and the depths of ignorance. We can't be isolated in this global economy.”
Destinations off the Beaten track
By Judson Brown
SOUTH DEERFIELD--Now may not seem like the best of times to be investing in an Internet site focused on adventurous travel to destinations off the beaten path.
But that has not deterred Max Hartshorne, a T-shirt and embroidered apparel salesman for a Holyoke, MA company, from purchasing GoNOMAD.com.
In fact, he thinks, as do some others, that the attacks awakened many Americans to their need to learn more about the world through travel.
A two-year old Web site started by Lauryn Axelrod, formerly operated from East Arlington VT, www.GoNOMAD.com is one of a growing number of "alternative" travel Web sites.
It's packed with articles, practical tips, links, and a searchable database of 1200 travel resources all geared toward people who want to see the world, but not as typical tourists.
These are people looking for rare, inexpensive, personally enriching, often adventurous and socially responsible travel experiences off the beaten path all over the world.
"At GoNOMAD, we define alternative travel as participatory travel, says a statement on the home page, "beyond passive sightseeing."
The participatory aspect of travel for some, as described in scores of articles archived on the site, involves organized educational experiences--like learning to cook in Mexico. For others, it may mean doing volunteer work as they go--teaching in Nepal, picking organic vegetables in New Zealand, doing dolphin research in Hawaii.
The site features "mini guides" to places such as Tasmania, Slovenia, and Zanzibar, and also unconventional approaches to travel, like a guide to home exchanges, for instance, and one on "travel as pilgrimage."
Hartshorne, 43, is a former newspaper reporter and editor who until recently was the managing editor of Transitions Abroad magazine in Amherst.
In additional to his affinity for the content and the mission of the site, he liked the numbers. A million hits and 61,000 unique visitors a month.
"That means the web site is seriously trafficked, and people are coming, so I won't just be waving a flag and nobody seeing it," he said. "It means you have a market, something people like."
And what about the world situation?
"Yeah, it's a scary world," says Hartshorne, "but I think that makes a lot of people more eager to travel."
If you see a mention of GoNOMAD while you are surfing the web or reading the paper, please send it to us. We will send you a reward!
Max Hartshorne has been the editor and publisher of GoNOMAD Travel in South Deerfield Mass since 2002. He worked for newspapers and other sales positions for 23 years until he finally got what he wanted, and became the editor at GoNOMAD. He travels regularly, enjoys publishing new writers, and watching his grandchildren grow up.
This article was last modified on July 16, 2018, 3:12 am