Welcome to Young Travelers of Hong Kong! For my dear, loyal regular readers (hi mom!), this might be a formal update of what Young Travelers of Hong Kong will look like in the future, though this post isn’t really for you. Excitingly this week Young Travelers of Hong Kong joined BoardingArea, a community of frequent flyers that are looking to maximise their miles and points experiences.
Here’s a little introduction to this blog and what we do here, as well as what content to expect, how often I’m looking to post, and what I can and can’t promise. While I’ll introduce myself briefly, that’s not the point of this post – for more about myself and how I got into blogging, check out my About page.
1. “We”, not “I”
Young Travelers of Hong Kong has never had, and never will have any ghost writers – all of the reviews I write are my own, as well as the opinion pieces, comparisons, guides, and other content that come with. That being said, the content on this blog isn’t solely my own.
You’ll see the occasional post from my friend Jason (studying at Cornell – more posts from him here), and Ethan and Mallesh have been pivotal to the growth of content on this blog as well. Generally I’d say that at least in the short run, for the majority of reviews and posts on this platform you’re stuck with me – though it’s fundamental to our blog’s brand that Young Travelers of Hong Kong has and always will be a team effort.
2. We’re not actually based in Hong Kong anymore
By way of introduction, my name is Alvin, I live in London, and I write for Young Travelers of Hong Kong.
As you’d expect, there’s a backstory to this mess – I grew up in Hong Kong, and although I’m not planning to move to Hong Kong anytime soon at the moment, it’ll always be a part of my identity. I did all my pre-university studies in Hong Kong (where I started the blog in 2014), though moved to London to be a Mechanical Engineering student at Imperial College. I’m hoping to take up a consultancy role in London and am currently interviewing for a few positions, though the general plan is to stay in London. Very similarly, neither Jason or Mallesh are based in Hong Kong anymore, and Ethan was never based there in the first place!
Yes, a Young Traveler of Hong Kong calls London home
If you scroll though the reviews and guides that we’ve written in the past, there’s generally a deeper sector expertise of the aviation market out of Hong Kong than out of other markets around the world. I don’t think that’s where we plan to be in the long-term, especially since we’ve already all moved out – though there’s likely to be a Hong Kong “flavour” threading throughout our posts that nods to this shared part of our identity (especially with the force with which we bash intra-European business class, given the amazing offers that we otherwise have intra-Asia).
3. We’re an aviation and hotel review site that only publishes other content if we feel like it
This is key if you’re new and have high hopes for a new blog on the network – I can’t promise 20+ posts per week.
Years ago I tried to compete as a blogger in the miles and points space, though I don’t have the acumen, miles and points experience, or even life experience (I’m not even earning enough of a wage to get a lot of credit cards yet, especially as an international student in the UK) to take an advisory role in the field. I’m looking for ways to get in the game, but right now there are much better blogs out there that can provide much better tips and tricks. Similarly, I’m always the last to know new things in the industry, so you probably won’t hear about the latest product reveals from me (unless I’m personally at the event, which has happened before). Jason is a better person to hear from on both counts, though I don’t want to oversell our abilities to offer miles, points, and industry news content in either case.
I believe a humble person owns up to their shortcomings, though that doesn’t necessarily mean hiding what they’re good at. I can promise high-quality, firsthand, expert, detailed reviews of airlines, airport lounge and hotel products, as well as deeply thoughtful and thorough comparisons between products. Many of our reviews have helped thousands of travellers choose which airline had the leading-edge offering to their specific destination, and I want to specialise in that. Obviously the volume of content I can output in this area is directly proportional to how much I fly, and there’s a ceiling to how much flying can happen when I’m trying to finish a degree, get a graduate job, and have part-time volunteering opportunities elsewhere. I’d say since I fly between Hong Kong and London regularly and go on other trips on a fairly frequent basis, you can expect a handful of posts per month, and maybe slightly fewer during major life events.
Still, over the past 8 years I’ve managed 110+ airline reviews, 80+ airport lounge reviews and 50+ hotel reviews. I’m also a daily reader of blogs that have a significantly higher review count and do this for a living. This isn’t a boast, but rather a justification of our posting volume and a plea for you to trust my judgement.
4. Why I wanted to join BoardingArea
In October I reached out to BoardingArea asking if our site could join the network.
Mainly, I wanted to extend my audience reach. This is fairly intuitive – I wanted to build a community that helped each other maximise their travels by choosing the best flights and hotels at their desired price range, and I struggled to do this without significant readership. I also struggled with wrapping my head around SEO, and didn’t have the web development experience needed to maximise my content.
However, why BoardingArea and not other platforms? I do strongly believe that BoardingArea helps bloggers, their personalities, and their goals shine through, preserving originality in a unique way compared to other platforms. That’s in a huge part thanks to the strong leadership of their founder, Randy Petersen – I haven’t met him personally, but just through email exchanges, he’s a great, genuine guy that really wants to help bloggers succeed. This culture flows down to BoardingArea’s bloggers and readership in an inspiring way, and I’m so glad to be part of this community.
5. Reach out to me and make yourself at home here!
I hope I’ve made clear that I’m not here to “make it big” or show off an extravagant flying hobby. I’m really here to help travelers make the best decisions, maximising value on great airlines and hotels, and flying/staying at the bad ones so you don’t have to. The scope will change in the future as my life changes (especially since I graduate this year, so I’ll be earning a legitimate working wage soon – yay!), so please do join along with me on this journey.
That being said, make yourself at home with the content that’s already on this blog, such as the reviews, guides, and more!
Hopefully this also makes clear that I’m open to any and all feedback, so please do get in touch.