Entries open 2 August 2021.

 

Categories and Criteria

1) ASTW TRAVEL WRITER OF THE YEAR
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer or digital publisher member with the best portfolio of three (3) travel stories under or over 1000 words (not including fact boxes or breakout boxes), published during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. Entries must be commissioned and published for a monetary transaction in a digital or hard copy publication not owned or part owned by the entrant. Proof of payment may be requested.

2) ASTW PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer or digital publisher member with the best portfolio of three (3) published travel images during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. Entries must be commissioned and published for a monetary transaction in a digital or hard copy publication not owned or part owned by the entrant. Proof of payment may be requested.

Images can be shot on film or digital format using devices such as a camera, tablet, smart-phone, drone etc. Images captured using multiple exposures e.g. HDR, panoramas etc are acceptable as long as the image accurately represents the scene photographed. Digital image manipulation by the entrant is allowed, within reason. This includes moderate changes to colour, white balance, tone, lighting levels, shadows, highlights, saturation, contrast, dodging / burning, sharpness, the use of filters, cropping, removal of dust spots and reduction of noise. Entrants need to be prepared to supply the unedited file of a submitted image if required by the judges.

Images must be submitted as digital files in JPEG format, RGB colour space at a maximum of 6 megabytes. Images that have been entered in previous years cannot be entered again. Images do not have to follow a theme or be connected. Images must have been published for the first time between 1 July 2020 and 30 June 2021, but may have been taken in previous years. An image, that for all intents and purposes is identical to another image published in a previous year, is ineligible. Images should be submitted as originally sent to the publisher. It is understood the images may not appear exactly as they were sent originally, due to variations in printing and publication fulfilment.
Any metadata including watermarks, copyright notations etc on the images, which could give away the name of the photographer, must be deleted.

3) TRAVEL COMMUNICATOR OF THE YEAR
Sponsored by TravMedia
Judging criteria: Awarded to the public relations member who submits the best series (up to three) of specific campaigns and initiatives during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. Entries need to show the ability to deliver exceptional media results (with full analysis of return on investment), through demonstrating creativity, strategic planning, collaboration with partners, and positive (or turnaround) sentiment using an extensive array of PR tools, such as press releases, famils, events, social media campaigns, photography / film. The submission can relate to one client or a range of clients.

4) BEST AUSTRALIAN STORY UNDER 1000 WORDS
Sponsored by TOURISM AUSTRALIA
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer or digital publisher member for the best Australian story under 1000 words (not including fact boxes or breakout boxes), published during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. Entries must be commissioned and published for a monetary transaction in a digital or hard copy publication not owned or part owned by the entrant. Proof of payment may be requested. The term Australia is used as the geographical areas defined by the Australian Bureau of Statistics: https://www.abs.gov.au/websitedbs/censushome.nsf/home/factsheetsas?opendocument&navpos=450. Stories may describe travel destinations or products and may range from a single destination to several destinations, products or activities that are thematically linked.

5) BEST AUSTRALIAN STORY OVER 1000 WORDS
Sponsored by TOURISM AUSTRALIA
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer or digital publisher member for the best Australian story over 1000 words (not including fact boxes or breakout boxes), published during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. Entries must be commissioned and published for a monetary transaction in a digital or hard copy publication not owned or part owned by the entrant. Proof of payment may be requested. The term Australia, is used as the geographical areas defined by the Australian Bureau of Statistics: https://www.abs.gov.au/websitedbs/censushome.nsf/home/factsheetsas?opendocument&navpos=450. Stories may describe travel destinations or products and may range from a single destination to several destinations, products or activities that are thematically linked.

6) BEST SUSTAINABLE TOURISM STORY
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer or digital publisher member for the best sustainable tourism story under or over 1000 words (not including fact boxes or breakout boxes), published during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. Entries must be commissioned and published for a monetary transaction in a digital or hard copy publication not owned or part owned by the entrant. Proof of payment may be requested. The focus of this category is on environmentally, socially, culturally and / or economically sustainable travel in Australia or overseas to inspire readers to travel and live in a responsible way.

7) BEST FAMILY TRAVEL STORY
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer or digital publisher member for the best family travel story under or over 1000 words (not including fact boxes or breakout boxes), published during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. Entries must be commissioned and published for a monetary transaction in a digital or hard copy publication not owned or part owned by the entrant. Proof of payment may be requested. The focus of this category is on family travel in Australia or overseas. Stories may describe travel destinations or experiences specific to the needs of a family travelling together and may range from a single destination to several destinations, products or activities.

8) BEST FOOD / BEVERAGE TRAVEL STORY
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer or digital publisher member for the best food / beverage story under or over 1000 words (not including fact boxes or breakout boxes), published during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. Entries must be commissioned and published for a monetary transaction in a digital or hard copy publication not owned or part owned by the entrant. Proof of payment may be requested. The focus of this category is on all aspects of food / beverages – including wine, cocktails, beer, and all food based experiences in Australia or overseas. Essentially, this will be a destination piece with food / beverages at the heart of the story, utilising activities, people, technology and products experienced at the destination.

9) BEST INSTAGRAM TRAVEL PHOTO
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer member, public relations, digital publisher, Friend of the ASTW or life member for the best Instagram single travel image posted on the member’s Instagram account during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. The image can be taken with any device including camera, drone, tablet, smart-phone etc and the use of apps and filters is permitted. Images entered in the ASTW Photographer of the Year and Best Travel Photo categories are not eligible.

10) BEST INTERNATIONAL STORY UNDER 1000 WORDS
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer or digital publisher member for the best international story under 1000 words (not including fact boxes or breakout boxes), published during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. Entries must be commissioned and published for a monetary transaction in a digital or hard copy publication not owned or part owned by the entrant. Proof of payment may be requested. The term international is used as the geographical areas defined as places not deemed Australia by the Australian Bureau of Statistics: https://www.abs.gov.au/websitedbs/censushome.nsf/home/factsheetsas?opendocument&navpos=450. Stories may describe travel destinations or products and may range from a single destination to several destinations, products or activities that are thematically linked.

11) BEST INTERNATIONAL STORY OVER 1000 WORDS
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer or digital publisher member for the best international story over 1000 words (not including fact boxes or breakout boxes), published during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. Entries must be commissioned and published for a monetary transaction in a digital or hard copy publication not owned or part owned by the entrant. Proof of payment may be requested. The term international is used as the geographical areas defined as places not deemed Australia by the Australian Bureau of Statistics:https://www.abs.gov.au/websitedbs/censushome.nsf/home/factsheetsas?opendocument&navpos=450. Stories may describe travel destinations or products and may range from a single destination to several destinations, products or activities that are thematically linked.

12) BEST TRADE AND TOURISM NEWS STORY
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer or digital publisher member for the best specific trade or industry story under or over 1000 words (not including fact boxes or breakout boxes), published during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. Entries must be commissioned and published for a monetary transaction in a digital or hard copy publication not owned or part owned by the entrant. Proof of payment may be requested. Rather than being of a general tourism nature, pieces need to cover the nature of travel or newsworthy trends in Australia or overseas that may affect the way people travel.

13) BEST TRAVEL BLOG POST
Judging criteria: Awarded to the digital publisher, associate or full writer member for the best travel blog post published during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021 on a member’s own blog site. Stories may be about any travel-related post, including a personal narrative, an opinion piece, an issues-based article or industry analysis. It can be about destinations or products and may range from a single destination to several destinations, products or activities that are thematically linked. Posts can be any length.

14) BEST TRAVEL BOOK
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer member, public relations, digital publisher, Friend of the ASTW or life member for the best independently written (co-authored books not accepted) travel guide or non-fiction book published in hard format (ebooks not accepted) for the first time in the past three years, from 1 July 2018 to 30 June 2021. Eligible titles must have a 2018 – 2021 publication date and ISBN number. The author or the author’s publisher must provide three copies of the book – one for each judge – to the Secretariat. Galley copies are welcome. The author must also provide a short synopsis (maximum 150 words) of the book and the research process. If the books need to be returned, the entrant must provide suitable envelopes and postage. Books not returned will be gratefully used as prizes at the annual ASTW trivia night.

15) BEST IMMERSIVE TRAVEL EXPERIENCE STORY
Sponsored by AZAMARA CRUISES  
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer or digital publisher member for the best immersive travel experience story under or over 1000 words (not including fact boxes or breakout boxes), published during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. Entries must be commissioned and published for a monetary transaction in a digital or hard copy publication not owned or part owned by the entrant. Proof of payment may be requested. The focus of this category is to delve beneath the surface to evoke a sense of place, space, history and culture through a hands-on experience that involves interacting with locals, e.g. – religious ceremonies, cooking courses, musical activities, art classes and guided walks in Australia or overseas.

16) BEST AUSSIE ROAD TRIP STORY
Sponsored by OUTBACK QUEENSLAND TOURISM ASSOCIATION
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer or digital publisher member for the best Aussie road trip story under or over 1000 words (not including fact boxes or breakout boxes), published during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. Entries must be commissioned and published for a monetary transaction in a digital or hard copy publication not owned or part owned by the entrant. Proof of payment may be requested. The focus of this category is for stories that hit the bitumen or traverse the gravel on an Aussie road trip by car, caravan, motor-home, 4WD, motorbike or push bike. Stories may also include tips specific to the mode of transport.

17) BEST ACCOMMODATION STORY
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer or digital publisher member for the best accommodation story under or over 1000 words (not including fact boxes or breakout boxes),   published during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. Entries must be commissioned and published for a monetary transaction in a digital or hard copy publication not owned or part owned by the entrant. Proof of payment may be requested. The focus of this category is for stories about a hotel, resort, retreat, glamping experience etc in Australia or overseas. Essentially the featured accommodation will be at the heart of the story, however aspects of the destination can be included.

18) BEST NATURE / WILDLIFE STORY
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer or digital publisher member for the best nature / wildlife story under or over 1000 words (not including fact boxes or breakout boxes),   published during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. Entries must be commissioned and published for a monetary transaction in a digital or hard copy publication not owned or part owned by the entrant. Proof of payment may be requested. The focus of this category is for stories based on the natural world such as water, air, plant life, landforms, living creatures, energy etc. From celebrating the beauty of nature, to the human resilience to its fury, stories can be set in Australia or overseas.

19) BEST TRAVEL PHOTO
Judging criteria: Awarded to the associate, full writer or digital publisher member for the best travel photo published during the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. Entries must be commissioned and published for a monetary transaction in a digital or hard copy publication not owned or part owned by the entrant. Proof of payment may be requested.

Images can be shot on film or digital format using devices such as a camera, tablet, smart-phone, drone etc. Images captured using multiple exposures e.g. HDR, panoramas etc are acceptable as long as the image accurately represents the scene photographed. Digital image manipulation by the entrant is allowed, within reason. This includes moderate changes to colour, white balance, tone, lighting levels, shadows, highlights, saturation, contrast, dodging / burning, sharpness, the use of filters, cropping, removal of dust spots and reduction of noise. Entrants need to be prepared to supply the unedited file of a submitted image if required by the judges.

Images must be submitted as digital files in JPEG format, RGB colour space at a maximum of 6 megabytes. Images that have been entered in previous years cannot be entered again. Images must have been published between 1 July 2020 and 30 June 2021, but may have been taken in previous years. An image, that for all intents and purposes is identical to another image published in a previous year, is ineligible. Images should be submitted as originally sent to the publisher. It is understood the images may not appear exactly as they were sent originally, due to variations in printing and publication fulfilment.
Any metadata including watermarks, copyright notations etc on the images, which could give away the name of the photographer, must be deleted.