The Australian Society of Travel Writers Incorporated (ASTW) is the most highly respected travel media body in Australia. Founded in 1975 and incorporated in 2011, it is a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to promoting ethical and honest travel, and the unbiased reporting of it. On a day-to-day basis, the ASTW is run by an elected committee and a salaried Secretariat.
The ASTW has more than 300 members who are freelancers and staff writers, travel editors, radio and television broadcasters, bloggers, guide book authors, photographers and public relations (PR), social media and marketing professionals.
Chances are if you’ve enjoyed a recent travel story, and perhaps ogled a gorgeous travel photograph, it’s been the work of an ASTW member. Our members’ work appears regularly in major newspapers, magazines and websites across Australia and all over the world.
All our members satisfy strict criteria to join the ASTW and substantiate annually – by providing details of their published output or travel-related position – to retain their membership. They must also adhere to a Code of Ethics. By ensuring that only bona fide applicants are admitted, the ASTW maintains its integrity and the professionalism of the travel industry.
The objectives of the ASTW are to:
Encourage and uphold responsible, professional standards of travel reporting
Safeguard the professional independence of travel writers
Promote Australia’s travel writers as a key segment of the travel and communications industries
Undertake other activities that contribute to the ASTW’s prime goals of better travel reporting and more satisfying travel.
One of the key benefits of being a member of the ASTW is the opportunity to network with other travel professionals at regular ASTW events.
There are regular ASTW lunches in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, organised by a lunch coordinator in each city, as well as a Trivia Night and a Wine & Wickets cricket day.
The highlight of the ASTW year is the Annual General Meeting and Awards weekend, which is held either in Australia or overseas (previous venues have ranged from Shanghai to Cape Town) and includes seminars, workshops, guest speakers and the gala awards night.