Did your vacation even happen if you didn't plaster it on Instagram? These days, it seems, not so much — and you can hardly be blamed for excitedly sharing the fun scenery with folks back home and around the world. Fair enough.
But not everyone's travel photos strike followers the same way: Some feeds inspire true joy, wonder, and wanderlust... while others just inspire a touch of that "unfollow" button.
Let's start with the best kinds of travel Instagrammers on the spectrum:
1. The truly grateful ones
We love when someone shares earnest feelings and thoughts about their vacation. Instead of #FromWhereYoudRatherBe, these people are not braggy — but rather sincerely #grateful for these precious life experiences, like this stoked girl who got an upgrade to business class.
2. The ones who show us things we've never seen before
We love the explorers of Instagram who take us somewhere we wouldn't have thought to go — or even perhaps wouldn't even have thought to research. Mongolia anyone?
3. The ones who teach about culture
Sometimes the most beautiful moments in life aren't classically Instagram-worthy in terms of stunning visuals — but rather cultural experiences that expand our brains. And we love Instagrammers who expose us to these fresh perspectives. Learning is fun, right!?
4. The ones who actually take good photos
It's a joy to follow actual photographers on Instagram: Some of the best travel accounts come from pro travel photogs who spend days in the same place waiting for the best lighting and best shots. Their art can be deeply inspiring — and a fantasy break from an ordinary day.
Do you see yourself in any of the above categories? (Uh-oh.) If not, consider that you might be one of the ones on the other list. Here are the travel Instagrammers who drive followers nuts:
1. The shameless selfie-takers
Nothing wrong with a good selfie every once in a while, but when you go to the Maldives and we never see the sea because your mug (or boobs) are filling every frame... it's kind of a let down. When people spend their whole trip Instagramming and Snapchatting selfies, you have to wonder if they even had a single authentic experience.
2. The salespeople
We get it — and we respect it: Some people make money traveling for a living by blogging or promoting products. But when when every other shot is a sponsored #ad, how are fans to even know what your perspective really is?
3. The ones who break the rules for the shot
Remember when Vanessa Hudgens got caught carving into the rocks in a national park... or rather got herself caught by posting about it? This happens on Instagram more than you might guess. Sometimes it's not even a safe shot, and the risks aren't worth it.
4. The copycats
Just like fashion poses or food pics, there are trends in travel photography on Instagram — the "look away back of the head shot", the "floppy hat shot," and the "breakfast in bed from above shot" are classics. Nothing wrong with giving those a go! But, when you literally copy someone else's entire trip photography, right down to the faming and the poses? Well, that's when things get really weird... and so not OK.
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