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Business Traveler Interview: Melanie Nayer

This is part of a new series here at WhyGo Business Travel featuring brief interviews with people who travel for work, asking them about what they do and some of their favorite travel tips. This way, if you’re looking for a career that will require travel, you’ll get to read about people doing some of the jobs you might consider – and you’ll also learn a few great travel tips from the travel pros!

This week, we’re talking with Melanie Nayer. She’s a hotels reporter for various publications, both print and online – and a social media consultant in the luxury travel industry. Melanie is based in Boston and while the majority of her articles end up printed in other publications, a sampling of them can be found on her website:

What do you do?
I’m a hotels reporter and write about various aspects of the industry for online and print publications. My coverage ranges from hotel reviews to industry trends including economic strengths/weaknesses, branding and marketing campaigns, corporate news and, of course, the luxury aspects of hotels.

What kind of travel do you get to do for work? Do you get to choose where you go?
I travel to hotels around the world, mainly internationally (most recently Asia), to write stories about specific aspects of the hotel (food/beverage, renovations/remodeling, historical/environmental aspects, etc.). I go where the story is and where the specific publication I’m writing for is interested in based on their editorial calendar.

How often do you get to travel for work?
I travel about every two weeks, depending on where I’m going.

Did you choose your job at least in part because you love to travel? Would you make the same job choice again, knowing what you know now?
I’ve always been fascinated with hotels, and I have always wanted to see the world, so it’s a good fit for me. Prior to being a hotels reporter I was a political/economic reporter so “news” has always been in my blood. Knowing what I know now… I’d still travel and immerse myself in hotels. I think there’s something extremely special about the four walls that make a home for guests every day, and there’s always a story to tell inside those walls.

What are some of your favorite travel tips that you’ve picked up?
Sleep when you’re tired. Everyone has a ‘tip’ for jetlag but I’ve found that the best advice is to listen to your body. My biggest tip: always stay hydrated. I don’t drink on airplanes and always try to go for a run or a workout before a long flight – it’s a release that makes it easier to relax when I get on the plane.

What advice do you have for someone who’s interested in doing what you do?
Be realistic. You can’t do it all, but focus on what you can do and find that one story that no one else has written about or discovered. Everyone knows to ask the locals for the best restaurant, but go beyond that and find your own hidden gems.

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