The Best WordPress Plugins for Travel Blogger Websites

If you’re starting a travel blog with WordPress and are looking to find the best plugins to help you succeed, this list might be helpful. We visited the websites of the most popular and high ranking travel blogs and checked what plugins they were using and compared them with alternatives to come up with the list of the best essential plugins for travel blogger websites. Depending on the strategy you want to apply for your website, some plugins might be more useful than others, but usually for travel websites, you want to reach  a vast audience, engage them with useful content about the different destinations you write about and hopefully encourage your them to share that content. Some travel bloggers might rely on affiliate marketing other on selling their own products and you’ll see plugins on this list that will help either cases.

We will not include plugins that have a more vast usage and application and are less specific to travel blogging. We still recommend a lot of these plugins, like Yoast SEO, WP Super Cache and Google Analytics Dashboard for WP, since they are also essential, but we won’t include them. We’ll write about plugins that will be particularly useful for travel websites.

This list includes what we consider to be the best, either free or premium plugins.

Social Warfare

Social Warfare is the ultimate social sharing plugin for WordPress. It’s not just another sharing buttons plugin, it contains a lot more features that will help you in the social media fighting ground. Amazing social sharing icons and sharing count with tons of display options, content protection, share count recovery options, Google Analytics Integration and much more. It’s a premium plugin, but once you have this plugin, you won’t need any other social sharing plugin.

A lot of the big players are using this one:

Interactive Geo Maps

Used by most of the top travel bloggers, the Interactive World Maps is a popular plugin that helps you display simple maps that can help your users understand where you’ve been and where you’re going to for example.
Interactive Geo Maps is its predecessor, built with better and more flexible maps. And it has a free version!
You can use it to showcase how much you’ve traveled or use it to redirect your users to content about a particular country or city. You can also display maps of individual countries to complement your posts and pages. All travel websites need to have a map and this plugin provides simple vector maps that will look great on your website.

Some examples of top bloggers using it:

Mailchimp

Having your visitors emails is vary valuable. It’s a lead, a way to bring them back to your website in the future, with a carefully crafted newsletter for example. Mailchimp is an email marketing service that will help you manage your emails and provide you with online marketing tools. Integrating your mailchimp account with WordPress is easy with this plugin. It will provide you sign-up forms which are well designed, user-friendly and optimized for all platforms.

Who’s using it?

Ninja Popups

Getting your users email is great, but what’s the best way to do it? Ninja Popups plugin will allow you to build non intrusive popups and customize them so they fit right in your website. Compatible with MailChimp and other platforms, it’s one of the most popular pop up builder plugins for WordPress. Also great to incorporate contact forms, information for users, social sharing tools and anything else that would require a popup.

Using it:

Amazon Associates Link Builder

If you want to monetize your website with amazon affiliate marketing and are part of the Amazon Associates program, then Amazon Associates Link Builder plugin is what you’ll need. It will allow you to quickly find the products you want to showcase and build the affiliate links easily.

Some bloggers using it:

Yet Another Related Posts Plugin

Once your users land on an article of yours, you’ll want to keep them in your site by displaying related articules that might be interesting for them. Yet another related posts plugin is one of the plugins that will allow you to display related posts very easily. It’s not the only plugin used by the many travel blogger sites we checked, but it’s the best.

Using it:

Instagram Feed

If you’re sharing your travel photos on instagram, then Instagram Feed plugin is a mandatory plugin. It’s a free plugin with simple but powerful features. You can easily link to your instagram account and display your latest pictures on your website. Engage your audience with your pictures and potentially gain more followers on instagram.

Examples:

Slider Revolution

You want to cause an impression on your visitors and Slider Revolution is the best plugin to do it. Create amazing custom sliders, with tons of great options and responsive layouts. Use the power of beautiful images in your favor and place a great slider in your homepage or complement your blog posts with one. This plugin gained notorious popularity in the WordPress community and has raving reviews. It’s a premium plugin, but it’s worth every penny.

Check out some of the slides built using this plugin on these sites:

Disqus


Disqus is a blog comment hosting service for web sites and online communities. The Disqus plugin will allow you to have Disqus hosted comments on your website, that will get better indexed by search engines and are proven to increase engagement by users, due to it’s many features and social networks integration. Apart from that, it’s also amazing at preventing spam comments.

Who’s using it:

Interactive Geo Maps – My new free WordPress plugin

I recently released in a new plugin in the WordPress plugin repository. It allows you to create interactive maps of the world, continents or any country in the world.

It was kind of a soft launch, as I’m still polishing out some features, but the plugin is ‘production ready’. I’ll be slowly marketing it to potential users. You can already visit the official website for some demos.

Screenshot of official webpage for Interactive World Maps
Official website

This plugin is a spinoff of my previous Interactive World Maps plugin, which is doing well, but needed a revamp. I decided to develop one from scratch and make a free version available. This new version uses the powerful amcharts library which provides hundreds of maps, all of them available in the plugin.

Some of the features included:

  • More than 200 maps available, including maps of the USA, US States divided by counties, Continent Maps, several World Maps and all countries in the world;
  • Colour regions/countries, setup a hover colour and click actions, like open a link when the region or country is clicked;
  • Add markers to any location on a map based on coordinates. Setup a hover colour and click actions;
  • Choose different projections (Mercator, Miller, Albers…);
  • Include or exclude specific regions of the selected map.

I plan to expand the plugin and include custom maps that are not available in the amcharts library. In particular maps of specific popular cities and region maps of my home country Portugal.

I’ve created a demo page where you can preview all maps currently available, which are more than 200.

If you had the opportunity to try the map and have some feedback, feel free to leave a comment below!

Delete Old WordPress Comments Automatically

There are a few reasons why you might need to automatically delete comments based on date. For maintenance or even performance.

A while back me and my friend Pedro Carvalho where working a project that needed this feature for legal reasons. We developed a plugin and decided to release it in the WordPress plugin repository with the permission of the project managers.

Delete Old Comments is very simple, non intrusive plugin. It will provide you a few options to automate the task of deleting comments based on age. They can either be sent to trash or permanently deleted.

The plugin will offer you 3 simple settings:

  • Recurrence – How often to check for old comments
  • Age – Set how old they need to be to exclude them
  • Operation Type – set if the operation will trash the old comments or permanently delete them.
settings page for plugin
Plugin Settings.

The new settings will be added to the ‘Discussion’ settings page.

We hope this simple plugin is helpful if someone else needs to implement this feature.

Feel free to leave feedback or ask any question either in the comments section below or on the plugin page.

Date and Time Picker field on Contact Form 7

Most websites online will need a contact form and Contact form 7 is without any doubt one of the most popular plugins on WordPress with 5+ million active installations and growing. It’s amazing how simple and versatile the plugin is, allowing any form to be extended using simple tricks.

The plugin comes with support for ‘date’ fields, but for some projects you might need a datetime field. I have developed a plugin that can help you with this and I’ll explain how you can use it with CF7.

Install the Date Time Picker Field

Although the plugin was not built to work directly with CF7, it’s compatible with any form you might have on your website, Contact Form 7 included. You’ll just need to follow some simple steps.

Add a normal text field to your form

The first step is to build your form. For the fields you want to convert into datetime fields, simply use text fields. You can name the field whatever you want, but you will need to pay attention to the class name you add:

It doesn’t necessarily need to be ‘datefield‘ it just needs to be something unique and that you remember after, when setting up the Date and Time Field plugin.

Setup Date and Time Field plugin

Once you have your form, you need to go to Settings > DateTime Picker. In the CSS Selector option, add the name of your class, preceded by a . (period). In this case .datefield This will be the css selector the plugin will use to look for the field and convert it into a date and time field:

And that’s it! You can explore the other settings available in the plugin to optimize the date time picker.

The plugin in the future might include a direct integration with CF7 if this becomes a popular request. Leave a comment if you have any suggestion or request.