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Travel Tips

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Travel Tips

Featured Friends: Janine from Fill My Passport

Meet Janine from Fill My Passport! The timing of this Featured Friends couldn't been any better! Why? Because she's my interim Co-Host for the Fly Away Friday link-up! Janine knew that Chloe was having a baby and took the initiative to volunteer to assist. I was going to host it alone until Chloe was back so I'm so thankful for her kindness!

This Toronto gal and serious content creator (not just in travel!) has traveled all over the world and looking to do more. Get to know the lady behind Fill My Passport.

1. Tell us about yourself!

I am a Canadian Travel Writer with a background in Journalism and editing :) I have travelled to 40 countries and love eating cupcakes for breakfast. Discovering untold stories and eating new cuisines are of ultimate enjoyment, as I put my experiences into writing.

2. Tell us about your blog, Fill My Passport and what inspired you to start?

Fill My Passport came about as an idea when I embarked on a 5-month trip spanning 26 countries. It would be a way to document my experiences and inform others at the same time, of the possibilities travel brings to our lives. When I returned home it was still a possibility as I began a 2-year stint in Cambridgeshire UK working at the University. When I returned home in early 2016, the opportunity presented itself to get serious about producing this website and resource for the world to read. I have not looked back even through the challenges that come with blogging.

3. You currently live in Toronto, one of my favorite cities! What brought you there, or were you raised there? 

I was born and raised in Toronto! It is my home and I do enjoy some quality time here. I need to re-embrace it as I have been away from home for quite awhile. When I have ventured downtown, I am amazed at the progress and changes!

4. Speaking of Toronto, tell us 3 of your favorite food spots in the city. 

Fresh - Vegan cafe with amazing noodle bowls, sweet potato fries and a carrot cake to die for.
Terroni - A REAL Italian restaurant with pasta made from scratch, artisan pizzas and an impressive wine list.
Curry Twist - Rated the #1 Indian restaurant in all of Toronto, this eatery in the Junction makes the best aloo gobi, naan bread, and chicken curry around! Plus the chef is the sweetest!

5. If time or money was not an issue, where are 3 places you would like to visit?

So hard to choose only 3! But for now, at the time of this interview as my choices change all the time, my top 3 are:

1. French Polynesia
2. Japan
3. Complete Exploration of South America - 6 weeks to explore the Salt flats, Macchu Piccu, Easter Island, Galapagos, Christ the Redeemer, Uruguay and Angel Falls.

6. What are 5 of your must-have items when traveling? 

If you mean in my luggage, I need dental care - being a dental hygiene nerd, I couldn't be without floss, rubber tips, tongue cleaner, toothbrushes, etc! Camera, headphones, anxiety drops - although I love traveling, I am not the best flyer and my Fraggle. I take a Fraggle everywhere and he photobombs quite a few pics.

7. I know this may be a difficult question but what destination has been your favorite? 

You are right, that is difficult! I always answer this question like this - every continent is so different that you just cannot compare countries. So, I will answer it the way I usually do ;)

Asia - China (Great Wall, you took my breath away)
Australasia - Australia! I love the Gold Coast not only because my hubby's family is there, but I also love the zoo, the shopping, and my yoga BFFs there.
North America - Los Angeles and Orlando
Europe - London, Vienna, and Helsinki.
Caribbean - Sint Maarten :)

8. You're my first Featured Friends that has a YouTube channel! Tell us about that. How is it different from blogging? Is it difficult?

I get a lot of help with my YouTube channel thanks to my resident film producer and editor :) It is challenging to keep it up and videos can take painstakingly long hours to produce. I am grateful to him for all his vision in making my channel as amazing as it is. We totally revamped the look for future videos. The new format is called, "Jewels of the Globe" with the first installment being about Austria.

9. What do you hope to accomplish through Fill My Passport?

I want it to be as successful as possible. I need to monetize it and make it my full-time gig. It has been challenging this past year with a lot of difficulty getting it up and going, but they do say being successful in this business takes more than a year to do unless you are super lucky. Fill My Passport will be a year old in June. The niche is gradually morphing into a honeymoon/romance angled platform that will tie in with another site I am currently building for Destination Weddings. And, on top of that, my family is building a blog about Dogs and their well-being called "Muttsbook!" I love that name so much. Busy times all around and hopefully Fill My Passport will lead the way for the other sites to succeed. We are a great blogging community and we have valuable content for readers.

10. Any wise words or additional facts about you you'd like to share with readers? 

Keep it up, do not give up. Blogging is hard work, but it is also a fun job. It is more fun when you see the recognition you deserve, and this I am told will come :) Invest in your blog if you want to do it as more than a hobby and enjoy yourself. Wake up each day and say when someone asks how you are feeling, "I am fantastic. It's a new day. I'm alive, and ready to make a difference." I try to keep this thinking as much as possible. I took this beautiful photo on one of the beaches of the Maldives with only footprints gleaming in the sunlight. As no humans are around, it reminds me of my favorite prayer that gets me through the many challenges in life, "footprints".

Follow Janine everywhere! 

Twitter: @fillmypassport6
Instagram: @fillmypassport06


Thank you Janine for gracing your presence on my blog! I can't emphasize how much I love your positivity and outlook on travel, blogging and life in general. I'm enjoying having you as my co-host on Fly Away Friday and looking forward to reading most posts from you! 

Want to read other Featured Friends? Click here.  

Want to be the next Featured Friends? Due to overwhelming response on interviews, I now have a section dedicated to bloggers wanting to work with this blog. Click here to find out more.

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