Chance Encounters – Travel Writing Competition Now Open

“Chance Encounters”
Travel Writing Competition Now Open

Update April 16 2020: Entries for Chance Encounters are now closed. Winners will be announced throughout May. To stay up to date (and catch the next travel writing competition) follow us on Facebook and sign-up to our Free Newsletter.

Dear Writer,

Intrepid Times was founded in 2014 as a home for narrative travel writing with heart. Last year, we held our first travel writing competition. The theme was overcoming fear while traveling. We received hundreds of entries from dozens of countries around the world, each with a unique take on what it means to feel fear and see the world anyway. The winning entries were collected in the anthology Fearless Footsteps that is being published around the world by Exisle Publishing later this year.

As you can imagine, we’re very excited about this! Our community is growing day by day, and we have decided that it is now time to get started with our next travel writing challenge: Chance Encounters.

Write a true travel story about an interesting conversation, quirky character or unexpected encounter that occurred during your travels. This could be a local with whom you shared a significant, cross-cultural moment. It could be a fellow traveler who you got to know and exchanged stories with. It could be a stranger in a strange land who you merely observed and remembered.

The story has to be true — but feel free to change the name if you want to preserve the person’s privacy. The idea is to explore the chance encounters and profound meetings that happen, often at random and usually when you least expect them, when you surrender yourself to the road and open up to the joys of travel. Remember these are travel stories, so be sure to set the scene and let us know where you were and what it was like.

For this competition, we are offering a monetary prize to the winner. The author of the winning entry will be paid a special rate of $100USD and be published on Up to three finalists will also be chosen and have their work published on Intrepid Times and be paid our (smaller) standard writer’s fee. The winner and any finalists will be announced and published in May 2020, with payment to winning/finalist writers made via PayPal on the day of the article’s publication.

Here are the instructions – read these carefully!

  • Write a non-fiction travel story on the theme of chance encounters
  • Stories should be between 1000 and 1500 words
  • Stories need to be in English and submitted as a Word Doc attachment
  • Your work should be unique and original and not published anywhere else — by submitting your work you confirm that you own the copyright and give us permission to publish on should you win or qualify as a finalist
  • No need to send photos now; however, if your story is selected as the winner or a finalist, you will need to provide at least one photo to accompany your story when published
  • The winner will be paid $100USD and be published on Intrepid Times
  • Up to three finalists will also be chosen to have their work published on Intrepid Times and be paid our standard writer’s fee
  • Payment for winners/runners-up will be sent by PayPal on the day of the article’s publication
  • Winners will be announced, paid and published in May 2020
  • Entries close April 15, 2020

Update – Entries Are Now Closed and Winners Will Be Announced in May. Sign-up to Our Newsletter With the Form Below to Stay Up to Date and Be Invited to the Next Competition

We can’t wait to see what you’ve got!

Competition entry is free of charge. By participating, you agree to our Competition Terms and Conditions. Top photo credit: Maria Betteghella from


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