Travel Blogger Tell All – The Minority Nomad

Ø  Who are you?

I’m Erick Prince-Heaggans aka The Minority Nomad

Ø Where are you from/Where’s home?

I was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio. I joined the military at 17 and have called Texas home ever since. I’m a Texan now.

Ø What type of traveler are you? Backpacker, full time traveler, luxury traveler?

It depends on what project I’m working on. I don’t like these labels. It puts you in a box. I move as frequently as needed. Sometimes I’m staying in 5 star hotels for a week and sometimes hostels for a month. Definitely a full time traveler though. I live on the road.

Ø  Where was the first trip you took?

Military missions were the first. My first trips for leisure were R&R trips in Turkey and Kyrgyzstan. After I left the military I began to travel in the Caribbean and South America.

Ø  Have you had any bad experiences whilst travelling?

As a whole I had 99% great experiences. I’m regularly harassed by customs in the UK. I don’t make my life any easier by always having one way tickets. Also my interactions with and in Russia have been nothing but negative. LOTS of racism.

Ø  Do you have any funny or crazy travel stories?

I was stripped naked on stage in front of 100 people in Thailand. An interesting experience to say the least.  I went to a ping pong show with my sister and some friends and I was dared to go on stage.

Ø  What is the worst place you’ve travelled to and why?

St.Petersburg was a beautiful city but the people were absolutely terrible. Siem Reap was a scam haven and not particularly pleasant in any way. I wanted to really like that city but there isn’t much to it. Angkor Wat and getting trashed are pretty much it.

Ø  Where is your favourite place in the world?

This question should be eliminated from all conversations with long term travelers. lol. It’s almost impossible to give you one so I’ll give you my top 5. Stockholm, Thailand, Colombia, Poland, and Tokyo.

Stockholm is one of the cleanest and beautiful cities I’ve seen. The people are extremely friendly and intelligent. Fun to be around.
Colombia is unspoiled beauty. From the people to the landscapes. Many tourist are afraid to visit there still after the Pablo Escobar era so the crowds are minimal. Amazing food and people.
Thailand easily has the nicest people in the world. The BEST travel bargain on the planet. No one even comes close in terms of price and quality.
Poland. I have a personal connection to Poland from growing up and interacting with Polish refugees in the U.S. The food their is great and history strong. Polish people are an open and resilient people.
Tokyo. I’m a tech head. I love anything that beeps and lights up. Tokyo is the home of all that’s techie. Any tech enthusiast will love it.

Ø  How do you fund your travels?

I’m independently wealthy. Think Bruce Wayne but black. lol. I’m very good with money. I’ve invested my money wisely over the last 10 years. I also sell my photography and do some ghost writing and consulting work in stocks. I’m all about multi streaming. Never have one source of income.

Ø  What is your most fond memory from your travels?

It’s always meeting someone that’s never met a black person before. People are shocked to hear that I constantly interact with people that have never met someone of African descent. I’ve found these to be some of the most open and delightful people. Makes my travels more than worth it.

Ø  What would you be doing if you weren’t travelling?

I would be a lawyer. I was a seat deposit away from attending law school before I decided to travel full time.

Ø  Have you ever experiences any cultural faux pas?

A man grabbed me in Buenos Aires and kissed me on both cheeks. Coming from a hyper masculine African-American community, this caught me wayyyyy of guard. Just not something we do.

Ø  What is your Favorite airline?

Emirates and Qatar are up there. Virgin is good also. I’m all about customer service. Pretty much every Asian airline is tops in that category.

Ø  Where are you off to next?

Romania, Moldova, Turkey, and then London for WTM


Ø  What is the name of your travel blog and why did you choose this name?

MinorityNomad.com. I wanted to pick a name that captured the intent of my blog. There aren’t many sources out there for racial minorities that travel. Solo females and gay travelers, sure. Blacks and Latinos? Not so much.

Ø  When did you start blogging?

2012. I’ve actually been writing about travel since 2008 when I was doing part time entertainment writing for a local paper.

Ø  Where did you start blogging?

I started blogging before I left home. I started blogging only to share my travels with low income students. They asked me too so I did.

Ø  Why did you start a Travel blog?

I started my blog to advocate travel within my minority community. I started a non-profit foundation serving low income students in the U.S. My foundation provides photojournalism training and travel opportunities for these students. One of the early criticisms was black people don’t travel. Statistically, it’s very true and sad. I’m trying to change that.

Ø  What are you tips for new Travel Bloggers?

Don’t care what other bloggers think. One of my biggest mistakes early on was looking at the “big” bloggers and trying to be like them. It’s largely a smoke and mirrors game. Be who you are and commit to that. Despite who it rubs the wrong way. As long as you’re honest and true to yourself you’ll be fine.

Also, have good content. I can’t tell you how many blogs I’ve stopped looking at because of terrible copy and photos. A typo here and there is fine. Shows a human is behind it. But not when a large portion of the content is grammatically poor.

Watch youtube videos on photography or take a course. It will make things quite a bit better.

Ø  Do you wish you did differently when you started out?

A little. I wish I would have written more in the beginning. I really threw myself into my travels instead of blogging  much. From a traveler and experience stand point I don’t regret it. From a productive blog view, I do regret it.

Ø  What has been your most successful blog post and what was it about?

A piece I put together about a black woman’s fears of travel. I think it was successful because I presented it as a personal conversation. She wrote her fears and I responded with advice. Also, it’s something that other blogs just aren’t talking about. I’m black so it’s my area of “expertise” per say. There really aren’t many of us. I can’t think of another full time black travel blogger other than myself and Kerwin McKenzie.

Ø What do you do to help make your articles successful?

I seriously let my friends do the work. I try to write engaging content and produce excellent photographer. And then my friends spread it. Actually i’ve been lucky because from the beginning i’ve had a very loyal group of friends who love to read what I write. No idea why but i’ll keep entertaining them as long as I can. lol

Ø What social media platform is the most helpful for you and why?

Twitter for engagement and Facebook for sharing and conversation. Twitter is instant and I have a tendency to fly off the handle so it slows me down a bit and lets me think. Also retweets are awesome. I’ve had a couple celebrities retweet and favorite my post which has led to some followers and coverage.

Facebook is where I rant and rave. I also get some great ideas from other bloggers. If you’re a blogger and don’t use FB then I don’t know what to tell you because it’s an excellent source for us. Not only personally but professionally.

Ø  Have you worked with any “big name” sponsors, if not who would be your dream to work with?

I’ve worked with Shangri-La Hotels, Ski Portillo, and several small hotels and tour companies. My dream would be to work with a major airline that’s willing to provide airfare for low income students. Also Canon, my god if I could work with Canon it would be a dream come true.

Ø  Do you have any tips for new bloggers who want to work with sponsors?

Be attractive. Make sure you have something they want. And be YOU. Sponsors invest in you. You represent their brand. If you’re out there getting trashed every other post you just might not see many sponsors. As bloggers our personal actions largely affect our professional ones. There is no separation between personal and professional anymore given the prevalence of social media.

Ø  Which travel bloggers do you admire?

 Caz and Craig Makepeace over at Ytravel Blog. Traveling with their girls and being on top of the blogging pyramid is quite impressive. And they’ve gone out of their way to help me out and give me advice when they didn’t need too. And I’ve heard this from others as well. Those two represent everything RIGHT with the blogging community.

Dave Lee over at MedellinLiving and Go Backpackng. Founder of TBS has created a community and course that EVERY new blogger needs to be part of. And that guy is humble as hell. I’ve had lots of great conversations with him.

Matthew Karsten over at Expert Vagabond. I love this guy. You have to admire his passion for life and adventurous spirit. Matthew is living to the fullest and doing what he loves. He’s also anoter great source of advice for me.

Bret Love at Green Global Travel. Hard to put into words how much this guys helped me. Me and Bret come from two very different backgrounds but tend to see eye to eye on quite a bit. His work in responsible tourism has forced me to evaluate what i’m doing in my travels.

Lee Abbamonte. He goes out of his way to interact with and support his readers. He met up with me in Santiago and bought me a beer after he had been traveling for 20+ hours. His online interaction with readers is something I strive for. Definitely someone that hasn’t let success gone to his head.

One thing that stands out about each one of these bloggers is their willingness to help their readers and other bloggers. I see sooooo many “big” bloggers that seem to forget where they have come from.

Ø  Do you have any advice or tips for aspiring travelers?

Just get out there and experience it. Travel is the best tool for self discovery. You quickly find out who you are. And travel solo. Get out of that “community” bubble. Spend time with yourself. Scary at times but highly rewarding at others.

Ø  What is your Travel Motto:

It’ll work, if God, wind, leads, ice, snow, and all the hells of this damned frozen land are willing. – Matthew Henson

Website url: www.minoritynomad.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/minoritynomad
Instagram: http://instagram.com/minoritynomad
Google Plus: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+ErickPrinceHeaggans/posts

Similar Posts


  1. What a great interview! I was just going to skim read this but found it really engaging. Good questions and great answers. Really enjoying this interview series.

  2. Great interview and subject. I have enjoyed Erick’s work for a couple of years now and relish trading the occasional FB barb. He’s doing some really good work out there.

Comments are closed.