Hugh Morris, Travel News Editor at The Telegraph, shares his top tips for PRs


In the hot seat:

  • Hugh Morris
    Travel News Editor and Senior Content Editor at The Telegraph

Hugh's Week:

  • Hugh writes for both print and online.
  • He spends five weeks of the year travelling - just his holiday allowance really. So the trip needs to be good.
    • Reluctant to go on group trips.
  • Hugh likes walking, mountains and history. Not a fan of beach holidays.
  • Gentle follow up emails are great — don’t chase or badger, especially if your story is weak.
  • Come armed with information if meeting up, wants to have a productive meeting.
    • Rarely goes to evening events.
  • Email is the best way to contact, doesn’t pick up the phone.

The Telegraph:

  • Every morning by 8.30am a selection of travel ideas / stories are collected by Assistant Head of Travel.
  • 10am: conference where writers pitch stories to the editor.
  • Weekly commissioning meeting where key story ideas (and ‘long leads’) for the week, Weekend + Sunday sections are discussed are on Tuesdays.
  • Saturday edition generally done by Wednesday / early Thursday at the latest.
  • Digital team interested in news stories of the day.
  • Every story needs to be pitched based on which reader it is relevant for
  • The Telegraph has 8 reader types:
    • Millennials, Family travels, Core Readers (empty nesters who have time and money), Luxury traveller, LGBTQ+, Adventure travellers, Solo travellers, Business travellers
    • The Telegraph must create stories for each of these readers
    • Age group is 18-80+
  • Exclusives and embargoes are more important than ever to The Telegraph.
  • Telegraph competitors include: The Times, The FT, How To Spend It.
    • Lesser competitors include: Refinery29, Suitcase, Good Housekeeping, Women and Home.
  • UK stories are a priority for the paper.

Top Tips:

  • Emails: sell the pitch in the subject line otherwise will be lost. Monday is the best day to pitch ready for Tuesday’s meeting.
  • Family travel does very well.
  • Relationship building is fundamental when working with The Telegraph
    • Even if you email your one contact and it isn’t right for them, it will be passed on
  • If you have stats and figures, make sure they stand up.
  • Press Trips: staff will question “How is this going to benefit The Telegraph reader?” If you can provide an answer, it’s more likely to get picked up.
  • Sustainable Travel: The Telegraph doesn’t tell people how to behave. All travel, therefore, is permissible. They won’t be going flight-free.

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