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Win a travel writing assignment in South Africa with The National Student’s Travel Writer 2018 competition


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Are you an aspiring travel writer, blogger or journalist?

If so, we’ve got the opportunity of a lifetime just waiting for you: two weeks in South Africa, exploring the iconic wildlife and amazing experiences that the country has to offer, whilst taking part in the Camp South Africa programme with our partners Invasion Group.

What’s included?

- Two weeks in South Africa, taking part in the Camp South Africa volunteering programme

- Activities including sports coaching and English teaching

- Return flights to South Africa (Port Elizabeth) from a UK airport of the winner’s choice

- Pick-up directly from Port Elizabeth airport and transport to the Camp South Africa site

- Free weekends to explore the country

George, Western Cape, on South Africa's famed Garden Route 

What is Camp South Africa?

Camp South Africa uses sports and education to make a difference to children in northern South Africa, using Nelson Mandela’s dream of every child having the chance to play sport as a company mantra. Volunteers can organise tournaments and coach local children in sports including netball, football, rugby, cricket, swimming, tennis and field hockey.

Not sporty? That’s ok – you can spend your time helping children with their English, maths, geography, drama – or any other subject that you choose.

Find out more about Camp South Africa here. 

What about free time?

Evenings and weekends are free (and of course you can choose to stay in South Africa longer once the programme has ended, if you want to explore further afield) – so you can spend the time you aren’t coaching road-tripping along the iconic Garden Route, tracking down wildlife on safari, sampling the local wine, learning to surf at the beach, or braving a bungee swing!

How do I enter?

Entering the competition is simple – all you need to do is submit a piece of travel writing to The National Student’s travel section before 4pm on Friday 22nd June 2018.

Please include the line “Travel Writer 2018 competition entry” at the beginning of the article so we know that it's a competition entry!

New writers can sign up to The National Student here.  

Once you’ve signed up, look for an email from The National Student Editor Lucy Miller, which will explain how to log in to the site and submit your article. Check your spam – if you can’t see the email, drop a line to and she’ll sort it out.

Registered National Student writers can submit to the site as normal.

How is the competition judged?

As in previous years, entries will be judged by our panel of experts – including top bods from Camp South Africa, The National Student and BigChoice Group.

We’ll judge the pieces on the following criteria:

- Originality of subject matter

- Editorial flair

- Quality of photographs submitted

What’s the closing date?

All entries must be submitted to The National Student’s travel section by 4pm on Friday 22nd June 2018.

We’ll contact the winner by Wednesday 27th June informing them of our decision.

Travel to South Africa will take place on 10th, 11th or 12th July, depending on the winner’s schedule.

Return flights from Port Elizabeth will be on or after 29th July, depending on whether the winner wants to extend their trip.

Who’s eligible?

Any undergraduate or postgraduate student in the UK, or any recent graduate – so that’s 2015 onwards.

What happens afterwards?

You’ll need to write three articles about your time in South Africa once you’re back, to be published on The National Student’s website. You’ll also have the opportunity to pitch an idea for our Freshers’ 2018 print magazine, which is distributed across 30 UK university campuses in October.

Finally, a reminder on how to enter…

1. Sign up to The National Student here

2. Follow the instructions in the email you’ll receive when your application is accepted

3. Submit a piece of travel writing to the site

4. Tag “Travel” as the category

5. Include the line “Travel Writer 2018 competition entry” at the beginning of your article

6. Share your article across all your social channels when it’s published, tagging The National Student and adding #TravelComp18 so we can see all entries in one place

7. Keep an eye on your inbox on Wednesday 27th June to see if you’ve won

8. If you’re the winner: start planning for the trip of a life time to South Africa!

If you have any questions, email

You can see previous entries to our Travel Writer Competition here and here

We can’t wait to read your entries!

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