Here at Imprint we are always on the lookout for new ways to enhance travel experiences. Usually this means adding new cultural connections or sight-seeing experiences to our tours. Sometimes we stumble across innovations that increase the vicarious value of travel – something we hold to be meaningful and valuable. Connecting to travel experiences through music or recordings can be inspirational or reminiscent. Anything that reconnects people to traveling experiences or gets them excited about seeing the wider world is a good thing. Such is the case with a brand new internet platform called Voqel. For lack of a better description, Voqel is essentially like YouTube, but for audio. At Imprint, we’re using Voqel to broadcast our own "radio station" for world travel, one that you can carry in your pocket. Voqel’s tagline is “Your story. Your voice.” Travel yields wonderful stories, so we’ve found Voqel to be a perfect instrument for Imprint. Using Voqel is simple. Just go to the website, www.voqel.com, and listen to any of the recordings. Randomly peruse the various audio uploads or pick a category such as travel, arts & entertainment, family life, music, etc. One can also follow favorite contributors; you’ll find Imprint’s files listed under Reid Coen. Of course, Voqel’s goal is not only that you listen to stories, but that you also become a contributor yourself. Their view is that everyone has stories worth hearing. To contribute, simply create an account, log on and start recording directly or uploading pre-recorded content. They also have a mobile app, which allows you to listen, share and record from an iPhone or iPad (an Android app is in the works), all with just a few finger taps.
Over the 18 years I’ve been guiding and teaching on tours, I’ve had countless tour members suggest I write a book, ask if I have my lectures written down, or inquire if I have them recorded somewhere. Voqel has provided me a perfect medium for sharing talks and other travel experiences. For those of you who have traveled with me, you will recall being moved by Hr Jung in Bacharach, Germany, Francesca in Rome, or Kheung at Angkor Wat. Perhaps these voices will transport you back to fond travel experiences. Or perhaps it will be the sound of cowbells and rushing water in Switzerland or temple bells and drums from Ranakpur Temple in India. So if you would like to revisit some historical narratives shared on the road or perhaps be inspired by stories of future destinations, use the Voqel link below to listen to what I’ve uploaded and enjoy the growing library of stories posted by others. Hopefully, some of you will be inspired to tell your own stories, travel or otherwise.