Entry Guidelines for 2018 NATJA Awards Competition

Entry Deadline Extended to Friday, October 5th! 

Note: Please read the following requirements carefully, as any entry that does not fully meet all requirements will be disqualified.

General Guidelines · Downloadable Entry Form Guidelines · Online Entry Guidelines · Entry Deadline · Judging · Entry Award/Note · Announcement of Winners · Prizes & Recognition · Frequently Asked Questions


  1. Entries must have been published or distributed between SEPTEMBER 1, 2017 and AUGUST 31, 2018. Content that was previously submitted in a NATJA Awards Competition, but has been re-purposed for another publication does not qualify for the 2018 NATJA Awards.
  2. NATJA members' membership must be in good standing through March 1, 2019 to be eligible for an award and/or prize.
  3. There is no limit to the number of entries you may submit, as long as all entries are properly identified, and an entry fee is paid for each entry per category.
  4. The submittor may only enter an article or photograph in either a print or online category of the same name, i.e. Culinary Travel. Duplicate submissions in print and online categories will not be accepted.
  5. Everyone can submit entries using the entry form starting on Page 6 of the downloadable Guidelines & Entry Form. NATJA members can submit entries online via the NATJA website (must login to use the form).
  6. A fee is required per entry, per category, per the FEES schedule on Page 2 of the downloadable Entry Guidelines & Form or on the Entry Fees page. NATJA members receive special entry fees.
  7. Review each category and ensure that the content meets the qualifications for the category/ies in which it is being submitted. Content not appropriate to the category/ies may be disqualified from the competition at the discretion of the judges.
  8. Once submitted, there are no refunds.
  9. Publications submitting entries on behalf of a journalist/photographer MUST provide contact information for the journalist/photographer in the JOURNALIST AND/OR PHOTOGRAPHER INFORMATION section.
  10. Publications that are NATJA members in good standing may submit up to five (5) entries by staff journalists at the NATJA media member price.
  11. Publications or their editors who are media members of the North American Travel Journalists Assoc. (NATJA) may not submit on behalf of writers who are not dues-paying members of NATJA at the “NATJA Media Member” rate. However, they can submit on behalf of writers who are NATJA dues-paying members at the member rate.
  12. NATJA Media Members may only submit articles with their own byline at the NATJA Media Member rate.
  13. Foreign publication submissions must be translated into the English language.
  14. By submission, submitter grants NATJA permission to publish the submission, in whole or part, in conjunction with any publication noting, commenting on or discussing the NATJA Awards Competition winners. In any such publication, credit shall be noted as provided on the entry form.
  15. Once entry and all corresponding materials are submitted, NATJA will confirm via email receipt of entry submission via email.


  1. Members and non-members can submit to the NATJA Awards Competition using the downloadable Guidelines & Entry Form.
  2. Photocopies of stories and the entry form ARE acceptable.
  3. Please write LEGIBLY when filling out the form. Information provided on the form by the submitter will be reflected when winners and finalists are announced.
  4. Each entry must provide contact information for the submitter and the journalist/photographer, if different than the person submitting.
  5. All applicable Entry Information must be provided on the entry form.
  6. Each entry must identify a single category name and number.
  7. Please enter ONLY ONE SUBMISSION ON EACH ENTRY FORM. For additional entries, please use additional entry forms.
  8. Online content MUST include either a hard copy of the article, photograph, podcast (on CD or flash/USB drive), video (on DVD or flash/USB drive), OR a direct link to the entry (i.e. www.mywebsite.com/article1.html). Failure to provide either a hard copy or a direct link may result in disqualification of the entry. Please use short link services such as bit.ly or goo.gl for long URLs.
  9. Photography submissions should include a tearsheet (or print out for online publications) of the article/publication in which the photograph originally appeared. NATJA strongly recommends that photography entries be submitted as originally published and as good quality prints. Submission of photography without reference to the article or publication in which it originally appeared may be subject to disqualification.
  10. Once the entry form is completed and all materials are gathered, the submission can be sent to NATJA via mail or a carrier such as FedEx or UPS. If submitting more than one entry, you can send all entries and materials in one package. NATJA strongly recommends tracking your package to ensure its timely delivery.


  1. Online submission is open to members and non-members. Non-members will have to create an account on the NATJA website. Creating an account on the NATJA website does not constitute membership into the organization. 
  2. Scanned photocopies of articles ARE acceptable.
  3. Each entry must provide contact information for the submitter and the journalist, if different than the person submitting.
  4. When submitting online, please enter ONE BODY OF WORK per online entry form. In other words, one article can be submitted in multiple categories when submitting the entry online. You must checkout at the end of the form in order to submit additional entries.
  5. Online content can be submitted as a direct link to the entry (i.e. www.mywebsite.com/article1.html) or a single PDF document. Failure to provide either a PDF or a direct link may result in disqualification of the entry. Please use short link services such as bit.ly or goo.gl for long URLs.
  6. Printed content can be submitted as a PDF scan or tearsheet.
  7. Photography submissions must include a JPG or PDF scan of the article/publication where the image appeared. Scanned tearsheets and photos should be at minimum 150 dpi and 2000 pixels on the longest side. Digital photography submissions must include a link to article or post in which the photo was published, and can include a direct link or upload of the photo.
  8. Once your entry is ready to submit, you will proceed to the checkout page to complete the submission process. You must check out for each entry form that you fill out. If you have multiple entries, you can request a consolidated invoice by emailing [email protected].
  9. To submit more entries online, you will need to fill out the form again and proceed through the payment process for each body of work that you wish to submit. You may submit an unlimited number of online forms.


You do not have to be an active NATJA Member in order to be eligible to submit to the NATJA Awards Competition. However, only currrent members in good standing are eligibile for the discounted entry fee.


New applicants, upon approval, will be eligible to receive one complimentary submission into the competition. This special applies to new members only during the competition, from August 1 to September 30.  To join NATJA, you can go online at www.natja.org/join and fill out the application.


Postmark deadline for all submissions EXTENDED: October 5, 2018. Mailed-in entries must be postmarked by this date. Online entry submission will be open until 11:59pm Pacific Time.


All categories will be judged by a panel of individuals selected by NATJA. The panel will be comprised of working media professionals, retired travel journalists, educators, and industry professionals. The judging panel may select more than one award per category, but reserve the right not to award in any given category.

From the entire field of entries, the judging panel and/or the NATJA Advisory Board are empowered to select two journalist entries and two photographer entries as Best Overall for the Grand Prize award.


In the event of errors, discrepancies, challenges, or other issues, the panel of judges and/or NATJA Advisory Board will have full rights and authority to make any appropriate decision, changes, or adjustments to entries, categories or awards.


Winners will be announced in February 2019. Award distribution will be at the sole discretion of the judges panel and/or the NATJA Advisory Board.


  • The winners announcement is circulated to all NATJA entrants, winners, and finalists, in addition to media outlets, NATJA members, and mailing lists.
  • Prizes are awarded as: Grand Prize for overall outstanding accomplishment across the competition; Gold Prize, awarded per category; Silver Prize, awarded per category; Bronze Prize, awarded per category. Finalists will also receive a certificate.
  • At the discretion of the judges, Finalists may also be named for individual categories.
  • All winners are permitted to display the NATJA "Winner's Seal" on reprints, dust jackets, covers, and websites/blogs.
  • Grand Prize winners for Journalism and Photography as well as Gold Prize winners in media categories (categories 100 - 192) are eligible to select a bonus destination prize. The list of bonus destination prizes is available at www.natja.org/awards-prizes. Please note that the list is subject to changes.
  • Bonus destination prizes will be valid for use February 1, 2019 through February 1, 2020. Seasonal and black out dates may apply.
  • No more than two destination prizes may be awarded for multiple Gold Prize or Grand Prize winners.
  • The final list of available bonus destination prizes will be sent via email to Grand Prize and Gold Prize winners after the winners announcement release.
  • Winner certificates and bonus destination prizes are distributed by mail. Recipients must ensure to provide NATJA with current mailing address information. NATJA is not responsible for misdelivered awards.

Frequently Asked Questions

1.Why do you charge a submission fee for the awards competition?

All of the fees collected for the awards competition go towards the administration of the awards competition.

2. I am submitting multiple entries into the competition. Do I need to mail each entry separately? Should a separate check be included with each entry?

Multiple entries can be mailed in one package. Each entry must have its own entry form. Fees for multiple submissions can be paid on one (1) check or one (1) credit card charge. You can also submit online at www.natja.org/awards.

3. I live in Canada. Can I send a check in Canadian dollars?

Submission fees are in U.S. dollars. If your only banking option is a Canadian-based check, you must add a $5 conversion fee per check. This fee does not apply to credit card charges.

4. Are photocopies of articles and/or the entry form acceptable?

Yes, we do accept photocopies of articles and the entry form. Photography entries must be submitted as published (for print publication) or as good quality prints, along with a copy of the article in which they appeared.

5. I am an international journalist, publication, or CVB/DMO. Can I submit to the awards competition?

Yes, international submissions are welcome. Stories and marketing material must be written in English in order for the content to be judged properly.