A YouTube travel channel started seven months ago by a United States expat in Guadalajara is managing to thrive despite Covid-19 restrictions and reduced international travel worldwide.
“The coronavirus has definitely presented some challenges with travel and making videos, but I’m still finding subject matter that keeps me going,” says Blake Wilkinson, 39, who came to Mexico from Portland, Oregon, two years ago and decided to start the Colibri Travel channel on YouTube this past January, just as news was coming out of China about a new, highly contagious virus.
Like many other travel YouTubers, Wilkinson started the channel both to show other people the hidden parts of Mexico most tourists never find and to help fund his love of travel and living in foreign countries, which has led him to travel throughout Latin America and to live in places like Madrid and Santiago, Chile.
“To really understand a country and its people, you have to get off the beaten path,” he says. “I’ve traveled for years and years and have always loved to dive deep into the local culture wherever I go. I moved to Mexico so I could explore everything Mexico has to offer, and I thought I could take people with me via my YouTube channel.”
Starting a channel dedicated to travel in January 2020 might come across as incredibly unfortunate timing, but despite reduction in travel worldwide this year that has bankrupted airlines and resorts, Wilkinson’s channel has been steadily growing and recently reached 1,000 subscribers, perhaps in part because he’s found ways to adapt while staying true to his channel’s original purpose.
He’s recently expanded his content to include tip videos on how to move to a foreign country like Mexico and videos that take into account the pandemic, where he discusses average Mexicans’ reactions to and beliefs about Covid-19 in his current home city of Guadalajara, while continuing to make videos featuring lesser-known destinations.
“I feel very fortunate that 1,000 people have chosen to follow my channel and join me on my ride throughout Mexico,” he said.
Mexico News Daily