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Kayla Douglas

LocationNew York City
Experience 7 Years

Kayla began chasing passport stamps as a teenager and hasn’t stopped since. Her passion for social storytelling and building community–both on and offline–blossomed into her role as Senior Marketing Manager.

Raised in upstate New York, Kayla craved the chance to explore the world beyond the confines of her small town from a young age. Upon receiving a dual degree in International Studies and French, she began working in the travel industry mere weeks after graduating. With a background as a former travel agent and passionate social media marketer, her experience aligned perfectly with SmartFlyer’s thoughtful approach to social storytelling. Kayla is passionate about empowering the ever-growing community of Smarties to approach social media marketing with authenticity while working in tandem with travel industry partners to tell their stories through the SmartFlyer lens.

In her perpetual chase for enriching adventures and airline miles, Kayla has visited – and revisited – both beloved destinations and remote corners of the world; some treasured experiences of late have included Peru by train, Vietnam by tuk-tuk, and Morocco by hot air balloon. But her favorite mode of transportation is hands down a safari game vehicle because it means she’s in her most cherished setting on earth, the African bush. Safaris through Tanzania, South Africa, and Namibia have inspired what she hopes are future trips to Botswana, Kenya, Zimbabwe, and Rwanda. Forever on the hunt for the next hot travel trend, you can typically find Kayla reading, running, writing, and creating content, an americano (or glass of wine, depending on the time!) rarely out of reach.

As a storyteller, how do you prepare for your trips?

I’m a super visual person, so putting together a virtual board of interesting spots is a must. I’ll bookmark cafés that I want to try, murals I need to find, and shots of the scenery that I’m dying to discover with my own eyes. Of course, if there are any special restaurants I want to try, I’ll try and snag a res prior to departure. For me, packing is always an afterthought! I’m totally the one throwing things in my suitcase a few hours before an international flight, barely able to get it zipped.

Favorite Travel Tip

Take all the pictures. Capture as much video as you want. But don't interupt your travel experience by trying to post to social media in the moment. For me, travel is about human connection and being in the moment. You'll lose out on that if you're too worried about editing your photo while on the top of a mountain. Wait until you're back to your hotel for the night (or better yet, when the trip is over) to start sharing your experience online; that way, you can ensure that you were present when it was happening and then able to relive it when you share the destination with your community.

Stories

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Reviews

Singita Faru Faru Lodge

Grumeti Reserve, Tanzania

Kasbah Tamadot

Asni, Morocco

Press

Create & Cultivate

5 Lessons Learned in 5 Years of Managing Instagram for Brands

AFAR

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