Discover the world through travel & beyond!


Hi there! My name is Colleen Lanin and I am obsessed with travel. As the editor of and the “original” Travel Mama, I launched this award-winning blog way back in 2009. That means I've been living my dream job of helping other curious folks explore our beautiful planet for a long time. Read on to learn about my experience as a travel blogger, TV and radio personality, journalist, speaker, and book author. Also, learn why I was invited to the White House as a travel expert…twice!

The Travel Mama Colleen Lanin giving tips for traveling with kids on CBS 8 News San Diego
Colleen Lanin on CBS 8 News San Diego

Print and Online Travel Expert

Numerous print and online publications have interviewed me as a travel expert. Below is just a selection of newspapers, magazines, and websites in which I have been quoted.

The New York Times article featuring advice from travel experts like Colleen Lanin from
(Photo credit: Elaine Glusac's Instagram account @eglusac)

Select Publications Featured In

The Travel Mama Colleen Lanin giving travel tips on the Better TV Show with hosts JD Roberto and Rebecca Budig
Giving travel tips on the Better TV Show

Television and Radio Travel Personality

During my career as a travel expert, I have given tips on many platforms, including television and radio.

TV Appearances

  • The Daily Buzz nationally syndicated morning television program, broadcast in 170 markets throughout the U.S.
  • Better TV nationally syndicated television program, broadcast in 140 markets throughout the U.S.
  • Fox5 San Diego News
  • KUSI Good Morning San Diego
  • CBS Daytime Tri-Cities
  • CBS 8 San Diego KFMB News
  • ABC 13 The Morning Blend Las Vegas
  • ABC News WSET News Lynchburg-Danville-Roanoke
  • NBC WVTM News Birmingham-Anniston
  • Fox 43 News Central Pennsylvania
  • CBS 10 News Tampa Bay
  • ABC 12 KDRV News Medford-Klamath Falls
  • UPN KTVD News Denver
  • NBC 10 WAVY News Norfolk Portsmouth-Newport
  • FOX Daytime at Nine KABB San Antonio
  • CBS 12 KSLA News
  • CBS News WMBD Central Illinois
  • KCTU 43 Kansas
  • Kansas Information Network News
  • NBC Valley News KVLY Fargo-Grand Forks
  • KTXD 47 News Dallas-Fort Worth

TV Commercials

I even starred with my family in three national commercials promoting tourism to Park City, Utah. Click above to see a sample.

Radio Appearances

Also, I've been interviewed on 36 radio programs including WCCO Radio Minnesota, CJAD 800 Montreal Radio, WNEW Radio FM Washington, and WBNR Radio AM New York.

18 Tips for Traveling with a Baby by Colleen Lanin in Babytalk Magazine
18 Tips for Traveling with a Baby by Colleen Lanin in Babytalk Magazine

Travel Journalist

My freelance stories have appeared in the “Today” show's travel section on, Parenting Magazine, the Chicago Tribune, Expedia, and many other outlets. What I'm most proud of, though, are my blog posts written right here on Travel Mamas.

One of The Travel Mama Colleen Lanin's articles for The TODAY Show online
One of my articles for The Today Show online

Some of My Articles

Travel Expert Colleen Lanin giving travel tips to parents at Bump Club and Beyond in Chicago
Colleen Lanin giving travel tips to parents at Chicago North Shore Moms, formerly Bump Club and Beyond, in Chicago (Photo credit: Chicago North Shore Moms)

Writing Instructor and Travel Speaker

I developed the curriculum for The Art and Business of Blogging, which I taught for five years at the University of San Diego Extension and San Diego Writers, Ink. I also taught a session at the well respected Travel Bloggers Exchange Conference (TBEX) and have given presentations about traveling with kids to parenting organizations like Chicago North Shore Moms (formerly Bump Club and Beyond).

Colleen Lanin with her book, The Travel Mamas' Guide
Holding my book, The Travel Mamas' Guide

Travel Book Author

I wrote a book, too. It's called The Travel Mamas' Guide and it helps parents travel with babies and young children…and stay sane! Working Mother Magazine and lots of other fantastic outlets recommend my book. It even won an award. I have the proof sitting on my neatly organized home office desk. (Did I mention I'm a Virgo?)

Colleen Lanin The Travel Mamas at the White House
Pretending to be the POTUS in the Press Room at the White House

Invited to the White House…Twice!

As one of the 100 most influential travel bloggers and media outlets, the White House invited me to a summit on global exchange.

I was one of 10 select attendees recognized for our influence in spreading the word about the importance of studying abroad. Subsequently, I was invited to return to the White House the following year for a private tour of the West Wing and Oval Office.

Best of all, I was able to bring my American history-obsessed dad along. Being a travel influencer definitely has its perks!

The Travel Mama Colleen Lanin at the White House Travel Blogger Summit in Capitol File Magazine (Photo credit: Capitol File Magazine)
I'm pictured in the top left at the White House Travel Blogger Summit in Capitol File Magazine (Photo credit: Capitol File Magazine)

Awards and Accolades

I've got to admit, I don't apply for a lot of awards. I think they're too much work and expense, but I sure do like it when I receive accolades!

Colleen Lanin and family when Travel Mamas launched in 20029
My family when Travel Mamas launched in 2009


Before I launched my travel writing career, I worked in marketing, human resources, finance, retail management, and as a cocktail waitress. I also earned an MBA at San Diego State University and graduated with honors from Arizona State University with a Bachelor's Degree in French, a Minor in Economics, and a Certificate in International Business. My career path makes no sense but I'm thankful my passions for travel, writing, and photography led me here.

Les Trois Graces fountain in Montpellier, France
That's me! In Montpellier, France! (Photo credit: Travel Mamas)

My Love of Travel

As a young teen, I spent a couple of weeks traveling through multiple European countries with my family of origin à la the Griswolds. I then flew by myself to stay two more weeks with my friend's big fat Greek family in Greece.

That monumental trip hooked me on travel! From studying abroad in France for a year in college and spending month-long stays with my own kids in foreign countries to quick weekend getaways — I've been exploring the globe ever since.

Sometimes people ask me what type of travel I prefer and the honest answer is, I like it all. Family travel, road trips, cruises, air travel, theme parks, nature explorations, girls' trips, romantic retreats, and city escapes all float my boat!

Travel Mamas Clients

Brand Partnerships

Over the years, I have partnered with many wonderful brands. From exciting destinations, the best cruise lines, and reputable hotels to trusted products and thrilling theme parks — Travel Mamas has had the pleasure of working with many names you know and love.

Sample Collaborations

  • Experience Scottsdale
  • Coastal Mississippi
  • Visit Buena Park
  • Visit Burbank
  • Princess Cruise Lines
  • Royal Caribbean Cruises
  • Hawks Cay Resort
  • Embassy Suites Hotels
  • Mall of America
  • Rosetta Stone
  • Disney on Ice
  • Expedia

To see partnership results, read what our clients think, and learn about partnering with me, then please take a look at opportunities for travel campaigns.

The Travel Mama Colleen Lanin traveling in the Sahara Desert in Morocco
Riding a camel in the Sahara Desert in Morocco (Photo credit: Colleen Lanin)

Where to Find Me

I have lived in California, Minnesota, and Southern France. Nowadays, when I'm not floating in a hotel pool, riding (mellow) roller coasters, or asking too many questions on a group tour — you'll find me in sunny Scottsdale, Arizona. I live with my husband, our two teen kids, and our rescue dogs, Pongo and Mickey.

Want to say hello? Contact Travel Mamas or connect with me via Instagram and Facebook.

Enjoy the journey!