Wikivoyage:Goals and non-goals
The mission of Wikivoyage is to create a free, complete, up-to-date and reliable worldwide travel guide.
Wikivoyage articles should be useful for at least the following contexts:
- Online use by travellers on the road – for example, travellers huddled in a late-night internet café in some dark jungle, who need up-to-date information on lodging, transportation, food, nightlife, and other necessities.
- Offline use by travellers on the road – for example, travellers sitting in a train with a subset of Wikivoyage on their mobile device.
- Online use by travellers still planning – for intending travellers who want to review destinations, plan itineraries, make reservations, and get excited about their trip.
- Individual article print-outs – for people who want to print, say, a list of museums or karaoke bars and put it in their back pocket for when they need it.
- Ad-hoc travel guides – for people who want a small fit-to-purpose travel books that match a particular itinerary.
- Inclusion in other travel publications – for travel-guide publishers and advisers who want up-to-date information.
- Travel essay anthology. Wikivoyage is not a travel magazine. Articles should be directed toward practical information about travelling.
- Personal travel journals. Wikivoyagers usually have interesting stories about their personal adventures, which should instead be written somewhere other than in our articles.
- Vacation photo gallery service. Photographs and illustrations should be targeted towards illustrating destinations and sights, not toward showing Grandma how big the mai-tai was that you drank at the luau.
- Personal homepage service. Each registered user on Wikivoyage has a user page; these should be used to support the development of the travel guide, and not as an all about me or my cat website. One or two photographs on your user page is reasonable; more than five is pushing it.
- Travel chat board. Wikivoyage has talk pages for each article, but these should be used to develop the article itself, and not as a "comments" area. Anyone can edit a Wikivoyage article; if you have useful information about a topic, put it in the article itself.
- Advertising brochure. Wikivoyage of course has listings and information about travel-related businesses around the world. We are pleased to have representatives of these businesses keep those records up-to-date. However, blatant advertising is not welcome, and overcompetitive acts (like deleting information about rival businesses) are not tolerated.
- Yellow pages of restaurants, hotels, bars, etc. City guides should certainly include information for travel-related companies, but these should be kept to a useful number. Think of a friend from out of town asking you where they should go – you wouldn't list all 200 possibilities, but 5–10 options for a particular type, budget, or part of town would be helpful.
- Web directory. Wikivoyage articles should not have in-article links to external resources, with the exception of a link to the official website besides the name of a listing. It's not a goal to collect links about any destination. External links should support and complement the content of articles; they're not a goal per se.
- Travel guide supplement. The wiki technique we use for Wikivoyage makes it possible for us to include information that's not in other travel guides. This doesn't mean that we only include information not found in other guides. Wikivoyage aims to be a complete travel guide – not just a supplement to traditional guides.
- Atlas. Although travel is intimately intertwined with geography, Wikivoyage does not describe geographical features just because they're there. Nor do we create separate articles for every crossroads with a name on the map.
- Encyclopedia. Wikivoyage aims to tell people how to travel all over the world, not document everything there is on the planet or how it ended up that way. If you find yourself needing references and footnotes on Wikivoyage, whatever you're writing should probably go to Wikipedia instead.
- Travel agency. Wikivoyage does not arrange visas, make bookings for airlines, car rentals, cruise lines, hotels, railways, or package tours.
There are probably lots of other near-miss goals that people might think we have; if needed, we'll list those here, too.