The Wordy Traveler is a luxury quarterly reading subscription for people who want to combine their love for reading with their appetite for travel. Billing itself as “Wanderlust Fulfilled,” The Wordy Traveler curates boxes around a regional theme and pairs them with local, ethically sourced teas.
The Wordy Traveler donates a portion of their profits to charities that support access to education for women and girls around the world. For every box sold, The Wordy Traveler makes a donation to a designated local charity. Currently, the charity is Mercy Corps, a global humanitarian organization that brings relief and empowerment to disaster-afflicted communities around the globe.
This is an overview and review of the Wordy Traveler subscription. Click here to see our monthly unboxing and review posts.
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The Wordy Traveler is a quarterly subscription and offers two different subscription options: Backpacking Edition and The Full Suitcase.
The Backpacking Edition subscription sends one book per box, as well as a premium ethically sourced tea that evokes the region and special surprises related to the quarterly theme.
The Full Suitcase subscription sends three books per box, along with a premium ethically sourced tea that evokes the region, special surprises related to the quarterly theme, and other goodies that are not sent to Backpacking Edition subscribers.
The quarterly themes for the two subscriptions are identical, and the books and gifts overlap. However, each subscriber will receive a different book or combination of books, so your box selection may differ from those that we receive.
This review is focused on curation and experience, rather than on retail savings or product discovery. It would make a fabulous gift for a worldly traveler (get it?) or a curious bookworm.
Cost of Subscription
The Backpacking Edition subscription costs:
- $49.99 per box for quarterly billing
- $45.50 per box for a 2-quarter subscription
- $40.40 per box for an annual (4-quarter) subscription
As you can see, you save $9.59/box or $38.36/year by committing to a full year of boxes. That is a 19% discount, which is on the high end for subscription box discounts. So be sure to sign up for a 4-quarter Wordy Traveler subscription if you can afford it!
The Full Suitcase subscription costs:
- $109.99 per box for quarterly billing
- $99.99 per box for a 2-quarter subscription
- $89.99 per box for an annual (4-quarter) subscription
- $94.99 per box for a 6-quarter subscription
As you can see, you save $20/box or $80/year by committing to a full year of boxes. That is an 18% discount, which is on the high end for subscription box discounts but slightly less than the discount on the Backpacking Edition. But still, be sure to sign up for a 4-quarter Wordy Traveler subscription if you can afford it!
The 6-quarter subscription option is a little puzzling. It’s not clear why someone would prepay for a year and a half, only to pay more per box than the annual subscription.
All subscriptions renew automatically for the same term as your original subscription. For example, a 2-quarter subscription will roll over into another 2-quarter subscription.
For the Backpacking Edition, international shipping costs $9.95 per box for Canada and $15.95 per box for all other countries, including Japan.
For The Full Suitcase, international shipping costs $12.95 per box for Canada and $17.95 per box for all other countries, including Japan.
These shipping fees are pretty average, not especially cheap but not so high that it’s not even worth subscribing, as I have seen with some other boxes that claim to welcome worldwide subscribers.
Therefore, the total cost of an annual subscription (billed annually) shipped to Tokyo is:
- Backpacking Edition: $225.79, or $56.45 per box
- The Full Suitcase: $431.79, or $107.95 per box
Damaged Items & Refund Policy
The Wordy Traveler has a great policy on damaged books. If you receive a damaged or defective book and return it within 30 days of shipment, they will send a replacement copy or, if not available, one book credit for the next box.
Our first box actually had a damaged book in it. We sent pictures, and they promptly shipped out a new book, along with an extra bag of tea as a “sorry” gift. Great service, and very low hassle!
The Wordy Traveler packages are shipped via USPS out of Ohio, USA. Shipments are tracked, and you will receive an email with a tracking number when your box ships.
Average time from shipment to delivery: 12 days (as of Winter 2019). Click to learn more about average delivery times on Expat Box Life.
International shipping rating: 4/5. Reasonably priced delivery. Tracking. Clear damage resolution process.
The Wordy Traveler subscription box ships in a pretty branded cardboard box that directly holds the items. The box is branded on the outside, but not on the inside.
The items are wrapped in pretty tissue paper, and there is a cute sticker sealing the items in.
Packaging Rating: 3/5. Pretty branding. Box is on the plainer side.
After subscribing to The Wordy Traveler, you will receive a standard welcome email. You will also be added to the newsletter, which provides periodic updates and discount codes.
The Wordy Traveler does not include information about the sources or brands of the art prints and other gifts in the boxes. And there is no explanatory pamphlet in the boxes. It feels like a bit of a missed opportunity to set the scene for the reading journey, and it can you leave you puzzling over the meaning of some of the bonus items. And furthermore, it would be nice to know who to thank for the art prints in the box, so that if you liked them you could invest in more of the same.
The Wordy Traveler uses the Cratejoy platform with a branded UI for subscription management. So the website is both user-friendly and transparent about your subscription details. For example, you can log into your customer dashboard at any time to review your billing information, address, and renewal date. You can even change your shipping address or payment information without contacting customer service.
Customer Experience Rating: 3/5. Can edit current subscription online. Great UI. Low communication with customers.
Allergy & Accessibility Issues
Expat Box Life aims to provide reviews that cover accessibility issues for health needs, allergies, dietary preferences, and disabilities.
Let us know in the comments if there are any accessibility needs that you would like us to address for the Wordy Traveler subscription box!
For every subscription sold, The Wordy Traveler makes a donation to a designated charity. Currently, the charity is Mercy Corps, a global humanitarian organization that brings relief and empowerment to disaster-afflicted communities around the globe.
Charity Rating: 3/5. Charitable donation with every box sold. Percent donated not disclosed.
What do you think?
Do you have a Wordy Traveler subscription? If so, let us know if you love your subscription box in the comments. Also, please drop a line to let us know if you agree with our review!
If you don’t have a subscription, are you thinking about subscribing? If so, stay tuned for our Wordy Traveler subscription box reviews and unboxing posts!
And if you are in the market for a fabulous subscription or gift box for women that offers global shipping, check out our round-up of the top 10 subscriptions for women who live abroad!