The wait is over – meet our winners!!

The waiting is finally over! A few moments ago we announced our 16 Big Blog Exchange winners and their exchange countries – and what an amazing bunch they are!

Here’s a quick reminder of this years exchanges…

Exchange one: CANADA – INDIA

– Logan Anderson, CANADA:

is swapping places with..

– Purujeet Parida, INDIA:


Exchange two: FRANCE – USA

– Lucie Aidart, FRANCE:

is swapping places with..

– Taralynn Mcnitt, USA:


Exchange three: UK – JAPAN

– Ruth Silverton, UK:

is swapping places with..

– Ashley Dy (Wildcard winner!), JAPAN:


Exchange four: SPAIN – SOUTH AFRICA

– Manuel Garcia del Moral, SPAIN:

is swapping places with..

– Roy Potterill, SOUTH AFRICA:



– Jui Seng Quek, MALAYSIA:

is swapping with..

– Belén Palacios, ARGENTINA:


Exchange six: IRELAND – BRAZIL

– Stephanie Buckley, IRELAND:

is swapping with..

– Ainoha Moura Aguirre, BRAZIL:


Exchange seven: SLOVENIA – AUSTRALIA

– Mic Melansek, SLOVENIA:

is exchanging with..

– Jono Cusack (Wildcard winner!), AUSTRALIA:


Exchange eight: ITALY – PHILIPPINES


is exchanging with..

– Marcela Fae, ITALY:


CONGRATULATIONS TO YOU ALL! We’re excited to watch your adventures unfold…


It has been an incredibly difficult decision this year for the jury – you’re all so wonderful. 

Each and every one of you brings your own unique vibe to blogging and you are all so passionate and talented. We at HI genuinely have felt privileged to spend so much of our time getting to know you all individually – as well as enjoying all of your amazing blogs, articles, photographs and stories. We’re hoping that even if you’re not a winner this year, you will stick around to watch these 16 bloggers prepare for their journeys, take off and embark on the BBE experience, helping HI to make the world a better place and spread cultural understanding. This blog will be a central hub where you can keep up to date with their journeys and the competition – so stick around! We’re sure you’ve all got tips and advice for them and that the community feel we’ve built up here together over the last few weeks will continue to flourish throughout the next steps of the competition. We’re so excited for the next stages and we hope you all are too! The journey is far from over!


54 thoughts on “The wait is over – meet our winners!!

    my friend Marcela from Fotostrasse – – has won, so happy for her! 😀 😀 😀

    but I have to say: I am a little disappoint with the brazilian winner. not personal, but the “brazilian” girl writes in spanish and lives in mexico!

    so our country won’t be part the game this year 😦

    1. totally agree with you!
      I’m also disappointed to see some people that have not interacted with other bloggers and competition in general as much as I see many of our other bloggers around!

      1. disagree with that, the quality of the bloggers is much more important than interaction. this is not a chat competition. it’s about blogging.

        but I think it doens’t make any sense to see a brazilian flag into a blog with spanish language and based in mexico.

      1. Hello Everyone,
        I remember going through the terms & conditions of the Big Blog X & it states that it should be

        “An eligible Participant is a person who:
        2.1.1 possesses a valid passport (valid for at least eight months from 31st October 2014).”

        Perhaps the so-called Mexican blogger is holding a Brazilian passport? In the same manner, the winner from Italy is a Brazilian-Italian currently residing in Germany & one of last year’s winners is a Filipino who lives in Singapore.

        Having said that, I’m still not discounting the fact that I totally understand your sentiments regarding this matter.

        Congratulations to the winners & for the rest of us, maybe life has other plans for us…Perhaps Big Blog X 2015? 😉

  2. Hi guys! I am so surprised but so happy! Thank you so much and congratulations to everyone. Just wanted to say hello here, there is a general blackout in the village and I can only access this website. So happy thank you for the opportunity!

  3. Congrats to the winners! I hope that even if we’re not selected, we’ll keep sharing ideas and laughs here in the comments as we used to do during the competition. I’ve grown used to chatting with you guys 😉
    As for me, you can already count on me for next year’s contest and though I’m not one of the winners, the Big Blog Exchange has still been a rewarding experience in itself.
    Looking forward to reading the winners’ first posts!

    1. Belen, it’s 28-33degC here in Malaysia year-round; so no wool, only cotton. Felicitaciones, my friend….. I’m glad the exchange is between you and me. Argentina was always my first choice.

      1. I’m so happy I get to make the exchange with you too!! 🙂
        specially because you told me from the beginning you would love to visit Argentina.. not like me, I didn’t wanted to jinx anything.. and now.. I’m so excited I get to visit Malaysia!!
        No more ‘nervios’.. from now on ‘felicidad’ 🙂

  4. Congratulations to the winners! I find strange that you don´t have even one blog in portuguese on the list. Brazil was the country with more finalists, 15 in total. And yet you choose a blog written in spanish to represent our country. We´re very organized as bloggers and that felt really strange in our community.

    1. same feeling here.

      I can’t see how people can “SWAP LIVES AND CULTURES” (as mentioned at the description of the project) if they are not even going to the same country of the other person!

      there is no EXCHANGE on that!

      1. We would just like to clarify the eligibility of participants. The blogger must have a blog, regardless of platform type of which they are the author of. They must hold a valid passport for the country they are representing for 6 months in the competition – regardless of current country of residence. We will take your comments into consideration for next years competition – all comments to make the competition better are welcome. We’d like to also say please keep in mind that the blogger representing your country to the readers is the one one visiting, enjoying, experiencing and writing about it. There are always so many great bloggers entered in each country and we would have loved to pick so many of you. But we have specified the eligibility requirements.

  5. Congratulations everyone! So glad to see my new friends Quek, Belen and Lucie win this fantastic opportunity. I am sure they will have great adventures and I look forward to reading all about them. As for those who didn’t win (including me 😦 ) there is always next year! 🙂 Surprised not to see Sel in the top to be honest…! 😦

    1. Hi – The exchange is Brazil -> Ireland, the Irish blogger will be flying over to Brazil and enjoying a 10 day itinerary in your fantastic country, and we hope you will all give her a warm welcome and maybe have the opportunity to meet her and teach her more about Brazil 🙂

  6. The criteria is kinda weird here. It’s based on the language and birthplace of the writer, right? I don’t see a single mention of the writer being Brazilian anywhere in the blog (written entirely in Spanish and targeting anywhere in Latin America but Brazil). Maybe you guys from HI don’t know that Brazilians speak Portuguese and not Spanish. I don’t know, the more I read the blog the more I think this criteria is totally off.

  7. Fellow bloggers, friends… I am truly humbled to have won the BBE (thank you, HI, for giving me the opportunity). I wish to thank everyone who has rooted for me during the last month and a half. Even though I was cautiously optimistic of winning, this came as a surprise nonetheless in view of the quality of the blogs of so many other finalists.

    I have had so much encouragement from so many bloggers that it’s kinda sad not every one of us won. My heartfelt thanks to Emily, Yuki, Allan, Deb, Sam, Karien, Hazel, Mari, Belen, Steph, Brigid, Aia, Tessa (the list goes on) for accepting me as a friend and for the incredible support you’ve given me. Here, I’d like to save a special word for Sel; meu irmao, you’re simply awesome and like so many others, I would’ve truly liked to see you win. You so deserve to. You blog well, your blog’s excellent and, above all, you are supportive of every one who’s crossed your path. A true amigo.

    To my other 15 fellow winners, I congratulate each and every one of you. The onus is on us now to prove to the panel of international jurors that they have picked the right candidates.

    To those who did not make it, it’s alright to despair for a while (I know how it feels) BUT carry not that despair to bed with you tonight. RESOLVE quickly to come back stronger next year. I too didn’t make it in 2013 and spent an entire year after BBE2013 improving my blog, my writing style, my approach to blogging. I’m still not there yet – hardly so – but at nearly 50, I feel I can still learn from and contribute to the blogosphere.

    To everyone who has rooted for me and to HI, I shall try my best not to let anyone of you down. Once again, thank you. Thank you so much.

    1. I’m very glad for you Quek!
      Thanks for your words.
      Specially Gald because you are exchanging with Belen that I was given a heartily support indeed.
      Enjoy and keep in touch 🙂

    2. ❤ thanks for the kind words!
      I hope your experience with this turns out to be as awesome as mine =D

      And to the 2 loves of my life, from Viagem Criativa, thank you for the support and next year will be both of you on the final list! I know it! You know you're my fav blog from BR, huh? ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤

    3. Congrats to all the winners! So happy for you especially, Vincent (Quek) since I read your story about last year’s hacking I was rooting for you! Congratulations and thanks for sharing your encouraging words to those of us who haven’t been selected this year. Maybe next year? I’m planning on entering again. It’s been fun participating and I pray for all of you for safe travels and great experiences. 🙂

      1. Thank you for your kind words and support, Shelly. It feels really good to know that I’ve been an inspiration to you with regards trying again in next year’s BBE. Don’t just “plan” to enter in 2015 – do it. U’ve got a good blog there and with a bit of luck, who knows? Good luck.

  8. speaking for myself, I never put in doubt the eligibility of any participant.

    what I am questioning is the conceptual aspect of this project. you are selling one thing to your readers and delivering another.

    your FAQ says things like “The final 16 lucky selected bloggers will be exchanging places with another blogger from across the world”; “You will only be swapping destinations with the blogger” but when I see the equation ireland > brazil but there is no brazil > ireland, this is not going to happen.

    as simple as that.

  9. Congratulations everyone! I’m so excited for all of you!!! ❤ Definitely, definitely, joining again next year. Thank you to all the lovely people I've met through this competition. I so love the community this project has made. Tuning in til the last day of the trip. 😀

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