Guidebookis? Anyone Use Em Still?

Jun 21st, 2011, 10:34 AM
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Guidebookis? Anyone Use Em Still?

Being rather a Luddite I still use guidebooks when I am on a trip - especially Let's Go series and Lonely Planet's - book geared more to my independent and low-budget travel style.

But with the wealth of info on sites like maybe printed guides are becoming a dinosaur?

Do you use guidebooks to plan a trip or do you take them with you - if so which ones and why?

PalenQ is offline  
Jun 21st, 2011, 10:39 AM
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I love a guidebook in my hands. I'm a budget traveler, too, and I like to read Cadogan's for the historical guides and not for their lodging recommendations which are usually quadruple my lodging budget.
pdx is offline  
Jun 21st, 2011, 10:39 AM
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Yes, we take guidebooks and it all depends on the area which ones.

For sights I prefer Michelin Green if available. We usually have hotels chosen and now we use these boards for restaurants. But the better gudiebooks give information not avaialable on these boards.
Aduchamp1 is offline  
Jun 21st, 2011, 10:46 AM
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Oh yeh Michelin Green guides - thanks for mentioning that - those I love as well for sights and town maps!
PalenQ is offline  
Jun 21st, 2011, 10:53 AM
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Only sometimes, but I do like Dorling Kindersley because the pictures whet the imagination. Sometimes it's nice to flick through a guide and think "I'd love to go there" rather than deciding on a destination first and then trawling through a lot of information.

I'm also taking a guidebook with me to the Ukraine this summer as I needed some orientation on where to go and the practicalities than I would for, say, Italy.
gwan is offline  
Jun 21st, 2011, 11:07 AM
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I love guidebooks. I use Frommers and Rick Steves. I generally take Frommers with me if I'm visiting multiple destinations which RS might not include. If I'm traveling alone I just take Frommers, but when my sister and I traveled together, we always took both frommers and Rick.

I usually have a Fodors for daydreaming and planning, but they are a little heavy to carry around with me.

I am in the process of planning my itinerary for my next Spain trip, so I read my Frommers every day.
Pegontheroad is offline  
Jun 21st, 2011, 11:09 AM
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"But with the wealth of info on sites like maybe printed guides are becoming a dinosaur?"

Information? On this site?

If your idea of a holiday is following the useless cliches from the semi-literate (and I'm talking about the people who get paid), or making sure you buy exactly the Romapass that optimises 2 days, 3 hrs of "must-sees", maybe.

But who'd do anything so daft. For a proper few weeks away -
you've got to have the local Blue Guide and Lonely Planet. In hard copy. Or Green Mich.

What technology's transformed, though, is that you can put the relevant Herodotus, Decline and Fall, or any other relevant books onto your Kindle. So you don't need to rely on secondary sources any more: you can have the entire literature about a site with you when you're at the site.

Of course, if Amazon got round to producing a decent search system...
flanneruk is offline  
Jun 21st, 2011, 11:20 AM
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I am a bit of a travel book junkie. Every time we start planning a trip I spend too much on Amazon, but I love looking through the books and planning. I used to rip out just the relevant parts to take with us. (My husband was not in favor - thinks it's a crime to hurt a book). On our last two trips I switched to taking only electronic guide books on the Kindle. The up side is that we don't have to cart around a collection of book chapters. The big down side as mentioned above is that the search functions in the electronic books are not very good. Oh, and the little maps are useless due to poor resolution. Still, I think that will be our approach for future trips.
AnaBelen is offline  
Jun 21st, 2011, 11:37 AM
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Depends on the trip, but I do enjoy guidebooks. In fact I admit to buying them for places I would love to visit but am never likely to get to.
My free Fodor's guide for being quoted was one such book.
hetismij is offline  
Jun 21st, 2011, 12:18 PM
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Depends on your travel style

rough guide footprints lets go guides are good stay current

LP has the most dated old biased info of all the budget guides for me

Bought by the BBC many cutbacks old info moderate frommers and fodors gold guide help me a tonne

Many helpful aps also too many to list

LP most expensvie download I have seen for dates material like $20 on Amazon a major rip off.

Haappy Travels!
qwovadis is offline  
Jun 21st, 2011, 12:20 PM
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Buy guidebooks all the time. Eyewitness and Green guides and use some information on Fodor's. People give good tips and one just has too gleen what is useful to their itinerary. Getting good information for our trip to Greece and we leave on Thursday. Also have bought both Fodor's and Frommer's semi-hardcover. But there is so much information on the internet. Plus on aisle seats thread, accumulating web sites. Everyone here has good intentions providing their vision of travel. One just needs to pick and chose. Richard
iris1745 is offline  
Jun 21st, 2011, 12:26 PM
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Guidebooks are the very first places I go when contemplating a trip. If it's to someplace new, I'll usually get at least two or three: always the Michelin Green Guide, Cadogan if there is one for my destination, and Eyewitness...sometimes Lonely Planet or Blue Guide too. The next thing I do is buy maps. Then I use the internet, but I certainly don't rely on it to be 100% accurate, except for official city and town sites. I love the internet for photo images of places I'm headed to, though.
StCirq is online now  
Jun 21st, 2011, 12:35 PM
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I absolutely use guide books - Let's Go, Lonely Planet, Rough Guide, Fodor's, Green Guide, sometimes Eyewitness plus guide books specific to locations, usually for large cities. I use them to plan trips; take notes and leave the books at home.
adrienne is offline  
Jun 21st, 2011, 12:47 PM
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I borrow the guidebooks from the library, and usually take copies of the maps.

I get AAA free guide book to rip them apart

Don't like to bring guide books with me, only 2-sided copies, but if I won't be able to make them at work, I would probably bring tour books.

Yes, there is a lot available on the Internet, but the books have it sort of compressed and better organized. At least better then I organize the pages
Dayenu is offline  
Jun 21st, 2011, 07:37 PM
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I love guidebooks! I always buy LOTS and use them extensively as I plan my trips. I almost always get the Rough Guide, Lonely Planet, Eyewitness, Fodor's, and Frommer's; my choice of others (Michelin Green Guide, Moon, etc) vary with the destination. I take at least 2 guidebooks with me, almost always the Rough Guide and - now that I have a Kindle - the one that I found next most helpful on it. I also use the internet extensively, but usually after studying the guidebooks. I take a lot of notes and take some of those with me, too.
kja is offline  
Jun 21st, 2011, 10:33 PM
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I like the timeout Shortlist pocket guides.
They weigh next to nothing, and keep me updated in places which I usually know quite well already as they get updated every year. This works best for cities than for whole countries, IMO.

For new destinations, I rather use resources on the web, especially when big travelguides won't bother about those regions.
For example, in Spain, many autonomous regions have excellent tourist info websites, with interactive maps etc. So I can match or adjust a route with potential sights left and right of the road.
Cowboy1968 is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2011, 03:11 AM
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I wish more people on these forums would read guidebooks before posting questions like "Rome: worth it?" or "What to do in London".

There is another category of guidebooks that some of us use. I have my mother's Muirhead's Paris and Its Environs (1922) that I use along with my 1950's and '60's Green Guides for planning/generating ideas.

I have a friend who collects antique Baedeckers and actually uses them on the ground. My wife and I occasionally follow the routes in our reprint of the WPA Guide to Massachusetts from the mid-30's. Fun!
Ackislander is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2011, 04:36 AM
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Like them very much. Here's dating myself, the first guide I used was "Europe on $5 a Day" although we averaged around $12. I still use the Frommer suggestion of tearing out the pages for a city then tossing. That backfired this March when I reached for the Paris section of Fodor's France, which I had already torn out and tossed for my 2010 trip.
Cathinjoetown is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2011, 05:00 AM
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My DH is a library ghost...he spends at least 3 hours a week in our local library. He checks out all the guides he can find on areas we're planning to visit, so we can decide which one fits our style and needs the best. We've found that no one publisher seems to work for us for every place we've been. Then we'll buy one and now we can also download digital versions to our kindle or iPad. Also useful is a menu translator. We go for 3 or more weeks now that we are retired, and try to pack lightly so we only go with carry-on or just one checked bag.
uhoh_busted is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2011, 05:05 AM
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I still use guide books. For weekends (or short trips) with the missus, I've found the Wallpaper City guides to be really handy. The restaurants, shops and attractions they include often aren't in the 'bigger' guidebooks and (I think) are perfect for finding unusual places for a memorable meal or souvenir.

For longer trips to places I've never been before, I'll grab a Rough Guide or Lonely Planet. I'm sure some people find them invaluable, but I can't get excited by electronic guides or apps. I spend enough of my life staring at a computer screen and will be damned if I'm going to do it whilst I'm on holiday as well.

I also can never imagine tearing sections out of a guidebook, just somehow doesn't seem right to me. On the upside, I suppose that 50 years from now the market for vintage guidebooks will be quite lucrative if the number of poster here that favour ripping out pages/sections is anything to go by!
Jay_G is offline  

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