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Just curious... I know it wasn't a series from Fodors (it was that "other" publisher) - - but when were the last books titled "Europe on $5 a day" published? And specific countries?

Just curious... I know it wasn't a series from Fodors (it was that "other" publisher) - - but when were the last books titled "Europe on $5 a day" published? And specific countries?

Old May 17th, 2005, 06:21 AM
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rex
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Just curious... I know it wasn't a series from Fodors (it was that "other" publisher) - - but when were the last books titled "Europe on $5 a day" published? And specific countries?

I suppose that "Spain on $5 a day" was possible at a later date than "France on $5 a day". I think it was pre-1970, but I am not sure.

And I wonder what a gallon of gasoline cost then? Would five dollars buy twenty gallons? And could you drive 500 miles on that 20 gallons?

And what did "$5 a day" include? surely not airfare. Did it include intra-Europe travel? I think not - - though I do still have my 1969 "Let's Go! Europe" and it has quite a few ads about car rental for "$1 a day" (this was based on 60 day rental for $240, with four people sharing the car) - - but obviously it didn't include gasoline in the $1 a day figure.

If the title were "Europe on the cost of a tank of gas per day" (and if this only means lodging breakfast and dinner), then I think it can (almost) still be done (especially if I had a big SUV which cost $50 or $60 to fill! - - and I do NOT have one of those).

Any one else think the comparison is valid?

Certainly, I would have never predicted in 1969 that I would live to see roundtrip airfares to Europe for as little as (the cost of) one hundred gallons of gasoline! Those DO exist.. in the off season, at least, you know!

Best wishes,

Rex
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Old May 17th, 2005, 06:30 AM
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From personal experience the $5 per day included both a place to sleep and meals at the minimum.

I did it in Amesterdam and also did it in London; in the latter city I actually got a decent hotel room for what was then a Pound per night and in 1970 the Pound was worth about $2.40 cents U.S.; didn't leave much to eat on but it was doable,.

By the "other" publisher I assume you mean Frommers or should I say it even louder????
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Old May 17th, 2005, 06:41 AM
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The $5 per day was definitely meant to cover lodgings and meals only. I did it for 6 weeks in 1966. B&B costs per person ranged from $1.90 in Genoa to $3.50 in Munich (we arrived late and lacked choice - we later changed to a B&B for $2.50 per night). It really wasn't that difficult to get lunch and dinner for around $3.00, so we stayed close to the $5.00. Booze extra, of course.

By the early '70s, the book title had changed to Europe on $10 per day.
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Old May 17th, 2005, 09:00 AM
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Interesting to read your replies. Does anyone still own a copy of either such book (that is, either $5 a day, or $10 a day)?

I guess the price of a tank of gas went a good bit over $10 sometime in the 70's didn't? I got my license in 1969, and by then, the legendary 29.9 of prices war was something that the "older kids" (18 year olds?) talked about as "gone forever". And it seems like it went from the 30-40 cent range to 70-99 cents in a single summer (what year was that?)
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Old May 17th, 2005, 10:59 AM
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Sadly, we ripped out and threw away sections of the book after we visited each place. All I have left, besides memories, from 1966 is a little black book listing photos I took and hotels and prices. I am still waiting for someone to ask about the Hotel Diana on rue St. Jacques in Paris so I can tell them what a dump it was 39 years ago!

The $5 a day book was first published in 1956. By 1974 it was $10 a day (it may have happened sooner than that), $15 in 1979, $20 in 1982, $25 in 1984, $30 in 1988.
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Old May 17th, 2005, 11:38 AM
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Maybe someone should put out a "$5 an hour" series. That would be budget for today, right?
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Old May 17th, 2005, 11:45 AM
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When reading "from $70 a day," it was per person/double occupancy. So not $70 for the solo traveler. I think that was 2002 pricing. In May 2002, it was $.92 for a Euro so a better value than today.
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Old May 17th, 2005, 12:01 PM
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Ron, please tell us about the Hotel Diana even if no one has asked. I'm always game for a horrible cheap hotel story.

I have posted about this before, but I clearly remember finding the Frommer $5/day book in my parents' books when I was 7 or 8, and being thrilled by the concept. The main thing I remember from reading it back then is that you had to accept having a bathroom down the hall.

This year when watching the 1954 film "Three Coins in the Fountain", I noticed the scene where the young women discuss how it was quite possible to have a maid and a nice apartment on a clerical salary in Rome if you were an American working for an American company and paid in US dollars. Of course it was just a movie - but I think this was more or less true.
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Old May 17th, 2005, 12:08 PM
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<<When reading "from $70 a day," it was per person/double occupancy. So not $70 for the solo traveler. I think that was 2002 pricing. In May 2002, it was $.92 for a Euro so a better value than today.>>

Interesting. So maybe we can feel quite justifiably good that we are fitting our trip in at under $45 per day, per person (double occupancy, multiplied times two, of course). For details, see http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...2&tid=34617502

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Old May 17th, 2005, 12:18 PM
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My 2 cents

I have the 1987 edition, it is "Europe on $25./Day".
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Old May 17th, 2005, 04:24 PM
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In 1965 my honeymoon trip lasted about 50 days: Paris to Belgium to Holland to Germany to E. Germany to Czechoslovakia to Austria to Hungary to Romania to Bulgaria to Turkey to Greece to Italy and back to Paris. We drove, and for as long as I can remember gas was always about $4/gal, whatever the exchange rate. For those 50 days we spent $500. which is $10/day, including gas.
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Old May 17th, 2005, 04:32 PM
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I believe that the $5 was meant to cover everything but plane fare - but the dollar was stronger then - and things were considerably cheaper during the last ice age.

These books were already long out of date when I first went to europe almost 30 years ago.
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Old May 17th, 2005, 05:50 PM
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I am really not sure that the dollar was stronger then (we have to be carefu, exactly what year are we discussing), and of course, the price of everything was a "lower number". But it took a hundred hours' wages to buy a color television for a lot of people (if not several hundred). Now how many can do it in ten? one? less than one? and maybe 200-300 hours to buy a trans-atlantic plane ticket, if not more than that. Now, fifty? ten? even at minimum wage, often less than a hundred.

I'll stick with "Europe on the cost of a tank of gas a day", and I am more impressed with how little that has changed than how much.
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Old May 17th, 2005, 06:30 PM
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You're right - it does depend on what year. but the first time I went to London the pound was worth only about $1.40 - and the prices for hotels and meals seemed to be significantly less than in NYC - even after the exchange rate calculation. And there were 7 FF to the $ - making meals in paris a real bargain (again after rate calculations).

But even then - and even in a modest gasthaus in a little town in Germany - the room was distinctly more than $5 - never mind getting anything to eat - or transport, sightseing etc.

But it also depends on perspective. A couple of years ago we encountererd a group of Americans in Oslo who were moanng and groaning about how expensive everything was - and we had just been talking about how happily surprised we were by the prices - had expected things to be very high - but prices were - again similar/less than NYC.

(But these folks were complaining about a simple but very pleasant salmon dinner in a pretty waterfront cafe that cost less than $25 - apparently in their local diner the whole meatloaf special was $10.)

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Old May 17th, 2005, 06:36 PM
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I have in my hand, the 1964 edition of "Europe on 5 Dollars a Day. I used this extensively and can vouch it was do-able. It did not include travel expenses. Frommer states it was "for basic living costs in Europe-that is, room and all three meals". "The cost of transportation within Europe, of sightseeing and entertainment is not included" in the $5.00 figure. Frommer references airfare going into effect 4/1/64: NYC to Amsterdam $440.80 "off peak" & $526.30 between 5/22-8/3. Car rental for less than a month would be approximately $10 per day with unlimited mileage for a VW-Renault class car. In Berlin I used a Frommer recomendation for a pension one block off Ku'dam bed & breakfast for $3.00 night.





































































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Old May 17th, 2005, 06:48 PM
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Forgot to mention the exchange rate in the 1964: 1DM = 25 cents. French Franc = 20 cents. 1 Guilder = 28 cents.



























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Old May 17th, 2005, 07:08 PM
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A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away: I must get the old $5-per-day book for a fun read and maybe some great ideas for my upcoming UK trip - I remember my parents taking us to the US beaches for a week in 1964 <$100 covered ALL for the entire week. Honestly we are budgeting something like $500USD per day while in London: my family of 4 enjoying a modest visit...
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