Travel Guides for Free

by James & Miel on November 12, 2007 · 0 comments

Do you love breaking out a new travel guide?

Have you dreamed of becoming a writer for Lonely Planet or the Rough Guide?

I’ve done my share of traveling; both with and without travel guides. There are some times when these can come in very handy. There are other times when you discover areas of a guide book that need some updating. There’s nothing like searching out some hard to find place only to discover that it is no longer there.

In college I traveled to Ecuador with a fourth edition of the Lonely Planet, meaning four groups of Lewis & Clark students had taken the same guide book and made edits in the margin for changes and comments on where to go. My favorite was the warning for roosters – complete with a drawing.

Next time you are on the road, consider taking notes and editing the latest edition of your preferred travel guide. Send these edits to the publisher of the guide book and kindly ask for a free copy of the guide book for the next place you are headed, promising to send edits of this book. If your edits are well done it will be worth their while to send you free books.

Things to consider updating:

1) Prices for hotels, meals, and transportation – these change often so you’ll have good material
2) Restaurants – updated menus or possible new ownership.
3) Newly opened hotels, guesthouses, restaurants, galleries, etc.
4) Class information – many people these days like taking classes – consider art, language, dance, cooking, music, etc.
5) Transportation updates – there might be a new bus line or an airline may be out of business.
6) Phone numbers, addresses and websites.
7) Local festivals, markets, and fair trade shops.

Keep in mind that you can start by trying this close to home. Many guidebooks have books that may include domestic destinations. You will be in a good position to scout out the latest info and share fun places to visit in your neighborhood. Its also a good way to get to know your local area in case you have guests!

While the effort that goes in to making edits may outweigh the price of the guide book, just think of the advantages. It’s a fun task that encourages you to explore new places. You’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that you’ve helped a fellow travel avoid woes or discover a great travel adventure. Plus, you’ll get to see you latest work in print!

I’ll admit that in my Peace Corps group I was voted most likely to become a writer for the Lonely Planet. Perhaps the dream is still alive!

Happy Travels!

Miel

P.S. We thought our readers would love to hear that we got an offer to get a free travel guide to review within a day of this post! We’ll be reviewing a travel guide for hiking the western coast of France in the new year when it is hot off the press! Yeah!

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