Guide books: For the best 'virtual travel'


With cruise lines and destinations all pushing virtual content out to keep your travel interest alive, there's another source of virtual travel that fits in your hands: Travel guidebooks.

For those of us who cut our travel teeth browsing page by page through a guidebook, marking places to go, things to do or eat or just learning a bit about life in 'foreign lands' it served as a way of making travel year-round, and of giving us an incentive to keep saving for a trip.

These days, with so much content on line, the value of guidebooks—and some have warned it's a threatened industry—is even greater. Not only do they let us read and relax and plan at leisure for when we can travel again, they are also an expert at our side to help us through the hype, because let's face it, virtual cruises are meant to sell cruises, destination sites all sound like 'this is the only place to go' and so forth.

But a well-established guide series—Frommers is my favorite because of consistent quality and having both full in-depth guides and smaller portable ones—can help you balance out the claims, help you find the choices that are your best, rather than someone else's. The best series are also tied to websites that update content regularly.

In fact, a good guidebook may be exactly what you need to add depth to all the travel shows on TV as well as to the virtual tours. And if you're wondering about traveling again, and why you definitely should, read this reminder.

The best part of every trip is realizing that it has upset your expectations

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For many of us travel is a passion and also a solace in rough times. We have to support guidebooks, like Frommer's, in these times for that industry to make it through.  And we will definitely need new guidebooks because so much about travel will change.

If you want a thing done, ask a busy man.

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