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Lonely planet or rough guide?

Travel Forums General Talk Lonely planet or rough guide?

1. Posted by andyuk2010 (Budding Member 45 posts) 6y

In people experience which do they prefer?

2. Posted by Piecar (Travel Guru 894 posts) 6y

The Lonely Planet being so ubiquitous that another million people are chasing the same place, I would go for the Rough Guides...In fact, I would go for the least common guide you can find. I am not an LP hater, but I am bemused at how many people show up at a place with their fingers tucked into the same page of the LP.

D

3. Posted by ErolGirl (Budding Member 78 posts) 6y

We have Lonely Planet ones, but just to really learn more about countries, not really to define our trip. A friend of mine has just been to Thailand and Malaysia and booked all the recommended hostels from Rough Guides. When she turned up they were nothing like the book said and ended up staying in different places they were so bad!! So I wouldn't bother for things like that. LP is good for getting a general overview of the country though :)

4. Posted by bex76 (Moderator 3711 posts) 6y

I much prefer Lonely Planet - I think their practical information is much more accurate and useful, and I prefer the format of their books. The sections at the start of all the books are excellent for learning about the history and culture of a place.

Inevitably some information, in any guidebook, is going to be out of date because the research has to start long before the publishing date.

5. Posted by t_maia (Travel Guru 3289 posts) 6y

I like Lonely Planet. They are pretty much idiotproof. You can basically throw a change of clothes, your passport and your credit card into your backpack, book the flight, pick up the LP for your destination at the airport, read it on the plane and be well-prepared when you arrive - all in the space of 24 hours or less.

The downside of LP is that almost everybody uses it, so unless you want to follow the droves it can be a good idea to pick up a different guidebook. If you speak a different language like French or German pick up French or German guidebooks as alternatives.

6. Posted by BedouinLeo (Inactive 698 posts) 6y

Neither. They're so full of inaccuracies and of no use to me whatsoever. They are just glossy guides and way overpriced. All the info you need is on-line free, whether it's a town you're looking for and how to get there or a basic 20 minute course in a language. Guide books, like postage stamps are slowly becoming a thing of the past.

7. Posted by bex76 (Moderator 3711 posts) 6y

Quoting BedouinLeo

Neither. They're so full of inaccuracies and of no use to me whatsoever. They are just glossy guides and way overpriced. All the info you need is on-line free, whether it's a town you're looking for and how to get there or a basic 20 minute course in a language. Guide books, like postage stamps are slowly becoming a thing of the past.

Do you not find it painstaking trawling through information online and do you not worry that you might miss out on things to do etc? I find it much more convenient to have a book with me, then I can dip into it when needed, and I'd rather read from a book than a screen. In a guidebook all the information is collated into one place, whereas to research a destination online may mean visiting mulitple websites and reading through lots of useless information before you get to what you need. Online information can be inaccurate too and a guidebook such as Lonely Planet or Rough Guide is always going to be well - written and in many cases much more objective than reading information online. I'm not saying I don't do research online as I do read lots of travel info on the internet, but I'll always have a guidebook for anywhere I'm going - hassle free and gives me peace of mind that I'm not missing any vital information.

8. Posted by t_maia (Travel Guru 3289 posts) 6y

I'm not saying I don't do research online as I do read lots of travel info on the internet, but I'll always have a guidebook for anywhere I'm going - hassle free and gives me peace of mind that I'm not missing any vital information.

I am of a similar mind. For shorter trips within Europe that I can plan pretty well in advance I do a lot of research on the internet and compile my own guidebook that I keep in a folder. As I go through the trip I throw the pages I away that I do not need anymore. This usually includes pages I copied from guidebooks that I got from the library as well as print-outs from the internet and some notes that I wrote for myself in MS Word.

For longer, less structured trips I get a guidebook. I simply don't have the time and energy to compile a full guidebook for a foreign country I have never been to before from the net before I go. I also find a traditional guidebook much more practical than taking a laptop/ipodtouch/iphone and searching for information online when I am at my destination. A guidebook doesn't need batteries, is less likely to get stolen and works even when you don't have internet access.

9. Posted by mike_rona (Budding Member 2 posts) 6y

I´d take both. Everyone uses the LP so sometimes you feel like you´re just following the masses around, but it is the most reliable of all the guides in my opinion if you are travelling independently by public transport. I prefer to take 2 guides, Lonely Planet, Rough Guide or Footprint guide. Depends on the length of your trip. If less than a month then probably no point carrying 2 guides. I find the quality of the guide depends on the author, not the publisher.... one Lonely Planet can be great, another can be rubbish, depends who wrote it and their own attitudes to the places they travelled and how lazy they are! Also sometimes the multi-country guides can be too brief (e.g. Rough Guide on a budget to South America has next to no information in it, whereas the Footprint guide is really detailed). Hope this helps.:)

10. Posted by BedouinLeo (Inactive 698 posts) 6y

[quote=bex76]

Do you not find it painstaking trawling through information online and do you not worry that you might miss out on things to do etc?

Nope. I find it more accurate and informative too.