Book Review
Travel Guide to the World – A Perfect Start
for Adventure beyond American borders 
 

The new guidebook, Travel Guide to the World, $17 and 224 pages, is one of those handy dandy paperbacks you should read to understand how to handle yourself in different cultures and countries.

Written by world traveller Susan Kimmel, Travel Guide covers a plethora of topics from tipping to international greeting customs. However, there are almost too many topics, none go into too much depth, but like the cover says, the book is "providing the essentials to get you the best value and most from your travel experience."

The 28 chapters offer titles such as travel bargains, tight-budget travel, luxury travel, airline, bike, hike, motorcoach and train travel, traveling with kids, traveling solo. Each chapter can be a book on its own. Nonetheless, I found this effort very informational (didn’t know that tourism is the world’s fastest growing industry) as well as practical. Tips such as traveling in between winter and summer seasons to get better hotel rates is useful for the beginning trekker.

The advice to bring carry-on bags and to pack light may not be enlightening for seasoned globe trotters, but I loved the very detailed tip of bringing clothing that can ideally dry overnight if you are in a place without a washing machine or if you accidentally soil a spot on your clothes. Another useful tip in the book refers to researching the local stores and shopping where locals do to keep costs down.

I laughed at the subtitle "Playing the Haggle Game" which is so true when you go to a country with street vendors. She suggests asking the seller for the price of the item and letting the games begin from there. Working off a 20 percent or 30 percent discount base usually works, she says. Asking for 50 percent right off the bat, she notes, will insult the vendor and the buyer will not get anywhere.

Within the bindings of this book is a popourri of ideas and dream vacations. Page 44 and 45, for example, features a checklist of places and sights and encourages readers to circle their top ten picks to see within their lifetimes. Another chapter discusses the pros and cons of using a tour guide and which countries actually make it more efficient to use one.

Travel Guide is a fantastic tool for all sorts of website listings including various transportation companies,tour operators, special needs travel, solo excursions, and travel safety. Kimmel has done the research for you, and there are many, many online resources that would otherwise take a person hours to look up. If you’re looking to expand your horizons and want to investigate traveling globally, this effort is a great first step in venturing out into the great beyond.

****

NOTEWORTHY INFO:

Travel Guide to the World
Susan Kimmel, MCC, author
Corystevens Publishing, Portland, OR
www.corystevens.com

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