Guidebooks are a staple item for many travellers. While there is nothing wrong with using a guidebook to get a feel for the environment you'll be vacationing in, it's a sure way to pay high prices and fight crowds.
Photo by mode.
Over at the frugality blog Wise Bread, they've put together a handy guide to budget travel. One quick way to cut down on the cost and the time spent waiting at crowded destinations is to ditch the guidebook:
Consult a good, locally researched guidebook like those in the Lonely Planet series for basic background and logistical info before you travel, but don't use it to plan your every move, like where you'll stay, eat and hang out. By the time a guidebook recommends something, it's usually overrun with tourists (and overpriced).
What can you do if you aren't using the guidebook? You can follow another bit of advice they offer by obeying the "Three L's Rule" to Look for Lines of Locals and keep your eyes and ears focused on finding the places the non-tourists go to enjoy the local culture.
For more money-saving travel tips, check out the full article. If you have your own tips for getting more out of your travel while keeping the costs down, share the wealth in the comments below.
The 7 Rules of Budget Travel [Wisebread]