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Definitely NOT a budget guide. False advertising!
on April 13, 2012
I'm really surprised that this hasn't come up in the other reviews.
When a travel guide is advertised for the shoestring traveller, one expects the focus of the book to be on traveling with a small budget. This is hardly the case. There is the occasional aside nod to budget within each chapter, but as far as the places to see/do/eat/sleep, you may as well have purchased a guidebook for each country because there is no low-budget emphasis. I was expecting to see SHOESTRING itineraries for the major cities in Europe.
I mean it's pathetic - in the Britain chapter there's a little box (paraphrased with some snark): "Did you know that you can get young persons railcards if you're 18-25? Makes it cheaper doesn't it?" In a SHOESTRING guide they really ought to provide more details on who is eligible and how to get one!
Lonely planet clearly chopped up all of their Europe guidebooks and shoved them into one (very large and hefty) book and instead of advertising it as such, advertised it as a shoestring guide to, I suppose, compel more people to buy it. I would return this book but the shipping alone would be at least ten dollars because of the heaviness which is %50 of what I paid for the darn thing.
I can see this book being useful for someone who wants a brief overview of each country regardless of budget. But that's what I would have bought if that's what I wanted. I wanted a shoestring guide - now I have a big fat book containing information equal to what I could have accessed on the internet for free. Sigh.