Lonely Planet – Why they are the best Guidebooks

Lonely Planet Baja in Car Door

Lonely Planet Guidebooks: Why they are No. 1

Preparing for your trip may be almost as exciting as the actual trip itself.

When you are embarking on your travels, excited and enthusiastic, you are probably thinking about buying a few of the best travel guide books that you can afford. Depending on which country you are planning to visit, you may find yourself feeling a little overwhelmed at how many hard-copy guidebooks you may need for your trip, and where you can find them.

There are so many travel guide companies online, but how do you know that these guide books will be the best for you.

Then, you wonder about the extra weight these guide books will add to your luggage and you think about the fact that you have to carry the guide books around with you as you travel.

Although, they aren’t generally huge, their sizing can be a little inconvenient as they are not like a pocket guide, you can slip into your jeans. So, once at your destination, you have to put your guide books in a bag and get them out each time you want to check out where you are going.

Disadvantages to printed guide books

You get fed up of carrying them about

Stuffed in a handbag, carrier bag or other bag, you soon find that it becomes annoying to have to keep getting the guides out to check where you are, get directions, or check out which places of interest you are going to visit.

Lonely Planet Baja in Car Door

One of the things that we have to be aware of when in a different country is that, as a tourist, you can stick out like a very sore thumb.

If you are in a hot country, with lots of tanned or dark-skinned nationals, your lily-white legs point a very large arrow towards you labeled “TOURIST” and that can attract undesirable people towards you, perhaps intent on making a quick buck, running off with your handbag, or hassling you to buy cheap, unnecessary goods or have your photo taken with an angry looking monkey!

Within a few days, you may have a developing tan and not look so obvious. But, it is preferable to not call attention to your status as a tourist. So, as you are standing together, head to head, excitedly scouring the hard copy tourist guide, you are in a position of potential vulnerability.

As sad and negative as this seems, it is an unfortunate fact of life, and it is better if we go prepared in order that we reduce our risks.

The alternative?

Lonely Planet guidebooks are a perfect answer to this potential problem.


Lonely Planet has created a fantastic alternative option for printed travel guides. They have led the way, in our technological world, of supplying tour guides in digital format.

You can download the guides that you need to your android phone or iPhone, laptop or tablet, or any device that has e-reader technology.

Lonely Planet is one of the best companies that we know, for providing top-quality guide books.

The company was started by Tony and Maureen Wheeler, who came up with the idea for supplying guide books after they stapled their first ever guide book together after they came back from a once-in-a-lifetime adventure, traveling across Asia.

Lonely Planet always put the traveler first, at the forefront of everything they do. We are delighted with the quality of these digital eBook guides and recommend them to anyone who asks us which company to use for travel guides.

The guide books are updated as necessary, usually every 2-3 years, and all books on the website feature a note on when the new update is due.

Lonely Planet guides are available in a variety of languages

They have a dozen partner sites for a range of countries—English, French, Italian, Dutch, Portuguese, Chinese (simplified or traditional), Korean, Czech, Hebrew, Russian and Indian (English version).

You can find many available on Amazon for these languages.

Their award-winning website gives you all of the tools that you will need as you begin to sit down and plan your trip away.

We find their website to be one of the best online. It is very easy to navigate. With a simple click, you can quickly find the travel guide that you are looking for. Everything that you might be considering for your trip can be found on the Lonely Planet website.

There are over 450 titles which feature award-winning photography. You can also sign up as a subscriber to be notified of any special deals that they offer from time to time.

How do I find the e-books?

Go to the website www.lonelyplanet.com and you will see a menu at the top with a choice of video, destinations, booking, shop and sign in.

You will need to create an account with Lonely Planet in order to purchase your guide books, so we recommend that you do this first.

Get the digital chapters you want, ditch the ones you don’t! Only $4.95 per chapter!

  • Once you have opened your account, go to the menu bar and click on “shop”
  • Below that menu bar, you will see a drop-down box that says MY COUNTRY; click on the downward pointing arrow and choose your country. Then click on UPDATE
  • Underneath the header that says “Shop” you will see the words “Journey through over 500 travel titles covering 195 countries” and, under that it says, ‘You can also download most of our destination guides to your iPad, Kindle, Android and more”
  • Beneath that is a list of countries where guides are available and also a map with North America, Caribbean, Central America, South America, Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia, Pacific & Australia and Antarctica. This is the page where you can access the printed, hard copy guides

To access the digital e-book guides, go back to the menu, just below the “Shop” heading, that says “Shop home,” “Destination Guides,” “eBooks,” “Pictorial & Gifts,” “Phrasebook,” “Lonely Planet Kids” and “Special Offers”

On that menu, click on “eBooks”

On that page, you will see that there are a staggering 275 available eBook travel guides. From here, you can look for the country or countries that you plan to visit, and select the eBook guides that you need.

I don’t know what an eBook is

An eBook is simply a digital version of the printed guidebooks. The “e” stands for “electronic.” You can receive it in PDF version or an epub file for Apple, Nook and Kobo and, for Kindle, it comes in a .mobi file.

What do I need?

You will need Adobe Reader or any other PDF Reader. If you are using a smartphone, you can download a PDF Reader app from Google Store, although we think that most phones already have a PDF reader installed. You will need to make sure that you have the latest, updated software available on your device.

You can purchase from Lonely Planet by PayPal, Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Visa Debit or Visa Electron [UK]. Your purchase online is secure as Lonely Planet use World Pay which is a global leader in secure, safe payment systems that fully protects your card details.

What guides can I get on digital?

It is unlikely you won’t be able to get exactly the digital travel guide that you want.

eBooks are available for all regional guides, Shoestring guides, Multi-country guides, City guides, Country guides, Trekking guides, Walking, Cycling, and Hiking guides, Parks and Wildlife guides and a variety of phrasebooks and pictorials as well as travel reference books.

At the time of writing, you cannot purchase the digital version of the Discover guides, Pocket guides, Encounter guides and travel reference, travel literature and pictorials. If there is something you are not sure is available, the company is excellent if you contact them for support and guidance.

How do I download my eBook guide?

Once you have opened an account, chosen and paid for your guide(s) you will be taken to a confirmation page on the screen. As long as you have purchased on the device you are planning to use the guides with, then you can download immediately. But, if you have purchased on your PC, you will want to download onto the device that you plan to use for reading the digital guide. You can do this from the confirmation email link that Lonely Planet will send to you.

You will receive this email from shopping@lonelyplanet.com.au. Check your spam box first, before contacting the company, if you can’t see the email in your in box. Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail (and other email accounts like that) have an automatic spam filter that often hides emails that are sent from a shopping site.

They are doing their best to protect you from spam, but you will often find a stray email in your spam box that should be in your in box.

If you have looked in your spam box and still can’t find the email, you can contact Lonely Planet to arrange for it to be sent again, or sent to a different email account. Don’t worry about this as Lonely Planet will resolve this as quickly as they can.

If you are planning well ahead of your trip, Lonely Planet advises that you download your digital product within two months. They are generous in that they give you 5 opportunities to download your digital purchase so if you suddenly lose all of your data, you can login again and download to your device.

Get the digital chapters you want, ditch the ones you don’t! Only $4.95 per chapter!

Will an eBook take up a lot of space on my device?

With the huge memories on modern devices, the digital download will not take up a lot of space.

An average eBook will be around 100mb, or more, in size, so the download may vary in speed depending on your broadband connection.

We have found it best to start the download, and then go off and do something else for ten minutes or so.

Are the digital versions different to the hardcopy, printed guidebooks?

The digital eBook contains exactly the same content as in the printed guidebook.

However, Lonely Planet may rearrange the content slightly in the digital version in order to create a more linear process for reading on a device. You can zoom in and highlight text that might be important for your trip and, should you want to, you can actually print off the guide as a back-up copy in case your device gets broken, lost or the battery dies.

Can I share the digital copy with our friends who are traveling with us?

Unfortunately, this is against terms and conditions of purchase from Lonely Planet and it is an illegal practice. The digital books are protected by copyright. You cannot post links anywhere on the internet for your download.

Are the eBooks expensive?

We think that the prices are extremely reasonable. But, if you click on “Special offers” on the menu, you will see that Lonely Planet offers discounts if you purchase more than one guide, whether it is hard copy, printed or digital guide.


We believe that the Lonely Planet digital travel guides are the best. The quality of content is second to none. The guides are easy to read and beautifully presented in digital format.

You will find it so easy to quickly scroll through the information on your device, find text that you have highlighted and get the information that you need. The company are a delight to deal with and, if a customer ever has an issue with a guide, they provide fast solutions.

We hope that you enjoy your Lonely Planet digital travel guides.  We sure do!

Have any others you enjoy more than Lonely Planet guidebooks.  Let us know what they are and why they’re awesome!