Overseas trips: Reading material before you go (Books)
If you are going to ‘Third World Countries’ or foreign speaking places, I suggest you buy a few books before you leave.
Buy online: scour bookshops and the secondhand treasure troves, and Rotary have great book clearances. Another good option for books is Op Shops.
You can swap them with other tourists when done. This is especially important with children’s books. You don’t want to be paying full price for a book they can read in a night. They can then donate them to school libraries.
You can always find bargain books and send them on. If you are looking for a great book to read, I recommend ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ by Elizabeth Gilbert. Thanks Jane for recommending this great read!
Where I purchased this book.
You may want to take a Bible with your spiritual growth if you are a Christian and often use it.
Glean Op Shops, eBay etc for 2nd hand Guidebooks.
Buy Guide books for the first 5-6 countries if you are traveling through many places. I know they are heavy.
If you only need sections, get out the kitchen knife and cut them apart and tape together the region you are visiting. A handy hint emailed to me by David Stanley the author of Moon Handbooks South Pacific.
David kindly sent me several emails and freely shared his knowledge, and for that, I am very thankful.
If need be, you can buy some that incorporate a region, but try to get those that are as detailed as possible. Up to 5 to 10 years ago as a publication is usually ok.
You can buy David’s Guide Books at South Pacific Travel
Remember, there are often few changes that are made within short durations. However, in USA and major countries, you will get an up to date Guidebook.
You can sell these for a few $$ to an incoming tourist when you are about to leave. This lightens your load, You might discover that you can trade it off along the way too.
A concise and large detailed map will beat anything you can find online when planning your trip. I had to order two, in order to find the best one that gives the details I needed since we were island hopping.
A cheaper alternative is Op Shop for a large Atlas in A3 size as they come in hardcover. Cut the cover off: The maps are great and you can remove and take just what you need.
We got a great one for $4. Where each map I was buying online was $15 — $20 of a detailed region.
Town maps and area maps can be used on your phone just like GPS.
My wonderful traveling mentor, David Stanley, also recommends you purchase Maps at
We love to explore; to experience the new; to never give up, to live life to the fullest; to meet new people; to give when people least expect it...To do Random Acts of Kindness, as we see and learn, while we travel the world.