The Lonely Planet has been my faithful companion on almost every trip I’ve taken. Southeast Asia on a Shoestring and Europe on a Shoestring are two particularly battered versions … they’ve been bent, dog-earred, used as makeshift pillows in desperation and clumsily highlighted while on bumpy bus rides.
And while I wouldn’t leave home without my trusty guide, I wish there were a way to make it more compact. Yeah, I know it’s just a book but for a backpacker with a shopping habit, a book that size takes up a lot of precious space and weight. On my southeast Asia trip, for instance, I could’ve done without the chapters on Indonesia, Malaysia, Burma and the Philippines — they just weren’t on the agenda for that trip.
But wait … there is a way to lighten up your Lonely Planet load. It’s called Pick & Mix and it allows you to download, save and print individual chapters. The chapters are identical to those in the guidebooks, and each will cost you between $2 and $4. And, you’ll get a discount if you buy multiple chapters at once. They’re currently trying out the Pick & Mix program so you can only get select guide books right now, but look for more soon.