The days are long, it’s mostly dry and sometimes even sunny, and everyone is zombie-walking their way to their summer vacations. It must be July! High time to introduce you to the dapper gentlemen who make sure you have plenty of holiday destinations to choose from in our Travel Guides sections.
Meet MaxM from ABC Amsterdam and Tom from ABC The Hague:
How long have you been the section’s buyer?
MaxM: Since 2013.
Tom: I’m not entirely sure. Since 2002? 2004? Quite a while.
What guides, besides those on The Netherlands, do you always try to keep in stock?
MaxM: Those on Indonesia, Croatia, Japan, Berlin and Portugal.
Tom: Pretty much everything, really. Except the guides on Antarctica. But I really do try to have the entire Lonely Planet and Eyewitness guide collections in stock at all times. Rough Guides are a little less popular.
Do you take a travel guide with you when you go on vacation?
MaxM: No. I once bought one when I went to South Africa, but I didn’t use it. So out of habit I don’t buy them because I don’t really need them.
Tom: Yes. The way I travel I can only bring one guide with me, though, so it’s always the Lonely Planet for me. It has more info than the others about logistics, cheap accommodation, etc. I do look in other guides for information, though. Once I travelled to Rome with three other people, and every one of us had a different type of guide! That was great for comparisons.
Personal preference: Lonely Planet, Rough Guide or Eyewitness guides?
MaxM: Rough Guides. They offer more depth about the country’s culture and cultural institutions rather than purely information, which the Lonely Planets offer more of. They are also less frequently published than Lonely Planets, which to me seems like they have a better value.
Tom: Lonely Planets, as I just explained. Eyewitness guides are beautiful to look at. Rough Guides I’m not that familiar with, so it takes me a longer time to look up the information I need.
What has been the top-selling, non-Netherlands guide in 2014 so far?
MaxM: The Lonely Planet Japan. No matter how many I buy for the section, I always sell out quickly!
Tom: The past few years I’ve noticed that Croatia and Denmark have been relative bestsellers. Usually it’s the guides to France and Spain.
If you could visit any destination in the world, where would you go?
MaxM: Seoul and Tokyo. Seoul because it is the StarCraft capital in the world. I don’t play the game as much anymore, but I would love to soak up how unbelievably huge it is there. Tokyo because it is a country unto itself. It’s an enormous city, very densely populated, yet everything stays orderly. I’ve always wanted to go there.
Tom: I would like to visit Pitcairn and Socotra. Pitcairn because it’s one of those islands in the middle of the Pacific Ocean that take forever to reach. The trip would be quite costly, but I would love to make it once. Socotra is an island off the Yemen coast. It has some spectacular nature, but because of its location it’s quite a dangerous place to travel to.
There are ebooks available for travel guides to Indonesia, Croatia, Berlin, Portugal, Antarctica, South Africa, Rome, Japan, Denmark, France, Spain, Seoul, Pitcairn (in the LP South Pacific) and Socotra (in the LP Oman, UAE and Arabian Peninsula). In fact, there are ebooks available for practically all travel guides! Check our Advanced Search for the destination of your choice.
Still not sure where your summer plans will take you? Check out our Nice Price: Travel recommendations list. It’s been freshly updated with our latest travel guide bargains.