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Having captivated millions during his five-year tenure as the New York Times’s “Frugal Traveler,” Seth Kugel has become one of our most internationally beloved travel writers. While his famously unassuming journeys around the globe have forged a signature philosophy of whimsy and practicality, they have also revealed the seemingly infinite booby traps of vacationing on the Having captivated millions during his five-year tenure as the New York Times’s “Frugal Traveler,” Seth Kugel has become one of our most internationally beloved travel writers. While his famously unassuming journeys around the globe have forged a signature philosophy of whimsy and practicality, they have also revealed the seemingly infinite booby traps of vacationing on the grid. In a book with widespread cultural reverberations, Kugel takes the modern travel industry to task, determined to reignite humanity’s age-old sense of adventure that has virtually been vanquished by the spontaneity-obliterating likes of Google Maps, TripAdvisor, and Starwood points. Woven throughout with vivid tales of his perfectly imperfect adventures, The Intrepid Traveler explains—often hilariously—how to make the most of new digital technologies without being shackled to them. For the tight-belted tourist and the first-class flyer, the eager student and the comfort-seeking retiree, Kugel shows how we too can rediscover the joy of discovery.


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Having captivated millions during his five-year tenure as the New York Times’s “Frugal Traveler,” Seth Kugel has become one of our most internationally beloved travel writers. While his famously unassuming journeys around the globe have forged a signature philosophy of whimsy and practicality, they have also revealed the seemingly infinite booby traps of vacationing on the Having captivated millions during his five-year tenure as the New York Times’s “Frugal Traveler,” Seth Kugel has become one of our most internationally beloved travel writers. While his famously unassuming journeys around the globe have forged a signature philosophy of whimsy and practicality, they have also revealed the seemingly infinite booby traps of vacationing on the grid. In a book with widespread cultural reverberations, Kugel takes the modern travel industry to task, determined to reignite humanity’s age-old sense of adventure that has virtually been vanquished by the spontaneity-obliterating likes of Google Maps, TripAdvisor, and Starwood points. Woven throughout with vivid tales of his perfectly imperfect adventures, The Intrepid Traveler explains—often hilariously—how to make the most of new digital technologies without being shackled to them. For the tight-belted tourist and the first-class flyer, the eager student and the comfort-seeking retiree, Kugel shows how we too can rediscover the joy of discovery.

30 review for Rediscovering Travel: A Guide for the Globally Curious

  1. 5 out of 5

    Literary Soirée

    “Rediscovering Travel” is an amazing companion for those who want to see the world by Seth Kugel, beloved in his six-year fifty-country tenure as the New York Times’s “Frugal Traveler.” Geared to newbie and veteran globetrotter alike, “Rediscovering Travel” shares Kugel’s own tales of perfectly imperfect adventures, while helping readers seek their own. He is especially adept at helping travelers make the most of new digital technologies without being hamstrung by them. With vivacity and humor, K “Rediscovering Travel” is an amazing companion for those who want to see the world by Seth Kugel, beloved in his six-year fifty-country tenure as the New York Times’s “Frugal Traveler.” Geared to newbie and veteran globetrotter alike, “Rediscovering Travel” shares Kugel’s own tales of perfectly imperfect adventures, while helping readers seek their own. He is especially adept at helping travelers make the most of new digital technologies without being hamstrung by them. With vivacity and humor, Kugel shows how we too can rediscover the joy of discovering the globe. 5/5 Pub Date 30 Oct 2018 Thanks to W. W. Norton & Company and NetGalley for the review copy. Opinions are fully mine. #RediscoveringTravel #NetGalley

  2. 5 out of 5

    Devyn

    I received this book from Goodreads. Let me just save everyone some time. Rediscovering Travel: A Guide for the Globally Curious is almost all lecture and no fun- at least in the beginning. If you want to read Seth Kugel drone on and on about how his way of travel is better than anyone else's, read the book cover to cover. But if you're just in it for the useful tips, skip to the last few chapters.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Anna

    An interesting perspective on travel. Kugel makes some points that really resonate and others where I am in disagreement. He tries to be understanding of other's perspectives most of the time, but occasionally there are moments when his bias shows through. This happened most particularly when he dismisses the idea that people can have valuable travel experiences that do not involve meeting new people, which basically dismisses the idea that other people can get pleasure out of things he does not An interesting perspective on travel. Kugel makes some points that really resonate and others where I am in disagreement. He tries to be understanding of other's perspectives most of the time, but occasionally there are moments when his bias shows through. This happened most particularly when he dismisses the idea that people can have valuable travel experiences that do not involve meeting new people, which basically dismisses the idea that other people can get pleasure out of things he does not such as art, solitude, and beautiful vistas. On the other hand I really appreciated the parts on being thoughtful about our travel experiences, spending less to get a more real experience, and making travel meaningful to you rather than to the world at large. A good book to get you thinking about what travel means to you.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Bryan Summers

    Right in my wheelhouse. Kugel wrote the frugal traveler column for the New York Times. This is about how to have spontaneous adventures while traveling. I loved it. One of the best times of my life was backpacking around Eastern Turkey and Northern Iraq. I didn't have a hard schedule. I mostly wandered around meeting a lot of people. At one point I was dropped off in Erbil, Iraq, seven miles from my destination. I could see the citidal high above the city and just kept walking towards that. I stu Right in my wheelhouse. Kugel wrote the frugal traveler column for the New York Times. This is about how to have spontaneous adventures while traveling. I loved it. One of the best times of my life was backpacking around Eastern Turkey and Northern Iraq. I didn't have a hard schedule. I mostly wandered around meeting a lot of people. At one point I was dropped off in Erbil, Iraq, seven miles from my destination. I could see the citidal high above the city and just kept walking towards that. I stumbled on the public library and spent an afternoon talking to the director of the library. I want to have another adventure like that. Anyways, that was 11 years ago. I think of it often. I highly recommend this book.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Lacey

    I would have enjoyed this a lot more if it didn't take until page 207 to acknowledge that women traveling by themselves may feel unsafe doing many of the things the author talks about.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Karen

    This probably falls somewhere between a 3 and a 4 for me. I agree with a lot of what the author has to say about seeking out the things that are of particular interest to you rather than ticking off a list of "must sees" in an area that maybe wouldn't make your list otherwise. As a woman, I wouldn't however feel comfortable taking a lot of the chances Kugel takes while traveling. At any rate, I found this to definitely be worth a listen and inspiring for future travels.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Jesse

    I will say this is well written and engaging and gives lots of tips to think about. However the author makes a fatal flaw in assuming everyone’s ultimate experience in travel is the same - or should be the same - as his ultimate experience in travel. I don’t even like going to parties if my closest friends in the world will be there - why would I want to go to a new year’s party of the mother of a stranger? I feel like the lesson he is trying to communicate is to not be afraid to pursue what you I will say this is well written and engaging and gives lots of tips to think about. However the author makes a fatal flaw in assuming everyone’s ultimate experience in travel is the same - or should be the same - as his ultimate experience in travel. I don’t even like going to parties if my closest friends in the world will be there - why would I want to go to a new year’s party of the mother of a stranger? I feel like the lesson he is trying to communicate is to not be afraid to pursue what you really want out of travel - for him it is human connection - but for others it might be the best donuts in the world - or the coolest video game bar - or something that many other people don’t like but you really do. Also, even though he says he realizes that the experiences of people other than cis straight white men might be different than his safety wise - I don’t think he fully or even partly understands what that means. Which is also what bugs me about the get off your phone and live thing. For a lot of us who are not cis straight white men connecting with other people like us needs to happen and that just may happen using the phone. Not all of us have the luxury of being fully ourselves by just walking down the street. And finally, while I appreciated his reflections on authentic experiences, a lot of what he was doing felt manipulative or gaming of his hosts. Again, even though he said it wasn’t. Three stars though because it did help me think about what I want from traveling.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Kathy

    I agree with much of what Kugel has to say about the travel industry and with his travel philosophy. I do fall in the camp of female readers though who would not feel comfortable doing many of the things Kugel does (I don’t know many moms who are going to show up in a random location with no plans and then accept overnight accommodations at the homes of strangers they meet on the street). Not a criticism of him, just an acknowledgment that his way may not be right for everyone. His points on tou I agree with much of what Kugel has to say about the travel industry and with his travel philosophy. I do fall in the camp of female readers though who would not feel comfortable doing many of the things Kugel does (I don’t know many moms who are going to show up in a random location with no plans and then accept overnight accommodations at the homes of strangers they meet on the street). Not a criticism of him, just an acknowledgment that his way may not be right for everyone. His points on tourism sustainability are spot on, as are his criticisms of travel review sites. The biggest takeaway for me was to remember to be mindful of breaking out of our bubble when we travel. Talk to strangers, try new things, go off the beaten path, wander aimlessly, enjoy.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Joyce

    I loved Kugel's weekly Frugal Traveler columns in the Sunday NYT. This books reflects his pleasure in travel and offers interesting anecdotes, strong opinions, and practical advice--and everything reflects his sense of humor. If found Appendix 2 with the information on risks of travel and the appropriate preparations for any travel to be particularly useful. This is perhaps better read than heard.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Eli

    I came to this via a spot Kugel had on an old Rick Steves podcast episode I listened to wherein he talked about his idea for smartphone “travel mode” that would help make us stay more present for our traveling while we are traveling instead of, say, posting on Insta non-stop. So I was intrigued, and this book definitely posed some worthwhile questions about how and why we travel and provided interesting historical and practical information. However, he does assume one type of traveler: White, ma I came to this via a spot Kugel had on an old Rick Steves podcast episode I listened to wherein he talked about his idea for smartphone “travel mode” that would help make us stay more present for our traveling while we are traveling instead of, say, posting on Insta non-stop. So I was intrigued, and this book definitely posed some worthwhile questions about how and why we travel and provided interesting historical and practical information. However, he does assume one type of traveler: White, male, and extroverted (he devotes a couple of paragraphs to the idea of what it might be like for other travelers and offers a resource list link, not even in the book itself). I couldn’t decide on three or four stars. Went with four due to helping me consider some questions about traveling I may not have otherwise.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Lesley

    I won a Goodreads giveaway copy of this book - Go me! I tend to just rate and not write reviews, so I'll do my best. I wanted this book because we've been trying to travel more with our kids before they graduate. I'm a planner, and as a family we lean more towards independent and quirky travel rather than group tours and standard American hotel brands. This book not only scratched the travel bug itch, but gave a lot of good advice and covered some thought provoking topics. I got some really saav I won a Goodreads giveaway copy of this book - Go me! I tend to just rate and not write reviews, so I'll do my best. I wanted this book because we've been trying to travel more with our kids before they graduate. I'm a planner, and as a family we lean more towards independent and quirky travel rather than group tours and standard American hotel brands. This book not only scratched the travel bug itch, but gave a lot of good advice and covered some thought provoking topics. I got some really saavy travel research tips with regards to OTA's, and I was freshly inspired to think outside the "must see!" travel box and just let a trip unfold sometimes. As I said in my update reviews as I was reading it, I knew I could trust him by his love of tostones, and his use of paper maps rather than google maps to navigate a city warmed this old geography major's heart.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Shawn Fettig

    For people who don't travel, this reads as a "Do; Don't Do," but for those who do travel, all of the author's suggestions seem to be common knowledge. A few nuggets of useful advice, but nothing too insightful.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Flora

    This is one of the rare books that discuss travel philosophy and does a decent job with it. Plainly said, this is a coherent and well-written rant from Seth Kugel. He discusses the positive and negative transformations in travel over the past few decades. This, in turn, puts the meaning of travel into question: what is a traveler nowadays? Why do we travel? How has the mentality towards travel changed? Kugel tackles these questions from various angles, drawing from his personal experience and fa This is one of the rare books that discuss travel philosophy and does a decent job with it. Plainly said, this is a coherent and well-written rant from Seth Kugel. He discusses the positive and negative transformations in travel over the past few decades. This, in turn, puts the meaning of travel into question: what is a traveler nowadays? Why do we travel? How has the mentality towards travel changed? Kugel tackles these questions from various angles, drawing from his personal experience and famous travel writers (ex. Mark Twain, Paul Theroux etc.). This includes: how to find authentic/organic travel experiences, the reason for travel (not just the philosophical reasons, the real reasons), the effects of technology, the risk factors, people, and money. In the final section of the book, he discusses how we can each work to be responsible travellers and make travel sustainable. For readers who have not done independent travel, this book may be difficult to read. This is because the book criticizes the image of travel = comfort + pleasure, as constructed by the travel industry. For some time, travel has been synonymous with “vacation” (at least in North America). Meanwhile, disheveled backpackers are often associated with images of hippies and people in the midst of a life crisis. Of course, these stereotypes have been subverted in the past few years as travel became increasingly more accessible for the developed countries (i.e. more mainstream). Like veganism, travel has become a roaring trend - a requirement for self-actualization, even. On one end, it is a way of self-discovery and active learning. On the other end, it is the new form of shopping (I call it the bucket list/destination checklist). For the first few trips, I’ve never stopped to think deeply about travel itself. Who had the time, anyway? Trip-planning itself was enough of a hassle. Plus, with all the new experiences within reach, who has time to get all philosophical? Get out there first! Though as I traveled more, I’ve noticed that I’ve started to travel differently. Instead of brimming with blind wanderlust, I begin to wonder why I travel and why travel is meaningful at all. This in turn changed the destinations I chose and the way I travelled. Instead of visiting the “must-visit destinations of year X” or “places you must see before you die”, I began to consider what are the most important aspects of travel for me. I started to choose destinations where I can speak (or learn to speak) the local language, choose local home stays, eat more street food, wander around the city instead of hop-scotch sightseeing, and slowing down. I didn’t care about checking off some metaphorical list or hit a certain number of countries - I wanted to go to places with cultures and languages that interest me. Kugel’s book pieced together the answers for the vague questions I gathered throughout the years. It also raised many key ideas that I’ve omitted as a traveller. I’ll admit it is by no means a page-turner, but it certainly taught me a lot about traveling more deliberately and responsibly. It put travel in a more humbling light rather than the dazzling social media hype. For this reason, this is an important book for those who love to travel and want to continue exploring the world more sensibly.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Kathryn Davidson

    The author feels that there are are several forms of travel: 1) for relaxation, 2) for status and 3) for exploration. He advocates that one travel to explore, and that instead of exploring the famous landmarks, that one try for more "authentic" or "organic" experiences by wandering off the beaten path, where the people will be friendlier than they are where there are tourists, and so one might get to peek into what people really live like there rather than the tourist version. The stories he sha The author feels that there are are several forms of travel: 1) for relaxation, 2) for status and 3) for exploration. He advocates that one travel to explore, and that instead of exploring the famous landmarks, that one try for more "authentic" or "organic" experiences by wandering off the beaten path, where the people will be friendlier than they are where there are tourists, and so one might get to peek into what people really live like there rather than the tourist version. The stories he shares in the book seem like they would only motivate people who are already looking for "authentic" experiences rather than people who just want to escape or who would be really disappointed if they spent all that money and didn't see something famous that was the reason they wanted to go to the country in the first place. He says that we shouldn't get upset when we American fast food chains because "it is a huge mistake - an utter misunderstanding of authenticity - to pretend we are visiting a civilization that has no contact with our own world. Instead of looking for authenticity in isolation, we must understand that our world's fascinating interconnectedness is the ultimate authenticity, and that it's absence is an equally intriguing exception." This misses the point that many who travel are looking for something "authentic" to their destination rather than their origin so are disappointed to arrive to see something that looks like where they left. Will have to admit that my children have opened my eyes to the possibility of using American fast food chains as a glimpse into the food tastes of the country being visited, e.g., a KFC menu in China does not have anything in common with the American version. He observes that what is one country's local beach is another country's exotic destination (the same can be said for cars). He says most of the world seems to travel more than Americans do. This is without acknowledging that America and Europe are about the same size, so while someone is Europe goes through many countries in a short distance, that same distance may not even get you out of one state if you're someplace like Texas. In summary, although there are some interesting stories, the book was longer than it needed to be and sang to the choir (says someone in the choir, i.e., who already prefers self-guided rather than formal tours and staying somewhere other than hotels).

  15. 4 out of 5

    DA

    The first four chapters is all about don't be afraid to explore, be spontaneous, interact with locals, don't schedule too much, be open, be curious, don't relay on technology, shed herd mentality, don't let user reviews guide/ misguide you, don't follow a guidebook, avoid cliché, and there is no must-see in travel it is all about your taste. Obviously, some of these ideas won't work for everyone (those traveling with kids or solo female travelers) and everywhere (relatively unsafe countries). I d The first four chapters is all about don't be afraid to explore, be spontaneous, interact with locals, don't schedule too much, be open, be curious, don't relay on technology, shed herd mentality, don't let user reviews guide/ misguide you, don't follow a guidebook, avoid cliché, and there is no must-see in travel it is all about your taste. Obviously, some of these ideas won't work for everyone (those traveling with kids or solo female travelers) and everywhere (relatively unsafe countries). I don't think the author is very judgemental about other ways of travel. He says his style of travel will bring more surprises and unique experiences to you and I agree with it. Have you ever been surprised by taking a hop-on hop-off tour in a city? I am glad he don't buy the 'I am a traveler not a tourist' cliché but he make a sensible classification of travelers (active and the exploring kind) and vacationers (take it easy and relaxing type). He has a logical explanation why locals in big cities like Paris are rude to tourists. The author is not very happy with electronic map because google map didn't meet his expectations many times. I don't think that is a reason to ditch electronic maps and GPS for paper maps. I recommend Open Street Maps. If you are an experienced traveler, this book will be a very dull reading experience. If you are new to travel, this book will help you avoid the mistakes experienced travelers made in their first couple of trips abroad.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Chris Jaffe

    Kugle is a travel writer (he does The Frugal Traveler for the New York Times) who gives his perspective on travel here. There is a mixture of two items in this book: 1) an overall critique of how people travel, and 2) Kugel's own travel preferences. Those aren't exactly the same things as Kugel at times points out that what works for him won't necessarily work for everyone. He's generally successful at being aware of when he's talking about Item 1 or Item 2, but the line between the two areas is Kugle is a travel writer (he does The Frugal Traveler for the New York Times) who gives his perspective on travel here. There is a mixture of two items in this book: 1) an overall critique of how people travel, and 2) Kugel's own travel preferences. Those aren't exactly the same things as Kugel at times points out that what works for him won't necessarily work for everyone. He's generally successful at being aware of when he's talking about Item 1 or Item 2, but the line between the two areas is clearly blurry. He's a big believer in travel working better as an experience you can immerse yourself in. He wants to takes chances at risks going off the beaten path to unexplored avenues and small little towns, even when he has no contact there or idea of where he'll stay. It sounds interesting, but he ain't kidding when he says it's not for everyone. (That said, I think he underestimates just how much problems most people would have adopting his ways of travel). His most effective critique is when he attacks the importance some place on having a pampered hotel experience - if you're just going to focus on the hotel experience, then you'll miss so much of what you supposedly came to travel for.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Mary Keen

    I heard an interview on NPR with the author talking about his unscheduled stop in a small town in very rural Hungary. I've been in various parts of Hungary, so was interested. The first chapter re his stay in Mezobereny was great; he'd known nothing about the town and area and had no Hungarian language. Altho' there were some challenging moments, he seemed to recommend this type of random travel. I read Ch 1 a couple of times, but only dipped into sections in the rest of the book, which are a comp I heard an interview on NPR with the author talking about his unscheduled stop in a small town in very rural Hungary. I've been in various parts of Hungary, so was interested. The first chapter re his stay in Mezobereny was great; he'd known nothing about the town and area and had no Hungarian language. Altho' there were some challenging moments, he seemed to recommend this type of random travel. I read Ch 1 a couple of times, but only dipped into sections in the rest of the book, which are a compilation of articles over several years. He has great advice for satisfying travel that i haven't seen in other articles. He also has precautions of which advice to be suspicious of and avoid, including many reviews on Trip Advisor and also gushing comments from travel editors who are comped into travel at the highest level. I wish that he had included an index --altho with some chapters including scattered locations, it would be a long index. He does have a NOTES section at the end, divided into chapters. This is what would have been "footnotes" in the old days, a much more useful and convenient way to read, IMO. STrongly recommend this book!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Sarah-Jessica

    "For me, and perhaps for others, the constant itch to go somewhere comes in part from the frustration that our worldview is largely shaped by the thin sliver of Earth we inhabit for most of the year—geographically, professionally and socioeconomically—and the knowledge that so many other slivers exist that we could never see. In this sense, travel is an imperfect substitute for what many of us dream of doing: to live somewhere radically different, to inhabit an entirely separate patch of this pl "For me, and perhaps for others, the constant itch to go somewhere comes in part from the frustration that our worldview is largely shaped by the thin sliver of Earth we inhabit for most of the year—geographically, professionally and socioeconomically—and the knowledge that so many other slivers exist that we could never see. In this sense, travel is an imperfect substitute for what many of us dream of doing: to live somewhere radically different, to inhabit an entirely separate patch of this planet long enough to know it intimately. Long enough to learn not just how to order espresso but also to practice the language, make friends, figure out supermarkets, navigate new kinds of bureaucracy, and grow accustomed to regular power outages. Long enough to realize that our abstract generalizations of entire peoples—such as 'incredibly friendly' or 'so rude'—exist only in the Jamaicas and Parises of our glossily simplistic imaginations." Love that part; truly related to it.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Bonnie

    As a lover of travel, I can't say that I learned much new from Kugel's book. However, I would definitely recommend it to anyone who is a seasoned traveler - much like Kugel and his sense of adventure - or anyone who wants to expand their experiences. The author was the "Frugal Traveler" and has authored several travel books. In "Rediscovering Travel" - he shares his own stories, his ventures off the beaten path - and ways to lose the 5-star resort type of vacation. He unearths and explains the t As a lover of travel, I can't say that I learned much new from Kugel's book. However, I would definitely recommend it to anyone who is a seasoned traveler - much like Kugel and his sense of adventure - or anyone who wants to expand their experiences. The author was the "Frugal Traveler" and has authored several travel books. In "Rediscovering Travel" - he shares his own stories, his ventures off the beaten path - and ways to lose the 5-star resort type of vacation. He unearths and explains the travel industry- how they "influence" our choices with their reviews, ads, etc. Besides some travel business advice- Kugel also expresses the social experiences of travel: how to meet "real" folks, try the regional foods, travel like the locals - and how to learn at the street level all the culture of a town or country.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Kelli

    A breezy collection of travel suggestions peppered with the author’s personal travel anecdotes. His writing is conversant, often humorous, but also can feel very repetitive at times. I would’ve enjoyed it more if about a third had been edited down so it was more focused. As someone who is well-traveled, I found myself in agreement for the vast majority, yet still took away plenty of new suggestions. Throughout the book I was skeptical as many situations he puts forward are ones where those of us A breezy collection of travel suggestions peppered with the author’s personal travel anecdotes. His writing is conversant, often humorous, but also can feel very repetitive at times. I would’ve enjoyed it more if about a third had been edited down so it was more focused. As someone who is well-traveled, I found myself in agreement for the vast majority, yet still took away plenty of new suggestions. Throughout the book I was skeptical as many situations he puts forward are ones where those of us who are not cishet white males would be reluctant, but I appreciated that he discussed his privilege towards the end. I think I would’ve appreciated this more as a few articles vs a full book, however it definitely inspired my wanderlust!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Geri chesner

    I am not the type of traveler as Kugel is, but I appreciated his stories, experiences and suggestions for those like him who do travel in this manner. I have lived through him vicariously and imagined myself as a a global oftentimes "frugal" traveler and have enjoyed the experience. You don't need to be the type of traveler he is to find his book fascinating - many reviewers lamented that it was written from his own privileged perspective...well, that's what he knows and has experienced. It took I am not the type of traveler as Kugel is, but I appreciated his stories, experiences and suggestions for those like him who do travel in this manner. I have lived through him vicariously and imagined myself as a a global oftentimes "frugal" traveler and have enjoyed the experience. You don't need to be the type of traveler he is to find his book fascinating - many reviewers lamented that it was written from his own privileged perspective...well, that's what he knows and has experienced. It took me a while to get through, however each time I wanted to stop and turn to another book, I was drawn back in and I am glad that I continued to the end.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Steven Krikava

    Pretty good, but not great I am a fan of the author, Seth Kugel. I enjoy watching his video program ‘Su Amigo Gringo’ on YouTube. And I liked his columns when he was the travel editor for the New York Times. So I wanted to like this book. Parts of it are funny and clever and helpful. Other parts are long, repetitive and pedantic. For me, I liked his advice on how to use social media more effectively. I also liked his advice on street food and dining while traveling. Really, though, that could ha Pretty good, but not great I am a fan of the author, Seth Kugel. I enjoy watching his video program ‘Su Amigo Gringo’ on YouTube. And I liked his columns when he was the travel editor for the New York Times. So I wanted to like this book. Parts of it are funny and clever and helpful. Other parts are long, repetitive and pedantic. For me, I liked his advice on how to use social media more effectively. I also liked his advice on street food and dining while traveling. Really, though, that could have been 2 well-edited columns and not a whole book.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Thomas Ryan

    An excellent well balanced look at modern travel — why we do it, how we do it, should we do it, and given the yin and yang of technology and globalization, the way to perhaps do it better. Seth Kugel comes off as both a wee bit jaded and very pragmatic in his approach to travel. Highly recommended, especially the first part on his philosophy of travel and the later chapter on technology and travel.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Manny

    One of the beat books on travel. Seth has a series of essays on various aspects of travel in todays day and age. While he does have a certain bias but he does give sufficient points to ponder on. It is a book which you can spend a lot of time reflecting on . I liked the comparison on travel through the ages and how the modern tourism industry has shaped up. Would recommend for everyone to read in the next travels

  25. 5 out of 5

    Rayfes Mondal

    How to be a traveler and not a tourist. Really enjoyed some of the history of leisure travel. It's a much more modern thing than we realize. How to use review sites effectively and not just to go to tourist friendly places. How to use your smart phone effectively but not be tied to it constantly. I also enjoyed reading about the author's personal travel experiences though I don't want to travel as frugally as he does. And he had good steps for determining risk.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Jenny

    As a keen traveller, I was very interested and intrigued to try Kugel's ideas for future travel plans. He challenges the over-planned or researched holidays that many of us take for Fear of Missing Out (FOMO). Kugel suggests wandering, chatting to locals and restricting online time while travelling to create travel that is lower in cost, more interesting and more ethical. Kugel's writing is funny, a little philosophical and this book is easy to dip in and out of with chapters on the people you mee As a keen traveller, I was very interested and intrigued to try Kugel's ideas for future travel plans. He challenges the over-planned or researched holidays that many of us take for Fear of Missing Out (FOMO). Kugel suggests wandering, chatting to locals and restricting online time while travelling to create travel that is lower in cost, more interesting and more ethical. Kugel's writing is funny, a little philosophical and this book is easy to dip in and out of with chapters on the people you meet, money, travel websites and technology. Kugel was the columnist for The New York Times Frugal Traveller column from 2010 to 2016 and now is a freelance travel journalist.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Darius Ostrowski

    Not bad, but it kinda made you feel guilty and that you were wasting your time if you didn't get "real" per Mr. Kugel's recommendations. It seems that he wasn't sure if he was trying to tell travel stories or tell you how to travel (cheap, local, spur of the moment), so he did a little bit of both.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kelly

    Seth Kugal's book has inspired me to get off the beaten path a little more. My husband and I used to stay in cute B&B's but save been staying in chain hotels more and more (gotta get and use those points). For our upcoming trip to France I booked a B&B, and a cheap one at that. Get into the culture more, Seth says. The B&B a my first step in doing just that. Seth Kugal's book has inspired me to get off the beaten path a little more. My husband and I used to stay in cute B&B's but save been staying in chain hotels more and more (gotta get and use those points). For our upcoming trip to France I booked a B&B, and a cheap one at that. Get into the culture more, Seth says. The B&B a my first step in doing just that.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Kim

    I went into the book thinking it would be a lot more stories about intriguing places to visit that maybe I haven’t been before… Instead it was a guide to traveling more mindfully. Lots of thought went into the book; it’s well written. Based on my travel experience and style, there wasn’t a ton too learn.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Ann

    Excellent book on travel- cuts to the chase on travel bargains that are not bargains, looks for authentic experiences although I am not quite that ready to stay as cheaply as he does but I am in agreement that $300-700 a night hotels are not in my league ever! I liked his advice on practical practices of guides, tours, tickets etc!!

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