Time to trade in your Travel Guide for a Phone App?

Travel publishing is shifting – Founders are taking a back seat and consumers are turning to digital rather than paperback for their destination information.

Mark Ellingham, publisher of the first Rough Guide 25 years ago predicts that within the next five years guidebooks will go almost completely digital. More and more consumers will turn to digital, like the iPhone and Android, as the media becomes more relevant and useful and the book market continues to stagnate and decline.

So…is it the last chapter for paperback guidebooks? Let’s explore the era of the application.

While the paperback guidebook can be very useful and great to have by your side, some of the better travel apps are just that and a whole lot more! From digital guidebooks to phrasebooks, podcasts to factbooks, museum-finders to cab-finders, map directories to point of interest locaters, travelers are really putting the world in their pockets! Find the best restaurants, hotels, and sights and receive up-to-date, relevant information in real time. Track your travels and share your experiences online with your friends and other like-minded travelers. Some of the current travel applications don’t offer added value from the tried and true guidebook though. It’s in these instances that its safe to stick with the traditional. That being said, this is really just the beginning for smartphone travel applications; with the advent of new technologies and functionalities, travelers can expect some exciting applications to take along on their adventures, possibly rendering the paperback travel guide useless.

So while many of you may stick with the handy paperback for now, the app is a great option too. Let your smartphone direct you if your Guidebook can’t!

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