Travel guides will never be the same

I remember my first trip to Norway. I was riding on a bus with family friends, trying not to fall asleep between visits to ancient churches, pristine mountain tops and historic sites. I diligently kept a journal, my first of many, and kept everything from my ticket to the Viking Ship Museum to the barf bag from the airline flight.

Along with my journal (which of course had an image of Edvard Munch’s The Scream), my other hand held the travel guide. A photo-filled book with all of the facts, must-see places and photos that I should attempt to take myself.

For years, this is what a travel guide has been. A book of facts, providing an all-in-one source of information.

Today however, we have another name for an all-in-one source of information: Google. In fact, whether walking around the historic center of a city, looking for the best restaurant or searching for the best transportation routes, information is best when it is fresh and from multiple perspectives. While a book is out of date the minute it is published, online reviews, website and connections with locals through social media are always fresh.

It is with this in mind that I am setting out to change the world of travel guides with The Travel Hacking Guide to Norway. This book is more than a guide, it is a challenge to rethink the possibilities of travel, technology and social connections. By directing readers to important resources online and connections with locals via social media, Travel Hacking Norway is a blueprint to experience Norwegian culture the way the locals do. Even though Norway is one of the most expensive countries in the world, using technology and travel resources, you can make it an affordable and enjoyable destination.

Most guides stop after publishing, but again The Travel Hacking Guide differs in that respect as well. This site will share updated information and resources about Norway as well as contacts and locals on social media who could help travelers when they arrive. In essence, the guide is the first step, but the resources online here and around the web provide the on-going value of the guide.

Just as iTunes disrupted the music industry and eBooks changed the publishing industry, it is time for the world of guidebooks to be forever changed. Let’s throw the first stone. Get started for free this week at:

Posted on May 15th, 2012 in Norway, Travel