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Periodical Profile:  Arthur Frommer’s Budget Travel

It was a long, cold, snowy winter on Cape Cod and spring, as usual, seems in no hurry to get here.  As I write this, the sky is gray, the wind is raw, the crocuses are spent and the daffodils haven’t bloomed yet.  Like me, do you need to recharge your batteries?  How about planning a vacation somewhere interesting or beautiful with Arthur Frommer’s Budget Travel magazine? 

Its tagline promises, “Vacations for real people” and they take that seriously by researching the travel industry for real deals (not shams) and providing readers with all the tools you need to plan an economical trip to many types of locations here and abroad.  Each issue of Arthur Frommer’s Budget Travel has a theme that supports the magazine’s overall mission.  Editor Nina Willdorf introduces the monthly theme in the editor’s letter, with recent topics being:  “Great Escapes” (Feb.), “Money Well Spent” (Mar.) and “America:  Center Stage” (Apr.).  At the bottom of the editor’s letter page is a small bright yellow sun with the bold statement: 

“Why you can trust us.  Budget Travel writers don’t accept free trips or discounts – because it’s impossible to be objective if someone else is paying the way.”

Knowing this, you can trust that the information you read in these pages is the staff’s professional and unbiased opinion.

Frommer’s approach is to provide the reader with a “rich mix of escapes,” trips that are “transformative, but rooted in reality,” “unexplored corners,” “back door entrances,” “time saving tricks,” “insider info,” and “secret strategies” .  In this months’ issue, for example, they recommend visitors to San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge avoid the popular paid parking lot and park at somewhat nearby Chrissy Field instead. From there you can enjoy a scenic walk and coffee at a kiosk for $2.00.  Having lived in San Francisco for several years and having visited the bridge numerous times with friends and family, I think their suggestion is a good one, although, at $2.00 a cup, I am a little suspect about the quality of that coffee!  The writer must be a tea drinker.  The feature articles in this issue are “The Savvy Tourist’s Guide to Iconic America,” “Real Traveler’s Series:  Yellowstone National Park” and “20 Best Kept Secrets:  Washington, D.C.” In addition there are several regular columns with helpful information about tech support, reader’s tips, deals, recommended road trips, gear and gadgets to take with you and an index to popular travel destinations.

Arthur Frommer’s Budget Travel has been in publication for 13 years now and their guidebooks go back much later.  For a trustworthy source of information on economical getaways around the globe, you just may want to start your trip here.

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