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Saturday, October 22, 2011

A Library in Your Carry-On 10.22.11

Nobody likes to be bored when they travel. No matter where I go, I bring along some form of entertainment, whether it’s reading material, a game or a puzzle book. Sitting on the airplane, train or in the car, you can’t always pass the time sleeping or shooting the breeze with your fellow companions. Also, sometimes you just want some time to yourself. In anticipation of the Shereen Travels Cheap book coming out in the next week, I’ve been thinking more and more about ebook readers and what great travel companions they make. While I LOVE a good book, I also love saving space in my luggage. Before Kindle came along, I always took up too much room in my packing with physical books. With one book that I was in the middle of and another as backup for when I finished in the middle of my vacation.


Are you a lover or books and reading? If so, this may still be your problem. While you can leave books in many hotel lobbies for other avid trip readers, books still take up room in your bags. Whether they are travel books, reference books, novels, journals or text books. Now, I carry 80% of the books I own with me, as well as blogs and newspapers I read often. I take notes on my device, too. The space I save by owning a Kindle is invaluable, because I have a wealth of information at my disposal, infinite reading material as well as Internet access, should I need it.


You rarely see me go anywhere without my Kindle and anytime anyone asks me about it, I am singing its praises. I love, love, love my Kindle, though I know it’s not the right ebook reader for everyone. There are new and improved models, but you can also choose from Nook, the Sony ereader and numerous others. There is certainly one for everyone now. While they may get smaller, the font size is always adjustable. Great for your little sister or your grandma!


Ebook readers can be super useful, as many have Wi-Fi now and can be used as tablets on-the-go. Plus, if you own an iPad, you already have a book reader. With free reading apps, they do double duty. Take pictures, write notes, check email, pay bills, Skype with friends and family, update your blog and read all the books you want. In the same space of a regular size novel, you can take every book you own (or at least the ones you downloaded). Kindle books run cheaper than actual books and you save paper and space at home and on the road. You can find most books for around $9.99, though some are more if they are new releases and many are cheaper to entice you more. In fact, there are many free and $.99 books for download and this is true on other services that are not on Amazon. Order with the credit card you have on file and get it wirelessly in under a minute. Lend books to friends, upload your own books and even listen to audio books or MP3s.

Here I am enjoying my own Kindle.
I prefer my Kindle with the 3G, because I don’t have to find a Wi-Fi connection to download a new book. As long as there is cell service, I can read something new. If you spend a lot of time in coffee shops and other places that are Wi-Fi hotspots, then you may wish to save money on your ereader and get one that has Wi-Fi only. As long as you aren’t continually using the wireless function, your battery will last much longer than you would have thought. When I’m not on vacation, I read on my lunch break at work. I have been able to read for 8+ hours on one battery charge, which is more than I can say for the battery life of any other electronic device I own. So, whether you’re on a 2 hour plane ride or a 15 hour train trip, your ereader can make the journey with you without needing recharging for a long time, making it one of the best travel companions you could own.



If you have an ebook reader or other web-enabled device, you can subscribe to this blog on it through Amazon. You’ll also be able to download the Shereen Travels Cheap book when it becomes available in the next week or so (it may be a bit behind the physical book). Why wouldn’t you want to take all the best travel tips, websites and packing techniques everywhere you go? Know when to plan, what to pack and where to book even when you’re not at home. If you love this blog, you’ll love the book even more!


We have several good things to talk about this time! Shereen Travels Cheap has been going through some good changes. The STC book will be available for purchase near the end of the month (final edits have run through the proof and the final final is on its way. Woot woot!


Don't forget that we have a great newsletter that goes out once a week (maybe twice if something too good to miss presents itself) with updates, tips and blog reminders...you'll get a fancy one as soon as the book is available for you to buy copies for everyone on your holiday list!

I've become a new frequent contributor on FareCompare, which is a fantastic site that brings you amazing travel sales, tips for finding the best airfare anytime of year. If you've missed my last few posts, you can read them here:



5 Strategies for Avoiding Airline Fees

Making Overbooked Flights Work in Your Favor


Explore London While Staying Within a Budget


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