Chances are you have at least a couple of Lonely Planet guides on your bookshelves, or in a box in your parents' garage along with very thin tax returns from the 1990s or early 2000s. I still have a couple of very outdated books—not for the informational value today, which is minimal, but because they're time capsules of how those countries were when I was traveling around years ago. And now BBC, which has owned the independent travel guide since 2007, is selling the brand at a big loss to some American billionaire who may also have fond memories of the densely packed books.
The books still sell pretty well, with Lonely Planet being the best-selling travel guide in the UK, but BBC says it doesn't want anything to do with the nice company and "would not make this sort of acquisition again." But I'm probably not the only person who quit buying guide books around the time wifi became common, and now thinks a laptop is too much trouble to carry around.
Photo by The Wandering Angel.