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EUROPE ON $5 A DAY March 4, 2007

Posted by thenaturalist in Economic History, Money.
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Europe on $5 a Day was published in 1957, when riding the London Underground cost one and a half cents and all over Europe you could eat a meal for less than a dollar and stay at a nice hotel for three. Author Arthur Frommer was an Army intelligence officer posted in Berlin and found all his deals while spending his weekends wandering Europe with hardly a penny in his pocket. He wrote his first version for GIs and published it while he was still in Europe. When he returned to the U.S. he self-published 5,000 copies of a new version for the general public, and it sold out the first afternoon it was available. The advent of transatlantic jet service in 1958, which cut flight time in half, sent millions of Americans to Europe with Frommer’s book in hand. The title Europe on $5 a Day lasted for seven years. In 1965 it had to be changed to Europe on $5 and $10 a Day.The most recent edition, published in 2004, was entitled Europe From $85 a Day. Now the series has ended just before cracking the $100 ceiling. Frommer, who lives in New York, is semi-retired but he still writes travel columns. His daughter, Pauline Frommer, launched her own imprint in 2006. The Pauline Frommer Guides will take over where the dollar books left off. (Ellen Creager, Gannett News Service, 3/4/07)

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1. Sherry Keith - August 16, 2008

Thanks, I am writing a travel memoir and remember using Europe on $5 a Day to plan a trip to Europe in the summer of 1965. I just completed a 5 week trip in Switzerland. A fantastic journey, not on $5 a day, but worth every CH Franc spent. Amazing how “economy” nourished so many American travelers for decades. Now my friends and acquaintances say, “You went to Switzerland? Wasn’t it terribly expensive?”

All I can say that I am glad Frommer helped to get me traveling. And just because the dollar dropped, does not mean that I will stop. After all, what makes Americans think that we are entitled to have everything cheap and easy–even travel?


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