About Reid Bramblett
ReidsGuides.com is written, designed, and maintained by guidebook author and travel expert Reid Bramblett.
Why bother listening to Reid's advice?
Reid has worked as a travel editor at a major guidebook publisher (Frommer's), magazine (Budget Travel), and website (MSNBC.com), and continues to contribute freelance travel articles to many publications.
The guidebook years
Though Reid grew up largely in and around Philadelphia, he spent his adolescence learning Italian on a Roman playground and exploring Europe in a hippie-orange VW camper-van while his father, Frank—a painter and professor at Tyler School of Art—was teaching at the school's Temple University Rome campus.
Reid later took a break from Cornell's anthropology department to spend his own junior year abroad in Italy.
After a stint in the editorial offices of the Frommer's guidebooks, Reid decided to see what life was like on the other side of the desk. His first gig as a freelance writer: Frommer's first regional guide, Tuscany & Umbria. He spent the next decade exploring, learning, taking notes, and reporting it all in his guidebooks and articles.
Reid has authored or contributed to more than 30 guidebooks, and collectively updated them over more than two dozen editions—including Frommer's Italy from $90 A day, Europe for Dummies, DK's Eyewitness Top 10 Milan & The Lakes, and Frommer's Memorable Walks in New York—and has contributed to more than two dozen others, most recently to Pauline Frommer's Italy.
As a daily travel reporter for MSNBC.com in 2003, Reid won two Lowell Thomas awards for travel writing.
Reid has written feature articles for Newsweek, the Miami Herald, Yahoo.com, Dallas Morning News, Modern Bride, The Daily Herald, and Spirit (Southwest Airline's in-flight).
He is a frequent contributor to TravelandLeisure.com, a Contributing Writer at Condè Nast's Concierge.com, and a Contributing Editor to Budget Travel magazine, where he formerly served as Associate Editor.
Reid's weekly adventure column, "The Intrepid Traveler," has appeared in the Chicago Daily Herald, St. Petersburg Times, and the Tampa Bay Times.
On the air
Reid Bramblett has appeared as a travel expert on CNN, Fox NEWS, the Travel Channel, CNNfn, and the New York City affiliates of ABC, Fox, and UPN. He has also been a guest on various NPR programs and stations.
He appears as the Cultural Anthropologist on the Travel Channel series Cruises We Love, and is the occasional co-host of the weekly, nationally syndicated radio call-in show "The Travel Show with Arthur Frommer" (Sundays noon–2pm; www.wor710.com).
Reid lectures regularly on Italy and other travel topics at the Smithsonian Institution, and has spoken at many other venues, including the New York Times Travel Show, the New York's Explorer's Club, many bookstores and libraries, and various professional conferences, including those of SATW (the Society of American Travel Writers, where he recently stepped down from the post of Active-At-Large).
Reid has also acted as a travel consultant for national tourism boards, major tour companies, scout troops, executives planning trips, and couples looking for something special on their next vacation.
On the web
Reid also maintains the award-winning ReidsGuides.com trip-planning site (and its offspring sites NoFrillsAir.com and BeyondHotels.net), which has been recommended by CNN, USA Today, Smart Money, The Washington Post, MSNBC.com, Frommers.com, Fodors.com, Men's Health, Away.com, and National Geographic Traveler, and was been proclaimed "Among the best" by Arthur Frommer.
He has also launched ReidsItaly.com (devoted to Italy travel) and TheIntrepidTraveler.net (devoted to adventure travel).
The story of ReidsGuides.com
Reid Bramblett's award-winning ReidsGuides.com trip-planning site (and its offspring sites NoFrillsAir.com and BeyondHotels.net) has been recommended by CNN, USA Today, Smart Money, The Washington Post, MSNBC.com, Frommers.com, Fodors.com, Men's Health, Away.com, and National Geographic Traveler, and has been proclaimed "Among the best" by Arthur Frommer.
However, Reid didn't start this site to promote himself and his writing. (Well, not just that anyway.) It grew from a single page posted to his personal Web space—purely for his own benefit—listing the links to which he referred constantly while researching and updating his guidebooks.
At bookstore talks to promote the guidebooks, Reid got tired of slowly spelling out each of these terribly useful travel urls while attendees scribbled them down, and eventually just started saying, "Actually, most of these links are on my Web site," and gave out the link.
Within a few days, he began getting e-mails complimenting the set of links, but complaining that it wasn't clear what some of them were without clicking over to the sites. So he began annotating them.
That was in 1997. By 1999, the site had too much traffic for his personal account, so he registered a url (TravelTools.net—it has been ReidsGuides.com since 2004), and it just took of from there.
The site that continues to grow and expand from that set of links is Reid's attempt to continue helping travelers make sense of the ever-burgeoning world of online travel information, plan more interesting trips, and learn to travel beyond vacations™.
Here is a clip reel of some of Reid's TV appearances: