Posted on 3rd May 2016 at 2:44pm
Must Have Travel Gadgets and Apps
Travelling is an exciting yet stressful time, especially if you are not as prepared as you should be. Arranging hotels, booking excursions, organising transportation, and navigating airports can be rather frantic if you haven’t taken to time to properly organise your trip.
Luckily for you, there are endless travel gadgets designed to make being on the move more comfortable and convenient, as well as a wide range of travel oriented smartphone apps to keep you well organised and help you stay on top of things all the way from planning, to packing, and enjoying your travels.
10 Must Have Travel Gadgets
Lets first take a look at some absolutely must have travel gadgets that will make travelling easier, more cost effective, and more convenient, whether you’re travelling for work or pleasure.
1. The Apple Airport Express
Dealing with Internet access while you travel can be a major headache, and get costly quite quickly if you aren’t careful. The Apple Airport Express is the perfect gadget for regular travellers who spent their hotel time tethered to a short Ethernet cable, or are stuck paying daily wireless fees.
This device functions as its own wireless base station, and all that is required is to plug it into an electrical outlet and attach an Ethernet cable. From here you are able to configure your own private Internet domain.
2. Portable Notebook Lock
Your expensive electronics are always at risk of theft while travelling, but gadgets such as a portable notebook lock like the one made by Kensington help to eliminate such risks. The notebook lock is a three metre coiled cable that attaches your computer to the surface it is sitting on using a combination lock.
While it is not safe to leave your notebook unattended for long as a pair of wire cutters could free it, it will most certainly deter many and slow down others.
3. Universal Power Adapter Kit
What is more frustrating than arriving at your destination and realising your chargers and devices are rendered useless because of a different electrical outlet than the ones you use at home.
International travelling is made far easier and more convenient with a universal power adapter kit that will easily convert all of your chargers to fit the outlets of your location. For those who travel abroad often this gadget is an absolute must have.
4. Smartphone Battery Extender
We all know that the battery life of a smartphone is sometimes disappointing; especially it seems when we need it most. Travellers will definitely want to invest in a battery life extender that is compatible with your phone as you will want that extra juice on long days of sightseeing, photo taking, and using navigational features included on your phone’s OS. Battery extenders are generally small and lightweight making it easy to travel with them.
5. Portable Gaming Device
Travelling with kids (or impatient adults) can be a nightmare without something to keep them occupied. Sony, Nintendo and other industry-leading game developers have released handheld devices to allow users to play all of their favourite games while on the go. This is perfect for long car rides, plane trips and killing time before transfers and connecting flights.
6. The Selfie Stick
Already hugely popular with teenagers and narcissists, the selfie stick is actually a great tool to have while travelling on holiday. The selfie stick allows you to capture better self-taken pictures of yourself with your travel mates as well, meaning everyone involved can be in the pictures without trusting your camera to a local.
Thanks to the selfie stick, your pictures will be better quality, no longer extreme close-ups, and even capture some of the wonderful scenery behind you.
7. Water Purifier Bottle
The water in some destinations is less than desirable and can wreak havoc on your insides, making you feel ill and uncomfortable on your trip. This can easily be avoided by purchasing a water purification bottle that filters and purifies your water using a variety of methods including filters and UV light exposure to ensure it is safe for drinking, no matter where you are.
This will not only save you money on bottled water as you travel but also ensure you have constant access to safe and clean drinking water even in the most remote parts of the world.
8. Home Monitoring Camera
So far all of the helpful gadgets have been directed at making things easier while away from the home, but this one focuses on gaining peace of mind and additional security while you are gone. There are many version of home monitoring cameras available that allow you to check in on what’s happening at the homestead while you are gone using your smartphone or laptop.
9. Action Video Camcorder
The GoPro and many similar models have made home movie making on the go easy and convenient. Pocket sized video cameras allow you to capture the action and excitement of your travels in HD, with exceptional sound and image options that larger more expensive camera equipment have to offer, including loop, live feed, and other innovative features.
10. Wireless Headphones
Headphones are an important piece of equipment to travel with. They allow you to listen to music, drown out unpleasant travellers around you, participate in conference calls or listen to a movie without disrupting others.
When selecting a pair of headphones idea for travel consider such features as large, comfortable earpieces, wireless connection to keep from getting tangled, and noise cancelling features to drown out unwanted noise around you.
10 Must Have Smartphone Apps For Travelling
Now that we’ve determined what gadgets you need to make sure you have packed in your carry on let’s talk about what apps should be installed on your phone to make travelling less of a headache.
Airfare is often the most expensive part of travel and Hopper is a great app for better managing those costs. Hopper is great for travellers with flexible schedules as it allows you to snag rock bottom prices on airfare, alerting you when you destination is at a low price point.
2. Trip Advisor
Knowing the best places to eat, sleep and relax can be difficult when you are new to an area. Tripadvisor is the perfect solution to this problem, providing ratings by other visitors as to where to locate the best food, finest accommodations, and most exciting nightlife. No itinerary should be planned without consulting Tripadvisor first.
3. Google Translate
Language barriers can be challenging. Google provides the Google Translate app to ensure you can understand what is being said to you, and be understood wherever you may roam. While the translations are not always exactly perfect it definitely allows for more fluent conversations.
Who doesn’t love sending and receiving postcards? Postagram is an awesome app that allows you to send more personalised post cards by uploading a holiday photo and customising your greeting. Postagram will print out your postcard and even send it via snail mail for a small fee.
Communicating while travelling is quite costly, and mobile phone carriers make sure we pay for the privilege of keeping connected while away from home. Skype is an excellent way to avoid these costs and still stay in touch with loved ones back home, allowing for talk, video chat, or instant messaging using an internet connection instead of data usage.
Keeping track of all of those confirmations and reservation documents can be a hassle, and they add up quickly. TripIt keeps track of all of those important details, converting confirmation emails into an easy to read travel itinerary that ensures you have all of your important information and documentation stored in one convenient location.
7. Travel List
Packing can be quite a nuisance, and it never fails, we forget something important. Not with Travel List on the job. Travel List helps you organise everything that needs to go into your suitcase, and even allows you to set reminders for last minute items to pack such as phone chargers and your toothbrush making sure nothing gets forgotten.
8. Google Maps
Navigating through an unknown city can be overwhelming but with Google Maps you will feel as though you have your own personal tour guide in your pocket. Google Maps provides travel directions for vehicle or on foot, provides traffic updates and public transit information, 360-degree street views, and a voice activated step-by-step GPS navigation system to ensure you get to where you are going quickly.
Travelling is expensive and it is easy to blow the budget if you aren’t paying close attention. Mint helps you manage and oversee your travel budget, keeping your expenses organised and tracking your spending to ensure you have enough money for your stay. This app is for information purposes only, meaning if your phone falls in the wrong hands they can see what you have but have no means to access your accounts.
Many people don’t consider what could happen if a health crisis were to occur while travelling. ICE is an app that makes sure you are covered in the event of an emergency if you are unable to communicate and can be accessed immediately, even if your phone is locked.
It helps first responders and hospital staff when treating you as it lets them know of any health issues and medication you may be taking. It also lets them know who to contact and more importantly, if you include a selfie, they will know they have the correct ICE details for the right person.
ICE can be accessed even when your phone is locked so your information can be accessed even when you are unable to respond.
Have a Great Trip
Whether you travel for pleasure or business being organised and prepared is key to ensuring you remain safe, are prepared with everything you need, and can get the most out of the experience. These handy travel gadgets and apps will help to make certain you can do just that.