Looking to get the most out of your next holiday or business trip? Here are a few gadget tips that will help make your your time away more enjoyable and productive.
Travel Hacker is presented by the new Qantas App for your tablet, Android or iPhone. Packed with features to improve every step of your journey — from check-in to boarding to in-flight entertainment and exploring your destination.[clear]
These always grace the top of my travel essentials list. Call me paranoid, but I tend to have two at all times. You never know when you might be stuck without a power socket, or in another country without a power adaptor.
With a powerbank you’re always covered — up to and including on your flight. Not all airlines have charging sockets and even when they do, they sometimes will only give enough juice to keeping you from losing charge.
I personally go for multiple port options that offer efficient charging. Belkin’s MIXIT Power RockStar 10000 is a pretty solid choice at the moment, providing a 10,000 mAh battery and 4.8 Amps for two devices. It also has magnetised cable storage which is a nice touch.
If this is a little too hardcore, there are plenty of other options out there at a variety of price points.
Planning on being outside a lot? Or laying by the pool? A solar portable charger may be a good pick. Or just laying by the pool. Models such as the AUKEY PB-P23 have internal battery storage — giving it the ability to charge now and dispense power later.
This is an absolute essential if you’re travelling overseas — you don’t want to be caught with no way to charge your gadgets.
On the lower end of the pricing scale you can opt for a country-specific charger. But if you travel a lot or want something a little more versatile, you may want to consider a multinational adapter — preferable one with surge protection. Some of the better ones will have multiple ports, including USB.
I tend to take a lot of tech on trips, especially for work. Laptop, tablet, phone, power bank, camera — that’s a lot of things that need charging, often on a daily basis.
Rather than invest in a metric tonne of adaptors, I’ll take a board with me so I can conveniently charge everything each night. Power cubes are also a good option.
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Most phone providers don’t have particularly good international options — especially when it comes to data packages.
I’ve known some people who have gotten by using public Wi-Fi when they’re overseas, but it’s a massive gamble. Local SIMs are usually priced pretty well, and data can be topped up if need be. They can usually pick them up at the airport too, which is handy.
Frequent travellers may want to consider KnowRoaming — a global sim card that covers over 200 countries and supports nano, micro, and mini card slots. It even has its own app, so accounts can be managed in real time.
If international SIMs don’t quite cut it for you, or if you have multiple devices you need internet for, pocket Wi-Fi is a option. Not only does this allow you to dodge hotel Wi-Fi charges, which can be costly, it means you can take it with you anywhere on your trip.
This is an obvious one for business travellers, but laptops can be incredibly beneficial on holiday too — especially during the flight.
There’s always a possibility that the in flight entertainment may encounter problems. Or if you’re on a budget airline, you may have to bring your own anyway. I also like to have entertainment options for hotels — particularly for those boring business trip evenings. That’s why I always load my laptop up with TV shows and movies — just in case.
Of course, if you don’t want to such a bulky item on your trip, there are other options.
As an avid gamer and reader, I always have my tablet on me. And it’s perfect for trips.
Since you can download Netflix programs onto tablets, I always do this before a flight. I always have so much to catch up on and a long haul is the perfect opportunity. I will also download a bunch of books and mobile games. I like to have options.
Some airlines even have their own in flight entertainment that can be accessed on personal devices, which is a plus.
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Noise Cancelling Headphones
Between the constant hum of the engine and potential crying babies — headphones can be a saviour on long flights. Sure, some headlines provide them as part of the service, but I always prefer to bring my own.
If you have noise cancelling ones — fantastic. But they can be expensive and they might not be the most comfortable option if you’re looking to get some shut eye. A comfortable pair of earbuds will do just fine too.
Holiday security just got an upgrade.
Smart padlocks, such as Master Lock, allow you to protect your belongings without having to remember any combinations — they can be unlocked right from your smart phone app.
We’re starting to get into wishful thinking territory here, but it’s too cool to not include.
Created by Bluesmart, this suitcase range is revolutionising luggage. These bad boys have a built in location tracker, remote lock, digital scale and USB charger. So no matter whether you think you’re over the weight limit, can’t find your bag, need to unlock it or need to charge — it has you covered.
I’ll take three please.
FindMeSpot Personal GPS Tracker
Safety is particularly important if you plan on hitting the wilderness, or at least somewhere out of mobile and Wi-Fi range. These personal GPS tracking devices utilise satellite technology, so you can always let your friends and family know where you are — all with the push of one button.
Some of the higher end models also included motion activated tracking, SOS assistance, and custom messaging. This is perfect for hikers and adventurers in general.
Jet Lag Calculator
This isn’t a gadget, but this handy tool can help abate one of the worst parts of travelling abroad. Jet Lag Calculator takes travel itineraries and puts travellers onto a plan that slowly shifts them into their new timezone, three days before departure.
Not a bad way to hack your sleeping patterns.