Thursday, 28 June 2018

Tech For Travelers: Make Your Trips Less Stressful With These Gadgets

Welcome to the 21st century, everyone. We've got phones we can talk to, drones delivering pizzas and even self-driving cars cruising our neighborhoods snapping pics of unsuspecting pedestrians for Google Maps. All of this technology and more seems to have made our lives easier. But what about when traveling? No app is going to prevent the person in front of us on the plane from leaning their seat back or stop that child from whining back in row 18. That being said, there are some gadgets that can help to make our travels less stressful. Let's look at some tech for travelers.

Portable USB and power chargers are useful tech for travelers

High-Tech Travel Solutions 


Smart Luggage 


We've got everything from smartphones and smartwatches to smart refrigerators and even smart water, so you knew smart luggage was just around the corner. While smart luggage may not be quite as impressive as Apple's iPhone, it definitely has some extras that can make your travels go more smoothly. Smart luggage usually has some sort of charger for your phone built in as well as location tracking. They also frequently come with the ability to weigh your suitcase. This comes in especially handy for those like myself who tend to overpack and are pushing the edge with those weight limits.

DIY Smart Luggage 


But of course, all of these bells and whistles come with a price. Like any technological upgrade, the more you receive, the more expensive it gets. Suitcases are no different. And if one or all of the components breaks, you're back to square one. An alternative to smart luggage that many travelers choose is simply buy the elements separately and save their pennies in the process. There's also confusion about security screening processes at the airport because of the lithium-ion batteries many of these smart bags contain. You might save yourself a headache, and some money, by purchasing a USB battery pack, a small USB travel scale and a Bluetooth tracker. The tracker will link to an app that you download to your phone. With a do-it-yourself smart bag, you’ve got the same tech with less hassle.

Smart luggage in an airport

Portable Power Sources 


In addition to charging your phone, you'll most likely want to charge other devices as well. This is where portable a power source comes in. You can use an external battery pack to charge your electronics. Like most savvy travelers, you probably have several devices and corresponding adapters. This presents a problem when you are staying at lodging that has a limited amount of outlets, or you are sharing your space with someone else. To solve the issue, why not bring a portable surge protector to increase the number of outlets you have at your disposal? Some portable power outlets even come equipped with USB ports.

Block Out the Noise 


Whoever said bring in the noise bring in the funk clearly was not talking about sleeping in a hotel room or being at a noisy airport. For many, silence is a sanctuary. But it doesn't always come free or even cheap. If you have trouble falling asleep in new or semi-loud environments, it could be wise to invest in a small white noise machine or download an app to your phone. Noise canceling headphones could also be useful when trying to watch your favorite Netflix shows on the plane or while waiting to board your delayed flight. They help drown out sounds like engines, crying babies or those people behind you having a loud conversation.

Low-Tech Travel Solutions 


Earplugs, Sleep Mask, Neck Pillow 


I can't tell you how many times having one or all of these items on my travels has helped me immensely and saved my sanity. Whether traveling by plane or bus, being able to shut the world out and fall asleep will go a long way towards making sure that you are well rested when you arrive at your destination. Additionally, when staying at an Airbnb or other unknown entity, you never know what external circumstances will be like. It's always better to be safe than sorry when it comes to your sleep. Nobody wants to be grumpy the next day because they were in a bright room with noisy neighbors.

Man sleeping with sleep mask

Packing Cubes 


These little miracles are so handy; I don't know how we got along without them. There's nothing worse than rifling through your bag to find something and then having your clothes strewn everywhere. You have to repack your bag every single time rather than taking out only what you need. Packing cubes solve this problem by keeping everything separated, in their spot and easy to put back. Buy them if you haven't already.

Whether you decide to purchase a state-of-the-art pair of noise-canceling headphones or simply invest in a good pair of earplugs, we hope these suggestions of old and new technology will help you have a pleasant journey. Have a great trip!

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