I’m always asked what gadgets I pack for a trip, well it depends if it’s a short trip or a long trip across the ocean. Some people travel with everything and others with nothing, I’m in between—I pick and choose which ones I want to carry all the way across the ocean. My must haves are: electrical converters and transformer, the luggage scale, an E-reader, my phone, and my camera.
Electrical converters and transformer is a must if traveling abroad. I have a kit that includes a transformer and individual converters, so when packing i just grab the one I need for the trip. I have recently seen an all-in-one style being sold, this would minimize the space needed for it (even for storage at home, I’m always misplacing one of the converters). If you have a layover abroad its a good idea to pack these in your carry on.
Luggage scale is a must for me, especially on long trips or trips across an ocean. Nowadays you only get 1 free checked bag for international travel (differs per airline per destination) and I bring stuff back, from souvenirs to art to local liquor or wine, and these things get heavy. To avoid that extra weight luggage fee (which is about $100 for over 50 lbs) I weigh my bag after I am all packed up to leave the hotel for the airport. And then if need be a rearrange things, for trips I’m worried about this happening I usually pack a small carry-on bag inside the checked luggage (on the way there) and then I use it for things that can go in a carry on: art, clothes, etc. The scale is worth the money versus having to get weighed at check in and then having to get out of line and rearrange and get back in line, believe me I have done this, it is not fun.
E-readers handy to have because you can have books, magazines, games, and music all in the same place! I always brought at least 2 magazines and a book on the plane with me, and of course an i-pod for music, and they take up so much space in my carry on (which is actually my camera bag so there is very little space to spare).
Bringing your phone on a trip is for relatively obvious reasons. I use it at airports to let people at home know I’ve landed safely, or to connect with my lovely family member who agreed to pick me up when I get home. If you want to use it abroad and you do not have an international plan make sure to put it on airplane mode, or an International phone or SIM card (which you can get through your travel agency). Remember to keep it in airplane mode while you are out of country (if you aren’t using an international phone), I forgot to do this in South Africa and I wanted to take some pictures with my phone to post from the hotel’s Wi-Fi….well my phone was dead the whole trip. Oops! The phone is handy for Instagram pictures and pictures to post online while still on your trip.
The last thing on my must bring list is my most important thing, my camera. This is my carry-on, I keep my camera with me at all times. I have a DSLR but you do not need something so big and bulky to get great photos anymore, a lot of crossovers point and shoot/dslrs work great and you have a bit of a zoom. Even some point-and-shoot cameras are doing great things, like the go-pro (I have not used it, but I hear great things). I prefer the DSLR because I want to option to change lenses. The accessories you want for a camera while traveling is a great strap, I just got a should strap and it is so much better than the around-the-neck type. Also get a bag for it, something to protect it while you are not using it. But be aware of thieves, be aware of where your camera is (and everything else you are carrying), sometimes it’s best to keep the bag in front of you.
That covers my must have gadgets for traveling. I hope it helped.
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