5 Tech Must-Haves for International Travel3 min read
After many years spent road tripping, catching (and missing) flights and hopping on train cars, I’d like to consider myself a bit of a travel pro. No matter how many trips I take however, traveling always seems to be relentlessly stressful. These days, I’m lucky if I can go a single journey without losing luggage, popping a tire or even leaving my wallet in a cab. Lucky me, right? Fortunately, technology has the great ability to prevent, or at least alleviate, the inevitable travel disasters. I’ve found a handful of gadgets to help me along the way, and have shared them below for you check out.
One of the most difficult parts of international travel is figuring out a communication system. International phone and data plans can be incredibly pricey, and they’re not always guaranteed to capture a signal. In some countries or terrains, access to Wifi isn’t an option either. The goTenna Mesh easily pairs to your phone and generates its own radio signal, so you can send texts and GPS locations using an app—without requiring towers, routers or satellites. I’ve used goTenna Mesh on a few excursions abroad when traveling in groups. It’s been an excellent way to communicate when we all want to go our separate ways.
I’ve already mentioned that I’ve had my fair share of missed flights. The majority of the time, it’s because I’m stuck waiting in airport security (the remainder because I always wait until the very last minute to pack my suitcase). With CLEAR, you actually get to skip the entire line for ID check, and head straight to the screening line. When you get to the CLEAR lane, you just have to verify your identity with a fingerprint or eye scan, which is a pretty neat in itself. Shockingly, it’s made my travels out of JFK a much less painful experience, and I’m making fewer mad dashes to the terminal.
Before traveling to a new location, I’m always researching to see if the local water is safe to drink or not. Whether it be a tropical beach or bustling city, I’m always wary of the local water supply. Rather than buying multiple plastic water bottles over the course of the trip, I’ve started bringing the SteriPEN Ultra with me during my travels. It eliminates almost all bacteria, viruses and protozoa that cause waterborne illness through its UV lamp. It’s also rechargeable via computer, outlet, or even solar panel, so it’s usable no matter where you’re staying. I use my SteriPEN at hotels, restaurants, and on-the-go, since it’s so portable and easier to carry in my bag than a bulky water bottle.
Away Charging Suitcase
When traveling for business, I’m constantly checking my phone and laptop. I spend layovers writing new articles, checking emails, and streaming movies, and inevitably use up my devices’ batteries. By the time I get to my destination, my phone barely has enough power to order transportation to the hotel. When looking for a new carry-on suitcase, I came across Away, a luggage brand that seems to be all over social media. I was thrilled to find out their suitcases come equipped with a portable battery—a dream for business travel. Instead of searching everywhere in the airport for a vacant outlet, I can use my free time more productively.
FLIO Mobile App
Though we all try to spend as little time as possible in airports, we’re often stuck there for reasons beyond our control. Snowstorms roll in in the blink of an eye, planes need maintenance, and flights are delayed. Rather than wallowing away at the gate, I’ve taken matters into my own hands and downloaded FLIO. The app contains information like airport maps, restaurants, shopping, lounge access, and flight schedules for over 3,000 airports. It also allows you to track your flight in real time to ensure you don’t miss it. Exploring the airport is a great way to pass the time during delays or layovers—you’d be surprised to learn all there is to do!
Technology definitely can’t solve all of our traveling mishaps, but it’s definitely a start. With all the tech gadgets out there, you’re sure to find one to streamline your next trip. Do a bit of research and find one best suited for your travel needs!
Image courtesy of goTenna.com.