Did you survive the 2022 summer travel season? Want to do it better the next time around? Here are tech gadgets for a smoother, more enjoyable travel experience!
Note: ExpressVPN does not have a business relationship with any brands mentioned in this article. We just love tech!
Best tech gear for traveling in 2023
All-in-one travel adapter
This one’s a no-brainer if you frequently travel overseas. You’ll always be able to charge your devices with an adapter that can be configured to the plug type of the place you’re in. The best ones come with ports for every international plug type, plus a few USB ports to boot.
Spy cam detector
Your hotel room or Airbnb rental might not be as private as you think. There’s every possibility that someone is watching you via a hidden camera. As creepy as that sounds, this invasion of privacy is worryingly common. We made a whole video about ways to find hidden cameras.
There are all kinds of devices out there that could help find spy cams, but one we’ll mention here is the Scout Hidden Camera Detector by SpyGuy. This little device works by using LEDs to reflect light off camera lenses. Just point the Scout at the object or area you want to check and look through the aperture. Any camera lenses will appear as a red dot, revealing its location.
Flying can be unpleasant. It’s hard to sleep over the drone of plane engines or those gossipers in the row behind you. That’s why you need a good pair of noise-canceling headphones to drown out distractions. Ideally get a pair with good battery life so you’ve got enough juice for the whole flight. Sony is king when it comes to noise-canceling headphones, though the price might result in the postponement of your holiday. JBL and Urbanista offer good, wallet-friendly alternatives.
Kindle Paperwhite e-reader
Books take up lots of space—space you can’t afford to waste when it comes to your carry-on. Rather than leaving your new page-turner at home, get yourself a Kindle Paperwhite. It’s thin and lightweight, so it barely takes up space in your bag. It also lasts up to 10 weeks on a single charge, more than enough to last your entire vacation. Did we also mention that it’s now waterproof? Well, there’s that, too, so feel free to read by the poolside or even while taking a dip.
Washing machine in a bag
Laundry is rarely at the top of your vacation to-do list. Sure, if you’re staying at a hotel they’ll clean, press, and return your laundry to your room. And yet, if you’re going off the beaten path for your vacation, things are a little trickier. That’s where the Scrubba Wash Bag comes in.
Scrubba Wash Bag is a mini washing machine that claims to provide a machine-quality wash in a bag. You can fold it up nice and compact so you can travel light, and it doesn’t require any electricity to function—just water, detergent, and your dirty clothes.
Portable coffee maker
A cup of coffee is an enshrined morning routine for many. However, it’s hard to get a good cup of joe when you’re out in the wilderness or even just an unfamiliar city. Portable coffee makers are a thing, and one of the star brands in this category is Wacaco’s Nanopresso. It’s small and compact, so you can pop it in your bag and take it anywhere. It even makes great coffee to boot. We bet it’ll outperform the lackluster instant coffee you’ll find in most hotel rooms, too.
You need somewhere to keep your new all-in-one travel adapter and all the associated wires and plugs, so go and get yourself a cable organizer. Having all your cables neatly stored in one place is way better than hunting through the tangled chaos of cords at the bottom of your suitcase. Go for one that’s slim and with plenty of pockets. Bellroy and BUBM are great choices at either end of the price scale.
Offline map apps
Navigating a foreign city can be daunting, yet having a map app in your pocket makes finding your hotel or that cultural monument a breeze. Google Maps and Apple Maps are natural choices. Not only do they help you find your way around, but you can use them to seek out awesome local restaurants and attractions and see what others—including both locals and your fellow travelers—think of these places.
Because most travelers don’t have a data plan, Google Maps’ feature that lets you download a map area and use it offline comes in especially handy. Other map apps that work offline include Here WeGo and Maps.me.
Traveling is one of the best times to use a VPN. You’ll constantly be using public Wi-Fi, like those found in cafes, restaurants, hotels, and train stations. While they’re convenient, these public Wi-Fi spots usually aren’t secure at all. Anyone could be watching what you’re doing while you’re connected, putting your personal information at risk. A VPN like ExpressVPN protects you by creating an encrypted tunnel between your device and a secure VPN server, so you can upload your vacation photos and check for cool things to do without worrying about someone stealing your personal information or sending you malware.
Read more: Is hotel Wi-Fi safe?
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