top ten tech-ie trotters' gadgets
Disclaimer: this is for travelers who cannot live through going out of town/country without the presence of electronics. Personally, we’d rather fly with less wires. We’re more of a Tom Sawyer rather than 007.
Portable hard drive – it may be a bit tasky to bring your portable hard drive but it is a lifesaver. Compared to bringing a laptop, it is much more convenient. It is a magic hat where you can store hundreds, no thousands of pictures, music and even videos. If you are like me (this is Ron speaking), who is click happy like there’s no tomorrow, then you need a storage where you can save your snapshots. The last thing you would want to see, let’s say for example that you are standing face to face with the Eiffel Tower, is a blinking alert on your LCD saying NO MEMORY SPACE. The horror!
Power outlet adapter for chargers – although most hotels and hostels have outlets they lend to their guests, it’s always safe to bring one with you. What you can do is research on your destination and prepare the adapter you need for a hassle-free charging of all your gadgets. Check-out this page for the power sockets of different countries.
Handy cam – there are some instances in your travel that merits pictures. And then there are just some moments that have to be captured with a handy cam. This is also a must for people who are into moving images as their form of souvenir. You know those people who have video tapes of all their travels? Playing with the Windows Movie Maker is not such a bad idea.
Laptop – it’s big, it’s bulky and it’s heavy… no, it’s not Mark Walberg’s crotch. It’s the laptop (pervs!). That’s why is not really advisable to bring one, especially for backpackers like us. The idea of fitting it inside the backpack where your clothes and shoes are terrifying and you wouldn’t want to carry an extra bag for it. But if you really must have one, then we recommend that you get a mini laptop. like a Mini inspiron, Asus Eee or the HP 2133 They’ve got the same features and usability without the extra pounds.
Multi-Card reader – cables are too messy, you don’t want to bring out your camera every time you need to transfer pictures, or your point-and-shoot just won’t work until you install the software that goes with it. That is the purpose of your universal card reader. It has ports for every imaginable electronic card. Not only does it saves you from wrangling yourself from all the cables, it’s also very convenient.
Hand held GPS navigator – Navigators are the map of the new era. It works with the same principle as those used in cars (duh!). For tech savvies, there’s no other fashionable way to travel than having a the world street maps on your back pocket. Finding your destinations, popular spots, restaurants, hotels are just a click of a button away, just make sure you download the local map of your destination before your flight. You may want to check out Magellan Maestro 4250 (US$300-400).
Ipod/MP3 player – don’t you get bored when you have to wait at the airport for your next flight for eight hours? Or you are in transit and you have been sitting in your cramped up chair and reading feels just not right. Or, you are on the plane and you just have to ignore that annoying seatmate you have who would not stop talking about his or her cat being left alone in the apartment. This is where the ipod/MP3 player comes in handy. You get to shut out the noise and get stuck in your own little world with the Beatles, or the Black Crowes. The MP3 player is very handy, especially the plug and play ones and battery operated. As for me (and this Monette speaking), ipod is the only way to go.
Cell phone – cell phone is not considered a luxury anymore. It has gone down history as a necessity for everyone. Somehow, when you travel, you have to have at least a connection to the world you have left. It also comes in handy during emergencies. It doesn’t matter what brand or what model your cell phone is. What’s important is the basic features that comes with it when traveling. Text and call features, alarm clock, calculator, currency converter and it also occasionally serves as an improvised flashlight. Just a note though: personal cell phones are fine. There are even travelers who refuse to carry one and be found. But, if there is one thing that we can recommend, please… leave out your blackberries. The last thing you would want is to be hounded by your boss, colleagues or pending office work.
Camera – for us Filipinos, travel doesn’t end when the aircraft touches down NAIA. It’s just the start of the non-stop marathon of posting pictures on facebook, flckr, friendster, multiply, deviant art and all sorts of web albums and blogs. It is actually the very essence of traveling for most Pinoys… ok fine, we’re guilty. That’s why we have to make sure that we have the best camera to capture and document the highlights of the trip. And if you are backpacking, make sure you have a separate bag for your SLR and its accessories.
Spare camera – sh*t happens when you travel. And when you are out in a foreign land, you are just dying to take a picture of yourself standing in front of every landmark there is to prove that yes, You have been there. So what happens when the heavens play a big joke on you and your DLSR suddenly jams? You will be very thankful to have your handy-dandy point and shoot camera to save you. The lighting may be a bit off and the focus is just not there, but at least you have proof that yes, you have been there… Did you say you have been there?