Luggage / Gadgets

Articles to be found on this page have diverse interests including: Bags & Suitcases, Gadgets and, tips and hints on how to pack and all of the above.

Readers can refer to the table of contents at right for fast navigation - GC.

Choosing the Right Luggage

Buy the lightest weight, good quality luggage you can find - and avoid the pitfalls of paying excess baggage due to the weight of your suitcase and mishaps that can occur with travel goods made from inferior quality materials.

These days, with good quality luggage the fabrics are a lot tougher to withstand lots of wear and tear over time. There are many stories being told where the handle broke and then the stand broke so it kept falling over and finally the zip broke. 

A very good quality trolley bag does not necessarily mean that its the most expensive either - Check-out The Luggage Professionals - The best luggage deals

Some other tips are:

1. Handles - must be able to lock down when not in use.

2. Wheels - Steer clear of wheels that do not run on ball bearings, that are of smaller diameter and are mounted on the outside of the suitcase; they should be at least partially recessed into the corners of the suitcase.

3. If using a backpack with wheels always look for one that has a cover over the wheels - you don't want to end up with dirty marks on your back.

4. Zippers - Avoid clothing-like small zippers and zippers that are mounted around the very outside edge of the suitcase as they are very susceptible to damage.

When packing:

Try to pack light weight clothing. Usually one smart outfit is needed the rest should be light and comfortable. If you have to take a coat wear it or carry it so it wont add to your allowable weight... and wear your heaviest gear to avoid the extra weight.

Your toiletries should be placed into plastic bags, just in case they leak. I also take several plastic bags to use for dirty washing and shoes. If you can find a plastic bag big enough then it is a good idea to line your suitcase or backpack with it and pack into it. This can avoid any wetness due to rain or leakages.

A good tip too is to take a set of clothes on the plane with you just in case your travel luggage goes missing - of course, this applies to any medication that you might need in your daily life... ensure that you pack a few days dosages and include spare prescriptions for them.

There are strict rules on items you can bring onto the aircraft now. Articles that are too big or heavy to fit in the overhead lockers or under the seat will not be allowed.

Also some items are dangerous and could cause serious problems when up in the air.Things like matches and lighters have been known to ignite from vibrations of airplanes. You can check the airline or your travel agent for more details re what you can take on board.

Make sure that you pack things like your medication, reading material, snacks, toothpaste, brush and comb, jacket and a lightweight set of clothing (or just underwear) in your cabin luggage.

Don't leave luggage unattended or with someone you do not know. You do not want to be explaining things found that you didn't put there. Always pack your own bags. Keep them locked at all times.

Each airline has a similar travel luggage policy. Weight and size limitations for each passenger do not vary too much. Think of others and of everyones safety by not storing too much luggage in the overhead lockers. They have been known to open during turbulence and falling on passengers heads.

Be careful of packing prohibitive or dangerous goods. Check with the country of destination if you are able to bring the items in.

And remember, bargains abound in the vast range of luggage available at The Luggage Professionals - The best luggage deals


All About Your Recalcitrant Luggage

- edited by Gary Cameron

So the baggage carousel slows down and then stops and still no bags! You’ve waited and waited while others have joyously collected theirs... but, no dice!

Or, their sorry selves finally turn up looking as if they’d been washed up on a desert island and battered by Cyclone Yasi for a few days.

How to Prevent Your Bag From Getting Lost

Pack all valuables in your carry-on bags: Cameras, computers, medication, wallets, heirlooms, jewelry, passports, as well as confirmation numbers, itineraries, contact information and other documents necessary to your travel should never be in your checked baggage.

Itemize: It sounds tedious, but when an airline or the insurance company asks what was in your bag, you don't want to forget anything of value. Arrange the contents-to-be around the bag and make a packing list before you travel - and then take a photo, as evidence, before you pack.

Pack a change of clothes in your carry-on bag so that you'll have something to wear if your checked bag is delayed.

Label: Put your name and details on the outside and inside each bag. Even better, put a copy of your itinerary in each checked bag so the airline can locate you.

Remember: Take a picture of the outside of your bag or make a note of its dimensions, colour and brand.

Check in: Avoid checking-in at the last minute as your bag may not have time to make it to your plane. Make sure the person who checks your baggage attaches the correct destination ticket to every bag, and get a claim ticket for each.

Avoid tight connections: The most common causes of lost and delayed bags are tight connections - try to structure your itinerary to avoid them.

ID stubs: Make sure you don't throw out your bag's identification stubs that are given to you at check-in - put them in your travel wallet.

Don't linger: When you arrive at your destination head straight to the luggage carousel.

Delayed Luggage

If your bags are delayed, try not to panic: The airlines typically have ways to track them, and about 98 percent of all misplaced luggage is returned eventually. If your bags are on the next flight, you could have them within a few hours. If they've been sent to the wrong airport, it could take a couple of days. Make sure to file your claim immediately at the airport and to give the attendant a hotel or home address, as well as a phone number where you can be reached.

The airlines will typically bring you your luggage when it is found; you will rarely need to return to the airport to pick it up.

And don't forget Twitter & Facebook: Most airlines have Social Media accounts for their Customer Service... Tweet them and ensure that you're in the loop.

Additionally, many airlines will reimburse any unexpected expenses caused by the loss or delay (keep your receipts!). But be careful here -- the airline sometimes has the option to deduct any reimbursement or stipend from any subsequent awards.

Before you leave the airport: Be sure you know how to check on your bag's status; some airlines have an online system while others will provide you with a phone number to call for updates.

What To Do if it is Damaged or Goes Missing

Inform the airline: When you realise that your bag is damaged or missing go to your airline's lost luggage counter.

Damaged: If the bag is damaged they will inspect it and request you fill out a form. If you can't report the damage to the bag while at the airport do so as soon as possible afterwards. Virgin Blue, for example, has a three day time limit on reporting damage to a bag.

Delayed or lost: If the bag doesn't arrive on the carousel the airline's luggage blues counter will try to track it with your baggage identification stub. If it can't be tracked you will need to fill out a form. Keep a copy of this form for yourself in case your bag is never seen again - Most lost bags turn up within 48 hours and are delivered to your home or hotel. If the bag is still missing after several days you will need to contact the airline to start a delayed or lost baggage claim process.

Compensation: You are entitled to compensation from the airline if your bag is damaged, delayed or lost. An airline's liability limit varies as it is governed by two international treaties - the Montreal and Warsaw Conventions. Check your carrier's website for specifics.

Receipts: Keep all your receipts as most airlines will ask for receipts for each item of lost luggage.

Be persistent: Airlines generally will not give you a great deal of help in your pursuit for compensation. Don't give up.

Stolen Bags

If your bag goes missing after you've left the baggage claim area, your claim is no longer with the airline, but with the police. Your homeowners insurance may cover a stolen suitcase; if it doesn't, consider purchasing travel insurance.

Tagging Service

Consider using a baggage tagging service such as, which offers luggage tags with unique serial numbers that can be linked to the suitcase owner via an online database. The site will contact you as soon as your lost item is found - An annual fee applies.


If you're wondering where lost bags go after they die, here's your answer:!


How to Share Your Journey with Family and Retrieve Files from Home

- by Gary Cameron & Dropbox

When travelling, one of the handiest tools you can have gives you the ability to retrieve documents and files that are stored and synchronized on your s
martphone, laptop and even your home computer - it's just like having a 'magic pocket' that you can dip into and come out with readable, printable information that you need... no matter where you are.

For example: You can back-up copies of your eTicket, Passport, Credit Cards and, everything else by saving them to a secure folder and view and print them at will, as well as, sharing photos and videos 'on the fly' so that others back home can enjoy your experiences, almost instantly, with the same readable and printable files. 

Dropbox facilitates all of the above and lots more, all you need is an internet connection - no USB or cables required...  even better - it's free!

I'll let Dropbox take over now and give an overview of how it works:

Dropbox is software that syncs your files online and across your computers

Put your files into your Dropbox folder on one computer, and they'll automatically appear on any of your other computers that also have Dropbox installed (Windows, Mac, and Linux too!). You can even download Dropbox apps for your smartphone or mobile device (iPhone, iPad, Android, and Blackberry). Everything in your Dropbox is available from the Dropbox website, too. As well as the video.

With Dropbox, your files are always in sync.

Let's say you're editing a document in your Dropbox folder. As soon as you press Save, Dropbox will sync this file to all your other computers and mobile devices instantly and automatically. It's as if you saved the document to all of your computers at the same time. This gives you the freedom to work anywhere and always have the files you need.

Dropbox lets you share files easily.

You can easily share entire folders or photo albums with Dropbox. Simply put the folders you want to share in your Dropbox, and invite people to them. You can also send people links to specific files within your Dropbox. This makes Dropbox perfect for team projects.

With Dropbox, online backup is automatic.

Any file you put into your Dropbox folder is automatically backed up to our servers. Even if your computer has a melt-down, your files are safe on Dropbox and can be restored at any time. While our free 2GB account is perfect for backing up smaller files and documents, we offer larger accounts (up to 100GB) for backing up more and bigger files, like your music and video collections.

Dropbox lets you go back in time to undelete or undo changes to files.

Every time you save a file in Dropbox, Dropbox syncs it to our secure servers. Dropbox keeps a history of every change you make so that you can undo any mistakes and even undelete files. By default, we keep 30 days of history for all your files. We also have an unlimited undo option called "Pack-rat".

Dropbox is better.

Dropbox replaces:

  • Emailing file attachments to yourself and other people
  • Using USB drives to move files between computers
  • Renaming files to keep a history of previous versions
  • Complicated backup software and hardware
  • And more!

Not convinced yet? Then take a look at our list of features. Otherwise, go ahead and get started!


How to Pack for Two Different Trips in One Bag

- by Michelle M. Winner on BootsnAll
- accessed by GC 20/02/2011
Round-the-world and long-term travelers often boast about their abilities to pack several months’ (or years’) worth of clothes in a single bag (or even no bag!). The key to packing light, of course, is to pack sturdy items that can be worn in a variety of ways and that can easily be washed on the road. In that way, packing for a year really equates to packing for a few days. When you’re traveling long term, you’re generally staying longer in one place, which means more time to do the mundane chores like washing your clothes every few days

But what about those of us who can only afford to take shorter trips, who can only take off for a week or two at a time? With such limited time on a trip, we don’t want to waste precious seconds washing a pile of dirty clothes, but we still want to travel with less luggage. That’s relatively easy if the trip takes us to a single climate or if we’re going for a single purpose. But try to bookend a business trip to Japan with a week exploring Southeast Asia, or trip to South Africa with a few days layover in Europe and the situation becomes infinitely more complicated. Packing for two widely different destinations or trips with one bag can be done, but you’ll have to scrutinize your itinerary, evaluate like an actuary and cut like a surgeon. Here’s how to do it.

Carry everything

Use two vastly different carry-ons as your complete luggage set. Besides saving the killer fees per leg, there is no chance of lost luggage, theft, missing connections, and luggage-handling delays slowing you down. Don’t waste your time and money checking bags.

Which bag?

It begins with the bag. For your main carry-on, get a bag that travels as hard as you do. Look for something lightweight, durable, and easy to maneuver through the airport with a maximum length of 21 to 22 inches (check with your carrier as limitations vary). You can find bags weighing in at just over two pounds but do not exceed a maximum of ten pounds. The material should be a 1000 Denier (tightness of weave) Cordura or a 2000 Dernier ballistic nylon if you are a frequent traveler. Some carry-on bags have a removable zippered external pouch you can use as a day bag.A backpack with a telescoping handle and exterior lacing to grip additional gear or piggy-back a smaller bag is a great choice too. See the Turbo Transit by L.L. Bean or Rick Steves Veloce bag. If you are not the backpack type, the larger bag should have multi-directional wheels and a long, fully retractable handle that the smaller “under the seat” bag can stack on top of as you wheel. Check that the ensemble fits your arm length comfortably at a full “running to the gate” roll.Tumi, Tutto, Eagle Creek, TravelPro, Delsey, and Bagallini are a few to check out at the local luggage store .

For your second, smaller “personal item“ bag, look for an expandable piece with separate zippered compartments that fits under the seat in front of you. This bag is up to you and what you carry; PC or iPad and gadgets, camera, phone, charger, current adapter, neck pillow, snacks, baggie of liquids, jewelry, book, wallet, passport and dark glasses should fit into this bag. If you always use the same layout in the pockets you will never be the guy I call “the novice” jumping up several times an hour to dig through stowed baggage. I’d love to hand him a Zen Nirvana Seat Back Bag Organizer. With the Nirvana bag, you can actually strap the bag to the tray table/seat back in front of you (not for bulkheads) and it holds everything you need for a comfortable flight.

Where are you going?

A few weeks before the trip research the destinations and weather forecasts via the Internet. If you have not been there before, look for dress cues in the city or country by visiting the tourism website or contacting your hotel’s concierge. Business attire in Nairobi is not the same for business in Beijing.

Your signature look

If you will be attending a business meeting in a large city, a trick from the owner of a professional shopping company will help you wrap your mind around the duo tomes “less is more” and “every piece has to work hard, twice.” Traveling year-round from her apartment in Paris to meet with executives of large clothing stores in the US, she always wore a simple black dress or suit with heels, but she capped it with a fantastic coat. When she removed her statement coat, what she was wearing receded and her face and gestures became the focus. On the road most people will see you only once. Wear your signature look over and over again, just edit for the new audience, new location and time of day.

No fantasies, just versatility

Because most of your luggage is the clothing you need to facilitate your adventures, excursions or meetings, make an itinerary to organize the outfits needed for each activity. This will weed out the “need” from the “greed.”

What is clothing greed? Say you envision yourself traipsing down a grand stairway in the Casino de Monte-Carlo, and as all eyes turn to look at you, finding sartorial perfection from your Gucci’s or Manolos on up, you beam. Save it for the Madison Avenue models. You need to detach yourself from all of your fantasy outfits and drill down to the necessities only.
Business, vacation or sport activity, you have to pack for versatility. A snazzy top, perfect for dinner at the Four Seasons, in New York City can be a cover-up poolside at the Mauna Kea in Hawaii or a robe at La Pensione in Taormina, Sicily. Do not include a piece of clothing in your luggage if it won’t work in both locations, doesn’t mix and match with other pieces, won’t drip dry overnight in a pinch, or always look sharp.

The secret

Sport enthusiasts demand hi-tech durability, easy wear-ability, and high style from sport clothing. In your quest to pack for two destinations in one bag, allow these features to be your secret weapons. Your clothing requirements are the same for short trips as for long ; ditto for multiple destinations. The bottom line is that you’ll want comfortable and functional clothes. For cooler climes layer; for warm, pack breathable fabrics.

One of my favorites is a lightweight well tailored equestrian riding jacket of spandex and nylon that I use to keep the chill away in a plane cabin, add authority in the boardroom or to hike up a Swiss mountainside. For two-climate versatility I like Columbia Sportswear’s Omni-Shade® line of hats, pants and tops. They protect from sun damage by blocking the harmful UVB and UVA rays and also work as layering pieces in the cold. They have the Skin Cancer Foundation’s Seal of Recommendation for a minimum UPF of 30, are light and easy to pack.

My other go-to pieces are tops, slacks, shirts and pants with sweat wicking qualities, better quality yoga pants, undies of 95% cotton/ 5% spandex, socks that dry quickly, convertible travel pants and other items, all available from sportswear manufacturers. Tights are a fabulous space-saver for the ladies. Add a pair of leggings to that hot summer tunic dress and you are set for cooler destinations. Recycled plastic bottles spun into fabric and edgy designs distinguish the wearable comfortable style at that I like to wear in western Europe.

If your taste does not run to “le sportif,” check out specialized travel wear in non-wrinkle fabrics that provide a more traditional look to men’s dress shirts, slacks and sport coats. For the ladies there are no-brainer three or four piece interchangeable tops, jackets, skirts and pants.

Destination palette

Select a neutral palette that reflects your destination and the season . In New York City, it ’s always ubiquitous black. Gray for spring reigns in San Francisco and navy is clothing culture for summer in Lisbon. Carry this color throughout to increase your options and brighten your neutral canvas with bold touches of color or shine. Adding a silver pin, belt, or watch can keep your simple silhouette from the mundane. A scarf, gloves or tie take only a minute bit of space in your bag and can be tucked into a shoe.

Comfortable shoes only

We travel to interface with the world. You will always be doing a lot of walking on a trip, and you’d better love the shoes you are wearing. My husband, a photojournalist, prefers Mephisto shoes, very European, sleekly-styled rubber soles with ventilated tops that keep feet cool and supported all day but don‘t have that “potato comfort shoe” look.

I favor one color ballet flats with formed rubber soles that support my foot and make walking a breeze. You can find similar styles and brands from Naturalizer or Clarks. Break them in before you travel and change your day shoes for another pair at night to give your traveling feet a rest.

Find a pair that works for both day and night, casual and dressy, and you’ll be set. But if you can’t limit yourself to two pairs, and wear the bulkier one on the plane.

So get packing!

Select a few one-color key pieces in specialized fabrics like washable merino wool or wick-able fast dry items that you can mix and match and layer. Roll your clothes or use three-pocket organizers or compression bags in a well designed, light-weight carry on and you‘ll be packing like a professional traveler.

Tips from travel experts: how those who travel for a living do it

Amy E. Richard, Media and Communications Manager at Oregon Shakespeare Festival in Ashland, Oregon says, “When packing for a warm clime and cold clime, I‘ve learned those light, thin down jackets (mine is a Marmot) are the best because they can be stuffed into very small bags.”

Maralyn Hill, President of the International Food, Wine and Travel Writers Association shares, “I like to use vacuum bags to compact items. I’ll usually take one or two for dirty clothes. If two, I’ll have one for light and one for dark. If one, everything is mixed together, but still compacts enough to leave room for what I might acquire.”

Colleen Friesen a cycling and outdoor adventure writer, shares her favorite tips: “Unless I’m going somewhere tropical, I always pack my stuff-able down vest. It’s actually Hollofil or something and it zips into a tiny pocket. It’s a lovely base layer that works with my windbreaker.”

Lena Katz worldwide travel journalist, Orbitz blogger and travel book author who always looks L.A. cool says, “I never pack close-toed dress-up shoes. They are impractical in the extreme. In cold weather your feet will freeze, in warm weather you’ll sweat and get blisters. Nice boots are my go-to footwear. You can wear them with a dress in warm climates, with pants or over leggings in cold. I tend to go for dresses and leggings or tights instead of lots of pants/shirt combos. Wear the bulkiest stuff– jeans, jacket, giant clodhopper boots and sweater to the airport. Even if you are flying out of Miami in summer. You’re not going to be outdoors long enough to melt, and once you get in the airport and the plane, it will be air-conditioned and probably even a bit chilly, so you’ll be glad of the warm clothes.”

- accessed by GC 17/02/2011

1. Mini Flashlight

With tons of backpacking lists online giving you recommendations on what to bring, getting ready for your big trip can be overwhelming. You’re trying to pack light, but you also need convenient and helpful things you won’t want to purchase abroad There are plenty of typical items we need to bring such as clothes, toiletries, and entertainment items. But, there are plenty of odd things that might come to good use.

Bringing a flashlight might already seem like an obvious, but the key is to get one that is small. A mini flashlight that can attach on a key chain or backpack should be an essential. Rather than digging through your bag for a flashlight you might need right away, a mini flashlight gets the job done. And, it follows the backpacker rule of packing light.

2. Zip Locks

Using zip lock bags at home to organize small things or various items could be a great way to keep your bag organized abroad. Use smaller bags to organize electronic cords, underwear, socks or toiletries. It is also useful to put travel mementos like flyers, receipts or photographs.

A cheaper alternative is to use plastic bags from the supermarkets. The produce bags are the best, since they are shaped better and can be sealed with tape. You can easily store your dirty laundry from your clean clothes

3. Baby Wipes

Baby wipes are a universal product that isn’t only good for children, but may provide very useful in destinations like Marrakech, Morocco. While sightseeing in Marrakech, they may come in handy on several occasions: Removing makeup, getting the sweat off your face,cleaning your hands after using a dirty restroom, trying your best to clean the toilet seat in a dirty restroom… in other words, a few of the less appealing things to do in Marrakech. They are also lightweight and cheap to find abroad. To avoid leaving you with a bad impression of Marrakech, keep in mind that it is an enchanting place, with many great activities and attractions like roaming the souks (or markets), strolling though Yves Sain Laurent’s Jardin Majorelle, or braving the snake charmers in Djemma el Fna square.

They come scented and unscented; preferably use the unscented since it is gentle on the skin.

4. Business/Personal Cards

When you’re meeting so many new travelers, it can get overwhelming and hard to keep up with names and faces. Even more so when you’re in a rush and are writing their email and Facebook name on a napkin.

Having a business/personal card is helpful to hand out to new friends abroad. You can customize your own card with your personal information, or take the advantage to promote what you do back home. Or, be creative and make a backpackers business card! This makes it easier to network and no one will dare forget you!

5. Vaseline

Vaseline, better known as petroleum jelly seems like an odd thing to add to your backpack. It is another universal product that can be pretty helpful. The biggest advantage is its use as a lip balm. Some other unknown uses are keeping stray hairs out of your face as a light wax or to moisturize your skin from sunburns. (Use after a minor sunburn to soothe skin, not for fresh burns.)

One great use is to coat your feet in Vaseline before you go to bed. Put on a pair of socks and wake up with very soft feet. This is great after an exhausting hike when your feet are aching for a pedicure you can’t really spend money on.

One common use is for nosebleeds when you are traveling at high altitudes. It keeps your nose moist from dry blood.

6. Extension Cord

When you’ve got your electronics on the road, it can be a hassle to find outlets when you’re in an 8 bed dorm. Be the technological savvy backpacker who brings an extension cord to plug in multiple devices, or share the outlet love with fellow backpackers.

Travel sized extension cords cater to those who need to charge netbooks, iPods and camera’s. Just make sure its a safe cord and doesn’t suck up electricity.

7. Small instrument

Every day it seems like every hostel has a guitar playing backpacker strumming along with new friends in a circle. Break the mold and keep yourself (and others) entertained with a small instrument.

Packing a small instrument like a harmonica or a ukelele keeps your mind sharp as you learn abroad, while keeping yourself in the spirit of learning a new hobby. Being able to throw it in your day pack makes it easy to go right into song without any trouble anywhere.

8. Tape

It’s amazing how the strangest things can be so useful. People speak of the wonders of duct tape, but it is often underestimate how helpful clear magic tape can be.

During a recent border crossing in Bolivia, a page of my passport fell out. I was being denied entry unless the passport was intact. I used to carry a roll of tape to hold my old (And now dead and in camera heaven) camera battery door shut. Little did I know that having that in my bag would save the day and allow me entry by taping the page back in.

Tape can also have other great uses - It can also take the grease off your face, kind of like a nose strip. A bit on the strange side, but somewhat helpful. Use tape to mend something temporarily such as a tear in your backpack.

9. External Hard 
/ USB Drive

For the techy backpackers or those who might bring mix travel and work together, an external hard drive is starting to become an essential. They are releasing smaller and lighter hard drives with more than enough space.

Use an External Hard Drive to dump your pictures after abusing your camera abroad. If you’re a travel writer, or working abroad, its great to backup documents and files that might be important.

One unique thing is to collect music from others. If other backpackers have their laptop, just connect your external to dump their music for your personal collection. This is a great way to communicate and to discover new music. You can even grab their pictures that might have been kind of awesome so you won’t have to harass them on Facebook later.

10. Gum

Its hard to underestimate any of these items, especially number 10: Gum. A simple treat that might be found easily abroad is something easy to carry.

Besides using it for bad breath after a hefty meal, gum is useful for keeping your mouth moist. At higher altitudes or in hot weather, chewing gum helps keep your mouth busy and hydrated.

Carrying a large pack of gum from home is perfect on the road so you don’t have to constantly purchase gum abroad. Besides, there’s nothing like your favorite flavor.


5 Technological Necessities When Traveling Abroad

 - by Amanda T. on Travelated

- accessed by GC on 16/02/2011

Unlimited Internet access has become the rallying cry of the digital age. Due to the Internet’s prevalence in modern society, people need, rather than desire, unrestricted access to the Web. Bills must constantly be paid online, messages must be responded to and memos checked, and if anything goes wrong, you will most likely be informed via e-mail first. Therefore, when traveling abroad, one must take the proper precautions to ensure that they have no trouble obtaining Internet access when they need it. The following is a list of five pieces of technology that are indispensable to traveling in today’s world.

1. Laptop

Unless you have absolutely no responsibilities, you will probably need computer access while you are out of the country. The best way to go about this is bringing a laptop with you. A desktop computer would be a burden to lug around, and I’m not sure how you would even get it on the plane. At any rate, a laptop is the most convenient type of computer to transport, and the kind favored by travelers.

2. International Wireless Device

The most pressing reason for needing a laptop as described above is the need for Internet access. You will likely need to keep up with employers, friends, family, bills, or various projects while you are away. For that, you may need to buy or rent an Internet air card from an international wireless Internet provider. When you are on vacation, you do not want to have to work around the schedules of Internet cafes or figure out when they are least crowded. With an international mobile broadband device, you can have the World Wide Web right there at your fingertips whenever you need it.

3. Flash Drive

Instead of carrying around a portable printer, you can just a bring a small USB drive with you so you can save any files you need to print and take it to a local library or print shop. Most libraries allow anyone to print documents for a small charge. While you do not want to be beholden to Internet cafes for access to the Web, printing from these locations is generally the most convenient option.

4. Surge Protector

With a surge protector, you can charge all of your electronic devices with a single power supply. Most hotels do not supply these, so you will want to make sure to bring your own. A surge protector is invaluable when visiting developing nations, as many of them have unreliable power grids. The surge buster will prevent your hardware from being fried.

5. International Power Plug Converter

This is extremely important since the voltage of electrical power is not universal. Europe runs on 240v electricity, and the plugs may be different. A converter allows you to plug in your electronic devices and run them without worry of them being toasted by excessive energy levels.

Amanda is a writer and blogger living in San Diego, CA. She loves to write about travel tips and international mobile broadband devices like internet aircards.

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