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I recently attended the Southeastern Unitarian Universalist Summer Institute (SUUSI). I gained many insights during the week at the conference, which I will share with you this week.
My husband and I have a lot of gadgets. At one point we were using the same equipment for phone and MP3 players, but in the last six months that has changed. We now have separate chargers for two different phones, two different MP3 players, and two different PDAs. Add in the portable DVD player and my daughter’s iPod Shuffle…if we were to pack the original chargers for these devices, plus the car chargers, we would end up taking another suitcase on our trips!
So what is a technologically advanced family to do?
The answer is simple: USB chargers.
Here is how to set up a very portable charging scheme.
Creating A Simple Travel Charging Scheme
Inventory Your Devices
When we realized what we were bringing, it came down to the following list:
- Two cell phones: an old Nokia and a newer Sidekick
- Two PDAs: one Zire 72 and one Zire 71
- Three MP3s: a Creative, an iPod and and iPod shuffle.
- One DVD player
Get USB Chargers
This can also make daily charging easier. USB chargers came with the iPod, the iPod shuffle and the Sidekick. I had gotten USB chargers for the PDAs, the Nokia and the Creative along the way, off the internet. A good site for this is GoMadic, which carries a system of chargers with interchangeable tips for devices, or by searching on “USB charge” and your device name and model.
I was unable to find a USB charger for the DVD player, but I will keep looking.
Purchase the Plugs
Next you will need a wall to USB charger and a car USB charger. I found one at Radio Shack, as part of a mobile iPod charging station.
Putting It All Together
By using the USB chargers, we were able to contain all of our chargers in a quart-sized zipper bag. This was much better than the last trip we took, where the chargers filled up half of a backpack.
Photo by James Cridland