The Best Tech Travel Gear – For The Rest Of Us

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Photo by Christina Ann VanMeter

I love seeing how other people work on the go. But honestly, some of these “can’t live without” devices are way too pricey. I certainly don’t have $500 to spend on a laptop bag, and I don’t know many people who do. So I thought I would write about the best tech travel gear – for the rest of us.

Laptop Travel

One of the things about traveling with a laptop is that batteries don’t have an infinite charge, so it is important to have a way to power your laptop. I’ve seen everything from extra battery packs to expensive power supplies. I go the easy way:

  • A power supply. Sure, you can spend money on lots of different high-end supplies. I simply ordered a second one when I ordered my laptop. In fact, even ordering after the fact from my laptop manufacturer is still cheaper than some of the options I’ve seen touted, and there are less expensive options available. Why a second power supply, instead of using the one at home? I keep one in my case and never have to worry about unplugging the one at home.
  • A surge protector. If you are traveling out of country or in a place where the electricity is prone to surges, you need to protect your circuitry. Get a good surge protector and plug your electronics into that, rather than the wall. Since I rarely travel outside the US, I use the Belkin Mini Surge Protector Dual USB Charger. However, the PHILIPS SPP2110WA/17 3-Outlet Surge Protector looks good too. Both are under $20.00.

Other Gadgets

If you have other gadgets you are bringing with you, you will also need to consider power. There is no need to lug around a bunch of chargers, or specialty docks and devices, as I have seen some recommend. The secret to this is to use USB chargers.

I personally favor the iGo charger system. With car, wall and battery charging options, the USB end also plugs into a computer. You then buy the charging tips you need for the devices your are carrying.

If tips are not available for my devices, I make sure that I have a spare USB charger available for every device I or my family are carrying. Just like the laptop, I don’t want to have to unplug what I have at home.

Oh, and I minimize what I take, too. Do I really need to bring the Kindle if I have the iPad? Probably not. Do I need to bring the iPad at all if I have my iPod? Maybe not. Do I need to carry my phone at all? Hopefully not.

One Bag To Hold Them All

There are a lot of fancy bags out there specifically designed to carry electronic loads. They have all sorts of nifty little pockets and padding and what not. And usually a huge price tag.

What do I carry when I’m traveling? A Jansport backpack. I pop my laptop into a padded neoprene case, then load up the backpack. It’s not a special computer backpack; it’s the one I used when I was in school (I have always sworn by the durability of Jansport) Looking around on Amazon, I saw them for about $30.00. They’re probably cheaper during back-to-school sales.

These are my minimums for travel. Do you have lower-cost favorites for tech on the go? Share below.

Photo by Christina Ann VanMeter