Essential Tech For Your Travels
Everyone loves getting new technology, especially when it makes life a little bit easier! Whether you travel regularly for work or are planning a trip away, we've put together a list of tech to make things less stressful and more enjoyable. Some are what we consider to be 'essentials' however we have thrown in a few extras that we just think you'll love!
1. Noise Cancelling Wireless Headphones
We can all agree that there is nothing worse than being sat next to a screaming child on a plane. You crank up your headphones to drown out the noise, but that won't do. So here's the obvious solution - noise cancelling headphones. What's even better? Wireless noise-cancelling headphones to avoid you getting tangled up in unnecessary wires. Pop them on, and any noise around you will disappear, replaced by your favourite music.
Take a look at some of our favourites:
SENNHEISER PXC 550
£320 guide price
These sound cancelling headphones are fitted with NoiseGard technology which counteracts surrounding noise the louder it gets. Not only are they wireless up to an impressive 30 metres but offer up to 30 hours of use, so you don't have to worry about charging them during a long journey.
BOSE QUIETCOMFORT 35
£330 guide price
Our final recommendation is one of Bose's few, wireless, noise-cancelling headphones. Unlike the Samsung Level On Pro, you cannot switch off the ANC (active noise-cancelling), so you will have to hear your surroundings the old fashioned way (lifting up an ear cup). As the name suggests, these headphones were designed to provide maximum comfort when worn and have synthetic protein leather ear cushions. With a battery life of 20 hours and a wireless range of 10 metres, these would definitely improve a long journey.
BOWERS & WILKINS PX
£329 guide price
Well-renowned for their high-quality audio equipment, Bowers & Wilkin's PX wireless, noise-cancelling headphones would be a brilliant choice for travelling. They provide up to 22 hours of listening time with refined noise-cancelling technology to provide optimal sound quality. With three different environment filters; City, Office and Flight they can be adjusted to best suit your needs. The headphones have a high-quality feel with a lightweight yet sturdy frame which folds flat - perfect for popping them in your bag. When you take the headphones off, they automatically go into standby mode. What's more, if you lift an ear cup or put them around your neck to speak to someone, the music will be paused, resuming again when you are ready to listen. This makes sure that you won't accidentally leave your music playing and drain your battery - your worst nightmare when you are on a long haul flight!
2. Portable Apple Watch Charger
If you are someone who loves your Apple Watch, then this one is for you. We know that battery life can be a real downside to these watches, particularly when you are on the go. Therefore, a portable charger may be the answer to all your problems.
AMBER BY CLEARGRASS
£60 guide price
We LOVE this portable charger. It has a gorgeous design which fits right in with Apple's aesthetic. Amber has brilliant power capacity and can charge your Apple Watch six times, perfect for a week away. It also doubles up as a safe way of storing your watch and can charge another device via a USB at the same time. You can also download an app which will inform you when your watch is fully charged and can locate your Amber if you misplace it.
POCKET BY UNITY
£80 guide price
Similar to the Amber, the Pocket can also function as a protective case for your Apple Watch. It has the power capacity to charge your device ten times and has a USB port to charge your iPhone as well. This model can function as a dock so that you can display your phone and watch on your desk. Furthermore, the bottom section is detachable and functions as an iPhone charger.
(These may be difficult to get in the UK but if you can get your hands on one, it's worth considering)
£25 guide price
The Nomad Pod is a small, portable battery pack which can charge your Apple Watch three times. This is definitely a more affordable model and, if you don't mind a smaller power capacity, would be a good option to take on your travels
£16 - £50 guide price
There is nothing more frustrating than losing your wallet or phone, especially when you are on holiday! So, meet Tile; a tracking system with small squares which can be attached to your belongings. There are different styles of tiles to suit you, including waterproof designs. Simply attach your Tile to your passport, wallet, keys etc. If they are within a 100-foot Bluetooth range, you can call one from your phone, causing it to emit a loud ring until you find it. If you have lost your phone, you can use another Tile to trigger the sound. Tile also has an app which recalls the last time and place that you had your item, giving you a place to start your search.
4. Mobile Battery Charger
When on the go, it can be a struggle to charge your smartphone and the last thing you want is to be left stranded, unable to order an Uber! So, when you don't have access to a socket, you need a portable charger.
There are lots of chargers out there, varying in size, style, battery capacity and number of ports but here are some of our favourites:
ANKER POWERCORE II SLIM
£25 guide price
This sleek, portable charger is a similar size to a smartphone, making it perfect for travelling. It has a decent power capacity which can provide three full charges for a smartphone in a super speedy time. Furthermore, the Anker Powercore has a Quick Charge option to be fully recharged in 4 hours ensuring your phone won't die while you are travelling, missing out on taking that jaw-dropping picture.
ZENDURE A8 QC PRO
£72 guide price
The Zendure A8 QC Pro is more of a blow to your budget. With a slightly chunkier design, it is a pretty heavy-duty charger. It can charge an iPhone 6s an impressive twelve and a half times and with four USB ports, your friends and family can charge their devices at the same time! In this case, spending more money will give you considerably more charging power, brilliant if you are away from a mains socket for a longer period.
5. Apple iPad Pro
If you travel a lot for your job, chances are you may need to work on the go. Apple's iPad Pro, with the most advanced display to date, is a brilliant option. It has all the features you could need, from a brighter screen to faster refresh rates AND a ten-hour battery - perfect for travelling. The iPad Pro is even better when combined with the Apple keyboard and pencil. The 10.5 inch iPad with the keyboard would fit on your lap, enabling you to work wherever. Furthermore, the pencil is perfect if you do a lot of editing or graphic design or if you prefer to handwrite your notes and ideas. (It is important to note that these extras do come at additional costs.)
6. Nest Hello
The Nest Hello is not a travel essential, but it is a great product which may give you more peace of mind when you are away. Fitted with two-way audio and one-way video, you can see who is outside your front door and communicate with them. With inbuilt motion detectors, the product alerts you when you have a visitor, even if they haven't rung the doorbell. Furthermore, the Nest Hello can act as a deterrent for potential intruders. It lights up when someone approaches at night, and you can speak via the doorbell no matter where you are, giving the illusion you are at home. What's more, a Nest Aware subscription will give you access to facial recognition technology which can detect if your visitor is a familiar face or someone new and alert you via an app on your phone.
Check out our Nest Hello blog for more details.
7. Bluetooth Speaker
Bluetooth speakers are fantastic for travelling as you can take your music with you, wherever you go and share it with your friends or family. They are lightweight, portable designs without the hassle of wires. It is important to find one with a good battery life as the last thing you want is to run out of power in the middle of your favourite song!
Here are some of our favourites:
JBL FLIP 3
£80 guide price
The JBL Flip 3 is perfect for use in a group as you can connect up to three devices so you can take it in turns choosing the next song. They have a robust design, so you don't need to panic if it gets knocked over and they are splashproof so won't be damaged by the rain. Furthermore, they have an impressive 10-hour battery life, voice control capacity, impressive bass and come in a great range of colours!
£150 guide price
Beats are renowned for brilliant sound quality, and the Beats Pill is no different. This speaker is a more expensive model, however, it has some great features. It boasts a 12-hour battery life, making it a perfect for travelling and a 3-hour quick charge option to provide music whenever you need it. A bonus feature is that the Pill can charge your phone. Though this may drain the battery, it is good for emergencies.
£60 guide price
The Scosche BoomBottle is a rugged, waterproof speaker which is perfect for an active or camping holiday. It has an Indoor/Outdoor EQ function to provide the best sound in each environment. The battery life is fantastic, offering up to 15-hours of play time, so you don't have to worry about recharging while you are camping. Like the Beats Pill, it can charge your smart devices - another brilliant feature for holidays.
8. Smart Suitcase
Suitcases are an essential part of travelling and can be so much more than storage on wheels. Smart suitcases offer a variety of features, depending on the model, taking your suitcase to the next level.
Take a look at our favourite:
BLUESMART CABIN 22" SERIES 2
£250 guide price
First and foremost, the Bluesmart Cabin 22" is a well built, sturdy case which offers 38 litres of storage to hold all your belongings. However, it doesn't stop there. This case has a rechargeable battery which can charge your devices on the go. Fitted with digital auto-locking, it can be controlled by your smartphone but also automatically locks when you are a certain distance away. Finally, the Bluesmart Cabin has location tracking so you should never lose your belongings again! Thanks to GPS and 3G location trackers, you can locate your suitcase from your smartphone and get notifications regarding its whereabouts.
9. Pocket-sized Drone
Drones are brilliant for taking on holiday and capturing great videos and images, however, they can be a hassle to pack or carry around. Therefore, pocket-sized drones are perfect for travelling; lightweight and portable while still being great pieces of technology.
Take a look at our favourites:
£220 guide price
Like other drones, the Airselfie can capture great shots from the air while being controlled by your smartphone. It can travel an impressive 20 metres and captures images with a 5 MP camera and 1080p videos with 30 fps. The flight time is pretty short, only 3 minutes, but the Airselfie comes with a rechargeable battery which increases the time to 9 minutes. The camera quality won't blow you away, but it is adequate for capturing great shots. Overall, the Airselfie is a convenient, compact drone with a more affordable price tag than other models.
£500 guide price
DJI has a great selection of drones ranging in price and size. The Spark is a smaller, cheaper model which is ideal for travelling. It can be controlled via your smartphone, a remote controller or gesture control; an impressive new feature where you can control your drone with hand movements. The camera quality is good for the Spark's size, HD with 30 fps, and the drone can be flown for approximately 15 minutes before it needs recharging.
Check out our DJI Spark blog for more details.
10. Solar Chargers
Solar mobile chargers are brilliant if you are backpacking or camping. Without access to a power outlet, even regular portable chargers will eventually run out of juice. They only require daylight to function although they do charge considerably quicker in direct sunlight.
Here are our favourites:
ANKER POWERPORT SOLAR LITE
$55 guide price
The Anker PowerPort Solar Lite is a thin, lightweight, portable charger. You can attach it to your backpack to charge on the go, or leave it out in the sun. Unfortunately, it doesn't come with a battery pack so you can either charge your device directly during the day or purchase a USB battery pack so you can charge at your convenience.
$70 guide price
The Solio Bolt does come with a battery pack (which can hold its charge for up to a year) and is still a lightweight, portable design. Once charged, it can fully charge a smartphone in 90 minutes making it ideal on the go.