Travel Technology: Top Picks for 2023
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The Top Travel Tech Gadgets for Your Budget
- Laptop: Macbook Air or Pro 13″
- Iphone, Tripod and Phone Accessories
- Portable Charger
- Portable HotSpots
- Virtual Private Networks
- Go Pro Options
- Staying Connected Off Grid
- Travel Adapters
- Portable Hard Drives
- Kindle & Kindle Kids
Technology changes quickly and packing light is always a concern. Stay up to date with the best travel technology out there, what we use, and what we love on a budget. We show you the honest truth behind the reviews you may find online. No need to comb the internet, reading reviews, and wondering if they are even true.
If you have read through our posts, you will notice that I am not a high tech person and don’t often speak about the travel tech gadgets we use. I prefer to actually savor our family travel experiences, rather than being bogged down by travel tech gadgets that someone (usually me) has to carry, charge, and care for.
Luckily, I have tried many, many different travel tech gadget options and will tell you the exact items we actually use, and why we love them.
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Laptop & Laptop Accessories
13″ Macbook Air & Macbook Pro
When it comes to travel tech gadgets, having a reliable laptop with good battery life is number 1. My absolute favorite laptop, which I have been using since college (so many moons ago), is the 13″ Macbook Air. It is incredibly light and thin, at just 2.7 pounds, and serves all the functions I need. Battery life is around 18 hours, which will get me through many long flights and allow me to work continuously. It also has advanced camera and audio specs for creating static videos.
If you use your laptop for creating digital art or are a professional photographer, you should probably consider a MacBook Pro.
Ultimately, it wont matter what laptop you have if it isn’t well protected. Be sure you can travel without worry and use a hard shell case AND a protective, water resistant sleeve.
My favorite hard shell case is this one. The great thing is, this shell will protect your laptop from all scrapes and scratches, even when you are sliding it in and out of travel bags or placing it down on a variety of surfaces. It comes with keyboard covers, and has a built in ventilation system to allow heat to escape and proper airflow to happen.
Once you’ve chosen your hard shell case, the next travel tech gadget I recommend is a water resistant laptop sleeve. There are many soft and stretchy sleeves, but the water resistant feature is key here. I love this super cute cactus design one, or for something more simple with build in document storage, this one is my next pick.
Iphone, Tripod, & Phone Accessories
I am OVER lugging around large cameras and lenses, and truly there is so much you can do with a smart phone. Find an article about taking great pictures with an Iphone, and you will be off to the right start! I currently use the Iphone 14 Max Pro for all my pictures and videos. I stick this collapsable tripod into my backpack and use it for any shots that I want to actually be in!!
My next level purchase later this year will be the Insta 360 x 3 Waterproof Action Camera with invisible Selfie Stick (this makes your shots look like drone shots!)
Another item I love, especially since I refuse to carry bigger cameras and lenses, is this Clip-On Iphone Lens Kit. This is super travel friendly, and provides Macro and Wide Angle options. It will work on Apple and Android devices too!
Anker Portable Charger
This is the tech item that saves our butts every time! We use our phones for everything, and our computers even more on travel days. These slim and portable Anker Portable Chargers are incredible. Here’s what you need to know:
- Charge Fast Anywhere: You can charge your devices on the go and quickly! There are multiple ports too, so your Iphone can be plugged in along with a second device via USB and USB-C.
- Super Slim: At only 0.6 inches thick, this 20W portable charger fits in any backpack, purse, or work bag. It even fits in my back pocket!
- Backup Power: The 10,000mAh cell capacity gives you enough power to charge an iPhone 12 twice, a Samsung S20 over one and a half times, and an iPad mini 5 once.
- Safe Travels: PowerCore features an exclusive MultiProtect safety system which combines a fire-resistant casing, temperature control, and many more safety features so you can charge anywhere with no worries.
- What You Get with our link: Anker 523 Power Bank (PowerCore 10K), USB-A to USB-C cable, USB-C to USB-C cable, travel pouch, welcome guide, our worry-free 18-month warranty, and friendly customer service.
GLocalMe Portable Hotspots
GLocalMe is an excellent company and product that provides you with stable, reliable and consistent Wi-Fi hotspots in over 140 countries. We started our travels by relying on our regular cell phone plan’s hotspot. It was horrible. It didn’t always work, even though I paid for the plan. And it was slow!
Then I heard about the GLocalMe network. There are a variety of budget options when purchasing the actual device (see below). I recommend purchasing the budget option if you are connecting 8 or less devices, and if you use your phone and computer for entertainment, but not necessarily for heavy work. If you need stronger connectivity, and will use it for 10 devices, then go ahead and purchase the second option. Both options come with 1.1GB global data to get you started, and you purchase more data as you go via the app.
Here is what you need to know about all the GLocalMe Hotspot products:
- No SIM card needed, get instant domestic and international data by paying online. Fast and stable 4G internet for home, outdoor and globally in 140+ countries. Also supports a SIM card slot, unlocked to use any SIM card, which means that you can easily use the data from it according to your own needs.
- Pay as you go WiFi. No contract nor roaming charges. Choose the more suitable data plan from our Glocalme App anytime. Comes with included 1.1GB global data.
- Share your WIFI connection with up to 8-10 devices at once. Download GlocalMe App to easily manage your hotspot and purchase data plans at low cost. Flexible data plans allow you to buy service by the Day, Month, Region or GB. Support mainstream frequency bands and works in more than 140 countries around the world across America, Europe, Middle East, Asia, Africa and Oceania.
- GlocalMe uses the a private security protocol to keep your WIFI connection safe.
Your Two GLocalMe Options:
- Budget Option: The GLocalMe UPP 4G LTE Mobile Hotspot is the right choice for those who use their devices for entertainment and short bursts of work.
- One Step Up Option: The GLocalMe DuoTurbo 4G LTE Mobile Hotspot is the right choice for those who need stronger and faster networks, and will be using their hotspot for work in more remote places.
Virtual Private Networks (VPN)
There is so much to say about virtual private networks, or VPN’s. This is THE way to keep your digital information safe while traveling, and is super easy to install on your devices. While its technically not a travel tech gadget, since its installed on your devices, it is a MUST.
See my post about What is a VPN and Why You Need a VPN. Do not overlook this suggestion! Your Travel Tech is not safe unless you have a VPN.
If you will be checking email, sending or accessing work files, logging into your banking information, and more you will need this!
Go Pro Options
The GoPro Hero 10 is the ultimate travel tech gadget. It is exactly what you need when you are adventuring. If your photos and videos include any amount of movement or action, or water activities, this is the item you need. This is the sharpest GoPro ever, has double the shooting frame rate for incredibly smooth shots, and captures details and textures beautifully. The lens cover repels water, and the kit below has extra accessories to keep your GoPro safe during water adventures. You can connect the GoPro Hero 10 to the cloud or via USB for quick and easy transfer of files.
If you want to save on this item and get all the accessories you need, the 50-in-1 accessories bundle is a no brainer. You will get a silicone waterproof protective case, a variety of mounts for all adventures including bicycles, filters, selfie sticks, extendable arms, and a floaty bobber for those wet and underwater adventures.
Staying Connected Off Grid
This is a travel tech gadget biggie. If your family plans to adventure or explore the more remote places and enjoy being immersed in nature, this is something you might need to keep yourselves safe. When we go to more remote places, especially with kids, we like to ensure we can still text and use GPS functions. The ZoLeo Satellite Communicator helps us to be connected just as much as we need, while still being physically remote.
The All In One Universal Travel Adapter is my favorite travel tech gadget in the adapter series. It has 3 USB Ports and 1 Type-C Port, the input voltage of the USB is 100-240VAC, which means you can use it around the world to charge multiple USB devices at the same time in over 200 countries. The following features are built in: LED power indicator, plug lock system, over-current (overload), high-temperature, short-circuit and surge protection built-in.
We plug in all our devices here; laptops, kindles, chargers, and beauty tools. All in one!
Portable Hard Drives and Why You Need One
This travel tech gadget is an unfortunate must have. Portable hard drives are one of those things I often cringe at reading about. I pay for cloud storage of my photos and videos, so why would I need a hard drive? Hard drives are just one more thing I have to keep track of, right?
Well, yes, but once I am carrying a waterproof bag for my travel tech gear anyways, this is one thing you should definitely have. Sometimes, your phone or cloud storage is unaccessible. Sometimes you forget your password, or get locked out, or need your data immediately and dont have good access. What if the cloud goes down?
A simple solution is to use the WD 3TB Portable Hard Drive. It is compatible with PC and Mac, small and easy to use. I recommend uploading your photos weekly.
Kindle & Kindle Kids
The most practical and travel friendly travel tech gadget. We are big readers, and part of our travel routine is to wind down together before bedtime and read. My kids are still young, elementary school, and reading is an important part of our Worldschooling and their general development. I have had a Kindle for many, many years. But only recently were my kids willing to begin reading on a device.
Traveling with books is daunting, difficult, and almost impossible if you have avid readers. So, my kids each have a Kindle Kids with a cover of their choice. The Kindle Kids automatically comes with access to thousands of children’s books, and a black, emerald dreams, or robot yellow cover.
So thats it. Thats what we really take. Don’t overpack travel tech gadgets, allow yourself to enjoy your family gap year or full time travels with your family. Learn to use your phone in unique ways to capture beautiful pictures and memories, and be sure that all your travel tech gadget cases are waterproof!