Do You Know Which Gadgets to Pack?

Technology + Gear
by Lola (Akinmade) Åkerström Jun 24, 2010

Photo by Mat Packer.

With today’s rapidly changing technology, I’m not so sure either…

Long gone are the days when a basic flip-open cellphone and laptop sufficed for our daily technical needs. If the multi-block line of customers I saw on CNN waiting for the newest iPhone is any indication, our definition of technical “needs” is constantly expanding.

Ironically, as we amass more technology and gear, we’re also touting various lightweight minimalistic approaches to packing for travel.

Hence, the dilemma – Which gadgets to pack for lightweight travel?

In his NYT piece titled Packing the Right Gadgets to Go, Farhad Manjoo shares packing tips for different types of travel; touching on various topics such as charging gear, making phone calls, accessing Wi-Fi, using e-readers, and taking photos.

For example, a single adapter can be used to charge a myriad of gadgets such as camera, smart phones, e-readers, and laptops.

Depending on your trip, it’s always a good idea to take along a few extra cables, adapters and other accessories. For foreign travel, a power adapter — to charge your camera, phone, e-reader and other gadgets — is a must.

How about the universal question of keeping in touch while traveling?

Manjoo suggests using Skype and setting up a call forwarding number. If you plan on making tons of local calls, consider purchasing a SIM card on location which gives you your own local number to use.

For leisure travel, Manjoo suggests the iPad because it’s the “perfect way to read books and watch movies on the go.”

But if you plan to write the great American novel while visiting Parisian cafes, take along a small Bluetooth keyboard (Apple makes a nice one) to connect to your iPad; even with the keyboard, the iPad setup is easier to carry in a satchel or large purse than most notebooks.

Overall, Manjoo’s article provides good packing tips for various travel scenarios – leisure, business, foreign – and more.

For me though, I’ll rather shrink my definition of technical “needs” and stick with my little flip-open cellphone and $30 MP3 player for now.

Which gadgets do you usually carry with you when travelling? Check out the Matador Team’s favorite gadgets.

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