Tag: Travel Gear

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The Power Tap: Because Regular Old Phone Chargers are Like, Totally Boring

January 16, 2015 at 12:44 PM | by | Comments (0)

Bored with your old phone charger which consists of just a cord and a plug? Need something more exciting to look at (other than Snapschats) while waiting for your phone to charge up? Check out this travel-friendly gizmo that popped up on our radar: the Power Tap, a smartphone charger shaped like a faucet.

Why? Why not? Why must you sneer at innovation?

The Power Tap has a USB port for plugging in your power-dehydrated gadgets, and an illuminated shower-like spigot you turn to let the juice flow. Instead of red for hot and blue for cold, the glowing colors mean off and on, respectively. The charger is $27.50 through Aeropostale. (Yes, your niece's favorite mall store.) And it’s available in white only. Which begs the question: any marble options on the way? We’d prefer it match our five-star hotel bathrooms.

It’s the little things, you know?

[Photo: Power Tap]

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We're Sure You Have a Good Reason for Taking Pics With Your iPad But, No. Just No.

January 15, 2015 at 3:55 PM | by | Comment (1)

Picture it: you're traveling, and about to head out on a tour that will visit photo-worthy landmarks. What do you pack to bring? Your digital camera, which fits in your pocket? Your iPhone, which already has an internal camera that's ten times better than the one you took to prom 10 years ago?

Or perhaps your iPad, which has a camera of equal quality, but is packaged inconveniently in an unwieldy machine that requires its own equally unwiedling carrying case that you inevitably fumble with as you try to open to expose the camera lens?

If you answered the last: UGH.

There are two kinds of travelers in the world: those who travel everywhere with their iPads, and those of us who loathe them because — well, we're trying to enjoy the vista of this lovely tropical waterfall, and you keep block our view by holding up something the size of a street sign.

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In Defense of The Selfie Stick (Don't Hate)

January 13, 2015 at 12:29 PM | by | Comment (1)

Are Selfie Sticks here to stay?

In case you’ve been living under a rock (or just haven’t updated your Facebook profile photo in a few months), it’s officially Selfie Stick season. The collapsible cane cradles your smartphone, then extends like a super-long arm to provide the perfect angle for selfie snapshots.

The gizmo du jour conquered Asia before invading American shores — you know, like Godzilla. And it was the star of the show at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas last week.

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Now Everyone Can Be a Palm Beach Princess, Thanks to Target x Lilly Pulitzer

January 12, 2015 at 4:11 PM | by | Comments (0)

Lilly Pulitzer. If you haven't heard of this Palm Beach print-crazy clothing line before, then you will by April 19. That's when the clothing company known for its outrageous patterns and frightening bright colors will drop at Target with more than 250 pieces made especially for the department store.

The preppy collaboration collection will include apparel, accessories and shoes for women and girls, along with home accents, outdoor entertaining accessories, beach gear and travel essentials. And all this Lilly stuff will truly be limited-edition as the 15 prints were designed exclusively for Target and won't be found anywhere else.

We're not sure a massive, completely affordable collaboration (prices range from $2 to $150) with Target was what socialite Lilly Pulitzer had in mind when she first started her business in tony Palm Beach in the 1960s but it does mean everyone can take a little bit of Palm Beach around with them on their spring and summer vacations.

The look book hasn't been unveiled for the line just yet but from the preview video above we can see that the following travel-related items will be for sale:

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Soarigami: A Gizmo That Puts an End to Armrest Hogging

December 5, 2014 at 2:44 PM | by | Comments (0)

Thankfully, America is finally having long overdue, tough conversations that bridge the gap between those who recline their airplane seats and those who (rightfully, IMO) shun them. But let’s not allow these discussions to distract us from another important issue:

Armrest hogs.

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Kickstarter's 'Fugu Luggage' May Finally Solve the 2-Wheel or 4-Wheel Debate

November 21, 2014 at 11:24 AM | by | Comments (0)

Luggage sucks.

Don't think so? Take a flight without it some time, perhaps on a quick overnight with just a messenger bag, and you'll quickly find that luggage is its own particular brand of torture. Travelers with it are less agile, earlier exhausted, responsible for extra fees, potential crime targets, and forced to spend more time at the airport dealing with it. Then there's the whole separate nightmare of if it's delayed or gone missing.

2014 marks the 100th Anniversary of commercial flight, and it's shocking to think how little the baggage situation has changed in that century. Adding wheels and decreasing weight have seemingly been the most pervasive advances in the luggage industry through the decades, and the most passionate arguments occur over "carry-on only or checked?" and "two-wheel or four-wheel?" rather than contemplating why we're still dragging our belongings behind us like wayward hobos.

Deep breath.

There is some hope, however; a company called Fugu Luggage has taken to Kickstarter to seek help producing what may be a breath of fresh air in the stodgy old luggage industry. It literally utilizes air to expand from a compact wheeled carry-on into a durable checked bag, complete with interior organization and "omniwheels."

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Gadget Watch: Meet the World's Tiniest Travel Humidifier

November 10, 2014 at 10:35 AM | by | Comment (1)

When it comes to #FirstWorldProblems, travel woes typically take the cake. To paraphrase your mother’s dinner time admonishments: There are starving children in the world who don’t even have mini-bars!

With that disclaimer in mind, we’d like to take a moment to bemoan a major pet peeve: hotel rooms with air so dry, you could cure your own ham in the time it takes for the shower to warm up. If you have sinus issues, you know you’re in for a night of hell. Even if you don’t, an especially dry hotel room might mean you wake in the morning with a nosebleed and lips chapped enough to whittle a whistle.

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Smart Luggage Controlled by Your Smartphone is Just Plain Smart

October 31, 2014 at 11:25 AM | by | Comments (0)

Lost luggage? Thing of the past.

Overweight carry-on? No more.

Forgetting the keys to your TSA baggage locks? Impossible!

It was probably only a matter of time before carry-ons got the smartphone treatment and, thanks to Bluesmart, some hassles of heading to an airport may soon be forgotten.

A new carry-on bag claims to keep travelers connected to their cabin baggage with the help of an iPhone app. It allows travelers to weigh their luggage instantly, locate misplaced bags, remotely lock and unlock the suitcase, and even charge devices while on the road. Here are the major features:

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Finally, a Travel Neck Pillow That's Not Ugly and Useless

April 2, 2014 at 5:47 PM | by | Comments (0)

We've been discussing Economy Class travel quite a lot recently, from surviving a 14-hour flight sitting up to the next generation of seats, and now it's time to share our little secret in the realm of BYO comfort: the MUJI microbead neck cushion.

Neck pillows are ugly, awkward, and embarrassing to be seen with outside an airport. We kind of hate them, actually, Unfortunately, they're still very much required if you hope for any sort of lengthy sleep in economy.

About three years ago we discovered the microbead neck cushion at one of Japanese retailer MUJI's NYC stores, and it's been keeping us comfy company on long flights ever since. At $25, it doesn't break the bank, and there's a few other excellent reasons we deign to drag it along:

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Review: Do Travel Socks Really Help Leg Fatigue?

March 14, 2014 at 10:46 AM | by | Comments (0)

About two years ago when traveling to Mexico, this contributor met a man in a long line at customs. When I mentioned I was a travel writer, he began telling me about a new business he was entering: Compression socks.

Compression socks, right. Sounds riveting. What's next? You're going to tell me how much fun it is to be an accountant? He laughed as if he'd heard it before. He looked down at my feet, and told me, all kidding aside, that he thought they’d be good for me with all the travel I do. He said he’d send me a pair once the company was up and running. We went our separate ways, but a few months later, I got a box in the mail.

According to the literature on the box, Dr. Segal’s True Graduated Compression Socks are said to increase circulation and reduce swelling and leg fatigue. A little bit of research shows that the general benefit of compression socks is all science at this point (regardless of the brand), but I was skeptical that they would make much of a notable impact for a young guy like me. Like a good little journalist, I gave them a shot on my next cross-country flight to find out.

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The Two Products Every Traveler Needs in a Toiletry Kit During Winter Weather

February 13, 2014 at 10:40 AM | by | Comments (0)

This winter has been a rough one for the northern hemisphere, with harsh winter conditions in the US and the dreariest of rainy seasons in Europe. Unfortunately the winter isn't over yet, so we're here to drop one big tip that's been a huge help to us as we travel during less than lovely weather: take care of your lips.

Frequent flying and the stress of switching time zones means lots of moisturizing to keep skin fresh and hydrated. It's just that we often overlook the importance of lips. Male or female, it doesn't matter. You need to have these two products in your toiletry kit:

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'How Do I Travel with Scuba Gear as Checked Luggage?'

February 5, 2014 at 5:54 PM | by | Comments (0)

With each new season comes new questions about what passengers can and cannot take onboard a plane. Thus, we'll be addressing some of the most popular requests with a series called, "Got Baggage."

So, how to fly on a commercial airplane with SCUBA gear?

First, consider how much diving you'll actually do. Just a day or two of two-tank dives? Keep it minimal. A week of day-long diving on a live-aboard? Bring your best stuff. Rent your tanks at the destination, and even your weight belt unless your BCD is has an integrated weight system.

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