The summer is now officially upon us, which means that the season of vacations, trips, and travel plans has begun. This is the most popular time to travel, whether you're single, part of a couple or part of a family. With travel, comes some important necessities, like the dreaded packing, which, no matter how hard I try, always seems to happen several hours before I am due to leave. Packing your essentials is never easy. Will it be chilly? How many shoes should I take? So many uncertainties! But one facet of that packing that can be a snap is knowing which essential travel gadgets to take along.
We all live in a very different world now. Gone are the days of underwater snap and develop cameras, packing a point and click, and hurrying home to develop your film and see your vacation pictures. In today's world, not only can we see our entire vacation album before our feet even hit home, but there are more accessories then ever before to ensure that every moment is taken in, captured, photographed, designed, and ultimately, lived. We can get more places too, like underwater, and we even have the ability to film ourselves doing these very things from our own view. The methods by which we enjoy travel have changed drastically, but one thing will always remain constant: our ability to enjoy the simple pleasures of taking a vacation. And no matter what new technology comes out, we will always have ourselves to rely on for that.
1. Waterproofed Kindle Paperwhite by Waterfi. Enjoy an afternoon by the pool reading or even take your kindle on that scuba trip (the down time portion of the excursion perhaps?) without ever worrying about water ruining your device. Waterfi products are not only waterproof in over 200 feet of water, but they easily wash off sand, food, or other details of the day. $240 at Waterfi.com
2. June app activated jewelry. This new device, by Netatmo, is simply brilliant. Literally a jewel attached to a leather wrap bracelet, this might look like a just fun accessory at first, but it's actually much, much more. The bracelet, when synched up to an iphone app, not only reads real time weather, but it also evaluates how long you've been in the sun, how strong the sun is, and even when you need to reapply sunscreen. In today's world where we are more knowledgeable about sun care and the dangers of sun exposure than ever, but also just as set on that tan as ever, June is a brilliant way to still get the rays without the burn of irresponsibility. Literally. $99.00
3. LaCie Fuel memory storage. Sometimes, the most important tool for your vacation isn't what will necessarily enhance your experience, but something that will enhance the trip overall. For the family vacation, tools to utilize your time can be crucial. Case in point: the LaCie Fuel, which not only extends Ipad life, also has massive storage capabilities that allow for over 500+ movies, songs, and more. Depending on the family, this can be crucial to a successful family vacation. Get it here for $180. I'm going to assume that it's worth every child-entranced penny.
4. Sand Free Mat from HearthSong. Okay, technically this isn't exactly a gadget, but for any summer vacation that is beach focused, it's a major necessity and great find! The mat, which is made with patented technology, allows for a more sand free experience at the beach (irony at its best!). Many of us are faced with the difficult contradiction of loving the beach and hating the sand that gets everywhere. That is what makes this kind of brilliant. Sand that would typically be everywhere within 5 minutes falls straight through the mat instead, making for less mess and less fuss. The same technology comes in a new beach bag as well. $45-$75 at Hearthsong.com
5. The Gopro Camera. The film and camera industry has changed drastically in the last 5 years thanks to all kinds of new technology that is being developed and explored. The newer versatility of a camera and camcorder has changed the way we look at travel, and all types of new products are popping up all over the market. One can feel like Goldilocks shopping for these–too big, too small, too simple, not simple enough. It can be overwhelming. But one of the originals of this new type of shooting that still corners the market now is the Gopro camera. Not only is it waterproof, with higher resolutions and built in wifi, but the fact that you can also mount it on yourself and shoot a personal view of what you're doing has changed the typical vacation forever. If you're excited, but still a novice, try the Hero3 edition, which the company calls the perfect intro to gopro. $199 at gopro.com