August 26, 2010

Investing in the Right Tech RTW Gear

techgearWe talked recently about when it’s important to buy high quality RTW gear for your trip instead of solely hunting for whatever’s on sale, and this time we’re going to talk about another gear-related topic that might involve forking over more cash than you would otherwise like. But even if you’re not what others might call a “flashpacker,” you might still want to bring along a little tech gadget or two – and those don’t typically come cheap.

Bringing an iPod on a trip has been de rigeur for years now (although some of us are old enough to remember toting a Walkman overseas many moons ago), but these days more RTW travelers are utilizing the multi-tool aspect of the iPhone on their trips, turning it into a phone that also navigates, translates, organizes, blogs, and – who knows – maybe by the time you read this it makes coffee and packs your bags for you, too. There are more travel iPhone apps than it’s possible to keep track of, and as the iPhone continues to evolve into a more and more useful travel tool it won’t be surprising to see it on every must-have RTW gear list.

If your RTW plans involve lots of blogging or at least computer work that you’d prefer not to do on a little touchscreen, then you essentially have three alternatives. Either you plan to bring an iPad, you plan to bring a netbook, or you plan to spend a lot of time in internet cafes. Assuming you’re not in the latter category (because that’s not really gear-related, after all), then the main decision will be whether to go iPad or netbook.

With the iPad, you have one decision to make, so if that’s your choice then get thee to an Apple store and hope they’re in stock. With netbooks, there’s so much variety nowadays that you’ll need to do a bit more research on the best netbooks for traveling before you make a purchase. There are different factors to take into consideration, so read about the benefits and drawbacks of the various models to see which one suits your needs best.

And after you’re done with that research, go on to some other aspect of trip planning that’s a little more fun for a break. Look up the best beaches in Spain, figure out when it’s shoulder season around the world, hunt for flights to Nepal, plan road trips through France, learn where to surf in Bali, or what those Italian gelato flavors mean.

Just remember that if you’re properly equipped with tech gadgetry when you leave home, you can look up all that stuff while you’re on the road, too.

photo by scriptingnews

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