I getting ready to pack for a two week jaunt out of the country. Going to be cruising for half of it, the rest spent in Denmark and Norway. So, of course, it comes time to decide what to pack Tech wise. I have to keep in mind it has to be fairly light, fairly small – I want everything in my carry-on. So a laptop is right out, but I still want the convience of accessing the web, maps, etc. if I want. I also should think about what my activities are going to be.
So here is what I’m planning to take, and why.
A. My iPad. Already loaded with such app goodies as:
1. City Walks and Maps.
The basic version is free, and if you want a more detailed map or sightseeing guide, you can add it separately for a small fee. I’ve alreay loaded Copenhagen (Denmark) and Trondheim (Norway) as these cities we’ll be on our own exploring.
2. Rick Steves’ Reader.
Travel guru Rick Steves has many rather large guidebooks for sale. This allows you to buy them in e-book form. As he happened to have a book on Northern European Cruise Ports, that’s the one I bought. No need to carry any bulky and space consuming travel books anymore.
Handy little app that you can input your itinerary so you have everything in one place (although I admit I also made a paper copy to take with me.)
4. XE Currency Pro
A handy little app that gives me up to the minute info (provided I have wireless) on currency exhange. I bet it would be hard to find a currency it Doesn’t have. Easy to edit and switch around. Counting on it to be a big timesaver.
For downtime. A few solo, but also the Pass and Play types.
A basic big clock with add ons such as alarms, music (from your iTunes library) and more. I use it for the alarm function.
7. If needed, a camera or movie camera.
That’s if either my smartphone or DSLR Camera doesn’t can’t get the shot. Actually I will be using it for some shots to add to my blog.
8. and the usual gang of idiots…
Music, movies, Itunes and ItunesU, and let us not forget iBooks. I’m on vacation here. I plan to sit and relax at one point. I have it pencilled in already.
Along with the iPad, I’m taking along my
B. Verbatim ultra-slim Bluetooth Keyboard.
This is so I don’t have to be one fingered tapping out a blog. The keyboard is the same length as the iPad, and about 75% of it’s width. Comes in a nice little vinal bag for storage/travel. Takes a USB connection to charge.
C. My smartphone.
Mine’s a Samsung Note 4. Among other apps on the phone are the camera function, a copy of XE Currency Pro (see above), my ship navigator/daily activities newspaper (I’m sailing with Disney, their app includes a nice countdown until you’re on board, then you follow the simple instructions to activate the app’s other functions.
I’ve also contacted my carrier (AT&T) and purchased a 30 day “Passport Plan” in case I can’t find free wi-fi in some of the towns I visit. Nice thing is it comes with an app to help me find hotspots. (who needs an app. Just find the nearest Starbucks, right?)
The phone also contains an app called S Health, which has a built in pedometer among other things and also Myfitnesspal, so I can count just how many calories I intake each day, as well as keep track of my exercise.
And let us not forget my Twitter app. @popcornbytes is going on the road.
Last but not least,
D. DSLR Camera.
It’s an old Nikon D50. So it takes photos, not movies. I can use my phone for that. I used to travel, in the “old days” with two cameras, one still, and one video. Now my video camera is HD and a bit large to be traveling for anything besides business.
I have a 2GB (yes, you read correctly) card and a 1GB back up – just in case I take more than 990 photos. Could happen. I have two batteries for the camera, but that also means I need to take the charger along.
E. My iPod Nano
It’s small, it’s loaded with songs. It’s a bit redundent, but I’m taking it so I don’t always have to drag the iPad to the gym when I work out or walk around the deck and want to listen to music.
So there are my five basic tech toys I’m taking. Now I need support.
The iPad and iPod will both run off of Apples’ “lighting” connection. So that’s one cord.
My smart phone needs it’s own cord, as does the keyboard. So that’s two more, and lastly, I need a powercord to connect with the seperate battery charger for my camera.
The Camera charger and it’s power cord will travel in its’ own quart size baggie. Along with the extra camera battery.
For the rest, I have a vinyl pencil case. It’s about 7 inches by 3 1/2 by 2 1/2. I have an iGo dual usb power cube that will plug in to charge two items at a time. So if I need to charge the phone and iPad at the same time (usually while I’m sleeping) I can do it. Along with the USB cords will be going the 1GB back up card, and a spare set of earphones. All of this either goes in my carry-on or “personal item” bag, aka my daypack.
Along with the above on this trip, since I’m going to northern Europe, is going a rather cubic Voltage Transformer (converts 220/250 VAC to the American 110/120 volt 50-60Hz).
So also into my “personal item” bag goes my iPod and another set of headphones, and my iPad (along with tickets, etc.)
The DSLR is going into my carry on.
And Technically, I’m ready.
Now, If I can just decide on what to wear…..