The Classy Travel Gadget Savvy’s List in 2020

Savvy is one thing, gadget-savvy is another. Being the classy person that you already are, here’s how to up your game in 2020.

Here’s my top 7 travel gadgets that you will love too.

The World’s Smallest Travel Steam Iron

This travel steam iron is the smallest you will ever see in the whole world, about the size of a computer mouse. From a company called Steamfast, the Steamfast SF-717 Mini Steam Iron will have you covered in all your wrinkle problems.

A Smart Carry-On Luggage

This aluminum alloy suitcase from Samsara has loads of futuristic features. It has LED lights that lights up when you open it in a dim environment. It’s top can be used as a desk as it is flat and and has a removable power bank that you can hook your devices up using USB-C. Aside from security features like being fireproof it also has a tracking app that lets you know where your bag is and if somebody has opened it. Lastly, since you care about the environment – this suitcase is completely recyclable.

Pocket Washing Machine

Now this could literally fit in your front pocket. A wash bag that could expand to hold up to 3 gallons of water and clothes (you only need 1 gal.). With Scrubba Wash Bag, you can wash your clothes anywhere and anytime you want to. This is the lightest and most compact “Washing Machine” in the world, it can fold down to a size less than your smartphone and can also be used as a dry bag when not washing clothes, or after washing your clothes.

Military Grade Sand Proof Beach Mat

Patented technology used by the military now in your car compartment. You just lay down the CGEAR The Original Sand-Free Outdoor Camping Mat on the sand and enjoy your day at the beach. You would never have to worry about shaking off all the sand from this mat ever again.

WiFi Hotspot and Power Bank in one

You want your internet to just work. This one connects to 4G LTE in over 130 countries while charging your phone. It can take in connections for up to 5 devices that lets you share unlimited internet to your travel buddies. It sets you back $9 for a 24 hour access via Skyroam

The Drone Made for Traveling

DJI has a new travel drone, the Mavic Pro 2. It has a powerful Hasselblad camera that shoots up to 4K. You can use your smartphone to control the drone so you dont have to bring a separate controller when you go out. It can fly 4.3 miles away from you with its top of the line technology.

A Backpack, A Shoulder Bag or A Briefcase? Why Not All?

You know how strong those 1680D Cordura Ballistic Nylon bags are, you have seen them in action, whether is indoors or outdoors, it can be in a classroom or an office, even in the jungle – you would still look cool. The Aer Flight Pack 2 is a carry-on approved convertible bag that can keep all your gadgets listed on this list safe and in place. It can switch from a backpack to a shoulder bag to a briefcase in mere seconds.

*These products use affiliate links to help my site make some small percentage of your purchases.

Travel Blogging The 2020 Way

This is something a lot of travelers are starting to consider. Blogging has a lot of potential to make money, to fund your next travels.

Here are some perks of being a blogger in 2020

  • Be treated like a celebrity in most places
  • Landing sweet deals from hotels to transportation, even in some other places like restaurants and spas
  • All expenses paid trip to _____
  • FREE travel gear

Now it doesn’t stop there, real money can be made through blogging. Most monetization methods still work, like

  • Google AdSense
  • Affiliate links
  • Sponsored posts
  • Guest posting
  • Offline Ads and Promotions

and now even more opportunities in

  • Facebook Ads
  • Vlogging / Youtube
  • Other avenues in Social Media

With some creativity, you might still be able to make a living out of just blogging. Some even call themselves “Influencers” now, but it’s a tricky title to pull off especially when you are just starting.

Nowadays, to be able to make decent earnings from blogging, you need to leverage multiple streams. You may have to establish several blogs. Some had transitioned into Vlogging. According to Social Blade ( https://socialblade.com/youtube/top/category/travel ) the top youtuber in the travel category (МегаФон) has an estimated monthly earnings of $10.9K – $175.1K. That is more than enough to sustain the channel, travel, and still live like a king.

Vlogging

So, what is this Vlogging thing? It basically means Video Blogging. So it is still a form of blogging but in video format. People upload it to websites like Youtube which then facilitates automated advertising. Vloggers can also take sponsorship deals on their own so that is another way to make money even with a relatively new channel. You don’t even need expensive equipment to start, your newly bought smartphone will most likely be more than enough.

Another and more modern stream of income is what is known as Live Streaming. Although mostly dedicated to gaming, it can be leveraged to establish authority or just to get people to know you more. Being live can be hard since you can’t cut ugly parts of the video or apply color correction to make you look awesome. It’s perk though for being “raw” is that your audience will feel more connected to you. Indirectly affecting positive traffic to your other and real videos.

Nothing of course would still stop you from doing your remote job while traveling. You could start blogging in your free time, which is actually a very wise decision regardless of the money and fame. Historically, blogging came from web logging, or just logging. Logging is something every adult should be doing anyway – there are really fancy journals now. Remember when you used to make actual handwritten diaries? This is the same, but only digital. You could choose to make it private if you want to. Social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter have a service that is unknown to most, it is called microblogging. Your posts in your timeline is actually a blog in essence. So you might have not know – you may already be blogging and not making money out of it.

Travel blogging

Traveling in the Post-Coronavirus World

Let’s say the outbreak has ended. It has lasted for months, it infected so many and killed some. We have learned that things like this happen from time to time. History has taught us that the infection rate has risen through time – it is easier to spread a virus nowadays.

Now, let’s say you somehow managed to survive. How do we travel now, having known that a global pandemic might start any time?

1. Health is wealth, but wealth is health too – don’t shy away from buying good hygiene products. Invest in your health, use your money to make sure you eat good food, and use higher grade products. You could go cheap and buy an unknown, unbranded, and unlabeled wet wipes that could potentially do more harm than actual cleaning. Premium products doesn’t mean it is just an expensive version of something.

2. While packing, consider throwing some disposable clothing in there, or a couple of towels that you could use and throw away or give to others in need. This will help you make sure you get those textile living bacteria and maybe even win a friend. Some bacteria do not wash away that easily in the laundry, plus it could contaminate your whole laundry basket too.

3. Save emergency numbers BEFORE you go to a certain place. Include food delivery services in that list as well. We might not have enough time, accidents or something might happen in between landing and on your way to the hotel where there’s good internet.

4. Cash is good, but now you have another reason to get cash into your banks. One of the lesser known transmitters of diseases is cash. Bank notes are filthy, try putting it under a microscope. Studies have shown that most american dollar bills have traces of drugs and blood in them. It is also made of a material that is not exactly something that you would consider as antibacterial. So for traveling – use cards as much as you can.

5. Human interaction is inevitable when traveling. Protect yourself from catching anything by skipping some normal greetings that involve touching, kissing, hugging, or just getting really close to someone. I am pretty sure they would be avoiding that as well. Do this for the next few months maybe or years until everyone is back to being comfortable with anyone. Wearing masks does not mean you don’t want to get sick, it may also mean that you are already sick and don’t want anyone else around you to get infected. This courtesy can now be exercised more during the times when the community has just survived an epidemic.

The  germophone in you must be really happy with all these changes that have happened. The introvert in you must already be partying in its own little space in your brain. The paranoid parents must be so glad about how kids are now preferring to stay home.

What is currently happening will pass. The virus may stick around and infect a few people a year. The global crisis that we are having right now, for sure, will have a lasting effect. Do not succumb into paranoia or mass hysteria, stay logical and most of all – after all these, enjoy life, keep living, and keep traveling.…

How To Take Instagrammable Solo Travel Photos Using Your Phone.

Travel photography has gone a significant change over the last few years. You don’t even need to carry those expensive and bulky DSLRs anymore. Your smartphone has multiple cameras now for taking selfies, wide angle landscapes, even good night shots that some very expensive cameras are struggling with. Selfies are good, it shows your personality, but it could be better? Let’s explore a list of things solo travelers do to win on Instagram using just their smartphones.

Posing and Personality

Posing

As with everything, it always starts with yourself. Stop worrying about people judging you for taking 100 selfies every hour. What you need to learn is how to take selfies that people would look at. As a part of planning your travel, you need to get as many inspirational photos or pegs as possible. Try to mimic those photos until you get the hang of posing and discover what works for you. To be confident is first to be comfortable.

Adding your personal style in your photos would make more impact especially if you are trying to build a personal brand. Otherwise, just keep taking photos.

Mobile Tripod

There are very small tripods now that don’t weigh anything. Pick ones that are sturdy and can also function as selfie sticks. Prices can vary so much but a few things to consider other than prices are:

  • Build – it has to be stable or you will end up spending a lot of your time trying to prop that tripod straight. It has to withstand being in the luggage. Go for the ones made in lightweight alloys instead of those cheap plastics.
  • Weight – those heavy tripods are really good, but not for traveling. Try to find something that would not compromise your freedom of movement, and would not let you pay for excess baggage. It should not be too light either, you would not want it knocking over the slightest wind with your precious smartphone in it. Pick something that would be stable enough but not too heavy.
  • Other uses – pick something that is multipurpose. Some tripods can be converted to a selfie stick, some can even be a cane. There are also some that has smart functionalities like remote controls.

Lens Attachments

Lenses come in different sizes, attachment styles, and builds. There are some cheap clip ons that work well. Several of those clip-on lenses even come with multiple lenses or configurations. Macro lenses are great for taking those closeup shots of an indigenous flower you just saw while trekking. Consider getting wide angle lenses for your phone as they would show more of the place you are trying to showcase.  Telephoto lenses when the zookeeper won’t want you to come pet that lion. There are also art lenses that can help with your creativity.

Remote Triggers

Nowadays, you could use your smartwatch as a trigger. As said above, a lot of tripods also offer some form of remote triggering device. When all these are still out of reach, your phone has a timer.

Timing

Since you don’t have the luggage space to carry proper lighting equipment. You summon the power of the “Golden Hour”. Most photographers swore by the Golden Hour but didn’t know that it happens twice a day. For a quick definition to those who doesn’t know, Golden Hour is a 1 hour time frame where the sun is at its lowest and casts the longest shadow. This in turn creates more drama on your subject with contrast while softly lighting it up. Most would take the golden hour opportunity in the afternoon just before the sun sets. While that is really awesome, you will for sure be sharing that with other tourists. The whole place will be littered with a whole day’s garbage, it will just be too much work to find a good spot and angle. Come in the morning, just after sunrise, it will be less polluted.

Asking for Help

Last on this list is, of course, the best. Why? you go try asking somebody that looks like a photographer, someone who has a really expensive camera around his neck. Now you will get your friends to start asking who took your photos last week were you were in Maldives. You could also frame your shot and ask someone to take the shot as you have set it up. Also, most tour guides are either well trained in photography or have taken enough photos to know how to get you in to frame. Lastly, do not forget to return the favor, take their photo after they have taken yours.

Taking photos has never been easier, cameras are really handy now, they are even in our hands already. Gone were the times where you buy postcards to send to your mom, now you can even livestream your travel. Mobile photography has changed how we store and share our life moments, maximize it now!

Going For A Cross Country Road Trip In Your 50s

So, you have less than a decade before you retire. Where do you want to spend the rest of your life?

You are planning retiring in the countryside or even abroad. You are already asking your friends where to buy a fishing boat. You have just visited a farm in Vietnam. You even tried dating again. Answers are still elusive.

So why not go for one last major road trip to help you with your decisions. Here are some tips for you Boomer!

Car

Car for road trip

Whether you are planning to take your ol’ rusty or maybe your son’s new convertible, make sure it is in shape. Your best bet is a rental, you know it is insured and kinda well maintained.

  • Tires – make sure it holds the correct pressure. Check it every few hundred miles on your first day out. The threads are as important, and don’t forget to check the spare tire along with the essential tools.
  • Emergency Kits – this includes stuff from quick car fixes to band aids. You would never know!
  • Spare Keys – let’s admit it, memory at your 50s isn’t the in it’s best and locksmiths are harder to find nowadays. Especially when you are in the middle of nowhere, took a pee, and returned to a locked car with the keys inside.
  • Music – no road trip would be complete without having your jam in full blast while on the road.

Health and Wellness

Your aging body needs a little more taking care than 30 years ago. Here are some things you could do while driving or on stops.

  • Hydrate – water is essential, but do not forget to energize with some caffeine or that earl grey tea. This is the hardest to manage on road trips so just follow your thirst (and bladder).
  • Snacks – bring a lot, fruits would be the handiest to have but a little bag of chips won’t kill you.
  • Rest – go strike a few yoga poses here and there. Meditation is also very helpful or why not go for a quick nap. Bring a blanket or anything that would make that backseat napping comfortable.
  • Medications – even when you are not sick, a first aid kit is always a good idea to bring while travelling around.
  • Hygiene – this includes protection from the sun, bugs, or any weather.

Safety

No, we won’t suggest that you bring any firearm or potentially lethal weapon with you. Here are a few things that are friendlier.

  • Smartphone – this is now an essential. Not only can you call your family when you miss them,  you will have access to several other things. With the internet you can look at a map and it will even help you navigate. It will also show real time traffic data, even the current weather in that area. Coupons have gone digital too – so you could take those sweet deals with you. The possibilities are endless with the internet nowadays.
  • An actual map – nothing beats old school. According to  https://geoisp.com/us/ US has a 99.39% coverage for mobile wireless internet. Which is pretty good but not that doesn’t say 100%.
  • A plan – for sure you need to plan this out well. Pick your stops well, tell your family, maybe even grab a chance to visit someone from across the country.

Cash – the world has been transitioning to digital payments, but it doesn’t mean your cards are now useless. So as your benjamins. …