What distinguishes the novice from the avid traveler is often their level of preparedness for the journey ahead. Leather passport case? Expert. Global Entry? Wizard. Flip flops on a flight to Alaska? Back of the line. Whether you prep for your trip with travel guides or just like to wing it, gadgets and accessories are important tools that can help streamline your successful vacation. For your upcoming plans, we’ve reviewed some of the best, must-have accessories on the market. Now, get to packing!
High Tech Luggage
You never want to be that sweaty person scrambling to get through security without leaving their laptop behind, or dropping everything out of their jacket pockets in search of their boarding pass. In order to make your flight on time with everything intact (including your dignity) organization is key, and this starts with the suitcase. There are a handful of new, tech-enabled travel gear companies emerging, but none are as sleek and sophisticated as the Barracuda. This collapsible carry-on comes equipped with a built-in GPS, a USB charger, 360 swivel handle, an adjustable work tray, and a location proximity sensor (AKA: no more fighting the masses at baggage claim. Simply wait for the alert and, voila!). The company launched their design via Kickstarter, and is currently selling the bag on preorder, so it’s time to get on the list before your summer travel is booked. You’ll be flying through TSA like George Clooney in Up in the Air in no time.
Barracuda Suitcase, $280
A Pocket Sized Bartender
For the seasoned traveler who measures distance by number of in-flight cocktails rather than miles, this is a must. Unless you fly Emirates business class, your beverage options are often slim, but this pocket sized tin by W&P Design provides a much needed solution. Available in 3 classic combinations- Old fashioned, Gin and Tonic, Moscow Mule – each kit provides all the ingredients and tools needed to craft your own distinguished drink, including a linen coaster. happy hour has never tasted better at 30,000 feet.
Yes, Athleisure is a trend. No, this does not make it acceptable to wear your pajamas to the airport. In the realm of travel fashion, we walk a fine line between dressing for comfort and completely letting ourselves go. Here’s a suggestion, pack a pair of lightweight Japanese cotton slippers in your carry on, and don those bad boys in the privacy of your own window seat.
Mini Spa Treatments
An express version of British beauty expert Tracie Martyn’s famous restorative and holistic skin treatments for the jetsetting elite is available in the form of her quick-fix eyepads. Meant to moisturize, calm and minimize dark circles, they are the perfect mid-flight refresher. Even better, they’re easily concealed under your eyemask, so you can rejuvenate while you rest.
Capturing great travel memories can be a challenge when restricted to an iphone lens, but there is a company working to maximize the potential of our most handy and portable photography tool. The Ztylus iPhone case is equipped with a removable kickstand that doubles as a mount system for an impressive array of camera attachments such as an LED ring light and a 4-in-1 lens case to enhance the width, depth and quality of smartphone photo snaps. So, when you’re only away long enough to justify a carry-on, you can feel okay leaving the DSLR at home.
Ztylus iPhone case, $99
The Perfect PJs
Because you never know who might join you in your hotel room for a nightcap, it’s best to be prepared. Maison Du Soir, an LA-based sleepwear company, makes the best effortless pjs in a variety of fabrics and silhouettes. The menswear inspired set harkens early sixties, smoking jacket style loungewear and will have you feeling like an international woman of mystery whether or not you choose to sleep solo.
The Ultimate Headphones
Ultimate Ears has been making custom fit listening devices for recording professionals and audiophiles for over 20 years, so it’s about time to stop fumbling with those generic earbuds and listen up. It may seem like a bit of a process- each pair is handmade using a mold of your ear created by a doctor- but think about it for just one bpm. So much of our travel experiences are shaped as much by sounds as they are the sights we take in, so why not immerse yourself in every note and nuance of your playlist, or all the new music you pick up along the way? your auditory nostalgia will thank you.
Ultimate Ears Custom Headphones, $399 and up
This is Ground, the leather accessories company behind the innovative cord taco, improves on efficient technology packing with it’s Cordito. This tech cord storage case takes a cue from the jewelry roll-up, allowing for easy organization and less tangle. It’s an essential for travel photographers among other creative professionals, who pack a lot of equipment when they head off the grid.
Cordito Tech Rollup, $49 and up
Cord Taco 5-pack, $29