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Six tech tips on how to travel light

Eugenio Ferrante | April 10, 2014
Heading out of town on a business trip? Or taking a well-deserved break in a distant land, and just want to be sure that you have the right tech tools in the event of a workplace emergency?

Heading out of town on a business trip? Or taking a well-deserved break in a distant land, and just want to be sure that you have the right tech tools in the event of a workplace emergency? Below are some tips to help you travel light.

Eliminate paper

The first step towards travelling light would be to eliminate paper documents. Pertinent information can be stored in a smartphone and tablet that you are bringing along anyway. If you're afraid of your device running out of juice at an inopportune time, just use online services that can give you access to this information from all your devices, as well as make it available to your travel partner. TripIt is a great service for this. 

Switch your newspaper and magazine subscriptions to online. I use Newspaper by Apple, on my iPhone and iPad, and make sure I sync the latest issues before leaving or during a quick stop in an airport lounge. It only takes a few seconds to get enough news for a long flight.

Start buying online books. It may not be an attractive option for some, but if you spend a lot of time on the road, the convenience factor could outweigh the subpar reading experience.

Get travel-friendly headphones

Most of us probably can't stand those cheap airline-supplied headphones, and prefer lugging our own along. Skip those monster cans though, and grab travel-friendly headphones that can be folded flat for easier storage. Alternatively, a good pair of in-ear earphones should do the trick, taking up practically no space in your hand-carry luggage.

Choose your hardware wisely

Frequent travellers may want to invest in more compact tech peripherals. I've never appreciated my decision to move to an Apple MacBook more than when I started traveling 150,000 miles a year.  It's not only lighter and more compact than any other PC I used to own; it also comes with an excellent battery life and the track pad allows for full gestures. You will not miss a touchscreen or an external mouse. And if you need to use Windows-based apps, a virtualization product that lets you run them side-by-side without skipping a beat should do the trick!

Buy a universal USB charger (for you iPad, iPhone, Blackberry) with a retractable cable, like from Kensington, is even better!

Ditch that laptop

Not going on a business trip?  Have you ever considered leaving your laptop at home? Tablets are substantially more portable and offer the same ability to consume data and various online resources. And on the occasions when you need to review a work document or access a business app using a desktop, there are a couple of useful solutions out there that let you remotely access your desktop right from your iPad. Wouldn't this be a great excuse to buy that new iPad Mini Retina or iPad Air?

 

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