Traveling the world may sound glamorous, and many moments are indeed. However let’s not pretend that there aren’t just as many moments where you begin questioning whether all the headaches are worth it!
I long for the day when I win the lottery and can fly First Class, with fancy additions like compression socks, slippers, pajamas, and those seemingly much more high tech headphones. Upon seeing them on my last flight I was jealous enough that I finally looked into replacing my free tangled mess given to me by the flight attendant.
I came across Sennheiser’s PXC 550 Wireless noise cancelling headphones. A German based company that specialises in premium audio products, there are headphones, and then there are these.
It’s the great debate among travelers – backpacks vs wheels. On one hand, a backpack is easier to get around with, and wheels don’t bode well on cobblestone streets or through jungles (I’ve tried). But on the other hand, after a couple of trips hauling a heavy backpack, even the most hardened travelers have secretly wished for wheels.
So which is better? The good news is you no longer have to decide. Leading brands like BlackWolf Adventure Gear offer hybrids; a wheeled travel backpack, which is basically like a suitcase you can take off road. When the terrain becomes too much for the wheels to handle, simply pick it up and put it on your back.
Combining the best parts of a suitcase (the wheels, handle and packing structure), and the best parts of a backpack (removable day pack, compression straps, terrific support), today we review the BlackWolf Grand Tour.
As global citizens, we are becoming more aware of our impact on the environment when travelling. With travel becoming more accessible we need to make sure our trips don’t have a negative impact on the places we visit and the environment.
As well as offsetting our carbon footprint we need to think about the things we bring along and what we leave behind. This means being careful about what you pack and purchase during your journey, and one way to reduce waste whilst traveling is to ditch the plastic packaging / bags.
Did you know that regular plastic bags can take up to 500 years to biodegrade? Although a lot is being done across the world to reduce plastic waste, as travelers we can do our small bit too – instead of using disposable plastic bags when packing, it’s far more environmentally friendly (and a lot easier to stay organized) to use packing cubes.
When it comes to backpacks we’re always interested to hear about the hottest, newest designs, and are constantly amazed at the newest innovations and ideas which improve the ease of both travel, and everyday life.
And I think we’ve found a backpack that active city adventurers in particular will be interested in – the new Urban Carry-On from CabinZero, optimized for urban life!
If there was ever a company with a cult following and legendary customer service it would be Saddleback Leather. Known around the world for producing some of the best, high-quality leather bags, briefcases, backpacks and wallets, this is a brand which has established a reputation for excellence, and made carrying things an art form.
And for those wanting a high quality bag, which exudes class, style, and makes you look as though you belong among the rugged explorers of our time, one of the company’s newest bags is the Squared Backpack; a full grain leather work of art and one of the sturdiest travel bags you’ll ever find.
This is a bag which I absolutely adore however I’ll aim to keep my romantic cliches in check. We’ll discuss the features, the look, comfort, durability, weight, and cost, and end with a verdict I’m sure you can already expect!
You can pretty much guarantee that every adventure will come with it’s bumps in the road, but with careful planning and a few handy travel accessories you can be prepared for anything.
We’ve all been there – you’re having the holiday of a lifetime ticking item after item off your bucket list and then something you hadn’t planned for happens. With travel it’s the nature of the beast, and it wouldn’t really be an adventure if everything was easy.
When you’re heading out into the wild it’s important to plan for 4 crucial things; shelter, water, food and safety. Whether you plan to be gone a weekend or a week, you won’t last long without a place to sleep away from the weather and creepy crawlies, safe drinking water, some food to refuel, and some safety equipment to treat bites, scrapes and bruises.
With these four crucial elements in mind, here are 5 essential travel accessories so that you can stay safe and enjoy your travels.
Travel can be amazing, but it’s tough when you head out on an adventure unprepared. Especially when it comes to a poor choice of backpack.
When you choose incorrectly or decide you’re happy with a cheap anything, you may quickly find yourself wishing that you’d invested in something better. You are after-all, literally carrying the weights of your decisions on your back.
So no matter where you are traveling, make sure that you have the appropriate backpack. The backpack model we’re focusing on today is one that brings home all the features you would need for a great trip. Seamless packing and comfortable transportation as well as a nice design and pleasing aesthetics are keywords here.
For avid travelers and outdoor enthusiasts, shaving becomes a nuance on the go. Especially, when you consider the different voltages, plugs, ports, adapters, chords and cables that are a requirement in an unfamiliar country.
For traveler’s comfort, we have created a quick guide for choosing a travel friendly shaver. Our top pick is based on currently available best travel shavers in the market.
There’s no denying that long haul flights can be a pain in the neck. And I mean that literally. Travel can be a real physical pain. You’re cramped for hours on end in a confined space, and as anyone who has sat in one can testify, airline seats aren’t exactly designed for comfort. A substantial 88 per cent of people experience increased back or neck pain following a flight.
But we suck it up and write it off as an unavoidable part of travel. Resign ourselves to the fact that we’ll contort ourselves into some semblance of comfort, and deal with the stiff neck at the end.
Which brings us to the wonderful world of travel pillows; designed specifically to help you sleep better while traveling, and feel better once you’ve reached your destination. (I’m sure everyone will agree that airline pillows are farcically small and essentially useless).
Many people can’t be bothered with travel pillows, believing these are just as useless as those the airlines provide. However these people have usually only tried the simple inflatable neck pillows, when there’s a whole range of different options specifically designed with comfort and neck support in mind. In fact, there’s even one which is NASA approved!
“When it comes to travel, if you don’t snooze, you lose, and that’s why your own pillow is probably the smartest item you can stuff into your carry on tote, suitcase or back of the car when traveling for any length of time. Even one night spent embracing an offensive pillow can mess with your rest and make you crabby and sluggish!”
But there are a couple of issues here. Pillows are bulky, and don’t often fit into your bag. And it’s difficult to maneuver trains, buses, taxis, and other forms of transport when you already have your hands full, and then try to stuff a pillow into the mix. Of course you drop it. And now your favorite pillow is dirty and wet. And probably smells like old beer.
Though there is a solution to our travel pillow woes!! An Australian woman named Di Tipper has created the Go Pillow Case – a product which is so simple that it’s genius, and means everyone can travel with ease with their pillow from home. It might sound like an oxymoron, but the brilliance of the Go Pillow means that you can now travel light, with a full size pillow!!
Traveling with one backpack is a skill to be learned and perfected. Even the most seasoned travelers fight the urge to over pack, and most will likely admit to throwing extra items into their bag last minute. Though practice makes perfect, and over time I’ve managed to hone my packing skills to the point where everything fits into one backpack whether it be for 2 days or 2 months.
There is something liberating and exciting about being able to live out of just one piece of luggage. When you’re hauling heavy bags it’s awkward on public transport, inconvenient to drag across town, and airlines will hit you with extra fees. You’re less likely to travel off the beaten path with all that weight, and it’s difficult to find your things when and as you need.
So if your resolution for the new year is to travel lighter and pack less, consider the following rules.
Over the last year we’ve scrambled through sand dunes in Peru, trekked deep into the Amazon, and hiked through some of the most remote island destinations on earth. We’ve wandered through the desert, rappelled down buildings, and trodden on the ruins of ancient Incan civilizations. So we’re fairly well versed in what to look for in a good travel shoe.
Because let’s face it – flights, accommodation and tours might be the holy trinity of travel planning, but finding, buying and breaking in good shoes is equally as important. No-one has ever enjoyed a trip while their feet were blistering and sore.
So we’ve put together a list to guide you when picking your next pair of travel shoes. You shouldn’t compromise on any of the following features. Over the years we’ve come to realize it’s essential to find a shoe which incorporates them all.
There’s an art to packing hand luggage when you’re heading overseas, especially if you’re a tech friendly traveler who transports a number of electronics and cords. Between your laptop, iPad, camera, phone, chargers, adaptors, and cords for all of the above, most bags aren’t exactly functional for transporting technology.
So when I had the chance to get my hands on the Lance Daypack from ecbc I jumped at the opportunity. I’ve taken it with me on our current Round the World, and honestly, it’s every travelers dream.
As far as hand luggage goes, the ecbc Lance Daypack is a more functional, fashionable and comfortable way of transporting technology and everyday essentials than any other bag I’ve traveled with before. And I’ll go as far as to say it’s the best backpack I’ve ever owned.
A bag which works functionally in the jungles of Cancun and is sleek and elegant enough for a board room, here are 5 reasons you need an ecbc bag too.
How do you organize your undergarments when you travel? Do you place them in zipped bags? Store them in luggage pockets? Or just place them wherever there’s space?
I can organize my clothes to look neat and tidy in a suitcase when I’m packing for a trip, though as soon as the case is zipped and flipped to stand on it’s wheels, there’s always a moment of pause where I cringe. After all that hard work separating your underwear from your shirts, and your shirts from your shoes, you know that after you arrive at your destination everything inside is going to be a hot mess.
And it’s always the little things. The individual toiletries, socks, underwear, and memory cards that disappear among the chaos. And that’s where the TUO by Origami Unicorn comes in – the ultimate travel undergarment organizer that allows travelers to organize their undergarments or small items neatly in a foldable bag which acts as a portable closet throughout their trip. Because a little organization can go a long way to making your life easier when you’re on the move.
For every woman who has ever wanted to travel light, though without compromising style, Australian designer Chalisa Morrison has created a brilliant new garment called the Zippy Skirt. A high quality, stretch pencil skirt with a unique zip on, zip off panel system, you can change your look in seconds by literally zipping-on different panels.
A qualified fashion designer with over 20 years experience working in product design, trends, styling and body image, Chalisa set out to create a versatile skirt that was stylish and flattering and could be effortlessly worn multiple ways by all shapes and sizes. She wanted to create a product to empower women to feel stylish and sexy while living a busy life; including travelling with a light suitcase – empowered and on the move!
1 skirt + zip-on panels (which also doubles as a stylish strapless top)…. Zippy Skirt is the little black skirt that every female traveler needs.
For those who travel long term, cooking on the road is one of the most practical solutions to keeping your expenses low. It’s healthier than eating out, and there are substantial savings to be found in trading restaurants for grocery stores.
Though one obstacle to eating on-the-go is kitchenware. Space-saving, multi-purpose, reusable kitchenware is difficult to find. And that is exactly why the Roaming Cooking range was born; collapsible kitchen containers for travelers which you can cook in, eat out of, are easy to wash, easy to use, and when not in use, folds down to a third of it’s size. It’s brilliant!
Even more exciting, enter the sweepstakes at the end of this review; 3 readers will take home a Collapsible Silicone Container Set with accompanying Cutlery Set from the Roaming Cooking range before Christmas.
There’s nothing I hate more than having to hand-wash while traveling. The skin on my knuckles gets rubbed raw, my nails get bent out of shape, and it’s usually done in the dirty sink of a shared hostel bathroom. Or a questionable looking lake. Though hand-washing is a necessarily evil when on a long trip/trek where you have to pack light and can only travel with a couple of pairs of clothes. And hundreds of travelers put up with it. Not any more.
In 2010, one Aussie traveler came up with a brilliant idea. A concept which would allow travelers to do their laundry on the road for free, and be able to wash clothes while traveling without having to use a dirty sink.
Weighing less than an apple, the Scrubba Wash Bag is a pocket-size device that allows you to wash your clothes and travel clean, light and free. Designed for travelers, trekkers and campers, the secret to its ingenuity is the hundreds of resilient nobules that act like a flexible washboard, a fusion of old and new technology, that allows you to wash your clothes in minutes. Though unlike a traditional washboard, you can easily slip it into your backpack.
Action camera’s are fantastic, though let’s be honest, they’re not made for easy sharing. If you’re an adventure seeker you wait until the end of the day to see your footage and you spend hours editing it before being able to create a sharable clip. I would love to post videos more frequently from our adventures, but they often take days to complete. That is, until now.
The TomTom Bandit isn’t the first action camera to hit the market, though I’ve found it’s certainly one of the most unique. Breaking into the market of action camera’s and releasing a product consumers will remember is a fairly difficult task – the market is already cornered by established name brands, and many companies who have attempted to break into action camera’s simply haven’t managed to last against brands like GoPro.
Though after reviewing the Bandit I do believe TomTom are up to the task – and not because the specs on the Bandit match some of the best cameras out there, but because it has very obviously been created with us in mind – they’ve really put thought into what users today want from an action camera, identified the pain points of current cameras, and created the TomTom Bandit action camera to be the easiest way to edit and share movies.
It was 110 degrees when we left Los Angeles earlier in June this year (43 degrees Celsius). We were Australia bound after having finished a 3 month road trip from the bottom of the States to the very top. The Californian sun was spectacular, so I boarded my flight in my tank top, shorts and thongs (flip flops…always feel the need to translate there).
In my carry on was a spare change of clothes, clean underwear and a light overthrow. 20 hours of flying later and I realized I had made the first rookie error of flight. I wasn’t wearing suitable clothing for the weather of my final destination, and I didn’t have an appropriate change of clothes.
I disembarked in Sydney to 32 degrees Fahrenheit, or as we in Australia call that…0 degrees. I had forgotten the implications of traveling to Australia in June.
Picture this: hours spent lying in a hammock you’ve strung up between two trees on a picture perfect beach, watching the sunset over the water as you decide it’s finally time to sleep. Or coupling it with a canopy to keep the rain off while spending the night in your luxury digs listening to the sounds of exotic wildlife jump through the jungle. Or quickly throwing it up if you’ve been kicked out of the airport overnight and need a comfy place to hang.
The fact is, hammocks are more comfortable, more enjoyable and far more adventurous than many other forms of accommodation, and traveling with one doesn’t have to be about roughing it or sacrificing comfort – in fact it’s just the opposite. And surprisingly, purchasing a good quality hammock doesn’t have to break the bank. Which hammock should I buy for travel.
After shopping around, Hobo Hammocks have proven to be by far the best value for money, with a few fun added perks thrown into the mix. As such, here are seven reasons you should always travel with a Hobo Hammock.
With no guide and absolutely no reservations, we hiked onto a body of solid ice which flowed like a river under its own weight through one of Alaska’s most spectacular glacial valleys. We trekked past beautiful crevasses and startingly blue ice. When we had a steady foot hold we whipped out the camera to snap a shot of the breathtaking Chugach mountains.
There’s climbing a mountain, and then there’s climbing an ICE mountain. But there was no need to strap on our crampons – we were wearing Jambu.
It’s a tough decision every time you go to pack; choosing which pair of shoes to sacrifice and leave in the wardrobe behind. You need your pair of hiking boots, as bulky as they are, and a good pair of sneakers are a must, but then you also have to consider footwear for the beach, something you can wear to dress up and then something to also dress down, perhaps a set of flats, a set of sandals, and, if you’re planning on hitting up the clubs, maybe even a sneaky pair of high heels.
What you end up looking at laid out on the floor are 8 pairs of shoes for one trip. Good luck fitting them all into one bag! And this, my dear female traveler, is why every single one of you needs a pair of Slinks. Your packing problems solved without sacrificing your desire to travel with multiple pairs of shoes…because one pair of sandals is never enough!
“That’s a NICE backpack” she said as I swung out a concealed belt-pack to reach for my camera.
“I want one. Where did you get it?”
If you haven’t yet heard of the Rotation180º Travel Away Backpack your mind is about to be blown. An innovative new rotation backpack from MindShift Gear, this is a brilliant new day pack which travelers and outdoor explorers are going to love.
Over the last year we’ve scrambled through sand dunes in Peru, trekked deep into the Amazon, and hiked through some of the most remote island destinations on earth. We’ve wandered through the desert, rappelled down buildings, and trodden on the ruins of ancient Incan civilizations. So it should come as no surprise that we’ve sacrificed many soles.
My feet have been pierced by needles from cactus plants, we lost one pair of shoes to a vicious cotton-mouth snake attack, and others have succumbed to water damage after crashing a quad bike into the sea. So it was about high time, we thought, to invest in some long lasting, high quality hiking shoes.
Stuck for gift ideas for the world traveler in your family? Well, you’re in luck, because travelers are not difficult people to buy for!
In the lead up to Christmas, we have compiled a list of great gift ideas for world travelers, and also highlighted whether each item falls into the “want it” or “got it” category, so you know which items are based on personal recommendation.