Best travel aide/gadget ?

Old Feb 8th, 2006, 03:29 AM
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Best travel aide/gadget ?

Hello Hello:

I recently won $200 at a casino, and have decided that rather then to 'reinvest' it at the casino, I'd splurge on some travel gadgets/equipment. My wife and I travel to each of Europe and the American southwest once a year.

I'm looking for suggestions from other Fodorites, as to what travel gadgets/etc that they've purchased, that they just couldn't live without.

Thanx for all of your suggestions !!!!!!!
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 03:36 AM
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The one I try not to live without is the infamous "dryer pillow" you use with a hair dryer to dry clothes (it will do Levis in less than one hour) but, unfortunately, Magellans no longer sells it.

The other gadget(s); Swiss Army Knives/Swiss Tools
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 03:57 AM
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I like nice luggage so buy a new case every second trip. The way airlines have to handle your suitcases the little light ones (cabin size or slightly bigger) seem to get the worst of it.
The only thing I can think of in the way of additional equipment are my lovely shoebags. I can't bear to put (fairly clean to begin with & filthy afterwards) shoes directly in my case!
I also purchased a darling little vanity case in Paris which slides onto the handle of my roller.
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 03:59 AM
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ira
 
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Hi J,

A Swiss Army knife, a compass a wine bottle opener.
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 04:09 AM
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I love to buy travel guides and study the area before my trip. I highlight things I must see do etc. They make my trips so much easier to plan as does the advice I get here.Then I can pass them on to others.
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 05:51 AM
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Thanx folks. Great suggestions.

To the rest of the Fodorites, how about your suggestions?
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 05:56 AM
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There are many travel resources that can be downloaded to a PDA. Get a low-end Palm Pilot or perhaps a second-hand Pocket PC and load it up with maps, guides, navigation programs, books, music...the list is endless.
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 05:58 AM
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If you want to spend the whole $200 in one place, my husband loves his GPS. The first time he brought it along I thought it was ridiculous, but I can't tell you the number of times it has really helped us out, both in cities and when driving.

I also couldn't live withough my little portable reading lights for all those dimly lit European hotel rooms.

I really like the mest travel cubes for packinjg. Got them quite cheaply from SierraTradingPost.com.

A tote bag that compresses to almost nothing for when I need a bag for daily shopping or for extra things for the flight home.

And...If anyone finds one of those dryers that Magellan's no longer has, please let me know where to find them. I'd love one.
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 06:08 AM
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Good idea. You can buy a GPS attachment for a Pocket PC for $50 or so. Here's a link: http://tinyurl.com/dt78e
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 06:46 AM
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Maybe not so sophisticated as Magellan's dryer pillow, but here's an article about making your own travel clothes dryer:

http://findarticles.com/p/articles/m...25030#continue

We love our memory foam travel pillows that we bought at the Sharper Image. Sometimes you can catch them on sale for around $20 each.
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 07:29 AM
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BettyK:

I read the piece..he talks about "the bag" but neglects to mention what kind...a plastic bag???
I think the biggest challenge might be getting the hair dryer to remain in the proper position!!!
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 07:34 AM
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Oops..sorry..read it again and this time got the whole article.

Another thing to carry...a small amount of duct tape...can be used for lots of things
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 07:37 AM
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I haven't purchased this yet, but I hope to before my next trip (in May)--a travel dictionary called iLingo that you load on an iPod. I think this is so cool--you can see and HEAR the words! Sounds way better and smaller than a book.

You can find it under iPod accessories on the Apple store website.
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 07:45 AM
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I enjoy my little micro cassette recorder. I am lazy when it comes to writing in my journal so I talk into my recorder each night highlighting our days activities. When I get home from the trip I type it up and put the narrative into my scrapbook. I also post it here as a trip report. I am looking at a new casette player that comes with a program that will automatically enter the text into the computer. Still checking it out and don't quite understand how it works but it would sure simplify the job of writting it up.
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 08:06 AM
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My job required constant travelling. I had a series of various gadgets/aides over the years but the one item was the most useful was a small magnifying loupe. When the little screws falls out of my glasses, this loupe finds the screw and allows me to put it back into the proper place.

When you're trying to read on a small printed direction for a map, this loupe is worth it's weight in gold.

I'll think a bit more about what else I carried around the world. I'm sure I have a few other gems.

Blackduff
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 08:18 AM
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OOOOOh - I like the travel dictionary for the ipod. Thanks for that idea!
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 08:21 AM
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By the way - a Pocket PC is also a sound recorder and both it and a Palm can be used to take notes.

Numerous language dictionaries are available free from http://www.microsoft.com/reader/down...ctionaries.asp
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 08:25 AM
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Hehe--I hadn't thought about the iLingo in a while, so I went and looked at it again when posting my previous reply, and then went ahead and ordered it. Sounds like a great deal--it has 6 languages in the Euro package.
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 09:21 AM
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Not nearly as high-tech as the other recommendations, and more for your wife, but...

I will not travel without my 4x4 inch folding jewelry box. It tucks down nicely between clothes for packing, and I no longer lose or damage my jewelry like I did before. You can get them for less than $20.
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Old Feb 8th, 2006, 09:37 AM
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iPod nano.

If you already have an iPod or other MP3 player, then get some nice headphones, like the Shure E3c or E4c noise-isolating type.
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