Your morning sprints from the bus stop to your office building are getting a little bit more sweaty, you’re starting to read a lot of “Life’s a beach” captions on Instagram, and you seem to be more energetic and cheery (sunshine does that to you). Yup, summer has begun.
Although we think vacations should be as technology-free as possible, let’s face it, the mantra of leaving it all behind when you’re on “vacay” has an exemption clause for your beloved gadgets. Unless you’re on a business trip that involves the sun, sand, and sea, you should keep your list of gadgets to bring for your summer vacation as short as it can be.
If you don’t have a smartphone, let me first ask you why you’re reading this and how you stumbled upon this magazine? But if you do have one, then you can actually stop reading this article now. Kidding. The great thing about a smartphone is how it is the master at being the Jack of all trades. It’s a camera, checklist, book, music player, your wallet, and of course, it allows you to stay connected with the world.
Remember: If you have not joined the elite group of underwater smartphone owners (Sony Xperia Z3 is a good option), make sure that your phone is in a protective case so it will survive an untimely death if it gets submerged in water—it happens to the best of us.
Portable power bank
If you told us three years ago that it’s possible to charge your gadgets’ batteries without power plugs or outlets, we’d say you were crazy. But we now live in a world of portable power bank chargers. You can get one in all shapes, sizes, and colors—a dime a dozen, really.
However, note that a portable battery charger can make or break your trip. Be sure that you pick a power bank from a reputable brand and store. When shopping for one, make sure that you check the type of lithium battery used (ion or polymer), its capacity, and the different safety measures that it should have against over voltage, over charging, and over temperature.
Remember: If you don’t choose wisely, a power bank can be a potential hazard. Worst case scenario: it kills your gadget.
Vacationing without a camera isn’t all bad but let’s face it, you need it. Investing in a GoPro camera is worth it if you consider yourself a beach bum and/or an active traveler. But if not, your phone or a simple pocket camera would suffice. Panasonic’s Lumix line of digital cameras are definitely one to look at as well as some of Canon’s and Sony’s many point-and-shoot cameras.
Remember: While having photographic evidence of your time at the beach is great, remember that when on your vacation, your focus should be on making lasting memories—not documenting them.
“You know what we need?” *Brings out phone, scrolls, plays Bruno Mars’s “The Lazy Song.”* We all have that friend. If you happen to be that one who is either uncomfortable with silence or just needs to have a soundtrack for everything, you need to bring your music player and portable speakers such as Loudbasstard or Beats Pill 2.0.
Remember: Be considerate. If the person next to you wants to hear Britney Spears’ discography at the beach, they’d listen to it themselves. Use your headphones if you must, or turn the volume down at the very least.
Other gadgets worth a mention include tablets, e-book readers, lightweight laptop (think Macbook Air) and mobile Wi-Fi.
Each person’s reason/s for going on vacation varies. But I’m pretty sure nobody would go on a trip with the specific goal of getting bombarded by technology. So like we said, if you must bring gadgets to your summer vacation trip, keep it to a minimum.
Remember: Selfie pods are optional but highly discouraged.