Going on holiday is amazing, its what most of us have spent a year or two or three or more saving and dreaming for.
That's why we've tried to put together the most useful items we've bought in the last few years. Especially ones that you might not think of if you've not been on holiday for a while.
1.) Portable Battery
- Why: For that long trip from UK to stateside make sure your phone, tablet and other accessories are topped up!
- Our Choice : Anker PowerCore 10000 From Amazon £20.00 Get it here
Flying halfway around the world isn't easy and you can spend a long time away from a charger. Couple that with how often we use our phones travelling now and you have a big problem. These days you need to use your phone to update friends and family, record videos, store e-tickets, check departure delays and most importantly entertain yourself.
You could take your charger with you and sit on the floor or battle your way to a precious USB socket in the terminal but wouldn't it be better to carry your power with you? The Anker PowerCore is around the size and weight of a pack of cards and will charge your phone around 3 times over! Being USB it's compatible with iPhone, Android, iPads, tablets even GPS devices anything that charges over USB this can do.
Finally Anker are one of if not the best portable battery producers. As a result there is no need to worry about exploding batteries with Anker you get a safe, reliable advanced battery ready to go every time!
We've used one of these on our last trips including one with no in flight entertainment, this was a lifesaver!
2.) Foldup Mini Backpack
- Why: Pack everything you need for the parks into a lightweight but don't use up your suitcase space.
- Our Choice : 22L Ultra Lightweight Packable Backpack From Amazon £11.68 Get it here
If you're travelling with kids you'll need to take a few items into the park. Even if you're not you'll still need extra sun cream, water, passes medication etc. This is when you need a small lightweight backpack, that doesn't use much of your suitcase allowance.
That's why one we've chosen here is extremely light but still comfortable to use and comes in a wide range of colours. So whether you want to blend in or stand out they have you covered.
Amazingly these backpacks will fold back into themselves and contain themselves in the front pocket. As a result making them small enough to fit in a pocket! You'd think this was a fiddly job to do but its actually really easy and simple thanks to the clever way it's been designed.
Water is something you always have to think about in Florida so this backpack features water resistant material and two pockets for water bottles, ideal!
These backpacks are especially useful if you're visiting in Spring or Autumn. Which is when you might need a jacket for the morning but not in the afternoon. This can save you going back to the car or renting an expensive locker!
3.) Multi USB Charger
- Why: Reduce clutter and take only one charger on holiday, while you're at it ditch the travel adapters too!
- Our Choice : AUKEY USB Wall Charger From Amazon £18.99 Get it here
- Complete With: Lindy 2M US Power Lead From Amazon £11.57 Get it here
These days when you get back to the room it becomes a fight as to who can have the travel adapters to charge their phones and devices. An average family might have 20 different devices with them on holiday all with different chargers. While using a multi USB charger lets you leave all that at home. Just pack the charger and a few USB cables and you can all charge at the same time.
You can get charges with as little as 2 USB sockets or many many more. However we've picked one with 5 as that's about as many as you might charge at one time. Because you only have one charger you'll only need one travel adapter too. Although if you buy the Lindy power lead from above you wont even need that.
On our last few trips we've loved our Aukey charger and Lindy power lead. It meant as soon as we get to the hotel we're charging with no fuss and no clutter. Saved us about half a KG of luggage allowance too!
4.) Selfie Stick (Controversial!)
- Why: Get great group shots without relying on strangers. Great for any aspiring Vloggers out there too.
- Our Choice : Anker Selfie Stick - Bluetooth From Amazon £15.99 Get it here
- Alternative : Anker Selfie Stick - Battery Free From Amazon £8.99 Get it here
We know what you're thinking and if you hate Selfie Sticks feel free to skip to the next section! But if you aren't appalled by the notion of sticking a seflie stick into the sky these are the ones to by.
So if you're not sure what a selfie stick is, they are a cradle for your phone on an extendable stick that means you can get great pictures of yourself or your group.
Basically there are two main types of selfie sticks, Bluetooth ones connect to your phone wirelessly and let you press a button to take a picture but need recharging. Battery free selfie sticks have a cable that plugs into the headphone port of your phone, they are a little bit more fiddly but cheaper. Again we have gone with Anker who make great quality products, we have the Bluetooth one and its been fantastic with a very good build quality.
Finally remember that these are banned from most Theme Parks now so leave them in the hotel on your way to the parks.
Pro Tip: Selfie Sticks also double up and an impromptu tripod which you can use for time-lapse videos!
5.) Elastic Luggage Strap
- Why: Identify and customise your luggage quickly after a long flight plus keep it and your belongings safe!
- Our Choice : Elastrapp From Amazon £8.99 Get it here
We've all been there, after a long 9 hour flight immigration have given you an evil look and a scare. Next you're looking at your luggage asking yourself 'Is that mine?' every other bag. If you have a standard dark suitcase it can be a nightmare to find yours at the luggage carousel. Plus the worry that somebody else might think that your generic looking suitcase is their generic looking suitcase. With the worst case scenario that they walk off with it by accident.
That's one reason we have recently invested in a set of ELASTRAPP luggage straps to make our bags almost instantly recognisable. Every time we've seen our colour combination its been our case, easy!
Previously we've had straps snap from bad handling by the airport ground staff. However with the ELASTRAPP we didn't need to worry as they are designed to stretch if they get snagged which means they are much less likely to get snapped off. This also makes them really easy to put on, as there is no fiddling of getting the length of the strap right. Furthermore thanks to the rubber section they stick in place much better than normal straps.
The other benefit to using these straps is if for some reason your lock breaks (Like on our 2014 trip!) the case is still held together by the strap. Well worth it for under a tenner!
That's our list! We hope you find something useful for you next trip, if you have any other ideas please leave a comment below and we'll try to share them in the next article!