We do a fair amount of travelling, last year alone I made three transatlantic trips, 2 with kids, 1 european trip and numerous UK trips, some of which took ALL day! So I know a little about what technology and gadgets ease the load and make travelling and being on holiday with kids a lot easier.
Before we even talk about gadgets and tech, we need to discuss charging them. There is nothing worse then getting somewhere or being mid travel and pow you are out of charge.
Nomad Charge Card and Charge Key
These two small but perfectly formed devices are pretty much permanently on my person. The Charge Card
(with a micro USB attachment) lives in my purse and the Charge Key (lightening connection) on my keyring. They have become indispensable and have been used a lot, not just by us, but by friends and colleagues too. You always need a charger when you are out and never seem to have one. This is the perfect solution to that. Even better they are under £20 each.
PortaPow Crystal 4.2A USB Universal Charger
I seriously heart the PortaPow Crystal 4.2A USB Universal Charger (under £15), it can charge up to 4 tablets, smartphones, satnavs, ebook readers etc at high speed anywhere in the world using universal USB charging sockets. It has four individually coloured and shaped status LEDs let you know when a device has finished charging and returned to trickle charge mode. Even better it comes with interchangeable UK, US, European and Australian shaped plugs clip securely into place for use in almost any country worldwide. We have two of these and they are totally amazing.
Belkin 4 Port Travel Hub (£6.00)
We use this a lot in the car, it is perfect for connecting to a USB Car Charger (£3.00), which means we can use four things at the same time one of which is my trusty satnav. Plus is you are travelling with a laptop or device with a usb connection you can use it to charge quadruple your charing ability from that device.
Always take with you camera battery charger or a space battery (sods law means that it will lose charge just when you least want it too!)
Both my boys love to relax and go to sleep to an audiobook or to listen to music the QDos allowed us to do this with great quality sound for as little as £20. It was really simple to use and set up and didn’t require constant charging. It has a really clever suction cup too, so you can stick it pretty much anywhere, even to the back of you decise and use it as a stand.
Kensington KeyFolio Pro 2 Case, Keyboard and Stand for iPad Family
I love my Ipad, it has revolutionised technology for me and I have to say that travelling with the Kensington KeyFolio Pro 2 Case, Keyboard and Stand for iPad Family just takes it to the next level. I find that I don’t need to take a laptop with me when I travel. Yes it is a little heavier that our Pong Ipad case (which we are still using a year after first getting it), but for travel it works really well. MadDad has the Kensington hardshell case for his Ipad Mini and he uses that when we are travelling too.
For both you and the kids. I think that good quality children headphones with a decibel limiter in are a must when travelling with kids. However, I have jet to find a pair I feel confident recommending. We have had different ones and unfortunately the boys have killed them within less than six months. So perhaps you can suggest a great pair for me!
Safesports ID Bracelets
Both the boys have Safesports Kids ID Bracelets and I think they are ace. We got them before travelling to Florida and neither of them took them off the whole time we were there. They are like those on trend plastic bands that people were and for the kids version the information is discreetly imprinted. They are made from 100% silicone and the data is engraved directly into the wristband. These survived water parks, roller coasters, fights, sports and children who have eczema! I still use them when we go anywhere as a family where we might be split up.
But what about the Tech?
As for actually tech to take with you, my boys have an Ipod each, which is great and we also travel with the family Ipad (great for movies and TV whilst travelling). They also tend to take their Nintendo 3DS’ with them too. For younger children I recommend Leapfrog products and my Best Friend will be taking a Leap Pad with her to Malta in a couple of weeks for her younger children along with the Leap Reader.
Once we get to our destination technology takes a back seat and will often remain unused, but it is great for travelling with and I love that the boys can store audiobooks and music on their Ipods.
Digital cameras are one of our most used pieces of technology when travelling and the boys both have point and shoots and we are currently lusting after a Go Pro after Who’s the Mummy showed us hers.
What is your must take?
My boys are nine and nearly eight at the moment and I am aware that this will be a different list for children of other ages and I would love to know what would be on your list?
Wow – that’s a lot of travelling!
Our must have gadgets are the usual things – ipods/phones/pads, plus the chargers and earbuds. Me personally, I always must have a pad and pen to write things down!
Fab post, but you have just cost me money as I have just bought a samsung version of the charge card and the 4 port charger! 🙂 x
I am loving the PortaPow especially. It’s a pain when you travel abroad, especially as there are only so many sockets in hotel rooms. I have bookmarked this post and I going to go through each gadget as we love travelling.
I have found being able to recharge my phone in the car is a real life saver.
The Belkin travel hub and the PortaPow sound great – especially with all the tech we carry around as a matter of course.
We always make sure we have the iPad, Kindle and phones loaded with plenty of games to keep them happy!
wow you do a lot of traveling , i look forward to reading the ones ahead am sure there will be many more by sounds of it , my son always steals my ipad and plays the games x
I tend to carry just my phone and charger as I believe in travelling with minimum techy things. But the OH insists on all his gadgets so I just leave him to it.
Wow what a collection gadgets. I always travel with my universal charger so that I can use my laptop or charge my phone. Other than that I travel light where gadgets are concerned but I always take my PG tips and Digestives!!
as we dont have kids yet, we just take our tablet pc
I’m just writing a Blog post on travelling with kids – but those with allergies so focussing on that side of things. For us it would sadly be meds, without which no one would have much fun. Then gadgets!!!
We always travel with the iPad stocked up with some films and lots of CBeebies on iPlayer Download. We also have story CDs and nursery rhyme CDs which are popular for car journeys. We are limited on tech as little is only little but I love your charging ideas x
Yes, I need to look into those bands, I get anxious about wandering!
Neither of my children take gadgets with them. My eldest gets awful car sickness so looking down at something or reading etc makes her sick. We have to try and distract her and get her to look out of the window or straight ahead so we play eye spy and other games 🙂
Love the idea of the nomad charge key – great idea. Gadgets are our saviour
We use the Leappad and the phone for travelling…. Those bracelets sound great though, I’m going to look into those, we’ve used tattoos (removable ones!) before.
This is a great round-up and my children are around the same ages. As I use my phone for a lot of photographs my must have is like one of yours – an in car charger. I wish phone batteries were better!
It’s great for kids to have something to play with on long journeys. I love our bluetooth speaker – so small and powerful, and chargers for all the gadgets are forgotten at parents peril!
I’ve tried both Nomad products and they are really cool.
Great post Jen and really useful, I need to ramp up my charging options. Phones never last long enough if you actually use them! iPhone and iPad at the top of the list I think 🙂
Fab Post 🙂 We like to take our iPad when travelling and load movies and games onto it for the girls.
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We tend to have the portable dvd in the car and the teen has his phone. We have in car chargers but must admit we tend to go places where you have no reception so it is a waste of time really!
Wow, you would be the envy of my husband with all your gadgets! We have the Belkin but I’m now going to look into the others, it’s always good to have a stash of gift ideas for a gadget lover! Great suggestions for a family who will only sit still with a gadget in hand (mum of two incredibly active young boys!).
Wow my husband would be incredibly envious of your gadget collection…must make note for future gifts!! Thanks for the ideas, from a mum of two incredibly active boys who will only sit still if they have a gadget in hand!