This seems like an unlikely topic for a post in a holiday website about Florida but I think this is very topical for Florida holidays. As a techie chap when I go on holiday my wife seems to enjoy all the planning and then takes charge of the packing of clothes, my main job is packing the Man Bag, the bag of a thousand cables and gadgets and so I thought it would be useful to share some of my plans these days when going on holiday and some tips on always having power and space!
In this day and age we (certainly our family) takes a crazy amount of electronics this last holiday we took with us.
- A Laptop
- 2 Nintendo DS’s
- An ipad
- 2 Iphones
- A Go Pro video camera
- A standard digital camera (took 4 batteries)
- A pebble watch (needs charging)
When I look at the list like that I think wow, didn’t think we took that much 🙂 This means that there is a wide assortment of cables that need to go with this lot, as well as the need to charge multiple items at the same time.
1. Take A Multi Plug
This makes total sense when someone mentions it but common sense doesn’t work unless you think about it. I needed multiple plugs for charging things and so initially the brain thinks I am going to need soooo many plug adaptors! No you dont, buy 1 (maybe 2 for safety) and take a UK multi plug to plug into, even take 2 if you want and then you could have 8, 10 or even more plub available
2. Get a Powered USB Multi Charger
Looking at my list above I think most people will take a number of these things and moving forward the companies all seem to be ditching the standard plug in to charge cable in favour of the USB charge. This is better for when you are on the move and want to charge off a laptop as you will most likely have a cable to charge the laptop and then 1 cable can be shared across lots of other items but it means when needing to charge multi devices there is not enough power and takes too long!
Whilst in Florida last time I bought in Walmart a power usb hub (example stock on amazon), this means you still need a cable per item to be charged but each of these items should come with a cable and so you should have lots. This allowed us to charge 2 iphones, 1 ipad and 2 cameras all at once. With the cameras I also had multiple batteries but this meant I could charge them all in an evening if we have used them all. This was a great item to have and helped to minimise the time I spent each evening charging things
3. Charging in the car
When you are out and about power is still an issue. It is fairly common these days I think that people have a charger in the car and so do the same over there, the benefit here being of course that you dont need an adaptor 🙂 If you are looking to use your phone also as your sat nav in the hire car then this is even more important as with a phone with a dead battery you are a bit lost. This is a great place to leave the charger.
4. Charge Everywhere
One other item I took with us that was very useful was a mobile battery charger. This is basically a battery with outputs so that you can leave it in your bag with the device and let it charge in the bag. The problem I was finding is that my phones battery drains quite quickly and as Disney embraces technology and the use of apps increases more and more we need the phone to have charge to book fast passes and manage your reservations. I therefore got an external battery charger that therefore offers power to charge anything with a usb connector cable, again there is a selection on Amazon (example search) and they are relatively inexpensive. The thing to remember with these is to make sure it outputs enough power to charge your required device (ask the seller), the first one I bought was not strong enough to charge an ipad for example (when on the plane) but it charges the phone well and can offer a full a charge and so if perfect to take to a park and at £15-£20 we found this really useful. When kids use the phone to play during lunch or in a queue then you can charge it right back up.
5. External Hard Drive Space
Depending on your requirements there is a very possibly need to have additional space for your photos and videos on holiday. Over the years the amount of space I have needed has increased each massively as technology gets better, photo and video quality increases which means larger files. This year we borrowed a Go Pro and the files that come out of that are ENORMOUS and so it turned out the hard drive on my Laptop did not have enough space and so off I went to the shop again to buy a cheap external hard drive that I would be bringing home with the files on it. BUT and this one is important ! try and make sure if you are taking images off the cameras and video and putting a drive then try and back them up. If you are in a villa or hotel with wifi try and back up to the cloud whilst on holiday. I am big on backing everything up but got caught out on this when my hard drive broke, the drive is still with some pro’s to try and get our content back.
If you are planning on taking lots of items with you then just think through how many things will be charging at the same time and how you are going to do it, I hope these suggestions will help to make an annoying task quicker and easier and you can make the most of the gadgets you take in the best place on earth 🙂