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Our tech expert weighs in on packing a tech travel kit

Electronics can enhance your vacations and business trips, but you must be prepared if you want to make the most of them while traveling. Planning is essential, whether you’re considering what to bring, how you’ll protect your electronics or what you need to keep them charged. To learn more about packing the perfect tech travel kit, we interviewed our tech expert, Jaime Vazquez.

What to consider when packing a tech travel kit

Which electronics should you bring with you?

  • All-in-one USB cable: These cables typically have a USB-A, micro USB, USB-C and lighting cable in one convenient package. They eliminate the need to carry numerous cords and let you charge multiple devices simultaneously.
  • Portable charger: These can be lifesavers if you’re stuck in an airport or somewhere without an outlet. When buying a portable charger, it’s essential to consider milliampere hours. Laptop batteries typically store around 5,000 mAh, whereas smartphones store around 3,000 mAh. You’ll want a portable charger capable of delivering enough power to your favorite devices.
  • Noise-canceling headphones: These have improved tremendously over the last five years and can enhance a trip on a crowded plane. According to Vazquez, “most noise-canceling headphones are wireless. I also travel with a pair of wired headphones, so they don’t drain my battery when I need to charge my phone.”
  • Tablet: If you’re traveling with your kids, it can be a good idea to travel with a cheap tablet in case it gets lost. It’s important to set up your security features so that your personal information isn’t at risk if your device is stolen.

How to keep your electronics organized

Consider bringing along a backpack with numerous storage compartments. Keeping your electronics separated is an excellent way to avoid scratched screens and tangled cables. Reducing the number of cords and items you bring is another way to keep your tech travel kit organized. 

Per Vazquez, “My secret weapon for travel is a set of packing cubes. I pack half my tech in my carry-on and the other half in my checked luggage with packing cubes.”

Other tech travel tips from our expert

  • Weigh your items: According to Vazquez, “I would pay attention to how much it all weighs together. I personally bring a laptop, tablet, battery and an all-in-one cable; they are all light on their own but heavy together. The combined weight of your electronics may impact what else you can pack.”
  • Know where you pack your tech: You’ll want to store each electronic device in a specific place and put them back when you leave. Knowing where each device is stored makes it easier to determine whether you are missing anything.
  • Bring an item finder: Small tracking devices, such as a Tile or AirTag, can help you keep up with your luggage. 

Tech travel kit FAQ

Can you have lithium batteries in your checked luggage?

A. Per the Federal Aviation Administration, devices containing lithium batteries are best kept in your carry-on luggage. Still, you can pack them in your checked baggage if they are turned off and packed in a way that protects them from damage. Uninstalled lithium metal and lithium-ion batteries are not allowed to be packed in your checked luggage.

How many laptops are you allowed to pack?

A. There are no quantity limitations on laptops, although you may find it easier to travel with a tablet. You’ll often be asked to place each laptop in a separate bin before your items are screened.

Do portable chargers work with all phones?

A. Most portable chargers have numerous inputs, allowing them to work with nearly any phone. If you buy a portable charger that isn’t compatible with your phone, you can usually buy a convertor to make it work.

Are noise-canceling headphones better for your ears?

A. Noise-canceling headphones are an excellent way to enjoy music and movies in a crowded environment, but they don’t protect your hearing from the noise around you.

Tech travel gear our expert recommends

Best USAMS Four-Foot Multi-Charging Cable

USAMS Four-Foot Multi-Charging Cable

This cable includes USB-C, micro USB and lightning connections. Each one is color-coded, making it easy to find what you need. The cable is braided for added durability. Many love that they light up when they’re connected.

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Best Lowepro ProTactic Modular Backpack

Lowepro ProTactic Modular Backpack

This is tough and contains modular compartments to keep your electronics separated. It features a sleek black design and is available in numerous styles.

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Best Amazon Fire HD 10-Inch Tablet

Amazon Fire HD 10-Inch Tablet

This affordable device is ideal for traveling with your family. It’s available in black, denim, lavender and olive. It’s compatible with numerous entertainment apps and lasts 12 hours on a single charge. It has Alexa-voice-command capabilities.

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Best Apple 12.9-Inch iPad Pro

Apple 12.9-Inch iPad Pro

This is available with up to 512 GB of storage. It is incredibly fast, thanks to the top-notch Apple M1 Chip. The 12MP rear-facing camera takes great photos, and the battery lasts through the day.

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Best Veken Packing Cubes

Veken Packing Cubes

This set includes six packing cubes in multiple sizes. It’s available in 12 colors and prints. Many were impressed with the quality and durability of the fabric. The packing cubes have clear windows that let you see what’s inside.

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Best Osprey Packing Cube Set

Osprey Packing Cube Set

This three-piece set has convenient top handles and side zippers. They feature a stylish black design. They’re lightweight and have plenty of space.

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Best Apple AirPods Max

Apple AirPods Max

These feature a comfortable design and are available in five colors. The audio quality is impressive. They are made from durable aluminum. The noise cancellation and transparency features are excellent.

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Best Sony MDRZX110NC Noise Canceling Headphones

Sony MDRZX110NC Noise Canceling Headphones

These wired noise-canceling headphones are more affordable than most. The battery lasts up to 80 hours. They fold down, making them easy to take on the go.

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Best Anker PowerCore 10000 Portable Charger

Anker PowerCore 10000 Portable Charger

This charger supports QuickCharge 3.0 and features a lightweight design. It’s available in black, red, white and blue.

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Cody Stewart writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money. 

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