Having tech with you has pretty much become necessity. To make sure you’re flying within regulations & policies, make sure to check with your local airport’s website to check you aren’t travelling with dangerous goods. In the end, make sure you bring a case with you so your devices stays undamaged.
Phones, laptops, tablets, iPads EVERYWHERE. Having tech with you has pretty much become necessity. No one leaves without it. In this highly digitised world, if you’re not travelling with tech to a place you haven’t been to, chances are you’re going to get lost!
Technology has gotten so advanced that our attention span has shortened and a bad service connection quickly makes us irritable. I mean… there really isn’t anything worse than having to zzresort to using one of those dodgy internet stations you find at the airport. You know the one we’re talking about – big overheard signs reading “Internet Available Here”. Not only are these slow, they are also potentially unsafe if you are dealing with confidential data.
So what are the ground-rules for travelling with technology?
Can I take my laptop on a flight?
Technically (pun intended), yes. What’s even better is that you can use them during your flight too. The only times you can’t use it on a flight is during take off and landing as it may intervene with airplane communication systems. Most airlines also have the option of in-flight Wi-Fi. There are multiple packages you can purchase from to browse the internet during your flight. These packages do come with a pretty hefty price tag though. However, there may be good news for all you Business Class passengers – many airlines offer Business Class passengers a limited amount of Wi-Fi connection service included in your ticket at no extra cost such as Singapore Airlines.
So how do you get your laptop through security and in with you on the plane?
Well, you have to take your laptop as a carry-on… Duh!! Before your security screening, you need to take your laptop out of your bag and place it in a separate tray. In the event your laptop does not pass the general screening, you may be asked to step aside and open your laptop as part of extra security measures. Don’t worry though, this usually means nothing. Your laptop could just have an overpowered battery that seemed unsafe in the scan, or you may actually have a problem with your laptop, in which case, it’s probably a good thing it’s going through extra screening… You know in case your laptop explodes on the flight. That would probably not be as fun as it sounds.
Another important thing to note – are you carrying extra lithium ion batteries? These may be deemed unsafe for travelling. It is best to avoid bringing extra lithium ion batteries, however if it is a necessity, make sure it’s in your carry on and not loaded away. Having an extra lithium ion battery may delay your security screening process, however if everything checks out, there is no reason you shouldn’t be able to take it. Loading lithium ion based batteries in your checked baggage may result in your bag from being denied transportation. This is mainly because checked luggage are stored in pressurised compartments and have a chance of blowing up into flames. Aviation safety experts have concluded that it is slightly safer to store these batteries in the passenger cabin rather than the cargo hold.
These rules apply for all electronic devices you intend to bring with you during your travels. It is also recommended to keep your laptop/ phone chargers in carry on as well, not just for safety reasons but simply because you may need to charge your device if you’re travelling long distances. The additional tech rule you need to keep in mind is enabling fight mode on mobile devices during the entire duration of your flight. Mobile devices can negatively affect communication systems, which you would know are extremely important if you’ve ever watched movies like Sully.
Which device is the most appropriate for travels?
Right, so now that you know that it’s safe to take your electronic devices with you when you travel overseas, you might be considering which devices are best suited for travel. You would want something that works well but isn’t too bulky or it can really become a burden during long haul flights where you need to stop off to change terminals.
Everybody loves a bigger screen and having to survive a long haul flight watching movies on your phone screen can get annoying, not to mention, pretty damaging for the eyes too. Laptops may also be a necessity for those intending on doing some business work during their flight. Whatever the case, you’d want to go for a laptop that you can carry everywhere easily. Some laptops, especially work laptops can tend to be heavy.
A 13” laptop is the most ideal for travelling. I mean, you really can’t go wrong travelling with a 13” Mac Book Air, it’s almost as light as your phone (okay, maybe not, but it’s still pretty darn light). The size also makes it easy to pack away and unpack when needed. If you want to be safe, bringing along a study laptop is a great idea if you are willing to compromise with the weight it adds on. Apple is a brand that has both sturdy and extremely light laptops. They are known for their incredibly light weight laptop designs. However, Apple laptops are not a device that everybody can afford. Wait no, that’s wrong! That may have been true at one time, but now, you have the option of buying refurbished Apple laptops. They come at a fraction of the price of a brand new laptop with the same features. So really, why spend heaps of money on a brand new laptop when you can come to a compromise of getting a fancy schmancy laptop and using the rest of that money enjoying cocktails on the beach. To optimise your productivity (or leisure), aim for laptops with 6+ hour battery life, an i5 processor (or higher), and 8GB RAM (or higher) – this allows you to run multiple programs efficiently with less lag.
In the end, whichever option you go for, cheap laptop, expensive laptop, second-hand or refurbished, make sure you bring a laptop case with you so your laptop stays undamaged.
Not everyone wants to deal with laptops. You could opt for tablets which are pretty much smaller versions of laptops without the keyboard. This will save you from having to deal with extra weight and finding enough space for your laptop. And, just like laptops and mobile devices there are sooo many different types of tablets to choose from. You will surely find one that will suit your price range and make travelling with tech a piece of cake. They come in different shapes, sizes and with varied internal storage.
A hot tip? Pick up an SD card to back up your data. Especially if you’re using your tablet to take photos and videos (of course, storing on “the cloud” is also a great idea). Of course, not many of us take photos with tablets – that’s where our next device comes in handy.
Most smartphones on the market these days are in very close in competition, providing nearly identical up-to-date features. So, it’s really up to you which brand you prefer. There are literally countless brands out there. Most laptop and PC brands are starting to make smartphones as well now, from Apple to Oppo to Dell phones! Other things to consider however include:
Is your phone unlocked?
Unlocking your phone allows you to use international SIM cards, making it cheaper for you to text, call and browse the web.
Do you have all the apps you need?
You might as well prepare these by downloading them prior to leaving to use minimal data while you’re overseas. The basics include: Facebook, Facebook Messenger, Instagram and essentially any other social media platform to keep you connected.
Again, try and update your phone to avoid loss of information. Make sure you’ve got a good amount of internal storage and cloud storage. And in the end no matter what phone you get, the most important thing to remember when carrying your smartphone with you is to PUT IT IN FLIGHT MODE or just switch it off.
Portable chargers (or power banks) are a great way to keep your devices powered while out of reach from power points. If you properly charge your portable charger, you should be able to charge your smartphone/ tablets about four to six times! So even if you have an old worn out phone, you don’t have to worry about running out of battery cause you can charge your phone multiple times with a portable charger. These are available for phone charging to laptop charging, and range from $10 to $150.
Like your laptop, tablet or phone, this device is powered by a lithium ion battery so it also must be carried in your carry on luggage.
To make sure you’re flying within regulations and policies, make sure to check with your local airport’s website to check you aren’t travelling with dangerous goods.
Are your headphones battery operated? Remember that devices outside of phones and laptops may contain batteries. Always be wary of using these on flights.
If you are looking for a device solely to bring with you for your travels, then consider buying refurbished devices from TCM! You can get the best brands at only a fraction of the original price and they would work just like a new one! Visit us today to get your travel devices sorted.