15 Travel Inventions We’re Thankful For

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15 Travel Inventions We’re Thankful For
As much as we love to travel—and do so frequently—it’s not always the easiest or most comfortable experience. It doesn’t matter how prepared you are for your trip, there’s still a chance you’ll enounter long security lines, be seated next to a crying toddler, or forget your phone charger at home. Luckily, there’s now an answer to nearly all of your travel-related inconveniences. In preparation for the holiday travel season, we’ve rounded up 15 of our favorite travel-related inventions and accessories that make the journey a little more relaxing. What will they think of next?
Courtesy of This Is Ground
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    The Travel Equivalent to “There’s an App for That”
    As much as we love to travel—and do so frequently—it’s not always the easiest or most comfortable experience. It doesn’t matter how prepared you are for a trip, there’s still a chance you’ll encounter long security lines, be seated next to a crying toddler, or forget your phone charger at home. Luckily, there’s now an answer to nearly every travel-related inconvenience. In preparation for this holiday travel season, we’ve rounded up 15 of our favorite travel-related inventions and accessories that make the journey a little more relaxing. What will they think of next?
    Courtesy of This Is Ground
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    Rolling Suitcases
    Don’t get us wrong—duffle bags, backpacks, and those beautiful vintage trunks all have their time and place. But when we’re running through the airport to catch a connecting flight or dragging our luggage through the streets of a foreign city in search of our hotel, we’re eternally grateful for two- and four-wheeled luggage. Two wheels let you pull a heavy suitcase along behind as you weave through crowds, and four-wheeled spinner luggage can be rolled alongside you, making it easier to control.
    Courtesy of Rimowa
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    Earplugs
    Crying babies, loud talkers, and street noise are just a few of the inevitable noisy situations in which you can find yourself on an airplane or in a hotel room. Earplugs are the original travel savior. Throw them into your carry-on bag to ensure that you’ll have a peaceful in-flight nap, and keep them on your bedside table for when the hotel’s cleaning crew starts vacuuming while you’re trying to sleep in. 

    Photo by Quinn Dombrowski/Flickr
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    Multi-Port USB Charger
    Multi-port charging blocks allow you to charge a tablet, phone, and camera all at once using just one outlet. You and your travel partner can even charge your phones at the same time, rather than fighting over the limited outlets. 
    Courtesy of RAVPower
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    TSA PreCheck
    If you fly more than a few times a year—particularly during the busy holiday season—we highly recommend investing in TSA PreCheck. For an $85-per-year domestic fee ($100 global entry), you can hop into the always-shorter precheck line. You won’t have to remove your belt, jacket, or shoes, and you can leave your liquids and laptop in your bag as well. It eliminates the time and stress associated with long security lines that can potentially cause you to miss a flight. 

    Photo by AMISOM Public Information/Flickr
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    Travel Pillows
    Forget the tiny ball of cotton that airlines provide. Traditional U-shaped travel pillows can make an in-flight nap much more bearable, and this travel pillow by Trtl was designed to prevent the inevitable stiff neck that comes along with napping against the window. Trtl’s pillow is also much more compact than the standard travel pillow, which makes it easier to tuck into your carry-on bag.
    Courtesy of Trtl
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    Waterproof Phone Case
    Cell phones have become an essential daily accessory and, for many people, have replaced the need for an additional camera. This waterproof case allows you to safely take photos in watery situations, whether you’re swimming with dolphins, cruising through Ha Long Bay, or soaking in Icelandic thermal baths. 


    Courtesy of JOTO
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    Flexible Water Bottles
    Traveling with a water bottle is important for staying hydrated when flying, but traditional water bottles take up precious real estate in your carry-on bag and disposable bottles are wasteful. This flexible water bottle shrinks to an easy-to-pack size when it’s empty, allowing you to drink water without sacrificing space. 


    Courtesy of Nalgene
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    Cordless, Noise-Canceling Headphones
    Headphones are essential for getting through any travel experience, whether it’s a subway ride or a long-haul flight. Cordless, noise-canceling headphones are next-level. They allow you to move around in your seat without accidentally pulling on the cord, and the noise-canceling feature drowns out all of the in-flight background noise.
    Courtesy of Bose
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    Smart Backpack
    The Smart Backpack is the future of travel. You can fit all of your carry-on needs into this medium-sized bag while also charging all of the electronics you’re storing inside of it. 

    Courtesy of AMPL Labs
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    Smartphones and Tablets
    We know smartphones and tablets seem like an obvious choice, but since their invention, they’ve been an essential part of anyone’s travel experience. Not only do you have a camera and Internet access at your fingertips, but they also function as books, radios, maps, translators—the list goes on. Travel apps like WordReference Dictionary or XE Currency Convertor can also be a major perk of these portable computers, allowing you to plan trips in ways you never could before. 

    Courtesy of Pixabay.com
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    Eye Masks
    If you’re planning to get some serious shut-eye on a flight, one thing that will help to ensure you some peace is an eye mask. We prefer the kind that seals out light and doesn’t press on our eyelids (which can interrupt REM sleep). This travel accessory pack from Flight 001 is compact and also includes a blanket, which may not be provided on some flights or on train rides.
    Courtesy of Flight 001
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    Cord Taco
    Cord Tacos keep all of your charging cords and corded headphones in order so that you don’t have to waste time trying to untangle your headphone cords. They also make it much easier to locate cords in your bag. 
    Courtesy of This Is Ground
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    Packing Cubes
    Even if you pack light, it can be hard to find things inside of your luggage without completely unpacking your suitcase. With packing cubes, you can separate your clothes by category so that when you need a shirt, you can simply grab one from your “shirts cube,” while leaving everything else intact and organized.
    Courtesy of Mumi
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    Compression Sleeves
    Leg and foot swelling happens to everyone during a long flight. It’s frustrating trying to slide your engorged feet back into your sneakers before deplaning or struggling to zip up your boots because your calves have nearly doubled. Compression sleeves and socks can help to significantly alleviate some of the swelling that happens in-flight by promoting blood flow throughout your legs. If need be, you can even sleep with them on during your first night of vacation to help the swelling go down faster.
    Courtesy of 2XU
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    Portable Luggage Scale
    Have you ever packed your suitcase to the brim and worried that it might be too heavy to check without paying a hefty fee? Portable luggage scales allow you to easily weigh your suitcase before you leave the house so that you can rearrange your things in the privacy of your home, rather than inside the terminal. But don’t forget to leave room in your bag for the scale; you’re going to need it after you do all your vacation shopping.
    Courtesy of ENROSE
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