Travelling with Technology

Craig Griffin
Nov 8, 2017 · 3 min read

I traveled overseas last year and read tips like these before I left to prepare myself. If you are going on an overseas painting tour (but even if not), this list will give you some information that you need to be aware of.

•Set up a separate email address to use for family and friends.
•Not all emails work overseas. Use a Gmail, there are plenty of other free online email services, but Gmail works just about everywhere in the world. Research which email service works in the country you are visiting.
•Use an entirely different email for internet, WIFI signups or other spam catchers. (I did this for years anyway, it is an excellent way to filter out spam).
• Make sure your device is fully patched and updated.
• Download apps to your device before you leave, including local transport apps for the countries you are visiting.
• Download translation apps, the best ones are Google Translate (free) and Duolingo (paid).
• Download to your device the Google maps data of the city or location of your journey before you leave home, Google maps uses quite a lot of data when downloading map data on the trip.
• Check with smarttraveller.gov.au for travel advice before and perhaps during travel for alerts. Better yet, download their app.
• Download books to your device before leaving. Libraries have BorrowBox for free one-month downloads.
• Make use of free Cloud services such as Google Drive or Onedrive, If you set up a Gmail or Outlook email address, you have access to free storage space with those accounts. There are apps available for all the major device platforms that give you access to your files easily.
• Control your data costs by turning off Data Roaming, use only WIFI whenever possible. Do do sensitive tasks over public (free) WiFi such as banking.
• Use Messenger, WhatsApp, Viber, Skype or other free SMS and calling Apps via WiFi.
• Call your local phone provider to understand costs for calls and data while overseas. Check if there is a charge for receiving calls when abroad. (I was unaware that I might incur charges for receiving calls, turns out I wouldn’t be where I was going).
• Buy a local SIM card if necessary when you arrive there, they can be purchased at the airport, newsagents, hire car places, where I traveled to they were sold everywhere.
• Use INCOGNITO or PRIVATE mode when browsing. Google “how to” before you leave for instructions. Doing this avoids saving most cookies, and the sites will not know that you have visited them before. This also prevents price hikes when returning to a website, I noticed that happening to me when searching for flights.
• Back up the information on your device before you go and leave it at home or with a family member or trusted friend.
• Remember travel adaptors for the countries being visited — you only need one and a power board.
• Put a password lock on your device and have ‘Find My Phone’ activated.
• Take a small battery backup with you to avoid running out of battery at a critical time. These are getting cheaper all the time, I purchased one from Target that charges my iPhone 3 times and my iPad twice on a single charge for only $15AUD. If you do need to power an iPad be mindful of the wattage output of the battery pack, iPads need 10 watts minimum to charge.

Hope these tips help to make your next journey even more fun!

Craig Griffin

Written by

An Aussie bloke living in the Philippines. Finding time to write, read, and enjoy life with my beautiful wife. I write about lifestyle, art, and technology.

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