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5 Gadgets for Traveling Trade Show Marketers, Coordinators, et al.

I recently read this article in Forbes, and it’s worth a share – whether you’re a techie or not. Many who attend or coordinate trade shows spend a lot of time on the road, and they want to work seamlessly regardless of physical location. Forbes gives this advice on what a business traveler should carry.

1. Personal Wi-Fi

Hotels and airports are famous for gouging visitors on internet connectivity fees. Most wireless carriers now sell Wi-Fi hotspots that provide on-demand internet wherever there’s a cell signal. For the same cost as a day of connectivity in some hotels, you can have a month of personal internet in your briefcase, and in a pinch you can also use it as your home internet. And, it’s a personal connection, so there’s less concern about lurkers peering in on your browsing habits. Try Clear’s wireless hotspots or your current mobile provider for a few options. Or if you’re a light user (less than 500MB/month), Freedompop has plans that are free.

2. Backup Battery Packs

With so many devices powered through a USB port, it’s now possible to bring backup power to your phone, Wi-Fi hotspot, tablet, portable speakers and a host of other devices with one single battery. Kensington has a variety of batteries that will do the trick, while Mophie has a nice product line as well.

3. Business and Travel Ready Tablet

The newest generation of tablets is well equipped to handle most business needs among office applications, email, PDF viewing and images. Instead of drawing lines between brands, pick your favorite and optimize it for your business use. Make sure that you (or your IT person) have everything seamlessly connected between your notebook, desktop and tablet. Make sure that email shows up immediately and in the right place. And perhaps most importantly, make sure that you have the right apps for the task at hand. An itinerary planning app like Tripit and a flight searching app like ITA Software can help you plan your next trip, while preloaded movies and TV shows can take the boredom out of flights.

4. Noise Canceling Headphones

Bose paved the way for digital noise-canceling headphones in the consumer marketplace, and now with some competition, costs are starting to go down. On the lower end, CNET recommends the noise-canceling Monoprice over-ear headphones that are “about 70 percent as good as the Bose QC15s for a little more than a third of the price.” For a more thrifty approach, consider the in-ear headphones that act as earplugs as well as speakers – without the noise-canceling circuit they can costs as little as ten dollars.

5. Ultrabook Computer

Reasonable processors are starting to fit into the smaller laptops that are ideal for business travel, giving users enough power to open up a 100-page PowerPoint file and stream Spotify at the same time. And with the growth of the tablet industry, Ultrabooks, the low-weight, high-power class of notebook computers, are competitively priced. The savvy traveler can fit both a low-profile computer and tablet into his/her carry-on with space to spare. Pick the unit that’s best for you. Apple’s Macbook Air at just under $1,000 has been widely popular in the community, while Lenovo’s X1 Carbon and Samsung’s ATIV Book 9 are both commendable devices. There is also Dell’s Inspiron 15z Ultrabook, which has an option for a touch screen.

What are your favorite travel gadgets? Share them below with our readers.


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