Whether you’re a casual business traveler only taking trips for things like industry conferences or you’re a regular business traveler, you probably know about all of the basic business travel products — luggage, laptop bags / briefcases, plugs and adapters, etc. But sometimes the basics aren’t enough. Here are ten cool business travel gadgets and other business travel products you might not have yet.
1. USB Rechargeable Batteries
Do you hate having to carry extra batteries with you when you travel, whether for a camera, cell phone, or something else, just because you can never be sure when you’ll have access to a charger? If so, USB rechargeable batteries might be a perfect business travel product for you. No bulky recharging docks necessary — you just charge the batteries through your laptop or other USB compatible device.
Right now you can only get AA USB rechargeable batteries called USBCELLs, but in the future, USBCELL.com will also be releasing AAA, 9 volt, and cell phone batteries that can be recharged using your USB device.
Are you terrible with directions? Does your company want to keep better track of your business travel? In either case, you might want to consider taking a Trackstick with you on your next business trip. These little GPS trackers come in several varieties from personal trackers to pro models. Set them up in your rental car with a clear view of the sky, and your Trackstick will remember your driving routes. Just plug it into a USB port on your laptop if you get lost and need to retrace your steps (the Trackstick exports your GPS data to Google Maps for you), or bring it back to the office so your employer can download and export travel data for company records.
3. Trace Me Luggage Tracker
Have you ever lost your luggage while traveling for business? Worse, have you ever lost your luggage and not gotten it back? If so, this handy little business travel product might leave you resting easier. Never worry about untraceable luggage again.
With the durable Trace Me Luggage Tracker tags attached to your bags, you won’t have to worry about them falling off. The barcode on the tags ties your luggage to your unique registration details in a database accessed by luggage handling personnel and law enforcement agencies. Why should your belongings end up auctioned off because of a little airport mishap where your bags can’t be traced back to you? Never again with the Trace Me Luggage Tracker!
4. Iqua SUN Solar Powered Bluetooth Headset
Whether you’re an eco-conscious business traveler or simply an efficient one who doesn’t want to load down luggage with unnecessary chargers and cables, a solor powered Bluetooth headset could be a good product for you on your next business trip.
The Iqua SUN was the world’s first solar powered Bluetooth headset, and it can be charged on either outdoor or inside light (so don’t worry if you face a few gray days on your trip). Technologically sound, space-saving, and environmentally friendly — what more could you ask for in a business travel gadget?
5. Electronic Translator
If your business traveling consists of visiting several international locations, and you don’t speak the languages fluently, an electronic translator like the Nyrius 12 Language Talking Translator might come in handy.
The biggest perk of this electronic translator over others is that it’s a talking translator. Not only can you see the translations, but you’ll learn how to say the words properly when asking the locals for help, ordering a meal, or getting directions.
6. Flat Resistance Bands
Not all business travel products have to be cool little gadgets. Sometimes it’s about simplicity. That’s the case when you want to continue your workouts away from home on business trips.
Resistance bands are natural options. They’re portable and lightweight, and can give you a good workout in confined spaces like hotel rooms. However, the popular tube-style resistance bands with handles can be a bit too bulky when packed in your luggage. These flat resistance bands do the trick. They can be folded flat and stored in sealed plastic bags (to keep the rubbery smell away from clothing), and they take up less room in your suitcase.
7. Amazon Kindle / Amazon Kindle DX
I’m actually not a supporter of e-book readers in general (for many reasons, one being that they’re just another piece of technology to be stuck carrying around when other options exist that can do the same thing and more, with similar sizes, and for similar price ranges). However, if you normally take long flights for business traveling, and you like to carry a few magazines on board with you, then a Kindle might at least save you some space and weight of lugging the paper versions around.
You can get the regular Kindle if your biggest concern is compact space, or if you want a larger reading area, you can try the Kindle DX (both pictured below).
8. Instant Cell Phone Charger
Chances are good that your cell phone will be glued to your ear during a significant portion of your business trip — checking in with clients, checking back in with the office, etc. There’s also a chance you’ll find yourself in a situation at least once where your battery is dying and you don’t have access to an outlet or charger (it never fails to happen when you can’t afford it to).
If that’s a concern for you, a simple and affordable option exists — instant cell phone chargers like the Eveready Energizer Energi instant cell phone charger pictured below. For less than ten bucks you’ll have a backup plan when your cell phone unexpectedly needs a jolt of juice.
9. Airline Comfort Set
Traveling on a cramped airplane is no excuse not to be as comfortable as you can. You should be well-rested and in the right mindset for work when you arrive at your destination.
One of the best ways to do that is to either purchase an airline comfort set like the one pictured below, or put your own together (just combine your favorite compact pillow, lightweight blanket — you don’t want it to take up too much room in your bag, so a throw works nicely, and an eye mask). You could throw in some earplugs or headphones and your favorite mp3 player too, and enjoy as peaceful a flight as possible.
10. Global Phone
Sometimes your regular mobile phone isn’t enough. If you travel internationally for business regularly, a global phone is a must-have business travel gadget. While you can rent them, the cost really adds up. If you’ll be traveling overseas more than once this year, it might be worth investing in your own.
The model pictured below is the National Geographic Talk Abroad Duet Travel Phone. It comes with a UK-based phone number setup, and allows you to receive free incoming calls in over 60 countries while you’re away (making it easy to keep in touch with the boss back in the office while better managing costs). This model has dual SIM card capabilities, allowing you to add an extra line for local calls if you prefer.
What other business travel gadgets or other business travel products do you consider must-haves when going on a business trip? Leave a comment and share your favorites with other business travelers looking to make life easier.