Whether you’re in need of some tech treats to make your airport experience easier to handle, or you want a cool bit of kit to help you document your holiday, our travel-gadget selection will hook you up
GoPro Hero4 Black
The king of action cams is really pushing the limits with its Hero4 Black. The camera’s main selling point is its ability to capture 4K footage at 30 frames per second, making it ideal for filming your high-adrenaline exploits. But it’ll also shoot 1080p video at 60fps, and, if you want to make your footage even more dramatic, slow motion at 120fps. The Hero4 Black is a tough cookie on its own, but you can also buy cases that make it able to withstand deep water, blizzards and, of course, your comedy falls.
Holidays have a habit of lightening your wallet – especially if you have a family – and now there’s a smart card that offers an even easier way to fritter away your hard-earned on silly fridge magnets and foods you can’t pronounce. Plastc slurps all of your bank- and credit-card details onto a single piece of, well, plastic. You then use its e-ink touchscreen to choose which account you want to pay with. Once you’ve coughed up your dough, it’ll send transaction alerts to your smartphone and display your mugshot on a screen at the point of purchase for extra security. More importantly, it’ll alert you via your phone if your card goes somewhere you’re not.
Despite launching the 330ppi Kindle Paperwhite, the 7.6mm-thick Kindle Voyage is still the top steed in the Amazon stable. As well as a 300ppi display that reads much like a printed page, the Kindle Voyage boasts a PagePress feature that enables you to apply pressure to the bezel to turn the page effortlessly. Its light is smart, too, adapting to your specific environment (ie whether you’re inside or outside). And all that for less than 170 quid.
When it comes to luggage, you’re either dragging it around wishing it wasn’t there, or standing around wondering why the hell it’s not. Thankfully, modern tech can solve at least one of these problems. The Trakdot GPS tracker slips into any bag and, when you land, tells you exactly where it is. Of course, that doesn’t necessarily mean your Hawaiian shirts will have made it to Honolulu or wherever it is you’ve trekked, but at least you’ll know you’re going to be wearing the same pants for a week without four hours of will-it-or-won’t-it-appear waiting at the luggage belt.
Bang & Olufsen BeoPlay H8
These hot headphones recently made our super elite list of the best tech on the planet, so we really can't go and suggest anything else if you want a premium listening experience while travelling. The audio fidelity and build quality are off the scale with the BeoPlay H8, while the lack of wire and excellent battery life make wearing them even when laden down with bags or engaging in an early morning run down the beach an easy and pleasurable experience.
Sometimes, there’s only one thing between you being lost in a wood of dangerous bears and getting home to a nice cuppa, and that thing is GPS. And with the Garmin Monterra clipped to your trousers, you won’t go far wrong. Thanks to a rugged build, TOPO maps, a four-inch colour touchscreen, an outdoor-optimised dual battery, an 8MP 1080p camera and Android OS, that price seems fair.
Osprey Ultralight Stuff Pack
Forget filling your suitcase with weighty beach bags or day packs – whether you’re on a city break, heading into the hills or beach-bound, the Osprey Ultralight Stuff Pack is built for travel. The fully waterproof, ten-gram pack stuffs away into its own apple-sized carry case in seconds. It boasts two handy internal pockets – one zippered stash and one security – plus a stretchable mesh outside pocket that’s perfect for a bottle of water. Or wine.
Apple iPad Air 2
The iPad Air 2 is Apple’s best tablet yet. Sure, the company says that about every one of its new tablets, but this one really is ridiculously good. Not only is it 18 per cent slimmer than its predecessor at 6.1mm, but there’s a 9.7-inch HD display with 2,048 x 1,536 resolution, plus brain-melting speed from the new 64-bit processor. Apple has even upgraded the Wi-Fi and 4G LTE to offer double the speed of the iPad Air. The Air 2 is not cheap but it’s worth every penny.
Apple Watch Sport
It may be the base model in Apple’s wearable range but, make no mistake, the Watch Sport is a beauty. This lightweight, anodised-aluminium timepiece features an Ion-X glass screen and a choice of stylish straps, enabling you to customise to suit your personal style. But, of course, it’s more than just a timepiece: you can take and make calls, tap to pay for stuff in shops, and do loads of other cool things. And as more software updates roll out, it’ll only get better.
If wheels that go in any direction are your idea of high-tech luggage, prepare to be dazzled. The world’s first 3G- and GPS-connected bag, the Bluesmart can be locked and unlocked, weighed and even tracked across the globe, all from your smartphone. Its built-in battery will also charge your iPhone six times over on the move – and there’s still room to stash 34 litres of creased-up clothing inside its 3.8kg polycarbonate and aluminium frame.
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
The Edge is the best smartphone Samsung has ever made. This sliver of glass and metal is not just beautifully designed; it also packs some of the best specs out there. The screen is a stunning 5.1-inch Super AMOLED with QHD resolution, while the 16MP camera is capable of taking stunning pictures. The 64-bit Exynos octa-core processor is super- fast, and ten minutes’ charge gives you four hours of use. If all that’s not enough, there’s also wireless charging.
Surface Pro 4
A perfect travelling companion for anyone who needs to retain some serious computational power when there's only limited carry space on offer, the Surface Pro 4 is a versatile bit of kit that is equally at home for both work and play. Even the base model has solid specs too, with an Intel Core m3 CPU, 4GB of RAM and 128GB SSD coming as standard - perfect for tweaking and emailing those holiday snaps to friends and family.
There was a time when capturing your holiday for posterity meant collecting blurred photos from Snappy Snaps long after the tan had faded. Not any more. Whether you’re snowboarding in Switzerland, biking the Alps or just lobstering on the beach, you can now capture the whole thing instantly in 1080p at 120 frames per second, with 12MP stills or even with slo-mo, via a self-flying camera drone that you just throw up in the air to start recording. Lily won’t take to the skies until 2016, but invest in one now and you can pack her sleek, midnight-black polycarbxonate and aluminium body into your suitcase for half the price.