By Rob Clymo
Most of us are in agreement that flying might be one of the best ways for getting from A to B. However, with increasing numbers of passengers and aircraft that offer little in the way of comfort unless you stump up for business class, making that journey can be an ordeal.
So, what can you to do make your time in the air a little more bearable? These gadgets might do the trick, not just during but before and after the flight too…
We all know how bad those airline headsets are but many of us persist in taking a pair of our own at the last minute. However, it's well worth spending some time seeking out a proper pair of noise-cancelling cans, such as the highly-rated but affordable Goldring NS-1000, which are perfect for isolating engine noise and your neighbour in the next seat too. Alternatively, if money is no object then the Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 Wireless headphones and Bose QuietComfort 25 are also excellent choices.
In-flight entertainment isn't always the draw it should be, so your phone, laptop or tablet might be the best bet for killing time. But, you'll want to be sure you've got extra power on tap if there are no outlets on the plane. So, invest in a portable power pack such as the Anker PowerCore 10000 Portable Charger, which is small but potent offering almost three-and-a-half iPhone 6s charges or three Galaxy S6 charges with ease. It's superb value too at well under twenty quid currently.
Many of your fellow travellers will be sporting an iPad en route to their destination and it's therefore little wonder that the Apple tablet is currently the best you can buy. Plump for the Apple iPad Proand you get a glorious 9.7-inches of screen real estate and perky performance. Plus, the huge rage of apps makes the device pretty much irresistible for air travel duties. Add on an Apple Smart Keyboard if you've got serious typing to do.
Cool and compact luggage
If you can afford it then investing in innovative luggage is a great idea. For getting to and from the gate then the Micro 3in1 Suitcase Scooter is a great way to go. If you prefer to take things easy then an electric alternative in the shape of the Coolpeds Electric Scooter Suitcasemight be worth considering, even though it costs a whopping £722.
Super secure smart lock
The design of padlocks has been relatively unchanged for years but now, thanks to the mobile phone, you can buy yourself a Master Lock Bluetooth Smart Padlockand control it using your handset. It's compatible with all devices supporting Bluetooth 4.0 or higher and there's an app that lets you manage it on the go. Simple but effective.
Robust laptop protection
Your Macbook will be in the firing line of careless fellow passengers who will recline their seats without warning, fire crumbs and other detritus your way with a vengeance and, heaven forbid, liquids could splash it from any direction. Get maximum protection from hot and cold beverages with the Cocoon Graphite 13-inch MacBook Pro Brief or the hard-cased Thule Gauntlet to ensure you keep your investment as safe and secure as possible.
Whizzy mobile Wi-Fi
Most airports are fine and offer at least some sort of wireless internet, but not all make it as easy as you'd like to get online. Avoid the stress and time-sapping sign-up process at each end by purchasing a mobile Wi-Fi dongle, or wingle as it's referred to. These are invaluable before and after your trip and an unlocked one means you can pop in a different SIM at the destination you're heading for.
Sleep-tastic travel pillow
A basic one does the job but why not splurge and kit yourself out with a superior version of the spongy solution for a decent in-flight snooze. The Travelrest Pillow is a best-selling option, as is the J Pillow Travel Pillow, both of which will help you get some valuable shut-eye while you're in transit. They're also good for bus and train rides too.
Reliable data storage
Long plane journeys are ideal for doing some laptop admin, so kill time by sorting out your data and storing it on the muscular 3TB Silicon Power Armor A85 Silver USB3.0 Rugged Portable Hard Drive. There are many variations on the theme, but this option is appealing due to its beefy feature set that makes it drop proof, dust proof and able to fend off water too. At the same time, it's only 458 grams while still having a huge 3TB capacity.
You can't beat a good book for whiling away journey time and now that Amazon has refreshed its Kindle line-up the choices are better than ever. The best-selling Kindle Paperwhite costs just £109.99 and boasts crystal-clear 300ppi resolution that'll be kind to your eyes. Alternatively, pick up the bargain-basement standard edition Kindle for £59.99 that includes built-in Bluetooth audio support for visually-impaired users plus a 6-inch glare-free touchscreen display.
Electronic tracking tags
There are some decent options out there for letting you track down your gadgets if you lose them and the same goes for keeping tabs on your luggage too. If you're worried about your bag or case, and everything inside it, then try the Trakdot Luggage Trackeror the Trace Meboth of which will help you feel reassured while you're in transit.
Lightweight travel shaver
Some flights seem to go on for so many hours that you feel as though you've grown a full beard by the time you get to the other end. Get the popular Philips Travel Shaver PQ203/17, that boasts twin rotary heads and comes with a travel pouch in order to arrive clean shaven or, if you sport a trendy beard, then suitably well-trimmed. It's a best-seller and cheap too.