By Vicky Anscombe on 23 November 2015

Black Friday is coming soon (November 27, in case it isn’t already firmly scribbled in your Filofax), and if you’re planning on splurging on some top travel gadgets for 2016 and beyond, it’s probably the best time to bag a bargain.

There’s no need to panic-buy everything in sight (or on your screen); we’ve compiled the ten best travel gadgets which you shouldn’t be without. This lot will make travelling a lot easier - and, believe us, a lot less boring.

MacBook Air

Apple’s latest offering is just half an inch thick and weighs two pounds, so it’s great if you’re trying to keep heavy bags to a minimum. A top-notch Core M processor means speeds will never be an issue, and it runs both OS X, Yosemite and Windows. However, there’s a snag; the only port is a USB-C, which is smaller than the usual USB, so you’ll need an adaptor to plug in accessories.

Macbook Air

Wacaco Minipresso

In at number two we have a device that could be viewed as a little bit, well, pretentious. It’s still great, though. This portable coffee machine is compatible with any Caffitaly capsules, and makes a pretty decent espresso on the go. It weighs less than a pound, includes a built-in cup and fits easily in a backpack or carry on. Get yours here.


Scientific monitor

This jazzy-sounding device is actually pretty cool - if you’re a sun worshipper, and you’ve been known to get carried away, this will tell you when you need to hop into the shade. The device works out how long you can stay out based on UV reading, sunscreen factor and skin type. It also displays easy to read graphics which will warn you if things are getting too toasty. Give this one a go.

Sum monitor

Kindle Touch

Why limit yourself to just one book when you could carry hundreds? This just-released ebook reader is the best on the market, and a well-loved traveller staple. Ebooks download wirelessly in seconds, the battery lasts for days, and you can read in direct sunlight or dusk. Sorry, paperbacks - you lose this round. Get yours from Amazon.

Kindle Touch


Oh, God, it’s actually happened. If you’re super-anxious about leaving your naughty tabby cats behind, Petcube will let you keep a watchful eye over them. The compact cube connects to your home's Wi-Fi, and a video stream will keep you up to date. You can even talk to your pets, and play with them via the built-in laser pen. Talk about attachment issues. Get yours here.


Mophie Powerstation Plus Charger

Ever bought a portable charger and been left bereft when it only half powers your device? The Mophie’s tiny - roughly the size of a credit card - and it has built-in Lightning or micro USB ports that can power up to four gadgets at four times the speed of a multiple charger. Power up here.


RHA T10 Earbuds

Forget those shoddy plastic imitations you picked up from Argos; these are the real deal. Each set comes with ten (yes, ten) sets of ear tips, so you can adjust away until you achieve a snug fit. Handy, too, as the earphones will leak less music, thus minimising ‘neighbour annoyance’ - this is also helped by the over-ear hooks. Interchangeable filters optimise bass or treble; handy, no? Get yours here.

RHA earphones


Hang on tight, for this is the future. Star Trek fans may remember the universal translator - a strange little gadget which translates alien tongues into English. Now it exists in real life. Sigmo is a portable gadget which translates 25 languages in real-time. You could just download Google translate, and try to use that, but unlike Signo, it doesn’t pick up little colloquialisms and other idioms which you might need. Learn the lingo here.


The Zomm

Out and about in a noisy restaurant, drinking, and prone to leaving your phone behind? The Zomm is a small, compact keyring that connects wirelessly to your smartphone via Bluetooth. The connection creates a wireless ‘leash’, so if you head off without your phone, it’ll sound the alarm. Especially good if you’re somewhere with new people and prone to distraction. Indulge yourself here.


PolarPro Power Pole

This, truly, is the last words in selfie sticks, and if you’re going to go down that road, you may as well do it properly. The PolarPro PowerPole is one of the best models out there; it's compatible with GoPro cameras, and will extend film time up to 10 hours with its battery. It also extends up to 30 inches and is splash proof. Oh, go on then.

Power Pole

Image credits: Shutterstock,,, Petcube,,, and

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