Travel Gadgets – How Many is too Many?

A funny thing happened to me the other day.  I was looking at all my lovely tech toys that could accompany me on my trips – and then I started hyperventilating. It was a sensory overload – a freakout over the simple task of surfing the net, but the conundrum of  what do it on? laptop? iPhone? PC? Sometimes there’s such a thing as too much choice. It got me to thinking about technology and travel. I love my electronic gadgets, they’re better than children – they don’t talk back (unless you change the settings to do so) but really when you think about it, most of them are completely unnecessary for the global nomad.

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How to Fly Like a Professional

If you fly routinely you’ll begin to pick up on a few things that the people who breeze through the airports do.  Most importantly, they probably ignore most of the people surrounding them which would make life easier, but is difficult to do.  It seems when people fly, they lose half of their IQ points.

Here’s a few tips that will help make your life easier and also make you a better passenger to the other people flying with you.

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An In-Depth Look at Volunteering

You know that really warm feeling you get about yourself when you do something nice for someone else? What about that feeling of gluttony and selfishness you get when you’re in a foreign country sipping your 5th cocktail of the night, served by someone who earns less in a month than what you’re likely to spend before you go to bed?

Well, you can maximise the former and minimise (though not entirely eradicate) the latter. Try a spot of Voluntourim.

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The Untouristed Thailand

So you want to visit Thailand. That’s cool. It’s a great place to travel to. Got your guidebook yet? Have you noticed all those ‘Must see’ destinations, and the ‘Hidden Gems’?

Well guess what. They aren’t so hidden any more.

You can expect that “deserted beach with powder soft white sand and turquoise blue water” to be full of fat Australians with tribal tattoos drinking buckets of watered down expensive alcohol. That “charming little village with smiling locals and cheap phad thai” is now a backpacker slum bursting with tattoo parlors and crazy Germans on scooters, oh and those locals aren’t exactly smiling because of you, though they are pretty happy to see your baht.

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The Ethics of Traveling to Burma

A couple of weeks ago I found myself sitting on a beach in Vietnam, miffed that my year abroad was about to come to a crashing halt, and desperately trying to find one more place to visit in Asia before I would have to go back to work. I wanted somewhere a little off the touristy trail (so not Bali then) somewhere I hadn’t been before (there goes Laos), somewhere survivable on my pitiful backpackers budget (adios, Philippines) and of course somewhere I would find remotely interesting (sorry, Singapore).  So that left Myanmar (Or Burma, if you are imperially inclined).

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What Will Prevent You From Traveling This Year?

I‘m not really the most festive person. I enjoy the holiday season because I get to spend time with my family but rarely put up a Christmas tree or any decorations.  When New Years rolls around I joke about resolutions but I don’t really feel any different or do anything to change the upcoming year.

That said, I find myself doing something during this first week of 2010 that feels like a big contradiction to the above statement: I’m planning my travel goals for the year.

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