Like many, I’m constantly connected to technology. And while it might be better for me to unplug when travelling, it just isn’t always possible – how else do I stay up on the latest Twitter trends? So I thought it would be best to answer some tech-related travel questions people ask me.
Which is better on while travelling – a laptop or a tablet?
Depends – what do you plan on doing during your trip? While a tablet is great in a pinch when you need to send out email, onscreen typing can really be a drag so those of you who need to “work” on the trip may prefer a laptop. And if you’re worried about taking your prized laptop on your trip, you are apt to get yourself a Chromebook (a phenomenal budget accessory for anyone really).
Should I protect myself further when using WiFi at hotels/airports/coffee shops?
Yes. Yes. Yes times infinity. The internet is a dark & scary place and most WiFi networks you’ll connect to during your travels are just as bad. Think of it as leaving the windows of your car down in a rough part of town – you’re just asking for someone to go sniffing through.
The first thing you should do is ensure you have a robust anti-virus platform installed & make sure it’s up-to-date. You should do this at home too!
The second item, and likely most important when you connect to networks that are not yours, is to have a VPN (which stands for Virtual Private Network). A VPN helps harden your connection to the internet & secure the data you’re sending out to the world. This is important when you’re connecting to networks you have little control over. While I use Private Internet Access as my provider, there are many to choose from – free & paid (you usually get what you pay for).
Lastly, use common sense. No form of security works when you willingly “open the door.”
I want to travel smart. Do I really need my computer, and camera, and phone, and tablet, and…?
Not at all. If you think about it, your smart phone can probably handle the duties all of those will give you. If you have a newer phone, the camera is likely on par to that of your average digital handheld, can provide you nearly everything your tablet will & gives you the pocket portability your laptop cannot.
If you have any other tech-related travel questions, I’d be happy to answer them in the comments!