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10 Awesome Gifts for the Conference Goer in Your Life

by Rita Mills, Director of Customer Engagement

Traveling for business can at once be fun and exhausting, interesting and monotonous, enriching and exhausting.

I’m always on the lookout for tools that will ease time at the airport, allow me to work comfortably on the plane, or make a hotel stay as comfortable as possible. Here are some of my personal favorites that enhance the experience of living on the road.

1. Packing cubes

As a chronic container-collector in recovery, I was reticent about packing cubes, but couldn’t help myself from trying them out. I first used these last year, and they’re a life saver – especially if, like me, you’re an iterative packer. They keep your clothes organized before, during and after a trip. A definite must-have.

2. Mini steam iron

Don’t you hate pulling out the ironing board and the iron from the hotel closet? It’s awkward and takes up so much room. This tiny steam iron does a good job of smoothing your clothes, and you can use it on a hotel room desk. Powerful enough to use as a steamer, and small enough to tuck into luggage.

3. Travel laptop stand

Laptops were a boon to business travelers to stay productive while on the go. Unfortunately, laptops have also created a legion of people with poor posture and aching backs. This collapsible stand helps with ergonomics while you’re on the road, keeping your body aligned while you work.

4. LED headlamp

When my sister-in-law proudly donned her headlamp on a family trip, I thought she was ridiculous. Boy, was I wrong! This comes in handy for more than coal mining: reading in bed, better light on the plane, or two-handed tasks that need good light. Great for camping, too. Many brands and price points available.

5. Bluetooth travel lock

I’ve seen luggage with built-in tracking, and thought it would be handy – more than a few times my bag ends up being the last off the conveyor belt in baggage claim, causing some anxiety that my suitcase had gotten lost. These often come at a steep price, however these Bluetooth enabled locks do the trick! AirBolt offers security and peace of mind. And because it operates through a smartphone app, you never have to worry about losing the tiny little key.

6. Traveler Dopp kit 

Again, I try to avoid amassing too many containers to collect things in. But this is my kind of ditty bag for my kind of packing! It lies flat, you drop your items on top, then scoop it up and go! It makes a handy pad to keep toiletries and prescriptions neat at the bathroom sink.

7. JamStik

Full disclosure: I don’t have one of these, nor do I play guitar. But now I want to learn, to give me something creative and productive to do on the road! Perfect gift for your favorite musician traveler.

8. Wacaco Minipresso

When I’m on the road, I miss my familiar coffee in the morning. Usually the in-room options are bleh, and I yearn for my favorite Nespresso pods. This hand-expressed espresso maker is a godsend! Fill it with hot water, pop in the pod, a couple of pumps and voila! Available for regular ground coffee, too.

9. Smartphone camera lens kit  

I have been loving my iPhone X and the amazing photos it takes. Now I’m a little obsessed. This lens kit will take your phone photography to the next level! The macro lens takes clear and vibrant super-up-close images (think flowers), and the wide angle works magic when you can’t step back any further. I’m in love.

10. Anker PowerCore

I’ve been searching for the right portable power charger at the right price for a couple of years now. On a recent trip, a friend in the music technology business said his engineers all swear by the Anker PowerCore series. Completely reliable. And at only $20? Sold.


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