Charge your Apple Watch and more on the go with this $30 power bank

The Jetpak will not only keep your watch charged, it can also top off a phone or other mobile device. Plus: Six months of Tello phone service for just $42.

Rick Broida Senior Editor
Rick Broida is the author of numerous books and thousands of reviews, features and blog posts. He writes CNET's popular Cheapskate blog and co-hosts Protocol 1: A Travelers Podcast (about the TV show Travelers). He lives in Michigan, where he previously owned two escape rooms (chronicled in the ebook "I Was a Middle-Aged Zombie").
Rick Broida
3 min read

Did Santa bring you an Apple Watch for the holidays? Then you've no doubt discovered it's good for two days, tops, before needing to recharge. And that can pose problems when you're traveling. You have to bring along the little charging disc from your nightstand, find yet another outlet to plug it into and risk losing it along the way.

A better solution: Pack a mobile charger that's also an Apple Watch charger. Like this one: For a limited time, and while supplies last, ZipKord has the 3SIXT Jetpak Apple Watch Dual Power Bank for $29.99 with promo code ZKCS1. (If you're not into monkeying around with codes, you can use this link to go directly to checkout with the discount already applied.)

The Jetpak features a 5,200-mAh rechargeable battery. Although it's not specified how many times you'd be able to recharge your watch, let's do some math: The Apple Watch Series 3 has a 279-mAh battery. In theory, you'd be able to fully recharge it around 18 times. I don't know if that's anywhere near the reality, but even if you get just, say, 10 charges, that should last you most trips.

Of course, that's if you use the Jetpak to charge only your Apple Watch. It has a Type-A USB port as well, so you can also use it to charge a phone, wireless earbuds or the like. But that'll reduce the available juice for your watch, natch.

One thing to note: The specs indicate support for Apple Watch Series 1-4; there's no mention of the Series 5. My guess is that's simply due to a lack of spec updates, as the Series 5 is identical to its predecessors, charging-wise. I can't say it with 100% certainty, but this should work with the Series 5.

Meanwhile, here are some other great cheap accessories for your Apple Watch.

Looking for super-cheap phone service? Here's 6 months for $42

Speaking of travel, I'm a big believer in carrying an inexpensive backup phone, just in case your regular one gets lost, stolen, broken or whatever. Ideally that backup phone will have service, hopefully inexpensive as well.

Here's one option: For a limited time, you can get a 6-month Tello Prepaid Plan with 2GB of LTE data for $41.65. That's after applying promo code CHEAP15 at checkout.

Before I say anything further, let me say this: Read all the terms and conditions. There are no gotchas to speak of, but you need to make sure this will work for you. For starters, you need an unlocked, CDMA-compatible phone or one of a select set of iPhone or Nexus models. (See Tello's compatibility page for more info.)

Assuming you're all good, this looks like a great plan for those who have good Sprint coverage and can get by on 2GB of LTE data per month. (After you hit that limit, you get unlimited data, but at 2G speed.) I mean, it literally works out to just $7 per month. Doesn't get any cheaper than that!

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