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No Airport Wall Outlets? No Problem. 5 Gadgets I Pack to Avoid Digital Disconnect

Unexpected delays can leave you grasping for Wi-Fi networks or wall outlets to save your tech batteries. These items help, and they fit in your carry-on.

Kimanzi Constable CNET Voices Contributor
Kimanzi Constable is a CNET Voices contributor who writes about energy, personal finance, broadband and entrepreneurship. He is the author of four books and a freelance writer whose articles have been published in Fortune, AskMen, Forbes, Entrepreneur, Insider, SUCCESS Magazine, Parents, Travel & Leisure, NBC, CBS, Black Enterprise and over 80 other publications and magazines. He's a global traveler who has been to nearly countries and counting. Keep up with his writing at kconstable.com.
Expertise Travel, digital nomadism, entrepreneurship, broadband, energy, money Credentials
  • Publisher's Weekly bestselling author with over 2,000 articles published in 100 publications and magazines.

CNET Voices is a group of industry creators, contributors and emerging thought leaders that have paired with CNET’s award-winning editorial team to provide you with unique content from different perspectives.

Kimanzi Constable
3 min read
Getty Image/ Zooey Liao/ CNET

No one expects their next flight to be delayed or canceled, but the reality is that it happens often.


Meet industry creators, contributors and emerging thought leaders that have paired with CNET’s award-winning editorial team to provide you with unique content from different perspectives.

On a trip back from Japan in 2013, my flight was delayed by 14 hours. At the time, I was low on funds and couldn't afford to leave the airport and go book a hotel. I had to stay connected and powered up within the terminal if I wanted to share updates with loved ones and stave off boredom. Having the right gear in my carry-on would have made the whole ordeal a lot less stressful.

These gadgets have come in handy over the years for all kinds of travel. I've been a digital nomad for eight years, so I'm traveling year-round; having the right tech keeps me entertained, informed and able to get work done wherever I am in the world. I've used my gadgets on trains in Japan, ships in Greece, airplanes throughout South America, buses in Africa and car rides in Europe.

A recent survey found that 25% of Americans plan to travel internationally this summer. If you're one of them, pack one or more of these items in your carry-on so you don't get into a pinch in the event of an unexpected delay.


Travel has taught me that I can't always rely on the Wi-Fi network of the places I'm staying. 

In Kenya, where my family is from, I had to tether off my phone because the network at the Airbnb was nonexistent. I've also stayed in too many hotels with terribly slow Wi-Fi.

Having my mobile Wi-Fi device has helped me avoid many unexpected travel experiences. I like the RoamWiFi 4G LTE Mobile Hotspot Router because it's fast, has a good range and can connect to various devices to provide Wi-Fi coverage. It's an investment, but if internet connectivity is essential for your trips, consider prioritizing a hotspot router.


Over the years, international adapters have gotten smaller and more versatile, and you can now fit them in a backpack.

I travel with the EPICKA Universal Travel Adapter because it has multiple port types, so it works well as an all-in-one option. Be sure to check that the country you're visiting will be compatible with whichever adapter you end up packing.


This Anker cord has both normal power outlets and USB ports, and it's small enough to stuff into a carry-on. I can charge 11 devices at once if necessary, which is great for Airbnbs that look the part but are lacking in actual wall outlets.

The extension cord also has surge protection, which matters because other countries sometimes regulate power differently. Plug the extension cord into your international adapter; this will ensure you only need one adapter for your whole trip.


I spend a lot of time on the go, with few opportunities to power my electronic devices. Power banks have been a lifesaver on planes, trains, buses and cars.

I use the Anker MagGo Power Bank to keep my main electronics charged up, which for me are an iPhone, iPad, Bose headphones and MacBook Pro. It's small enough to fit in my carry-on, but robust enough to meet my power needs in the event of a setback, such as when the Airbnb or hotel has a power outage (which has happened before).

You never know when you'll be stuck somewhere while traveling. Ensuring you have enough power to keep your devices powered can help you in emergencies and maintain peace of mind.


Since I work remotely, I need to do a lot on my laptop while traveling. Typing that much on a laptop keyboard can hurt my wrists. I even wound up in a hospital in Colombia once because of nagging wrist pain. After that experience, I now pack a laptop stand everywhere I go.

The Tonmom Laptop Stand is adjustable to different heights, easy to assemble and small enough to fit into your laptop bag. Your wrists will thank you. Laptop stands are also good for your device because the elevation gives ventilation fans more space to release heat.

The right gear makes traveling easier

You never know what might happen while you travel, but having the right gadgets can help you prepare for those unexpected moments. Look at your upcoming trips and see if any of these gadgets would make the journey easier.