Mango Beat: 6 Entertaining Must-haves For Traveling

by Camille Conopio
Originally published on

Trips can get stressful and boring at times, especially during the long hours of transit. Personal necessities and documents are the top priorities when packing carry-on baggage. Apart from the basic must-haves, here are six things, aside from your unstoppable smartphone, that are sure to keep you entertained during your travels if sleeping seems to be impossible on the flight.

1. E-book/books

Travelers are bound to have some downtime and one of the most preferred things to do (aside from sleeping) is to read a book. Should you find yourself getting bored or about to doze off while waiting to board the bus or plane, a book (that you may not have finished, one you just can’t get enough of, or something new you bought for this trip) is sure to keep you up. Reading books transport you to another world, so why not start your own journey within a journey? Not much of a bookworm? A crossword, quiz, or coloring book is also an interesting option. Classic paperbacks might have their own charms but there are no qualms about taking along an e-book reader either, giving you the option to load as many books as you wish without compromising your baggage weight.

2. Music/audio player

No doubt smartphones are the universal media player almost everyone has. However, if you enjoy having your earphones plugged, listening to music or having a marathon of your favorite TV series on your phone chances are its battery will drain much faster. And though you’ve packed your power bank for charging, it’s best to always be reminded that power supply is limited while traveling. Being made to play music, your MP3 or MP4 player won’t take up much space in your bag and will work its musical magic for hours to come. Bring it along because it’s always good to have a second option at hand.

3. Laptop or tablet

Whether you’ve got some business to work on, papers due in class, or catching up onyour (downloaded) movies or series, the laptop or tablet is your ultimate partner on a long-haul flight. Notonly will keep you entertained but it can also serve as a backup battery pack for your phone and many other gadgets as well.

4. Journal

Despite having a digital notepad on your phone, tablet, or laptop, having a small notebook orjournal made of paper will definitely come handy. Travel can be quite stressful - from preparing yourthings and dealing with long lines to the actual travel. Often, when one is high up above the clouds,boredom and feelings of homesickness will usually kick in, and this is where the journal becomes yoursaving grace. It’s an escape, a storybook, a planner, an evaluation, a map and a reminder of your life’s journeys from the past.

5. Noise-canceling headphones/earphones

Many things can get so annoying on a travel – it could be the plane’s engines, the droning bus air-conditioning unit, children screaming (or crying), other travelers chatting loudly, or could be a seatmate snoring soundly. A little noise will still disturb the most chill of vibes, so spare yourself from going nuts on your travels. Don’t forget to bring those awesome headphones designed to reduce unwanted ambient sounds through active noise control. Make sure nothing bothers you while enjoying a newly-purchased album or a movie in peace while commuting.

6. Camera

Some share travels through written stories, others by means of photos. While the latest smartphones are a convenient and ideal option, the features of a camera (whether a compact point-and- shoot or a DSLR) are guaranteed to deliver A-grade results. The only challenge when one chooses to use a camera is the bulk that comes along with it – the accessories (charger, lenses, tripods, etc.) but thinking about the creative documentation you can come up with from your travels is truly rewarding. Explore your camera while killing time, and you’ll be ready to snap like a pro in no time.
Packing all six of these is sure to help put you out of misery but don’t forget their ultimate partners as well:
USB cable. Planes and some transit vehicles are now equipped with USB ports which makes charging any gadget more convenient for travelers. During downtime, when phone’s memory is full and you got your laptop with you, why not transfer some files! It can come in handy for you or to a fellow traveler, you never know. There’s a reason why U in USB stands for universal, so make sure to have it with you.
Back-up battery pack. It could be an extra battery for the camera or phone or simply a power bank that can charge almost any gadget (long as you have both the lightning and USB cable of course). Many things can happen while on a travel but running out of phone battery shouldn’t be one of them. Other power banks are designed with a LED flashlight so it’s absolutely a must-have in your travel bag.

Related links: