The Best Gadgets For Your Summer Holiday

By Tom Pritchard on at

Summer's here, and you know what that means. The weather's great (ish), the kids are finishing up the school year, and it's time to head off to a beach somewhere and do nothing for a week or two. Wherever you're going to sun yourself on a beach, head off on a road trip, or hike your way through some mountains, here's the tech you'll want to get your hands on to make it through.

Kindle, £60

Taking books on holiday is a time-honoured tradition, and the 21st century makes it easier than ever. If you're a reader, you can't go wrong with a Kindle - even if you prefer real books over their digital counterparts. If you're willing to wait another few weeks, you'll be able to get hold of Amazon's updated Kindle. It's thinner and lighter than before, has Bluetooth, a glare-free display, and 4GB of storage. The updated Paperwhite is coming as well, which has 6GB of storage. More than enough room for all your books. [Pre-order here]

Philips Fidelio NC1 Noise Cancelling Headphones, £123

You're going away, so you will probably want to listen to something - whether it's music, video, or an audiobook. So you need some sort of headphones. Rather than grabbing a semi-disposable pair of £10 earphones from the supermarket, do it right with the noise cancelling variety. Background noise is a pain, regardless of whether it comes from aeroplane engines or rowdy English tourists, so don't let it screw up your trip. [Buy it here]

GoPro Hero Session, £160

Action cams are reasonably new gadgets, but they are handy for documenting your trip without having to wander around doing your best Asian tourist impression. GoPro's Hero Session is a good choice simply because it's so small. It's not going to weigh you down, and it's going to take up less space in your luggage than its larger cousins. Plus it's durable and waterproof up to 10 metres, so it won't be getting destroyed very easily. [Buy it here]

VicTsing Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker, £15

You want your music, but you don't want to destroy speakers by getting them wet. No problem. Waterproofing is a thing, and if you're space and money conscious this one from VicTsing should do you just fine. It's waterproof, shockproof, a battery that should last all day, and since it's Bluetooth your phone can be far away from any damaging wetness. It's also got a clip, in case you're out in the big bad world and need to stop it falling out of your pocket or bag. If you're not worried about money or space, try the Braven BRV-X (£200). It's waterproof, shockproof, has much better sound, as well as 5,200 mAh power bank for charging your devices. [Buy it here]

Waterproof Tech Pouches

If you have things that need to be kept as far away from water as possible (like, I don't know, your phone), you're going to want to keep it safe. So grab yourself a waterproof pouch to stash it away. There are two options here, one for phones (up to 1800 mm x 100 mm in size), and another designed for tablets that can probably fit a bunch of other stuff as well. Both of them are touch-sensitive too, so you don't have to worry about taking things out to use them. [Buy the phone pouch here | Buy the tablet pouch here]


We all love our gadgets, so you're going to want to do everything you can to make sure they stay powered up during your stay. Luckily there are plenty of things you can do to make sure that happens. There's the transforming adaptor (£15) so you can actually plug your stuff into foreign sockets, complete with two USB ports. From there you can go for this charging 5-port USB hub (£18), a solar powered USB power pack with a 15,000 mAh capacity (£23), and a regular USB power pack with 22,400 mAh capacity (£20).

Travelex Supercard

You don't want to carry cash everywhere, and maybe traveller's cheques aren't your thing either. So how do you stop the bank screwing you with charges when you use your credit card abroad? With the Travelex Supercard, a pre-paid debit card that's linked to your own cards. The advantage being that using it abroad doesn't come with any charges. The only way this will net you any charges is if you withdraw money from cash machines (three per cent of the total), or you use it here in the UK (£1, plus one per cent of the total). [Register here]

Trakdot, £35

One to have just in case some stupid airline loses your luggage, or it gets stolen. So throw a Trakdot in there so you can figure out exactly where it is. It does this using a GSM SIM card, rather than GPS, to triangulate its position and text/email you a location when your luggage arrives - regardless of where it is in the world. You can also track its location online, or with an iOS/Android app. The only downside is that you do have to pay for the service. It's free for two weeks, but after that you'll have to pay £18 a year. [Buy it here]

Bluesmart Hand Luggage, £350

You need to take some luggage on holiday, but there are a few annoying factors involved. What if the suitcase itself could get ride of them for you? Not only does the Bluesmart have room for all your stuff, and special pockets for storing gadgets, it also comes with smartphone integration to keep an eye on how it's doing, a built-in scale to make sure you won't be saddled with extra baggage fees, 3G and GPS location tracking, and a built-in USB powerbank for charging one gadget at a time. Plus it has wheels, like any good suitcase should. [Buy it here]

Bluetooth Smart Padlock, £63

This is probably a little bit big to slap on your suitcase, but there are plenty of uses for padlocks for the security conscious travelling away from home. Keys can be lost, combinations can be forgotten, but this one can be unlocked via Bluetooth using your phone. All you need is the app. But phones run out of battery, which means you can unlock this with a combination as well. Just in case. [Buy it here]