If you’re lucky enough to have traveled abroad, you’ll know that it’s one of the most rewarding experiences one can embark on. As a provider of Teach English abroad programs, we’ve seen literally hundreds of millennials undertaking life-changing trips every year, using their teaching placements as a stepping stone for making incredible travel memories.
In this article, we’re gonna be looking at the items that most millennials can’t bear to travel anywhere without. For millennials, travel is about self-discovery, trailblazing our own path in life, it’s about expressing independence and courage. But, as everyone the world over knows, us millennials love our gadgets; we may be fearless but being digitally connected to those we care about is just as important!
So here’s a list of 10 of our most important travel items from the high-tech to low-tech and everything in between:
In the age of “if you didn’t get a photo then you won’t there”, it’s easy to see why a camera can be the most important part of any trip. Something to capture all those amazing moments one experiences while traveling. Interestingly, even though most smartphones these days can take really great photos, millennials still opt for a camera to capture their moments and ultimately save them to look back on them in the future.
Hot tip: Opt for taking at least two lenses, such as the standard wide angle 17-55mm lens, try buying a rather inexpensive medium-range lens like Canon’s EF 50mm f/1.8 STM, it will be great for portraits, day, night and action photography.
The mobile phone is such a powerful tool in all our lives today. We do everything we needed to do on them and they just make traveling that much easier. From online check-ins, booking accommodation to calling a cab etc. These are all things we do on our mobile phones. Mobile phones play an even bigger role in the lives of millennials as we’ve never really had to live without them, so why travel without one?
Hot tip: Make sure your phone backs up your photos and that you have as much cloud storage space as possible before you depart. There’s nothing worse than losing your phone abroad and all your photos go with it.
Apps are such a vital part of millennials lives, gone are the days where you had to carry a map to walk through a city. As millennials, we believe in making our lives as easy as possible, so if there’s an app that can do something for us that we don’t have to do ourselves, we will use the app.
Uber/Grab: A millennials best friend when traveling anywhere. With the touch of a screen, they can get a taxi to take them from A-B without speaking the local language.
Duolingo: In a foreign country and can’t speak the local language? No worries, this app helps you say a phrase in your own language, translates it and then projects the local language out the speaker.
Citymaps: This app helps millennials travel through any city in the world without getting lost. From popular spots, to where to eat, accommodation and so on, this app helps locate everything you’d need to see in a city.
Maps.Me: A very cool app that lets users download the map and use it offline. It features, Accommodation, health, shops, transport, entertainment and all the major attractions of that particular city. It really is incredible, especially because you can use it offline.
Remember those days when you were at an airport and your mobile phone battery ran out and that was it, you had to read a magazine to keep yourself occupied? Well, millennials remember those days too, we dreaded them, which is why the power bank came along. A power bank is essentially a battery to charge your other batteries. Yes, that’s where we are as a society, we’re so consumed by our gadgets that we need to charge things that charge them too.
We can all agree that power banks are very useful, they can always come in handy in desperate times. When you’re traveling home or abroad and like most millennials, you have all your tickets on your phone, instead of being stranded when the battery dies, you can plug in your power bank!
Hot tip: When buying a power bank, an important question is, for what device are you going to use your power bank? A laptop needs more power than a smartphone. A smartphone can be charged with a power bank of 3.350 mAh but a laptop needs more power. In need of a laptop power bank? Use a power bank with a capacity of 30.000 mAh or higher.
Earphone or Headsets
Go to any subway or metro in the world and a common scene will be people with their earphones in, listening to music or podcasts, watching videos and so on. Personal space has become something that this generation takes very seriously. With the hustle and bustle of life being so intense, millennials use earphones and headsets as a form of escapism, so when we’re in a public space or traveling, the last thing they want to happen is someone interfering with their “zone”.
Hot Tip: Pack noise-canceling headphones, you’ll be thankful if you have to take that overnight bus in Myanmar where they play Burmese movies at full-blast deep into the night!
With such a big chunk of milinilials having online businesses and doing their work online, laptops have become an essential item to travel with. On the entertainment front, laptops are the device of choice. Platforms like Netflix and Amazon prime are increasingly becoming an important part of their lives, whether it’s lounging in an airport waiting for a connecting flight or sitting at a Starbucks waiting for a bus to your next destination, having something to watch is the best way to kill some hours.
Hot tip: Make sure you have your laptop set to auto-backup. If you have a buy a new on in a hurry, it can be a real buzz-kill to have lost all your work!
Mobile Wifi Unit
There’s no better way to stay connected in a foreign country than having one of these mobile wi-fi routers. With data roaming costing so much in some countries, millennials have found that using portable wifi devices saves them a lot of money. You can be anywhere in the world with signal and you can connect to the internet. There’s something about being connected that millennials can’t seem to get enough of, hence why social media is still such a big part of their lives.
Hot Tip: Check out prospective mobile networks before you arrive at your destination. Some are better than others and you don’t want to be that sucker who gets duped by that dodgy kiost at the airport because it was the first place you saw when you arrived.
Ever landed up in a hotel room and they told you they had universal adapters and your chargers just didn’t fit in the adapters? Well, this is something millennials, like many others, would like to avoid. The key to avoiding this from happening is to always pack your own universal adapter. This will help to ensure that all your travel gadgets are always charged when you get to your accommodation.
Hot tip: This Universal Power Adapter from Sunpak(R) is perfect if you are traveling abroad. It has a compact, snap-together design so you don’t have to worry about losing plugs anymore. It also features built-in fused surge and spike protection and a built-in auto-switching USB charger. This travel adapter includes adapters for the US, UK, Europe, and Australia.
For years, millennials use to look at people who had satchels as uncool and not very smooth. But over the last few years, satchels have taken over the world. People who travel find them to be the most convenient items. Traveling compact and light matters a great deal to millennials, so being able to put their passports and important documents somewhere they can constantly see them has become a game changer.
Using these bags to put all your important belongings means millennials hardly have “hand-luggage” anymore. This makes traveling that much easier for them.
Hot tip: As tempting as it may be to purchase these trendy colorful satchels that all the cool kids have, but when traveling abroad, it might be better to purchase a satchel with a more basic color so you don’t attract people to your very important belongings.
Quality Travel backpack
Comfort and convenience are very important to millennials when choosing a backpack. The bag has to say you are traveling but you’re not an ignorant foreigner that’s trying to find themselves while sitting at a 5-star resort in Bali. Millennials believe in traveling to find a deeper purpose in life and educating themselves on other people’s cultures. Believe or not but the backpack can show exactly what type of traveling you’ll be doing and what you’ll be looking to find on those travels.
Hot tip: When traveling to countries known to have petty crime, it might be a good idea to get a backpack with a chest strap. If you’re planning to teach English in Vietnam for instance, you must beware of people on motorbikes that tend to ride past and snatch people’s backpacks. This is where having a backpack with chest and/or stomach straps would come in handy.
Teach abroad destination Idea: Vietnam!
It’s no secret that Vietnam is a fascinating country to explore and one of the best ways to see it is by teaching English in Vietnam. Already a major travel destination, it’s no surprise Vietnam’s become our fastest growing a program. It’s the ideal location for those looking for a beautiful setting to live in while benefiting from high salaries as well as extremely low cost of living. Check out our video below on what it’s like to live and teach English in Vietnam.
Ready to make Vietnam your base for your future travels? We’ll send you more info!