Travel Gadgets

By Lucas Vidgen

Travel can be a very Zen-like experience. Throw some clothes in a bag, get the dog put down and you’re out the door. Some people, however, take the whole “preparation” thing a little more seriously. Take a look at some of these must haves… 

lostfoundThe Lost & Found Sound Tag

It’s a sad fact of life that some people lose their luggage. It’s an even sadder fact that some people think that by attaching name tags they will somehow prevent this from happening.

It has to be the absolute peak of misery, therefore, that somebody has decided that what we really need in this situation is a luggage tag that spits out a 20 second audio clip to help the bag get back to its owner. The makers suggest that you record your name, address, phone number, hotel’s name and address on the tag, but we think your 20 seconds would be much better spent recording insults and threats for baggage thieves.


gforceThe Gforce LED Clock

One of the great things about digital clocks is that they don’t keep you awake with their tick, tick, ticking. What exactly is the thinking behind the Gforce, then? Its makers, the Nichia Corporation, advertise the fact that it’s so bright you can see it from kilometers away (sweet dreams!) and then go on to make such lame claims as “You will always know what time it is and even the exact date.”

The days of only knowing the approximate date are clearly in the past. Thank you, Nichia Corporation.



 penoseThe Penose Trimmer

OK, men over 15 years of age. We know what we’re talking about here. That dirty little secret otherwise known as fly’s legs.

That’s right. Nasal hair.

The only thing grosser than having to trim your nasal hair is not doing it, and we at XelaWho agree that anything that can mechanize, simplify and speed this task up is worth the investment.

We’re unsure which situation would warrant the Penose’s ability to do the job underwater, and shaping your nasal trimmer like a pen could lead to some fairly embarrassing situations, but anything that keeps a dividing line between nose and moustache gets the thumbs up from us.

bananguardThe Banana Guard

Of all the delightfully kinky things that can be done with a banana, somewhere near the top of the list would have to be putting it in a plastic container and stuffing it in your backpack. Nice work, Banana Guard – you appear to have solved the squishy banana problem forever. There’s only one thing that worries us here – have our lives really become so trouble-free that now all there is left for us to do is solve the issue of the Bruised Banana? Only time will tell.



 briefcase-bbqThe Carry n’ Go BBQ

Generally speaking, a briefcase is not the first item on our packing list when we hit the road. Until now, that is. The Carry n’ Go (does every gadget have to have an n’ in its name?) is your classic barbecue, crammed into a fold-out briefcase setup. Easy to store in the trunk of your car, you’ll never be wondering what to do with that roadkill again. Plus you can look like a busy executive when really you’re just off down to the park to cook up some sausages and down a few coldies with friends.


 reef-dram-sandalThe Sip n’ Surf Sandal

Here at XelaWho we do not generally condone the wearing of reef sandals, except in certain circumstances involving, well, reefs. Then the Sip n’ Surf came along and changed all that. What’s special here is that the sandals have a special compartment in the sole, which holds about two shots of your favorite liquor.

Taking a swig out of your shoe may seem a slightly ungainly process (and unlikely to impress nearby beach bunnies), but we’ve decided that the combination of water sports and hard liquor is such a fine one that we have to give this one the thumbs up.


selkbagThe Wearable Sleeping Bag

Here at XelaWho we often bemoan the fact that we have to exit our sleeping bags if we want to shoot pool, do push ups or ride our bikes. Well thank you, Selk’bag for making our lives just that little bit easier. This wearable sleeping bag allows full movement of arms and legs, weighs in at a little under 2 kilos and will keep you toasty down to a temperature of 5 degrees celsius.





The Atmospheric Data Centeradc

You may not need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows, but with the handy Atmospheric Data Center, you’ll never be at a loss to know the exact level of humidity, which is always a great conversation starter.
Another bonus is that when you’re sweating your ass off down the beach you can be the guy who everybody loves, making periodic announcements like “Hey! It’s 39 degrees!”… “Hey! We just hit 40”… “Hey! Where’s everybody going?”. Other vital info that the ADC provides includes barometric pressure and altitude readings.




translatorThe Electronic Translator

We’ve all come to accept that learning a language is hard work (except for Dutch, which is really just English with a funny accent) and it’s become plain to us over the years that hard work never really amounts to anything. That’s why we recommend the ECTACO Partner Dictionary and Travel Audio PhraseBook E15J800.
This little baby’s got a 10,000,000 word vocabulary (roughly 50,000 times bigger than your average XelaWho writer) and its features include reverse translation, state of the art voice recognition and professionally narrated native-speaker voices, meaning that you’ll be busting out fluent conversations (in a Stephen Hawkins kind of way) from the moment you clear customs.


The Mile High Kitmilehighkit

Extensive research by the XelaWho team has revealed that there was a time in history when bumping ulgies was one of the few activities that didn’t require a whole lot of equipment. Well, those days are gone, according to the pundits at Oro design. If you want to get your groove on in the airplane bathroom, you’ll be needing the Mile High Kit, which includes a set of scented cloths, a tin of hot cinnamon mints, a folding pocket mirror, a blindfold, a “do not disturb” door hanger, massage oil and personal lubricant, a feather tickler, a mini-personal massager, three condoms, and a pleasure ring.


The Moblie Washerwashingmachine

There comes a point in traveling when everything comes down to laundry – you can get so over sights and sounds that washing your clothes becomes an Activity for the Day.

The team at Astone understands perfectly, which is why they invented the Mobile Washer – it weighs just 2kg and when inflated (that’s right, inflated) and holds over six liters of water.

That oughta keep you busy.


The Land Walkerlandwalker1

Streets flooded again and you don’t want to get your shoes wet? Tired of haggling outrageous prices with unreasonable taxi drivers? Don’t worry – the folks at the Sakakibara Kikai Corporation have got your back. Their Land Walker is a 3.4 meter high sit-in robot which travels at a zippy 1.5 km per hour. There’s only one at the moment, meaning that we’ll have to wait a while before we can see what we’ve been waiting so long for – robot wrestling – and even longer before we can see what we’re really waiting on; two foxy robot chicks getting it on in an all out cyborg catfight.

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