It’s about the journey not the destination, they say – but it’s hard to be a happy traveller when a dusting of snow has delayed your flight and this year’s Christmas is happening at Heathrow.
Upgrade your getaway with these nomadic items: from backpacks to trackers to self-cleaning bottles, this globetrotting gear offers a one-way ticket to smarter travel – no miles necessary.
Sure, it won’t do anything to hasten your departure, but at least you’ll feel like you’re ready for adventure. Provided Father Christmas gets clearance to land, of course.
Cotopaxi Allpa 42L Travel Pack (€220)
Winter sun might be fun for some, but there’s nothing like a spot of festive exploration – and if adventure is calling this Christmas, Cotopaxi’s Allpa sack is what you want from Santa: a rugged all-rounder that’s all kinds of clever, it’s the ultimate tool for one-bag travel.
Big enough for gear galore but sufficiently small to carry on-board, the 42-litre pack zips open like a suitcase for easy access, while a raft of mesh pockets keep your whole haul organised inside. Littered with lash points and sturdy grab handles, an adaptable strap setup means the burly bag can also be carried several ways – ideal for arrival halls and jungle crawls alike.
Native Union SMART Charger PD (£37)
Off the plane, hail a ride, drop the bags and hit the town. Great plan, except your phone’s flat and it’ll take an hour just to hit 25%. Shame you didn't stash this smart charger in your suitcase: equipped with a USB-C Power Delivery port, it can juice your travel tech in a jiffy.
A surprisingly striking piece of plug-in utility, the angular adapter also packs an additional USB-A port good for 18W power, as well as a trio of interchangeable charging heads to suit almost every destination. If only your foreign language skills were so versatile.
Harber London Travel Wallet with RFID protection (£79)
Travel might be a tonic for the soul, but you’ll need a stiff gin when you reach the check-in desk and realise your passport’s back at the hotel. Avoid the drama of forgotten documents with this wayfaring wallet.
Slimline and sumptuous, Harber’s leather billfold is built for those on the go: besides space for more than a dozen cards, there’s a low-profile passport pocket, dual compartments to keep different currencies distinct and even a place to stash a spare SIM card. It’s all RFID protected, too, so your identity’s another thing that’s safe. Unless you lose the wallet.
Larq Bottle Movement (£78)
After twelve hours on any tour bus, cool H2O will naturally be top of your wish list – but buying a bottle is bad for the planet, no matter how parched you are. Want pure water without the plastic waste? Larq’s lightweight canteen is the answer to your aqua dreams.
Find a stream that’s free from particulates, brim the stainless steel cylinder and hit the button on the top. Give it a minute and a UV-C light in the lid will blast bacteria and banish contaminants to give you properly fresh refreshment. Not sure about the source? Tap twice for Adventure Mode, which runs a 3-minute cycle to destroy 99.9999% of nasties. Self-cleaning and filter-free, it’s truly a flask for the planet.
Fresh 'n Rebel Clam ANC (£130)
Nature’s noises might be soothing for the soul, but three nights in the wild with a nattering companion is enough to drive anyone primal. Take those twigs out of your ears: these folding ‘phones from Fresh ’n Rebel can mute your mate without going full Lord of the Flies.
Shipped in seven distinctive shades, the Clam cans carry active noise-cancelling tech that can deftly banish background sounds, transporting you to a realm of aptX Bluetooth bliss. And, with a battery good for 30 hours with ANC enabled, your mate will run out of energy long before the headphones do.
Archipelago: An Atlas of Imagined Islands (£25)
It’s fun being a footloose wanderer, but once your passport’s full of stamps and you’ve put a pin in every place, there’s a question every roamer has to face: where next? Expand your horizons and visit the fictional with this tome of make-believe destinations.
Curated by historian Huw Lewis-Jones to celebrate 300 years since Daniel Defoe first published his castaway tale, Archipelago is an atlas of islands invented by illustrators – complete with labels, locations and landmarks. A work of creative cartography and magical fabrication in equal measure, this mythical map book won’t get you anywhere – but your inner Robinson Crusoe will relish it.
Tile Slim (£25)
Keys? Wallet? Phone? The pocket pat-down is a dance known to wayfarers the world over. Come up empty and frantic rummaging is sure to ensue. Quit rifling through your rucksack: attach this waterproof Bluetooth tracker to your assets to prevent the malady of misplaced particulars.
Shaped like a credit card and lightweight to boot, slip the slimline finder in your billfold and it’ll log its location at regular intervals. See it’s last-known position via the smartphone app, then activate its raucous ringer at a range of 61m – before, naturally, discovering it was in your back pocket all along.
Anker PowerCore Essential 20000 PD (£40)
On-the-road entertainment might be better than ever, but flatten your battery and it’s back to playing I Spy. Avoid the tedium of competitive looking and keep your blower alive with this capacious power bank.
Its textured shell harbours a 20,000mAh capacity that can boost most mobiles more than five times over, while USB-C Power Delivery means high-speed juice that can go both ways. Want to be responsible with your new-found power? There’s also a USB-A port capable of 18W charging – perfect for saving fellow travellers from the dreaded dead cell.