9 Tech Tips to Make Your Holiday Travels Go a Little Smoother
Whether you’re flying or driving this holiday season, chances are technology will play a prominent role. I’ve visited my family in Dallas for the last 14 years around the holidays and have collected a variety of tech-related tips and tricks along the way.
1. Charge your phone to 100% before you leave. Winter weather can cause flight delays and searching for an outlet at the airport is like playing a game of Where’s Waldo. Pro tip: Bring along a portable charger. Driving? Bring a car charger.
2. Remember to pack your wall charger. If you don’t have a portable charger, there’s no worse feeling than forgetting your wall charger and relying on someone else to have one, or having to buy one at your final destination.
3. Flying? Check in and utilize a mobile boarding pass. Just about all of the major airlines have the option of mobile boarding passes. Utilize them to avoid the paper clutter and you’ll probably have your phone out anyway.
4. Preserve battery on your phone by lowering brightness. I’ve resorted to this one a few times. Just remember to momentarily kick up the brightness when you display your mobile boarding pass. Some of the newer smartphones automatically brighten when you fire up the mobile boarding pass. Super slick.
5. Set a reminder a few days before your trip to download your favorite movies/music/books/podcasts to your phone, tablet or computer. Ever tried to download content — or simply watch a YouTube clip — from airport WiFi? Not pretty.
6. Driving? Download the GasBuddy app to locate the cheapest gas prices along the way.
7. Download the CommunityAmerica mobile app. Super handy for when you’re out of town. You can use your location to identify the nearest surcharge-free ATM in our CO-OP network of more than 30,000 options. Expecting a check or two for the holidays? No need to be in the Kansas City area to deposit them. Mobile Check Deposit in our app allows you to do it on the spot.
8. Big city traveler? Download the metro app of your destination city. For spots like Chicago and New York, you can increase efficiency as a traveler if you know what public transportation color line you’re supposed to board ahead of time. It can be overwhelming if you’re not familiar.
9. Destination close to the airport? Pass on renting a car in favor of downloading the Uber or Lyft apps. Uber recently introduced a new feature called UberPool, which provides a discount in exchange for picking up other riders headed the same way as you. I tried it last month in Washington DC. Pretty smooth experience and best of all, affordable. What would have cost me $18 for UberX cost me $9 with UberPool.
Do you have any additional tech-related travel tips? Let us know in the comments!
Eric Sorrentino blogs about the world of digital and tech at CommunityAmerica. He has been a published blogger and writer since 2006.