Toward the end of 2018, it became evident that the technology I used while traveling was woefully inadequate. I had a first-generation iPad Mini to watch movies or TV shows on the plane and an 11-inch MacBook Air from 2011 to write on for our blog while on a plane or in a hotel room.
I replaced the battery in the MacBook to try and preserve its life and did a full format and reinstall of macOS High Sierra to remove anything that was slowing it down. Still, I could only have a few tabs open on Safari or no more than a few programs open before it started to get sluggish.
As for the iPad Mini, it had reached that point where the newest iOS will no longer update. That also meant I could no longer update any apps, except those that still made versions that worked on such an ancient device. I got a constant lag when streaming video, even with a strong WiFi connection.
I’m a list writer (Note from Sharon: OMG, is he a note writer!). In fact, to this day I still use a hard copy packing list when getting ready for a trip.
I’ve started to notice that besides the list of things I need to bring with me, I also need a list of the things I need to do before the trip. This is the stuff you don’t want to remember you haven’t done the night before or, even worse, the day of your vacation.
As our lives get busier, the list keeps getting longer because I keep forgetting to do more or more things.
Getting online at a hotel can be frustrating. Sometimes it’s difficult to know what the WiFi network name is for the hotel. Then when you can connect, you usually have to log in with your credentials. This usually means entering in your name and room number. If you get premium internet, you have to select it even though the login page says you’ll need to pay, the front desk said you won’t be charged and they’re never wrong, right?
There are plenty of tips in that article but at the last hotel where we stayed, I was stumped. I was able to log into the hotel network on my MacBook and my iPad Pro but my phone was resisting. No matter what I did, I couldn’t get the login box to pop up.
Technology marches forward every day. A device that was a “must have” last year is a relic today. I’ve shown what tech I used to bring with me, so I thought it would be interesting to see “what’s in my bag” when I go on a trip nowadays.
I’ll start out by saying that while I’d like to have the newest technology, I hardly ever do. If something works for me, I’m gonna keep using it. Case in point, I wrote this on a 7-year-old MacBook Air. When the battery stopped holding a charge, I replaced it…all it took was a $70 kit from Amazon and 15 minutes to install. At the same time, I also clean installed High Sierra OS. This computer is as “like new” as it’s ever going to be. I’m sure Apple would have preferred me to buy a new one but this works just fine to write this article, thank you very much.
I was just digging around in the darker corners of my hard drive and found copies of my packing lists from 2003 and 2005. I still use a version of this list to help me pack for trips even today, but it’s been updated significantly in the last 12-15 years.
I thought it would be enlightening to look back and see what items we felt were “travel necessities” back in the early 2000s. All that I ask is that you don’t judge me too harshly on this list (Note from Sharon…TOO LATE! I’m judging the fact that you travel a minimum of 6 times per year and STILL USE A FLIPPIN’ PACKING LIST….)