Our smartphones are in our hands every day. We are so used to having the typical features and apps in the palm of our hands that we think we have them mastered.
When traveling with your smartphone, there are a few things you’ll want to add, update or change in order to use your device to its fullest potential.
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10 Tips for Traveling with Your Smartphone
Turn Off Data Roaming
Data roaming can play a big part in unexpected charges showing up on your phone bill, especially during international travel. Data roaming occurs when your network provider is not available in a given area and your phone connects to another in the interim.
When you are going to an unfamiliar area it is important to make sure that roaming is turned off as it ensures your phone won’t automatically connect to Wi-Fi and guards against incurring the charges associated with roaming.
If you turn data roaming off prior to your trip, it will prompt you to connect to a Wi-Fi source when trying to access the internet. You can use this as your reminder to use the free Wi-Fi at hotels, restaurants, cafés, and other locations.
Download Necessary Apps
Depending on where your travels may take you, there are numerous apps to help get you around! To make sure you’re not caught off guard, ensure to take the time to download all the necessary apps before leaving.
While traveling, you may be caught without reliable Wi-Fi, or need an app urgently. To alleviate any excess stress, make a list of the apps you’ll need and double-check that they have all downloaded prior to departure.
To make them even easier to locate on your phone, make a specific travel folder so they are all conveniently accessible when needed.
Buy a Reliable Phone Case & Screen Protector
Purchasing a reliable phone case and screen protector can help ensure that your smart phone makes it through your travels safely. Protecting the outside of your phone is a priority to ensure you can use all of your necessary apps and keep in touch with your friends and family during your adventures.
There are so many different phone protection options out there, but I’m currently using one of the Gear4 case from ZAGG. I’ve been through quite a few cases and I love the grip on the back of this case, as well as the sleek feel. It’s not too bulky so I can easily fit it in my pocket, but it protects my phone well.
34% of Gear4’s iPhone cases use D3O® Bio, the world’s most advanced, plant-based protection material. D3O® Bio is made with up to 45% renewable resources, as opposed to fossil-based resources.
I am using ZAGG’s InvisibleShield screen protector. They offer five different screen saving options from traditional glass screen protection, anti-microbial options, as well as anti-glare, and privacy screens. I didn’t realize there were this many options when it came to screen protectors and I love the blue light filter options!
As a global leader and innovator for screen protection, protective cases, tablet keyboards, and power management solutions, ZAGG delivers 360-degree protection for the devices that connect people to their world.
Knowing your smartphone will be safe will also give you peace of mind to travel however you want to. It’s one of the many benefits of device protection!
Know Your Plan and Your Phone
Understanding your phone plan can help make your trip a lot easier! Check your network provider’s coverage map to see if you will have phone service in the location you are traveling to. Or if any extra fees may be charged in that location.
If you are traveling internationally, look into whether you have an international option associated with your phone plan. If not, take time to weigh the options of paying the additional fees or purchasing an international plan through your provider versus buying an international sim card when you arrive at your destination.
If you have done a recent update on your current phone or recently purchased a new one, spend some extra time learning about new features and settings you may not be familiar with. This will allow more ease with use and eliminate any frustration with functions that work slightly differently than before.
Get Enough Cloud Backup Space
According to a recent travel survey conducted by ZAGG, 91% of people use their smartphones to take photos and videos while on vacation. Both photo and video files take up large amounts of storage space on smartphones, with video files being the biggest culprit. Take the time to check your phone’s current storage level and assess if you need to increase your storage space.
To increase your storage, you can either delete files, or purchase more storage. This may be a good time to go through your cloud storage to organize, delete or move any unnecessary or large files and empty out old Dropbox and Google Drive content.
Pack Chargers in Your Carry-on
We rely on our smartphones to do so much for us while we’re away from home so making sure they stay charged and functional is key. Always be sure to pack your charging cords and wall adapters as well as a reliable back up and keep them easily accessible.
For security and ease, pack your chargers in your carry-on in case there is any sort of mix up with baggage, or if you have an opportunity to get a quick charge in while en route to your destination.
Bring a Portable Power Bank
Investing in a power bank can be great under any condition but even more important when traveling. Oftentimes, there may not be any outlets available to charge your devices and a portable charger can offer you the security of knowing you will never be stuck with a dead battery.
The mophie power bank by ZAGG comes in many different sizes and options to fit any traveler’s needs. The styles range from mini packs to power banks with stands and wallets attached and more. They are compatible with iPhone, Google Pixel, Samsung Galaxy and other Qi-enabled devices.
I’m currently using the powerstation go rugged AC when I go on road trips with my travel trailer. It’s very compact and is perfect for charging my laptop, phone and camera gear.
It also comes with battery jumper cables and it came in handy when I came home from a long trip to find my car wouldn’t start! I recommend leaving this in your vehicle when parking your car while traveling, especially at an airport parking garage. You don’t need someone to help you because the power bank actually jump starts your car!
Take Photos and Screenshots of Important Documents
When arriving at a new destination, it may take some time to adjust to your surroundings, and your device might not automatically connect to Wi-Fi. Without an internet connection, you may not immediately be able to pull up any bookings or confirmation numbers.
Use the screenshot function on your phone to your advantage and have screen shots of all travel and reservation information, and take pictures of your license, passport, credit card and any other important documents.
Download Important Information
In case you struggle to find Wi-Fi while exploring, use Google Maps to your advantage. Google Maps allows you to pre-download maps and access them without internet! Pre-download maps of paths between sites you may visit just in case get caught without an internet connection on your adventure.
Plan ahead when downloading maps and beware of public, non-password-protected Wi-Fi. Many of these are scams, even if the Wi-Fi looks legitimate. Keep yourself and your information safe by avoiding these networks.
If you prefer to listen to specific music or podcasts while you’re exploring, take the time to download those in advance while connected to a trusted wireless network.
Turn on Find My Phone and Remote Wiping
Unfortunately, there is always a small chance that you may misplace your smart phone and to make the odds of finding it more likely, turn on your Find My Phone option and make sure you know how to easily use and access this function.
Since you’ll have all your important documents saved on your phone for convenience and security, enable the remote wiping feature in case your phone ends up in the hands of a stranger.
Technology can be intimidating, but it can also be your greatest tool when traveling. Spending the time to familiarize yourself with the ways your smartphone can contribute to your travels will have you set and ready to go in no time!