Travel Tips for the Technology Addict

Vacation seems like the perfect time to go off-grid and enjoy the simple life, until you realize your ability to find food, directions, bathrooms, and happiness depends on it.

So why not embrace your addiction? I mean, come on, happiness.┬áBesides, you can use your newfound connectivity to mess with your friends’ site analytics data:

Screen Shot 2014-03-25 at 12.03.07 AM

So without further ado, I give you three random tips on refusing to disconnect:

1. Get Cheap Cellular Data on Your Locked iPhone(s) In a Foreign Country

Step one: buy a cheap Android smartphone. There are tons on eBay. Step two: go to the foreign country. Step three: spend $15 on a SIM card (in Iceland, that buys you a cellular phone number + 1gb, plenty for a week). Step four: Put it in your Android and set it up as a tethering hotspot. Boom, instant connectivity for all your iPhones, anywhere with cell reception!

2. Free GPS

Your phone actually has a GPS chip in it that is completely independent from the cellular antenna that receives call and data signals. As such, no phone company has control over it, and you don’t have to pay to use it. (I finally realized that’s what the G in GPS really stood for.)

All you really need for that GPS chip to tell you something useful about your location is a map onto which your phone can place the ol’ blue dot. Fortunately, there is a free app called MapsWithMe. It lets you download OpenStreetMap data into your phone before you leave the mother country. Then when you’re driving around, you can always tell where you are.

So next time a car rental company offers you “fully integrated GPS navigation systems” for $11/day, feel free to laugh like a crazy person and run out of the store.

3. Convince People at the Airport to Give You Their Outlet

This tip I got from my friend Jess, who is a far more seasoned traveller than I. You should always travel with one of these:

61kl-ohwDtL._SL1500_It takes up very little room in your pack and guarantees that you will always be able to charge your phone/laptop/roomba, even when all the outlets are taken. Electricity is cool like that.

My name is Tinabeans, and I am an addict.