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Travel Gadgets Gift Guide


Traveling can be tons of fun but just like those days where you stay at home, stuff happens. Here's our round-up of new products that can either prevent those little snafus or help you deal with them when they happen. Bon voyage!

VinniBag

With TSA regulations forbidding most liquids from being stowed in your carry-on luggage you're left with little choice but to pack precious cargo, like say a nice bottle of wine, in your checked baggage. And that means your cherished libation may be subject to getting knocked around and possibly broken open during transport. Enter the VinniBag! This item is made of heavy duty and durable plastic and has an inflatable cushion (just a few puffs!) that surrounds your bottle, giving it a highly-protective and liquid-tight way to ride home. VinniBag is custom made to accommodate liquor bottles but you can also put things like camera lenses, perfume or olive oil bottles, collectibles or other fragile items in it. Take it camping and out on the boat too; it floats! Meets all TSA regulations and stores flat when not in use. www.vinnibag.com

FixnZip

You're at the airport getting ready for a wonderful vacation overseas and your flight is boarding shortly. You're digging in your carry-on bag, getting all your electronics, snacks and reading material ready for the journey, and when you go to zip the bag back up, the zipper breaks so you can't close the bag up properly. Now what? FixnZip is a small and easy to carry zipper repair kit that'll work on metal or plastic, teeth or coil zippers on luggage, purses, jackets, backpacks, trousers and basically anything that has a zipper. The use of tools, thread or needles is not necessary. And best of all, you can remove FixnZip when you get home and put it in reserve for the next zipper emergency! www.fixnzip.com

HomingPIN

It's scary to think that airlines mishandle about 20 million bags a year. If you're a frequent flyer, it's only a matter of time before one of those bags is yours. In that situation you want everything possible going for you, and HomingPIN can help. HomingPINs are tags for your luggage that each have a unique code that, when entered into an airport baggage tracing system like SkyAssist, NetTracer or WorldTracer, will instantly give the airline the contact info of the registered owner. And if you lose your bag outside the airport, like at a taxi stand, the person who finds it can report the found item by entering the code at the HomingPIN website. Also available are stickers for use on laptops, iPads, cell phones or what have you. A one year subscription to the service is included with the purchase of the luggage tags and stickers, packets of which are available in various combinations. There's an additional fee should your item need to be repatriated through other than airline channels. www.homingpin.com/buy

Cable Keeper

These are very cool gadgets from Neet Products. They are "sleeves" about the width of a flat shoelace that unzip to offer a place to tuck cords in order to keep them untangled, and the small Cable Keeper is made just for ear buds. Just unzip the Cable Keeper completely then insert the ear buds so that the jack is barely hanging out one end and the buds the other. Zip it back up and then, if you want to, you can wrap the whole thing around your wrist and wear it bracelet-style until you need it. A longer Cable Keeper will accommodate cables for mobile devices that are three feet in length or longer. www.neetproducts.com

MyAir Comfort Mask

If you want to protect yourself from airborne germs, allergens and the like, whether you're on an airplane or not, the best way to do so is to wear a facial mask that's made for that purpose. Something a lot better than the standard white masks you see everywhere is the MyAir Comfort Mask, a fashionable mask that blocks particulates down to 0.1 microns and that knocks out 99.997% of airborne pathogens (bacteria and viruses) that cause illness. The MyAir mask also retains 88% of the moisture that you exhale, helping to avoid dry mouth. MyAir attaches to the face via ear loops, is latex free and uses replaceable filters. www.ellessco.com

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