Over the past 6 years that I've been backpacking around the world, I've come up with a pretty extensive list of travel items that I wouldn't leave home without. For me, my backpack is my home, so having some essentials (as well as some luxury items that make life easier while on the road) is very important. In this article I'm going to dive into my backpack and share some of my favourite travel gadgets that I love to pack.


For the espresso addict

1. Handpresso


Find one hereOn Handpresso.com for ‎€82.50 plus tax ($120 CAD)

This is an essential item for anyone who loves espresso coffee. In some places around the world, a good cup of joe just isn't that easy to come by and if it is, it can cost a small fortune. The Handpresso is the perfect gadget for the budget conscious coffee fiend and it can pay itself off after just a couple of months.

Basically, it's a manual pump, handheld espresso machine that can make a perfect cup of espresso every time. I picked one of these things up in Italy this year, where a single shot of espresso cost around €1.50, while a 250g bag of Lavazza coffee is only €2 and makes 30 cups. The Handpresso more than paid itself off after I finished a couple of those bags.

If you're a coffee lover who isn't satisfied with the regular filtered or instant coffee that's typically found in hostels, consider picking one of these machines up on Amazon for $210 or so. It's small, compact and pays for itself.


2. For the movie buff

The Cube Projector



Find one here: On Amazon.ca for $610 CAD or buy on Amazon.com instead for $270 USD

Budget travellers deserve to have a TV in their room too! This handy little piece of electronic genius helps to make that possible and it doesn't just project any TV, it projects up to 100 inches of bright and vibrant display on any wall.

All you have to do is download a movie onto your laptop or smart device, hook it up to the cube, position it away from a wall and hit play. The Cube fits in the palm of your hand, but can project a screen big enough for any home theatre room.

The main downside of this tiny projector is that the built-in speakers aren't very loud, so you'll have to use separate portable speakers to make it really sound good. But I think most people travel with a good set of speakers anyways these days, so with this thing, you can literally fit a home theatre in your pocket.

Note: Buy the Cube on Amazon.com instead of Amazon.ca because it's half the price.


3. For the social media junkie

Range Extender


Find one here: On Amazon.ca for $47 CAD

Are you sick and tired of having a weak wifi signal in your hotel room? I know I was before I picked up a Range Extender on Amazon for $47. This little gadget plugs into the wall and connects to the hotel's router to eliminate dead spots and grow bars where they were previously lost.

For a digital nomad like myself, or just anyone who expects their Wifi to always work, the D-Link Range Extender can be a lifesaver and a headache reliever.


4. For the chronic overpacker

Luggage Scale


Find one here: On Amazon.ca for $11 CAD

Here's another cheap travel gadget that can pay for itself. Have you ever made your way to the airport check-in counter only to find out that your bag is overweight and you'll have to pay exorbitant fees?

With a portable luggage scale, you can weigh your bags before heading to the airport and distribute the weight or get rid of some heavy items to ensure that you don't pay any overweight baggage charges.

Many airlines charge $25 for the first kilo of overweight luggage, so it only takes one time to pay this little gadget off two-fold!


5. For the person who always loses their luggage

Luggage GPS


Find one here: On Amazon.ca for $90 CAD

Another potential money saver, a Luggage GPS can give you peace of mind when you're taking a flight, a bus or a train ride, or even when you're just leaving your bags in your hotel room for the day. Charge up this pocket-sized tracker, hook it up to the tracking app on your smart phone and never worry about where your bag is again.

If an airline loses your luggage, you can give them exact coordinates of your bag's location so that they can get your precious pack back to you as quickly as possible.

I recently had an airline lose my luggage and it took them 6 days to find it and get it back to me. Had I placed a GPS tracker on my bag, I could've told them exactly where it was and saved myself a lot of money and headache.



Have you heard of these gadgets before?
Do you have a favourite travel item that not many travellers know about?
Please share in the comments below!


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