An Alternative To Taking Your Laptop

The golden rule of travelling is ‘Never take anything you can’t afford to lose’. For most people, their laptop is one of those things. I like to write as I travel and find I feel like I am missing an arm without my laptop to check emails and catch up with the world back home. The problem being, that apart from being scared to lose it and therefore taking it everywhere, no matter how light weight they are, it’s always quite draining to carry after a while and in some countries it is difficult enough just trying to get a wireless connection anyway.

Well, those days are over. Whenever I don’t need to have a laptop on me constantly and I am ok using internet cafes, I have a new number 1 travel buddy, my portable hard drive! Apart from the obvious advantages of it being much more light weight, much less expensive (should you lose it) and being able to store everything I do on the go including my pictures there is one addition which opens up a whole new world of possibilities.

PortableApps.com provides FREE applications which can be downloaded straight onto your Portable hard drive or USB Key and enables you do everything from open a web browser with all your bookmarks and contacts already on it, which is also a super safe way to ensure nobody can hack the accounts you log in to but it has a range of other applications like instant messenger and antivirus.

Ok your convinced right? Ok so all you need to do is choose whether you are taking a USB Key or a Portable Hard Drive. Some things to think about are:

  • A USB Key is smaller than a Portable Hard Drive
  • Memory ranges but a USB Key has less memory space than a Portable Hard Drive – Keep in mind that on top of the applications which are being downloaded onto your hardware think about what you will be saving on it. Things like photos take up a lot of space.
  • A USB Key costs less than a Portable Hard Drive

The best way to to decide what you will need is to think about what you will use it for (what you will be storing on it) and how much you can afford to spend. Don’t be caught out having to delete your photos to fit more on it. In the same sense, don’t buy a large expensive Portable Hard Drive if you will only be storing a couple of word documents on it.

Remember:

  • Always make sure you have anti-virus on it, it will come into contact with many a virus as it is used on public computers
  • Get a good case for it. I use a large padded pencil case for mine.
  • It’s a good place to store all your flight and accommodation information including receipts or anything else you think you will need. It may be a good idea to have a copy of your passport and insurance information just incase. Just try not to lose it!

You can buy a Portable Hard Drive or USB Key online or by visiting your local electronics store.

I will supply some links to online stores here once they have been approved.

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