Inspired by my Valentine’s Day post on the power-nap head pillow, I decided to hunt for more wacky travel gadgets (you know I love my gadgets!). And boy, did I find some!

1) The JakPak

If you’ve ever been hiking in a foreign country and wished that instead of heading back to your hotel room you could just transform your jacket into a body tent and sleep in the woods, the JakPak may be exactly what you need! Just put on the jacket, step into the attached sleeping bag, pull the tent section over your head, and voilà—you are now ready to sleep (and stay dry!) pretty much anywhere.

2) The Tugo

When I’m standing in the check-in line for a 6 a.m. flight and fighting to stay awake, I really depend on a triple espresso macchiato from Starbucks (my daily morning ritual). Between holding travel information for Mom and me and pulling both of our carry-ons, I don’t always have a free hand to hold a cup of coffee.  The solution to this dilemma?  The Tugo, a rubberized ring strapped to the handle of my luggage. The ring (which also comes with a net for carrying bottles) rotates to keep drinks upright—the perfect solution for a traveler who’s half asleep, needs both hands free, and is prone to spilling! (See my earlier post on packing and how reusing clothes is a challenge for me!)

3) The EZ Sleep Travel Pillow

Imagine you’re traveling solo on business on a long flight and you need a place to rest your weary head. Hello! Just pull out this inflatable pillow, blow it up, and attach this puppy to the armrest between you and your neighbor. Be warned, however, that you run the risk of annoying the passenger next to you, since this device hogs the armrest that you’re both supposed to share. But maybe you can smooth things over by inviting your neighbor to lean on the other side of this pillow so you can both get some decent sleep. (And if your neighbor is a cutie, just imagine what a great icebreaker this gadget could be!). Sweet dreams!

 4) Her Majesty’s Umbrella

When the weather is nasty and I’m fighting the wind and the rain, I have a hard time not bumping into walls, people, and other obstacles as I make may way down the sidewalk. Fortunately, there’s a solution to this problem. Her Majesty’s Umbrella is a sleekly designed deterrent to wind and rain—and is also see-through. Added bonus: the queen of England actually uses one (and who doesn’t want to be compared to the Queen, right?).

5) The Backpack Cooler Chair

This item is perfect for travelers who want to be able to sit—and enjoy a cold beverage!—anywhere (as long as they aren’t hoping to pack light). The chair and its attached fold-out table are easy to set up, so you can have a comfortable, sturdy seat wherever you go. If you’re planning to travel with aging parents who are mobile but need to sit frequently, this gadget may suit your needs very well—as long as you don’t mind schlepping it around.


6/7) Komfort Kollar and the Original UpRight Sleeper

These odd-looking sleep aids may earn you some curious looks from your fellow passengers. But don’t let them bother you! I strongly believe that sometimes you have to put function before appearance. (Case in point: my blindingly orange boots for camelback riding!) And honestly, when you leave the plane feeling fully rested after sleeping soundly during your flight, you won’t care how you look!



8) Hotel Motel Inspector

This device is a miniature black light that you wave near surfaces in a dark hotel room in order to detect bodily fluids and other contamination. You’ll have to decide for yourself if you want to think about—let alone find—traces of the hundreds of guests who preceded you. (Me, personally—I’m opting to stay in the dark on this one.)

9) GasBGon

These flatulence-filter seat cushions absorb not only the odor of flatulence but its sound as well. In addition to basic black, the offerings include patterns and designs with clever names such as the “Holdem Big Slick” and the “Tush Down.” Clearly the makers of this product have a good sense of humor!



10) Laptop Compubody Sock

Want a little privacy while tapping away on your laptop in an airport or during a flight? Then you might be interested in this art project made by a wearable technology designer. It’s not actually for sale anywhere, but if you’re up to doing a lot of knitting, you could make your own!


What are your favorite wacky travel gadgets?  Share them here! You’re amongst friends!  🙂