10 Incredibly Useful Summer Travel Products

Caroline Morse, June 09, 2014
Fares from Washington DC:

    In summertime, the living may be easy but the packing for warm-weather vacations most definitely isn't. These 10 travel essentials can help.

    (Photo: Thinkstock/amanaimagesRF)

    Lewis & Taylor Dress Shirt

    Summertime travel's not all flip-flops and Hawaiian shirts, unfortunately. It's also prime season for weddings and business travel. Men can stay chill and look cool with the new Philicence-fabric shirts from Lewis & Taylor. The Philicence fabric is made using a hydrophilic nano-technology coating over pure cotton, which can stop sweat patches from forming. Best of all, the shirts are custom-made to your specific measurements, so you're sure to look fresh even on the road.

    (Photo: Blue Kicks Shoes)

    Blu Kicks Shoes

    If you're planning to be near water this summer, you need a pair of Blu Kicks. These classic shoes have a non-slip sole, are slip-on (perfect for airport security lines), are made of cotton canvas, are quick-drying and machine-washable, and feature a cushy removable insole. This season's new styles for men and women are even better—they have an upgraded, more supportive insole. Bonus: A dollar is donated to support environmental causes for every shoe purchased. I love the stylish design options, too, like the new Arctic Stripe and Fiji Red shoes pictured above.

    (Photo: Great Useful Stuff)

    Great Useful Stuff Packing Cubes

    Packing cubes are ubiquitous these days, so what makes Great Useful Stuff's packing cubes stand out? This set of four lightweight cubes can be fastened together with their Velcro strips and hung up to be used as a dresser. No more unpacking and repacking—or having to use a questionably clean/bedbug-infested hotel dresser. The set comes with bags in a variety of sizes, so you can store your socks separately from your shirts.

    (Photo: Unburn)

    Water-Jel Unburn

    Unfortunately, summer vacations can sometimes mean painful sunburns. Pack some Unburn sunburn relief just in case. This gel contains 2.5 percent Lidocaine to help relieve the pain, and it also helps to cool down the burn. (And it comes in a handy travel size, if you're flying.) Always pack sunscreen, too, and hopefully you won't need this product!

    (Photo: Sunpocket)

    Sunpocket Sunglasses

    Always breaking your sunglasses in your bag or suitcase? Bring a pair of Sunpockets on your next trip. These stylish shades are foldable, so you can toss them in your pocket or purse without worrying about damaging them. Both arms and the bridge of the sunglasses feature unobtrusive hinges, which allow them to fold down to a small size for easy storage. Sunpocket offers plenty of fashionable options for men and women.

    (Photo: Watershot)

    Watershot Underwater Smartphone Housing

    Whether you're at the beach, pool, or river this summer, you'll need the Watershot smartphone housing to stay in touch. The Watershot is a kit that waterproofs your smartphone by enclosing it in the Watershot housing, which keeps it protected from water and other damage. The Watershot comes with two large removable lenses (a flat port and a wide-angle), so that your pictures will be even better underwater. (If you download the free app that goes with the case, you can use your phone's front and back cameras as well as most other functions—like social media apps—while your phone is locked in the housing.) Use it with confidence up to 195 feet underwater! Available for iPhone and Galaxy only.

    (Photo: Kinivo)

    Kinivo Mini Portable Speaker

    Take your music everywhere you go this summer with the Kinivo ZX100 Mini Portable Speaker. I like the rechargeable battery, compact size (it fits in the palm of your hand and weighs only 5.6 ounces), and great sound quality. Plus, it's compatible with pretty much everything, from smartphones to MP3 players.

    (Photo: Hydrapak)

    Hydrapak SoftFlask

    Stay hydrated in the warm weather with a water bottle that can go anywhere with you—and fold up when not in use. The BPA-free SoftFlask comes in three different sizes (350, 500, and 750 milliliters), has a wide mouth (which makes it easy to fill up and clean out), and has a locking cap to prevent spills.

    (Photo: Briogeo)

    Briogeo Spill-Proof Travel Kit

    No need to worry about overzealous security screeners or leaky bottles when you have the Briogeo Spill-Proof Travel Kit. This kit contains sealed, individual-use shampoo and conditioning packets inside a sealed, clear bag—much more portable than travel-sized bottles!

    (Photo: BioLite)

    BioLite CampStove

    The downside of camping in the middle of all that nature is that there's just no outlet for charging your gadgets. (Kidding … mostly.) Bring the BioLite CampStove along on your next camping trip and you can charge your electronics while cooking your dinner. This portable stove, which weighs about two pounds and is the size of a water bottle, uses twigs to make fire and then uses the heat from the fire to generate electricity. You can then use this electricity, via the included USB port, to charge your devices. (Here's how it works.) The BioLite CampStove can boil a liter of water in less than five minutes and charge an iPhone 4S enough for an hour's worth of talk time in just 20 minutes.

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    This article was originally published by SmarterTravel under the title 10 Incredibly Useful Travel Products for Summer Trips.

    Follow Caroline Morse on Google+ or email her at editor@smartertravel.com.

    (Lead Photo: Thinkstock/iStock)