Field Trip · Technology Tools

Tech Gifts for the Traveling Genealogist – Tuesday’s Tip

When you’re out and about on a genealogy research trip, there are certain things you may expect such as a clean bed, free wi-fi, and a convenient location to charge your phone.  There are small items that you may not know exist which can be a genealogists new best friend, especially if you’re out and about on an epic research road trip.  Here are a few gift ideas that will keep you or your genealogist organized, informed, and comfortable whilst conducting research on the go.

USB ChargerAmazonBasics 4.0 Amp Dual USB Car Charger for Apple and Android Devices 
You can keep your portable devices powered up and ready to go with an Amazon USB car charger.  The charger has two USB ports, which is perfect for charging your smartphone, tablet, fitness tracker, and so forth.  You and your research partner will have your devices charged and ready to go when you arrive at the library, cemetery, or archive.  This little device has a powerful and rapid charging rate, so you’ll be able to arrive with a full battery and ready to tackle those brick walls!  On the way home, this handy device will help your phone recover quickly so you can call ahead for take out or to keep your family informed of your whereabouts.

Retail Price: $7.99

Pomarks 4in1 Multi-function Pen, 32GB Flash Drive, Stylus & BUSB Pen Stylusallpoint Pen
Do you every have the feeling you’re missing something?  How many times have you walked out of the house and then remember you left your flash drive by the computer?  Those days are over my friend!  I found this cute Pomarks multi-function pen, which has several essential tools you need to keep your research in order.  I love this device because it has all these functions built into one expensive looking package:

  • Red Laser Pointer
  • Black Ballpoint Pen
  • Soft Stylus Tip
  • 32 GB Flash Drive
  • Emergency LED FlashLight

Yes, it’s very cool and looks like something James Bond would own.  Who says genealogists can’t travel with both substance and style?

Retail Price: $29.99

TaoTronics® Handheld Mobile Document Portable Scanner
handheld scannerPortable scanners have really come a long way in the last three years.  My one complaint with these handy devices has been the resolution sizes. I usually prefer to digitize items at the bare minimum of 600 DPI, especially if I know I won’t be back to conduct research in that archive, courthouse, or library again.  If you’re looking for a scanner that will give you the best DPI for your buck, this is a great product.  It has three resolutions (300, 600, and 900) and allows you to choose a JPEG or PDF format.  If you like to scan at the higher end of the resolution settings, you will want to purchase a 32 GB memory card for the device as well.  There’s also an upgraded model which scans at a 1050 DPI with an additional Optical Character Recognition option.   The upgraded item is very drool worthy!

Retail Price: $52.99      Upgraded: $79.95

Jackery Giant+ Dual USB Portable Battery Charger & External Battery Pack 
Dual USB ChargerWhen my friend Tina and I were researching in Ireland a few weeks ago, we were in dire need of a portable battery charger.  We ended up using her schizophrenic laptop as a portable charger, because we were hitting a library, government office, or archive nearly every day during our trip.  Jackery Portable Battery Packs are super reliable and charge your devices with limited downtime. I’m recommending this dual charger as it has the ability to  juice up your phone, a tablet, or another device quickly and conveniently.  Friends shouldn’t fight over a USB space, and they certainly shouldn’t have to rely on a broken laptop to keep their phones alive in Ireland.  Next time, I’m bringing this with me! Note: do not by this at the airport!  You can purchase it from for a huge discount.

Retail Price: $175; Sale Price $22.49

Four-in-One Leather Charging StationFour in One Charging Station
Keeping your gadgets organized, at hand, and ready to go should be a priority for every genealogist.  I have always admired the look of the multi-device charging stations, but many of them were made of wood or plastic, which are not quite aesthetically pleasing.  I found this faux leather multi-charging station device and I love it!  The leather looks very sharp and stylish.  I have used it to charge my tablet, smart phone, and fitness tracker all at once, with an extra space for friends to juice up their devices as well.  As it’s under the $30 price point, this handy little charging station makes for an organized room and a happy pocketbook.  I’m planning to purchase one for my parents next year, because it’s super useful, will work with their decor, and will help keep my father’s OCD in check.

Retail Price: $28.99

If you need more gift-giving inspiration, check out my previous post on holiday presents for hard working genealogists!

See You At the Library!

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