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  1. I'm in the process for packing for my upcoming Brilliance of the Seas cruise next week, and started thinking of all of the essential gadgets and accessories I've acquired over the years and thought I'd list some of my must-haves for any trip I go on. Please share yours as well. 1. External Battery Pack/Charger This is a must have for me to keep my iPhone and iPad charged when going all-day or when flying long distances and power outlets are not available. It's a bit heavy, but it will keep my phone and tablet charged for days. http://www.monoprice.com/Product?p_id=10392 2. Luggage Tag Holders These are the new improved version--http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00M5MDAS0?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creativeASIN=B00M5MDAS0&linkCode=xm2&tag=royalcacom-20--but they're essential for me. You simply print and cut out your paper luggage tags and place them in the holder. There no need to fold, staple, laminate, tape, etc. these as they're ready to go as is. I've used these successfully for my past several cruises. 3. Zip Ties Cable or zip ties are great for securing your luggage. Choose a bright color or one that isn't too common, such as these http://www.monoprice.com/Product?p_id=5777. I've been using zip ties for years to secure my bags as I don't need to worry about a key and don't need to worry about the strength of the luggage lock. What's great about these is that you immediately know whether someone has been in your luggage or not. They're also easy for the TSA to remove if they need to inspect your bags. I simply carry a small pair of scissors in an outer pocket of one of my checked bags, but can always use a nail clipper if need be. 4. Packable Backpack I haven't used this on a cruise yet, but I have on one trip and found it to be exceptional. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00DHIZ7CI?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creativeASIN=B00DHIZ7CI&linkCode=xm2&tag=royalcacom-20 The reason I like this backpack is because I can throw it into my luggage, it doesn't take up much space, and I can pull it out and use it for excursions. Last cruise I tried to simply use my carry-on computer backpack. However, it was too heavy and it made my life onboard the ship miserable as I had to unpack all of my electronics and cables, put them into drawers, and then I was always looking for those things. This way, I can keep my computer backpack packed and use this instead. Let me know what your must haves are.
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