Sometimes we want to avoid technology when we travel, but other times tech can actually make travel easier and more enjoyable. Stay tuned this week as we chat with Scott Tharler, The Family CTO, to get his recommendations for family travel.
About Scott Tharler
Married with three children, Scott Tharler is a gadget expert with over 20 years of experience writing consumer technology columns for Club Life Magazine, Gear Patrol, Maxim, Fodor’s Travel, American Airlines and many others. He’s performed live gadget demonstrations on TV and radio, as well as for public schools and libraries, and at private companies and retreats. And this past fall, Scott launched The Family CTO, a new kind of gadget site to help you enhance your digital lifestyle with fun, practical gadgets.
To hear the latest episode of The Family CTO podcast, just ask your smart speaker to “play The Family CTO podcast.” Or find and stream the show on your preferred podcast platform. If you’d like to see all sorts of helpful tech solution roundups, reviews and buying guides—or ask Scott a gadget-related question—head over to TheFamilyCTO.com.
Travel Tech Recommendations
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- RoadTrippers is great for discovering roadside attractions and local recommendations.
- AllTrails is helpful to find hiking trails and read reviews and see pictures from real people.
- GasBuddy is helpful for finding gas stations, especially those that have cheaper prices.
- Scosche FrescheAir portable HEPA air filter is great for getting rid of odors on long road trips.
- The Calm App is helpful for providing sleep sounds or helping you get to sleep at night when in a new place (or at home)
- For road trips, it helps to have a reliable stand for your phone, especially if you are using it for GPS. Scott recommends the GoDonut, which is a little round phone or tablet stand.
- Iottie is a dash or windshield phone mount with Amazon Alexa built in.
- Wilson Electronics WeBoost is a cell signal booster for cars.
- Eggtronic Power Bar is a battery that allows you to wirelessly recharges two phones and a watch at once.
- QuietOn Sleep Earbuds offer active noise canceling to drown out noise when trying to sleep in a hotel room.
- Loop Earplugs are not electronic, but they naturally attenuates concerts and loud noises and are also good for sleeping.
- Bringing along a Roku Streaming Stick+ or an Amazon Fire stick will help provide entertainment in the hotel room if the TV has a port that you can plug into.
- Nomatic accessories such as the wallet and Navigator Tech Organizer are useful for storing cords and accessories.
- Twelve South AirFly Pro is a 2-way Bluetooth headphones adapter for connecting two headphones / AirPods to one device.
- Puro Sound Labs has volume limiting Bluetooth kids’ headphones.
- Pictar Pro Grip is a smartphone grip, charger, and remote shutter which is great for using your phone as a camera.
- Insta360 Go 2 is a tiny action cam
- Western Digital My Passport Wireless SSD is a small wireless drive for storing extra photos. You can put the SD card from your camera into it and it will automatically back up your photos. And because it is wireless you can share it with others.
- SanDisk Ultra Dual Drive USB Type-C is a good back up for Android phones and the SanDisk iXpand Flash Drive Go is good for backing up iPhones.
- GoSun is a solar-powered cooler that doesn’t need ice.
- Inrix Driving App is a good traffic monitoring app that if you plan ahead, you it will tell you the best time to go and during your trip, it shows you the best route.
- ScottEVest offers great tech-oriented travel clothes with lots of pockets.
- SkyHour lets you donate or save money toward flight time.
- ACBC offers zip travel shoes for men that lets you change out the top of the shoe.
- Link Flip shoes is a topless, no thong flip flop.
Full Episode Transcript
[00:00:00.120] – Kim Tate
Gadgets and gizmos galore today, we’re talking about family travel tech.
[00:00:16.760] – Announcer
Welcome to Vacation Mavens, a family travel podcast with ideas for your next vacation and tips to get you out the door. Here are your hosts, Kim from Stuffed Suitcase and Tamara from We3Travel.
[00:00:31.640] – Tamara Gruber
So Kim we’re both back from our road trips.
[00:00:34.100] – Kim Tate
And I don’t know why I’m cheering that. I kind of want to be back on it.
[00:00:39.020] – Tamara Gruber
Don’t tell your husband that. But I’m wondering, we were going a long time. You were gone a long time. Did you find any, like tech or apps or things that you found really useful on this trip?
[00:00:51.620] – Kim Tate
Yes, I actually have some good things to mention. And so this is perfect timing. I think I’ll start with the app thing because there are two apps that I use tons.
[00:01:01.010] – Kim Tate
And the first one was called Road Trippers. And we’ve talked I think we’ve talked about road trippers in the past. And I know you and I did a giveaway of a road trippers plus membership, which I think is pretty affordable. It’s I want to say twenty four dollars a year, if that sounds right. I don’t know if that sounds right to you.
[00:01:18.380] – Kim Tate
So they actually gave me a complimentary one to try out. And so I thought, OK, I’m planning this massive trip. And we went basically from the Oregon coast all the way down the coast of Northern California and then kind of ducked inland and went down to stay at a friend’s guest house for a while. And so I planned the whole trip with this road trippers plus.
[00:01:37.310] – Kim Tate
And I absolutely loved it. It was cool. I think using the app is better. At first I started just using it on my desktop, like on through a Web browser, and once I installed the app, using on your phone is way easier, but it just helps you, you know, map your route and find little that kind of like roadside attractions.
[00:01:57.230] – Kim Tate
But there’s some really cool stuff on there. And like there was this one part where it was like a scenic byway. And I thought, oh, that’s cool. So I added it to my itinerary. And then I looked on alltrails and found a hike to go with it. So that’s the other app I used was on this trip. A lot that I recommend is all trails, but yeah. So Road Trippers Plus was just cool because it people can also add photos.
[00:02:18.230] – Kim Tate
And so you really get a sense of like because one was like the largest totem pole and I thought, well that’s pretty cool, like my girls might like that. But then when I looked at the photos I was like, yeah, it seems kind of like a cheesy tourist stop.
[00:02:29.330] – Tamara Gruber
Yeah. Like you’ve been to Vancouver.
[00:02:31.520] – Kim Tate
Yeah, exactly. Like so so we skipped that, you know. So that’s the idea is that it has some of those things. But also, you know, I finally decided on this trip, I wanted to do a drive thru tree and so I went and I got to see like what the drive through. There was three of them that are kind of the main ones that I know about. And I looked at the pictures and then also read the reviews and what people said. And it helped me decide that, like, OK, we’re going to do this one that’s in Klamath.
[00:02:55.940] – Kim Tate
And so I really liked it for that sort of stuff because it is user generated content. So I loved that there’s reviews about the spots and, you know, sometimes there’s good photos and you really get a feel for it.
[00:03:07.160] – Tamara Gruber
So that is what I like about all trails. You know that you can really get a sense of what you’re going to see and how hard it is and things. And then, yeah. So it’s nice to see it has that kind of community because I haven’t done the plus a pro version, but I did look at it on my desktop when I was planning my trip, but then I ran out like the free version only has like so many stops or something.
[00:03:26.150] – Kim Tate
[00:03:26.840] – Tamara Gruber
But I did see like we were going to drive past the what’s it called. The Oh gosh. What’s that movie. The baseball movie with Kevin Costner. Field Dreams. we’re going to drive past that site. So I was like, oh Glenn. Like what else are we going to be in this corner of Iowa to, like, drive past that? Would you want to go? But then it turns out they were closed in March.
[00:03:44.540] – Kim Tate
Oh, no, that happened to us. We wanted to go to the Martinelli cider tasting that we’ve done before, actually. And I was like, oh, I’m going to add that on there. But yeah, they were closed. They’re not doing it right now. So I was like, oh, bummer.
[00:03:56.060] – Kim Tate
But anyways, yeah. So I definitely if you’re looking for new app, I think road trippers and paying for the plus, like Tamara said, you get to have as many stops as you want and so you can use it if you just want five stops and so you can get a feel for it and then you can really decide.
[00:04:12.110] – Kim Tate
But using the app, like if you’re doing planning on your iPad or your iPhone is the key. So that was the one thing.
[00:04:17.960] – Kim Tate
And then, like you already said, all trails is huge. And I actually use that. It was so cool because we found we were driving through Oregon and I realized kind of the timing. It was a nasty, nasty day. And so the day I was going to do this big and didn’t stop, it was gross. It was so windy and gross.
[00:04:35.270] – Kim Tate
And I said, well, there’s no point in us going because we’re just going to be cold and miserable. And so then the next day, I was looking that night on trails and trying to find hikes, you know, along this stretch we were going to be doing and I found a dune, you know, a dune hike. And it was this random, like I never would have known where it was. It was like John P. Duganhim trailhead or something like that.
[00:04:58.940] – Kim Tate
And I wouldn’t have known to go there. And sure enough, it was a tiny parking lot, probably ten cars. And we parked and we we hiked maybe a quarter of a mile in.
[00:05:07.520] – Kim Tate
And then all of a sudden we came out to this amazing, huge, like massive felt like the Arabian desert sand dunes. So awesome. Yeah, and if it wouldn’t have been for all trails and just kind of looking and like you said, you know, being able to see the photos that people have submitted and really getting a feel like I like all trails because it shows you like the actual route and it gives you the distance.
[00:05:29.490] – Kim Tate
So you can see like, oh, it’s a loop, it’s not back and it’s just it works really well. And then it has a really cool, like getting there section for most of the trails, not all of them. And it helps you.
[00:05:39.870] – Kim Tate
Like I said, it helped me go OK, right after the city. I need to kind of be looking because there’s this campground. It’s the turns right after that. Yeah. Yeah.
[00:05:48.360] – Tamara Gruber
So that sounds fun. So any other tech or apps that you used?
[00:05:52.560] – Kim Tate
Yeah. So another app, one more app. And then I have one tech thing. So another app that I loved was called Gas Buddy and I’ve heard of that before and I know I used it in the olden days like when it first came out, but I actually got it again and I found it really useful on a road trip because I actually ended up using Costco gas stations a lot.
[00:06:10.140] – Kim Tate
And same with Fred Meyer because we’re Costco members. And like at one place, we saved 30 cents per gallon by just driving a mile down the road and going to a Costco instead. And so, you know, I mean, it’s not always worth it, but at 30 cents a gallon, it saved us about five or six bucks. So it was worth the little one mile down the road type thing.
[00:06:28.440] – Kim Tate
But I think gas buddy’s just great because you can really see that, oh, in this city, should I fill up now where our hotel is or should we get on the road for an hour and then fill up? Because I’m I kind of like to keep my gas really full, especially when I’m traveling on my own. Yeah. I’m like, once it gets below a half a tank, I’m like, okay, keep my eyes open, you know, where’s where’s the next gas fill up?
[00:06:48.000] – Kim Tate
I’m going to do so anyways. But yes, a gas buddy was good. And then the one piece of tech that I absolutely loved and like full disclosure, these guys sent me this item by skosh and I got it from CES, which took place virtually in January.
[00:07:02.340] – Kim Tate
It’s called The Fresh Air HEPA Air Purifier. It’s an air purifier that’s like a cylinder. So it almost is like a coffee tumbler type thing. And it actually fits perfectly like in a cup holder in a car.
[00:07:14.190] – Kim Tate
And I was wondering, I’m like, OK, how much use are my going to get on this? But we’re going on a road trip. So I said, sure, send it to me, I’ll try it out.
[00:07:20.820] – Kim Tate
And it was so useful for these days of like eating in the car, because I will admit we ate McDonald’s a couple of times and then one time we actually got like fish in the car, like fish and chips and coleslaw, and we’re eating it in the car. And even though you throw the garbage away, your car still kind of stinks. And I turn this thing on after we would eat. And it really worked like it was amazing. And then the next morning, because almost every day for me, I have a really sensitive nose.
[00:07:46.140] – Kim Tate
And so. Yeah. So you know how you park in the hotel and like, you don’t really notice it because you’ve been in the car the whole day.
[00:07:51.750] – Kim Tate
But then you go sleep in the hotel and then you come out the next morning, you open your car and you’re like, OK, yeah, it smells like fish or McDonald’s or whatever. I did not experience that on this trip at all. And so I think this thing really helps. So anyway, that’s my one piece of advice
[00:08:05.220] – Tamara Gruber
We ate in the car a ton also because it was just safer and I told Hannah, she’s going to turn into a chicken nugget because they’re going to start, like, calling her Nugget. I think we had more fast food in those two weeks than we’ve had like the last two years. It was crazy, but it’s just easier and honestly, like it felt safer, like some of those kind of things. So, yeah, usually I would love to do all the local stuff, but we didn’t this time, so I could have used that for sure.
[00:08:30.540] – Kim Tate
Yeah, it’s and I mean it is, I think it’s, I think it’s ninety nine dollars so it’s not cheap, cheap. But if you do spend a lot of time in the car, I was, I was impressed with it. I felt like it worked. So I’m just thinking also like after picking up kids from athletic practice might be good.
[00:08:46.080] – Tamara Gruber
Definitely. Yeah, for sure. So I remember even when we were we were talking a couple of years ago about that road trip that you took out West with like a bunch of teenagers near like.
[00:08:56.910] – Kim Tate
Yes. Their feet. Yes. Yes, I remember that. Yeah. Perfect timing for, like, you know, summer road trips with teens.
[00:09:05.130] – Tamara Gruber
Well, those are definitely good recommendations. I would feel like we didn’t use nearly as much, although I will say that I lived with the Calm App because I needed that to for background noise, for sleeping.
[00:09:18.510] – Tamara Gruber
And I also tried I think we’re going to talk about this when we get into our interview. But I did just get some air pod pros and they’re supposed to be noise canceling. But let me tell you, it’s not quite enough to block out my husband’s snoring. And the other thing is I didn’t realize how short their time frame was because I used to have, like, the Bose sleep buds and they would last night. So these like go, they stop, they run out of battery at like six hours or so.
[00:09:44.220] – Tamara Gruber
And so I would find myself like waking up and then I would take them out and I would like put them in the, you know, in the charger and like just like kind of like doze a little bit, hold it in my hand for a while. Then when, like, it always seemed the time of morning when Glenn got really loud.
[00:09:58.440] – Tamara Gruber
So then I would put him back in for like another hour or so, like I need to charge these things. But the calm app at least, you know, like, well, it does do some calming. I actually enjoy it for sleeping, but I like the this kind of the sounds that they have.
[00:10:12.120] – Tamara Gruber
So, yeah, that was really my only thing, although I definitely need. Those little tinier, you know, earplug things that go in the ear, yes, these things definitely still hurt as a side sleeper.
[00:10:23.400] – Kim Tate
So, yeah, I, I couldn’t handle that because like you said, I’m a side sleeper, so.
[00:10:28.950] – Tamara Gruber
Well, I know that Scott has a lot of other recommendations for us, so why don’t we jump over and start chatting with him and find out what other tech he has to recommend.
[00:10:45.960] – Tamara Gruber
So today we’re here with Scott Tharler, and he’s a gadget expert with over 20 years of experience writing consumer technology columns for Club Life magazine gear patrol Maxim, Fodor’s Travel, American Airlines and others. He’s also performed live gadget demonstrations on TV and radio, as well as for public schools and libraries.
[00:11:03.900] – Tamara Gruber
And this past fall, Scott also launched the Family CTO, which is a new kind of gadget site which helps you enhance your digital lifestyle with fun and practical gadgets. So welcome, Scott.
[00:11:14.340] – Scott Tharler
Hey, thanks for having me here.
[00:11:16.110] – Tamara Gruber
Yeah, it’s nice to talk to a gadget guy because I think, you know, I know Kim has reviewed quite a bit of gear in the past, you know, on her website. And I come from a tech background. So I think we both have that in our brains, which is probably why we started podcasting together, too.
[00:11:32.820] – Kim Tate
Yeah, I’m excited. I’ve always kind of been an early adopter, too, which my husband hates because he he never buys the first iteration of something. He always waits a little longer. And I’m sort of getting into his line of thinking, but I still like having the brand new gadget.
[00:11:46.860] – Scott Tharler
Well, there’s something nice about having something that helps you out when you need it most. And I’m so into travel tech because that’s it’s the whole reason I got into gadgets. It’s when you want something to help you enjoy stuff more or you want to make sure that you’re connected and whatever that means to you, tech can help you on your trip.
[00:12:07.980] – Tamara Gruber
So before we jump into some specific tech recommendations, can you tell us a little bit about, like, your family and how did you get into tech as a career?
[00:12:17.740] – Scott Tharler
Sure, well, I’m married with three kids, they are 10, eight and four, which is they are interesting ages. I think every age is an interesting age, but those are interesting as they’re starting to get to those preteen and teen years.
[00:12:32.410] – Scott Tharler
I got into gadgets, I guess I was always into watches. I first started getting into watches, probably when I was about my kids’ age. I was like eight or ten and I had a fancy watch that could not only digitally tell you the time, but the seconds. And it had an alarm like that’s what passed for fancy back then. And from there that was like my gateway drug to gadgets. I had watches that could tell you the temperature, that had a calculator that played games that could dial the phone.
[00:13:04.540] – Scott Tharler
And it’s very funny now because I don’t even wear a watch now. But watches were kind of how I got into it because I just love the idea of always having some tech with me.
[00:13:13.960] – Kim Tate
That’s cool. I was always jealous. I was not a Swatch kid. I wanted a Swatch, but my family couldn’t afford one. So when you speak of watches, I kind of have these flashbacks to my nervousness of people who own the Swatch watches. And I remember playing Snake on a couple watch I had at some point.
[00:13:34.300] – Scott Tharler
Yeah, there’s definitely some Swatch envy out there, but I, I still look at watches. I’m jealous of my kids because now their watches have cameras and stuff built in and apps and they’re listening to music from them and stuff like I literally couldn’t have even dreamed of back then.
[00:13:51.940] – Kim Tate
So we know that Tamara and I, we love tech and we’re definitely into it. And so we’re definitely excited about this and helping our listeners learn a little more about maybe some cool travel tech.
[00:14:02.650] – Kim Tate
So outside of your phone, what do you think is the best tech gadget that somebody could bring with them when they’re traveling?
[00:14:10.500] – Scott Tharler
You know, it’s a tough one because there’s so many, you know, on some level, I’m I’m almost disappointed if I don’t get stopped going through TSA because it’s like, dude, I have so many things with me, I’m going to say something disappointing. My most favorite gadget is just my brain, because I am always thinking, like, OK, what am I going to be doing?
[00:14:31.380] – Scott Tharler
How am I going to be using this? And so what winds up happening is there’s not just one special gadget, but I take a lot of time to pack cords and adapters and accessories to make sure that I have what I need so that if I’m in the car, you know, OK, we’re going to be renting a car. So I’m going to want to bring a car adapter so I can charge my stuff in the car or I want an audio, Jack, so I can make sure that if I want to play something from the TV in this place that we’re staying at, that I can play it on this.
[00:15:06.060] – Scott Tharler
So it tends to be more functional stuff. And I start packing. My wife will say, like, oh, are you packed already? I’m like, yeah, yeah. I just need to throw some clothes in a bag. Like I always have trousers.
[00:15:20.910] – Scott Tharler
It’s always electronics first because I really it’s like when you pack you think, what am I going to be doing? I’m going to be going hiking. So I need comfortable shoes, comfortable socks and a water bottle and a hat. I do the same thing, but I think I want to make sure that my water bottle has a sensor on it to tell me that I’m drinking enough water. And given that we’re going to be hiking, I’ll probably want to bring a three hundred and sixty degree camera so that I can take pictures of everything around me and really get some great panoramic shots.
[00:15:50.820] – Tamara Gruber
So you’re not a minimalist, I think is what you’re saying when it comes to to travel?
[00:15:55.980] – Scott Tharler
I, I try to be I’m in theory. Well, when I’m packing, I’m not a minimalist. I have all sorts of redundancy when I’m packing. But when I actually go out. Yeah. I don’t want to be schlepping around. You know, if we’re at a waterfall in a state park, I want to be enjoying the waterfall. I don’t want to be fumbling through my bag looking for just the right stand or just the right camera, just the right anything. It’s important to know when to put your gadgets down and actually just enjoy where you are.
[00:16:25.730] – Kim Tate
Yeah, I think that’s a great point.
[00:16:26.930] – Tamara Gruber
Yeah, and there’s only so much you can fit in your bag, I always find, like I finally ended up selling my drone because I found I was always trying to bring, like, a tripod, my camera, the drone, all the cords, your laptop, you know, like ever your GoPro for the actual shots and too much stuff.
[00:16:45.090] – Tamara Gruber
Yeah. But anyway, I thought it would be helpful if we kind of break it down into different kinds of travel when we’re talking about family travel and see, you know, maybe some of your recommendations for that type of environment, you know, what will help us in, you know, different types of travel environments. So maybe we can start with road trips since a lot of people are doing those right now. Do you have any tech gadgets that you would really recommend for people going on a road trip?
[00:17:08.120] – Tamara Gruber
And I say this, Kim and I are both, you know, have big road trips coming up, so.
[00:17:12.720] – Scott Tharler
So the first one I mentioned is a car adapter. There are plenty of ones where there are very small ones that can charge to a USB like a regular if you have your charging cord with you and they can do a USB, see if you have that kind of a device. So I would look for something small that can charge multiple devices at once.
[00:17:34.020] – Scott Tharler
And then also I think stands are important things that hold your phone or your tablet in place. I just got this really interesting one called a go donut, and I do not like the name of it, but it is actually it’s like four inches across. I’m actually holding one right now and it’s like the size of a donut. And then it has these slits in there that allow you to put your phone or tablet at different angles. And so you could put this on, say, the armrest and then everybody in the back seat is watching something.
[00:18:05.640] – Scott Tharler
So that’s cool. There are other ones out there that are more they would keep it more secure. So if you’re bouncing all over the place, you don’t have to worry about it going. This is I mean, it’s pretty steady, but there are other things that I bring along that are more like a clamp that clamps on to one end and then it clamps your phone into place.
[00:18:24.180] – Kim Tate
Yeah, I’ve seen those that, like, clamp onto the headrest and then lock in the phone. And I’ve always felt like those were a little safe, you know, nice. A little bit of a safety in case there was an accident or something. You don’t have this projectile flying around.
[00:18:35.580] – Scott Tharler
Yeah, you don’t. You want as a rule, you want like the fewest number of things flying around the cabin. So there’s actually one there’s a company called Iotti and I’ll send you a link and we can put it in the show notes. But they have this it looks sort of like a charging stand, but it’s a suction cup that goes to an arm and holds your phone in place. And it actually has Alexa built in. And so you have your Amazon smart assistant with you in the phone, in the car, and then you basically just tell in the app, the Alexa app, that you want this to work.
[00:19:12.060] – Scott Tharler
So I know that whenever we go someplace, we go to an Airbnb or a hotel or whatever, the kids feel like they’re more at home. If Alexa is there and I’m not going to bring the Alexa speaker everywhere we go, but it’s nice to know if you’re in the car, you can say, hey, Alexa, how far are we from the nearest restaurant or whatever? And it’s a it’s a hands free thing. So you don’t have to worry about, you know, fumbling with your phone or your tablet while you’re driving.
[00:19:40.140] – Tamara Gruber
I wish I had something like that when my daughter was little and she would just ask so many questions when we were driving. And I was always like, why don’t you write that down in your notebook and we’ll look that up when we get home because mommy didn’t know the answers.
[00:19:53.610] – Scott Tharler
Yeah, there are so many ways of passing the time. And I think, you know, I think gadgets are one way, but I like the fact that my kids are getting old enough that we can do all sorts of fun word games and math games and more of like the kind of things that I would do as a kid to pass the time when I wasn’t we didn’t have phones or anything like we didn’t even read in the car. It was just sort of playing games.
[00:20:17.910] – Scott Tharler
And so there’s part of that. But for people who do use their phones and tablets a lot, it’s good to have something like we boost, which is basically it boosts your cellular. So if you’re going to be driving and getting, you know, a change of scenery, you could be going through some parts that you’re only getting one or two bars. And so it’s good to know that you have connectivity. And so there are things that are it’s either a stand that you put your phone in or it could be something that boosts several devices, like whatever devices are in the car so that you always have cellular service.
[00:20:53.700] – Scott Tharler
And I think that’s a good one for people who are thinking about road trips. That’s really cool.
[00:20:58.680] – Kim Tate
Yeah. Especially as since so many of us rely on our phone GPS and you have those little moments where it’s like, I can’t find you any longer and you’re driving along hoping that you’re not going to miss a turn. Yeah, yeah.
[00:21:09.810] – Tamara Gruber
It looks like you’re driving through outer space or you’re off the road.
[00:21:14.640] – Kim Tate
Anything else about road trips?
[00:21:17.130] – Scott Tharler
Road trips are interesting because it’s not like when you’re flying, you think I want to bring the fewest number of things possible and things need to be light. When you’re bringing stuff on a road trip, then that’s when I would think about bringing a drone instead of, you know, a different camera. So there are drones that sometimes I’ll bring a drone along.
[00:21:39.390] – Scott Tharler
It’s not like an always thing. But I do think that there’s some things that you think like, oh, I’ll I’ll just put this in the back and then if I use it, it’s OK. Coolers are a good example. Actually, it’s funny because they’re not really super techie, but I started to write a piece about Cooler’s because I love the the family CTO is all about the lifestyle and like, what are you doing? What problem are you solving?
[00:22:02.760] – Scott Tharler
And there are a lot of different colors. And I didn’t know until I did the research that in this article I’m going over like ten different kinds of cooler’s. So, for instance, you might have a backpack cooler if you’re going hiking, you might have something where it’s more about the kind that you put when you’re rolling onto the beach. So you want to make sure it has good wheels that go in the sand or there might be a different kind that does better for ice retention if you’re going out camping.
[00:22:29.900] – Scott Tharler
And so it really depends on the kind of trip. And so for all of these gadgets, it’s thinking about what are you going to do and how can the technology serve you rather than how do I get 100 gadgets into my car? It’s really thinking about the the purpose of the gadgets.
[00:22:47.780] – Kim Tate
Yeah, I think you have to think also quickly about Coolers. We have like a little mini fridge for cars. That’s supposed to be like a cooler. But we’ve realized it’s really a pain in a way because it’s really hard to open the door unless you keep a cushion kind of around it. So you can’t pack the car as tight as you’d want, whereas if you have one that opens from the top, you could just open it and grab something out of it.
[00:23:08.090] – Kim Tate
And then when they started inventing the car light, I don’t know, I’m so old. I just noticed a cigarette light adapter. But whatever that’s called and the 120 volt or something in the back, those worked so well because he could plug those fridges right in the back. But we still have older cars and so we don’t have one of those. But when we’ve rented cars on a trip, it’s been nice to be able to plug directly in back there instead of having a big cord going all the way up to the front.
[00:23:33.380] – Scott Tharler
Yeah, and they have some now. There’s a company called GoSun that has essentially the iceless cooler and it’s solar powered. So you can not even have to worry about that. You can charge it up beforehand and then use solar to just keep it going if you’re especially if you’re out camping and stuff like that and you have some sunshine.
[00:23:52.250] – Kim Tate
That’s awesome. Oh, well, what about for hotel rooms and vacation rentals, you know? And I have a few of those coming up. So any products that you think, you know, we mentioned the Alexa, but anything else you think maybe makes it feel a little more comfortable tech wise?
[00:24:08.820] – Scott Tharler
Yeah, I mean, tech wise, the first two things I always think of are basically power and audio or power and entertainment.
[00:24:17.520] – Scott Tharler
So for power, I have this thing here called the Egg Tronic Power Bar, and you can’t see it because we’re on a podcast. But it’s essentially like it looks like a bar that’s about the size of a maybe a thicker version of like a big remote control. And then there are three spots on it. And it’s essentially a battery that you can wirelessly charge like two phones and a smartwatch on at the same time. And I love that because I don’t want to have to start worrying about where am I digging for outlets.
[00:24:48.360] – Scott Tharler
And I’m not going to bring the same dock that I have by the side of my bed. You know, I don’t want to start worrying about that. And so it’s nice and portable and it’s a big battery. So it is going to charge like three things and and be good. What’s another one? I think for entertainment stuff, you could bring a streaming stick. So like a Roku or an Amazon fire stick. Those are fun to bring because it’s little.
[00:25:14.220] – Scott Tharler
And if you’re someplace where either they don’t have a lot of TV or you get stuck on a rainy day, you can sort of plug in your streaming stick, whatever it is, into the HDMI port of the back of the TV and then give it power. You do have to remember to bring your remote. I’ve done that where I forgot to bring the remote. But if you do that, then essentially it’s like you’re bringing your entire collection of entertainment like you never, never in the old days would you have brought like a DVD player and a remote and three hundred DVDs.
[00:25:46.440] – Scott Tharler
But this you’re just bringing bringing something that’s like the size of a USB drive and you basically have all your movies. So I like the idea of doing that. It just has to connect to whatever the the Wi-Fi is.
[00:25:59.250] – Kim Tate
And my girls actually we’ve forgotten remotes before, but they’ll use their phones. So I guess at least with the Amazon fire, it has an app that you can use as a remote on your phone.
[00:26:07.980] – Scott Tharler
So, yeah, and that’s a great backup. I’ve actually had to do that with the Roku before. So as long as as long as your phone is on the same Wi-Fi network as the streaming stick, then that’s a great workaround.
[00:26:20.400] – Tamara Gruber
It’s funny, my daughter just asked me the other day, I think the Grammys are going to be on on a certain night or some awards show that she went to watch while we were traveling.
[00:26:28.560] – Tamara Gruber
And she’s like, do you think the hotel will have CBS? They are so used, like only doing streaming kind of stuff they don’t even know, like regular TV?
[00:26:38.700] – Scott Tharler
Yeah, yeah. I my kids are growing up in a very interesting world where, like, if they can’t listen to the exact song that they want or watch the exact movie that they want. Right. Then, then they’re just befuddled. Like, why can’t we? Because in the olden days we had to wait for things like we had to wait for a commercial.
[00:26:57.450] – Scott Tharler
And then when The Wizard of Oz comes on once a year, you see it. You don’t just say, like, you know, play Wizard of Oz and then it just shows up.
[00:27:04.200] – Kim Tate
Yeah, we actually just had that last night where we were going to watch a movie and, you know, they were ready to just rent it for three bucks. And I was like, well, let me just check and see if it’s on anything, because we have all these services and then we also pay for Comcast. And sure enough, it was free on Comcast through like Fox Channel or whatever. And they were like, oh, but it has ads and commercials, mom. I’m like, too bad we’re going to take advantage of this like free streaming and not pay three bucks for it.
[00:27:33.990] – Kim Tate
But they’re just so like they just expect that they can just get it. And it’s kind of funny. And we also happen to pay for Spotify, even though we already pay for YouTube music because they like Spotify and all their friends are on Spotify. And so I don’t know. This tech tech world is when you have teenagers, it becomes a another level.
[00:27:54.180] – Scott Tharler
Yeah, I mean, you were talking about swatches, I remember there was a thing when I was in junior high school of that people would have these jackets that could pack into themselves and it was like fold up jacket and everybody had it.
[00:28:08.160] – Scott Tharler
And so, you know, that’s one thing if you’re buying like a 30 dollar jacket, but then there’s like headphones and laptops and phones and there’s so much stuff that teenagers are going to want to have that that seems overwhelming to me. So that’s sort of what I’m bracing for. So you mentioned if you go to a vacation house or a rental or something like that, one of the things you might not be used to are the sounds that are going on.
[00:28:32.160] – Scott Tharler
And so I like to bring they’re either passive or active noise canceling earbuds. And by passive, I mean it literally is just an earplug. And there’s a particular brand called Loop that I like. And then for active, that’s more of what you’re used to for noise canceling. But these are tiny. There’s a company out of Finland called Quiet On and they’re so small that they fit into your ears and you can actually sleep with them on and they will last the whole night.
[00:28:58.950] – Scott Tharler
And it makes a big difference if it is canceled out snoring and other environmental sounds that I just didn’t want to hear that help me sleep better on vacation because you want to be you want to be actually awake to enjoy your vacation. So it’s nice to to be fully rested.
[00:29:14.450] – Tamara Gruber
I’m gonna have to look those up because I think I’ve talked about on the podcast before, I used to use the Bose sleep buds and then the battery stopped working and then the company recalled them actually because they couldn’t get the battery to work and actually refunded me, even though it was I had had the product for a year. And I’ve been wanting them to come out with a new one. I think they did just come out with a new one. But then I also just recently finally gave in and got the Apple AirPods that are noise canceling.
[00:29:39.870] – Tamara Gruber
So they’re not as small. So obviously not as comfortable, but they at least are multipurpose. But those sound those aren’t great because that is always my issue is snoring and definitely any hall noise. When you’re in a hotel like I can’t stand when people walk by, like late at night making lots of noise or you’re near the elevator or the ice machine, you know, something like that. Yeah.
[00:29:59.460] – Scott Tharler
Or people that don’t realize that, like after 10:00 p.m., maybe just don’t stand in the hallway talking. They’re actually other people who are families who might want to get to sleep. I always feel like such an old person saying that. But, you know, we just paid to come down here, stayed at Disney Resort and we’re going to be going before the park opens. So maybe get back into your room and have that conversation.
[00:30:19.900] – Tamara Gruber
That’s why I hate when you either know that there’s a wedding there because, you know, there’s going to be the drunk people coming back late or when there’s some kind of sports sports team tournament, it’s those kids are going to be like, we’re running up and down the hallways.
[00:30:31.180] – Tamara Gruber
Yep, yep. So we talked about kind of in the hotel room where vacation rental. We talked about in the car. I know it’s been a long time since we’ve flown. We’re probably a lot of us, maybe not everybody. But, you know, what are some things that you would recommend to use on a flight to make it more comfortable or more enjoyable?
[00:30:50.040] – Scott Tharler
Well, you know, I said that I am very much into the adapters and the cables and everything, but I don’t want to be reaching into my bag until like a rat’s nest of stuff to try to get at whatever I’m getting at.
[00:31:03.420] – Scott Tharler
So I like having an organizer that’s just four cables and little accessories like that. There’s a great company you probably know about them called Nomatic. And it’s that the last part of it is spelled like automatic. So Nomatic has great suitcases and bags. And I just discovered that they have some other sort of everyday carriers, like a wallet, a very minimalist wallet that just carries your cash and cards in with this little material, as you can imagine. And then they have this thing that they just call their travel organizer.
[00:31:35.220] – Scott Tharler
That’s exactly for what I just said. So it carries spare batteries and earbuds and memory cards and all your wires and things so that when you you know that you want to take something from that out, you can just pull out one thing, open it up, and there you have it. So I like that. You know, the old thing used to be, like you said, Bose, like everybody, you would walk down the aisle and you could just see like 20 different people wearing Bose headphones.
[00:32:01.140] – Scott Tharler
And those are great. But it’s not it’s not the first thing I think of. I think of like, are my kids going to be set? And I’m not necessarily going to get them three hundred dollar headphones. So I like the idea of getting them their own headphones. There’s a company called Puro that makes great kids’ headphones that are actually stylish and they are a volume limiting so they can’t crank it up over eighty five decibels, which can cause hearing damage.
[00:32:29.250] – Scott Tharler
So I love Puro headphones for that.
[00:32:32.190] – Scott Tharler
And then the most important little accessory you can have sometimes, especially if you have two kids, is a splitter, but they actually make them. Now there’s a company called 12 s that make something called the Air Fly Pro and it’s basically a Bluetooth adapter. And so it works both ways. So way number one is that if you plug this into the armrest or sometimes they have like an audio jack in the back of the headrest, you plug this in and then you can have two different sets of Bluetooth earphones listening to that same audio, whatever that is. So that’s a great thing to stop fights for 90 minutes.
[00:33:13.830] – Kim Tate
But it actually works important because I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen people bring Bluetooth headphones on a flight without their, you know, the cord that all the Bluetooth come with. But they forget the cord because they’re just used to using Bluetooth and then they have the seatback entertainment for like a long international flight and they can’t do anything that they have to ask for.
[00:33:32.250] – Kim Tate
One of the pay five dollars for the cheap, you know, dollar store earbuds from the airline.
[00:33:37.770] – Tamara Gruber
I still have like a JetBlue survey in my little travel kit, because for Hannah, I’ve had to do that a few times.
[00:33:43.090] – Scott Tharler
Yeah, yeah. It’s awful. And these actually this 12 South product I just mentioned, there’s another kind of Bluetooth adapter, which is it can take wird headphones and make them Bluetooth so it works the other way. So if you have your favorite wired headphones or earbuds or whatever, you can plug those into this and then it can be Bluetooth to whatever your phone or whatever is the source of playing the music. Cool, and I’ll give one shout out of something that happened to me is, you know, wireless earbuds are so popular and like air pods, they actually have like little and this is not techie, but I don’t know what you would call it.
[00:34:23.460] – Kim Tate
It reminds me of like glasses holders like that. You would keep on a pair of glasses to be able to hang there. But I had an earbud in and I was kind of falling asleep and it popped out of my ear. And then I’m like looking all over the floor for this earbud that just fell down. And, you know, it’s not a good you don’t want to be digging around for a earbud on the floor of an airplane.
[00:34:42.660] – Kim Tate
So just a heads up that if you are using earbuds, it might, you know, see if you can look into any that have a some kind of like especially it works with the airports. I know where you can keep them together. So if one pops out, you don’t. It’s attached to the other one.
[00:34:56.910] – Tamara Gruber
Still, I feel like that’s why they make the announcement now. Like if you lose something, don’t you know, like call your flight attendant or something. Yeah.
[00:35:05.430] – Scott Tharler
Yeah. I don’t want to be digging around on the floor for anything that’s I don’t know. Everybody has their own thing with germs in most places like around my house, if something falls on the floor, I will pick it up and eat it. That’s fine. But there’s certain floors where I just go like I don’t even like walking around. Hotel room floor is like without socks on. So I don’t know.
[00:35:28.650] – Kim Tate
I hear you there. Well, why don’t we move on and just quickly chat about photography? Because a huge part of travel is taking photos. So I know this can go down a huge you know, it could be an episode on its own, but just, you know, kind of top level. Do you have any favorite gear that you like to bring on family vacations for photography? Yeah, definitely, there are a bunch of different factors, I won’t go into drones because we talked about that.
[00:35:54.430] – Scott Tharler
I think one thing is most people don’t even think about bringing a traditional camera, you know, like the old school camera. And so if you’re going to be using your smartphone, then there are a couple of things that you can do to make it even better. There’s a company called Pictou that has something called the they’re pro grip, that it does a few things. First of all, it looks like sort of half of a camera. And so it looks and feels like you’re holding a camera.
[00:36:23.770] – Scott Tharler
So it’s not you don’t have to do that weird thing where you’re like scissoring your your pinky and your pointer to try to hold your camera when you’re taking pictures. But it actually will charge your phone while it’s in there and it has some actual real life buttons on there. So you can do things like bring up a different mode or zoom in or actually take the picture by clicking a button, which is nice because then you don’t have to, like, look away and fumble and touch your screen.
[00:36:50.770] – Scott Tharler
So having something like that is fun. Another thing if you’re going to be using your phone is a gimble. Have you guys ever used a gimble when shooting photos or videos? Yeah, we’ve. Yeah, yeah.
[00:37:03.280] – Kim Tate
I own the Osmo pockets but and then the Osmo mobile too so.
[00:37:11.290] – Scott Tharler
Yeah. So like that’s the DJI product. A lot of these drone companies realize they’re making things that allow the drones to be steady and take great pictures. Hey, why don’t we make everybody’s picture study. So I would recommend having a gimble with you.
[00:37:26.090] – Kim Tate
I think for video mainly like if you’re shooting video is what I’ve noticed on that. So, yeah, kind of my go to for that.
[00:37:32.890] – Scott Tharler
There’s sort of something nostalgic like when you picture, if you picture like your parents, your grandparents like, oh, remember those pictures we took from Bermuda in the fifties? You picture it being kind of shaky. So there’s something nice about it. But if you plan on watching something for more than like two minutes, like you really don’t want shaky video. So it’s nice to just get rid of that. Another thing that’s good to have is if you’re going to be taking a lot of pictures and videos, that’s going to take up a lot of memory.
[00:37:57.160] – Scott Tharler
And so it’s good to have a back up of memory. And so Western Digital makes a product that’s basically like a wireless drive. It’s about let’s say I have it here. It’s like about six inches by six inches and maybe an inch thick. And you can take if you do have a camera that you’re shooting off of, you can take the memory card from that, put it in, and it will automatically back up your pictures. And it’s a wireless drive, meaning that you can then everybody on their own phones can load up the app and see whatever pictures or video you shot from that.
[00:38:34.180] – Scott Tharler
So you could actually have a bunch of videos that are just on there. And then if you’re waiting at the airport, you could be everybody could be looking at pictures and watching them and talking about them on their phones and stuff.
[00:38:45.580] – Scott Tharler
So I like having a way of backing up stuff so that I don’t lose pictures that I’ve taken. I guess another one would be there’s a company called Insta 360. And I actually just talked about this product called the Go on my podcast, and it’s like the size of your pinky. And they just came out with the go to just this week. And it’s so small that I read somewhere that it weighs the same as six pieces of paper. Like, it’s super duper small and this is the kind of thing that you could wear and you can program it to just take pictures like every 30 seconds or every whatever.
[00:39:26.620] – Scott Tharler
And so it’s a great action cam because it actually does it uses some software to do some stabilization optically. And then it’s just also good because there are a lot of fun effects.
[00:39:40.360] – Scott Tharler
You can do slow motion, you can do time lapse. So like if you want to see, you know, it’s kind of pretty to see a time lapse picture of, like the clouds going by along the beach in Hawaii or seeing a sunset or just seeing the rush of people in a city. So there are a lot of different fun effects that you can do and they make it really easy to edit stuff. And so it’s a great little camera.
[00:40:01.540] – Scott Tharler
But really, the secret sauce is the editing. It’s so easy to make really fun effects and it’s just a new way. Instead of like, you know, in the old days, you take a picture, you print it out, you look at it like that’s all there is to do with it. This there’s so many different ways of sort of making your memories into a more of a multimedia experience. So I like their stuff. So what does that look like?
[00:40:24.850] – Tamara Gruber
I’m just trying to, like, picture how small it is. Is it you like clips on?
[00:40:30.320] – Scott Tharler
Yeah, so they have different mounts and clips, the one that I have, the original one is it has a magnetic back. So you would put like the magnetic back one little piece of it under your shirt and then this on your shirt on their website. They show people literally like it’s on a sweatband or on a hat. You can clip it on there.
[00:40:48.410] – Scott Tharler
So it’s more of like your eyes, your perspective, but it is tiny. And so there is sort of a conundrum with with having tiny tech. Like you just said, the last thing you want is to have a couple hundred dollar action cam falling on the floor of your airplane and then you don’t know where it is or that you lose it in your Airbnb or wherever you are. So they have some some really good accessories that help you mount it to different places because they want you to be mounting onto your bike or your car or whatever so that you can take some interesting shots.
[00:41:22.060] – Tamara Gruber
Kim, all I can think about is how many how much photo editing you’re doing to, like, straighten the horizon.
[00:41:27.140] – Kim Tate
Yeah, exactly. Yeah. It sounds like it’s like stitching together and so
[00:41:35.210] – Scott Tharler
yeah, it’ll stitch it together and then it’s all this artificial intelligence stuff that you basically upload this stuff and it says, OK, I will tell you what your best shots were or I will put together a montage of like all the coolest video that you did. So that’s that’s what makes it really cool, I think. Yeah.
[00:41:56.180] – Tamara Gruber
But otherwise it sounds a little bit overwhelming. I’m just thinking back to back in the day when we would all come back from a trip and make like a photo book, you know, like how many of those photo books did we actually do? And, you know, like kind of I know I gave up on them in about twenty fifteen or something like that.
[00:42:13.010] – Tamara Gruber
But so that’s we’ve certainly covered a lot so far. I’m just curious. We’ve talked a lot about hardware, but do you have any favorite travel apps that you like to use when you’re planning?
[00:42:23.990] – Scott Tharler
You know, I’m so boring when it comes to that. I really just use Kayak to to look at what the best flights are because I just love the granularity of being able to say, you know, I want under this price range with no red eyes going through these airports. But for these dates, I tend to book hotels on Priceline. And because I do, I’ve become like a VIP gold. And so I just like the express deals. And if I what I like about Priceline is that you can get a good rate, but it it really rewards flexibility, which most travel does like.
[00:42:59.780] – Scott Tharler
And so if you don’t have to stay in an exact place at an exact time, you just know, I want to be somewhere near Charlottesville because we’re going to go on the Skyline Drive. And so, you know, within twenty miles you can find something that is a good deal. So I like those you know, there actually some apps I’ve used. You’re talking about road trips. There’s one called INRIX. That is a it’s basically a traffic monitoring.
[00:43:26.960] – Scott Tharler
And I know other people use Waze or just Google Maps. It’s sort of built in. But INRIX, I found if you say I’m going from here to here, it’s the most accurate way of doing real time updates to say actually based on traffic, we think it would be best if you went this way. And then it has another interesting thing where you can slide the timeline. So it would say like, OK, it’s three thirty, but what if we left at four and it will use whatever fancy eye is out there thinking of what’s going to happen with the traffic to say, you know, if you go at three thirty, it’s going to take you an hour. But if you go at four, it’s only going to take you thirty five minutes.
[00:44:04.580] – Scott Tharler
So I kind of like that. Other than that, I think there’s there actually some interesting things that are more like programs that I found. My daughter is currently in the fourth grade and apparently that’s a magical age because there’s a program that the government has called every kid outdoors where they get like a free pass to every state park or every national park. Every national park. Yeah.
[00:44:27.920] – Kim Tate
And so and they actually expand it to fifth graders this year as well because of the shutdown last year.
[00:44:33.410] – Scott Tharler
Yeah, and that’s great. And there was another thing here I happened to be in in New York. And they have there’s a program called Ski in New York where fourth graders can ski for free. So it’s a golden time to be nine or ten years old. Like, there’s all sorts of fun things, but I think it’s just a matter of sort of looking out there and seeing what cool programs happen to be out there. The the only thing that I don’t know if you’ve heard of, there’s a site out there called Sky Hour.
[00:44:58.250] – Scott Tharler
Have you heard of that one? Sky Hour our is an interesting one.
[00:45:02.210] – Kim Tate
I know you can imagine what it does, but.
[00:45:04.010] – Scott Tharler
Yeah, yeah. No, it’s like you when you recently had I think her name is Danielle from the the thought card, she was talking about saving up for trips. It’s actually something to help you save up for trips, but it’s something where people can help out. And the basis of it is that you pay for hours of flight, you’re not paying for distance. You’re not paying for like this is how much it is.
[00:45:25.790] – Scott Tharler
You literally I think it’s something like, you know, it’s sixty dollars. For an hour of flight and so you can start to do the math and realize, like if you’re going to Florida or California, that might not make sense, but actually going to Europe, that’s not that crazy. Like, it’s not that crazy that you would pay for, you know, five or six hours to certain places in Europe. And so if I know you’re going on a trip, I could say, hey, Kim, I’m going to donate an hour to your trip and then either other people add more hours to that or you just pay whatever the differences.
[00:45:58.930] – Scott Tharler
But it’s basically good on any airlines. You’re just paying for something that then gets instead of transferring points into a flight, it’s if you have the right number of hours that turns into a flight. So I just thought that was an interesting spin on things I hadn’t seen before. That’s really cool.
[00:46:15.430] – Kim Tate
Yeah, I was thinking it was going to be I know there’s websites that’ll show you like the Sunrise and Sunset Times for specific locations so that you can do it. So I was thinking when you said Skaara, that was what I was doing. It was. But that sounds way cooler. And I think that would be really good. I was thinking to my graduation trips type thing where, you know, you can say, hey, donate an hour of flight time or something.
[00:46:36.010] – Tamara Gruber
That’s pretty cool.
[00:46:37.010] – Scott Tharler
Yeah, but it’s also that factor, like you’re saying with your other guest, where you get to see it building up. So you get to see, oh, cool, I have this much towards my trip and it’s not just like maybe I’ll get to go on the trip or maybe I won’t. Right.
[00:46:51.280] – Tamara Gruber
Right. You know, that’s really neat. It makes you think of like when people get married and they register where you can kind of donate towards their honeymoon or something like that, it’d be another neat way to use it.
[00:47:01.720] – Tamara Gruber
Yeah, exactly. Well, we’ve certainly have talked about a lot of things, but we have a question for you that we ask all of our guests. And I imagine that you’re is still going to have some kind of tech angle to it since you talked about water bottles of sensors and all these kind of things. But do you have any favorite brand of clothing or, you know, what do you wear when you travel?
[00:47:23.800] – Scott Tharler
I definitely do. And I think the first one is called Scotte Vest. And I am I am not the Scott and Scotte Vest. It’s actually a friend of mine, Scott Jordan, that I’ve known for 20 years. And I love his stuff because it started off as just being literally like a fishing vest with a bunch of pockets in it. But it’s grown to be shirts. I’m actually wearing a what they call their camping shirt now. It’s it’s like a nice short sleeved button down shirt.
[00:47:49.210] – Scott Tharler
They have pants and shorts and dresses. They even have a mask nowadays. But all of their stuff is based on not just having a lot of pockets, but bringing your tech with you. And I know when I’m going on a business trip, if I have the blazer, they have like a sport jacket with a lot of stuff. It literally saves me like a carry ons worth of stuff that I can put in there. And so I have cords and batteries and a lot of the stuff that I talked about, I will have in specific pockets in that.
[00:48:19.390] – Scott Tharler
So I’m a big fan of Scotty.
[00:48:21.280] – Tamara Gruber
Best you can tell your friend Scott that I also own two of the long cardigans that they have for women with those big, deep pockets.
[00:48:29.650] – Scott Tharler
Cool. Yeah. I mean, they they really have expanded. They have I guess they never got into shoes, but they have underwear. There’s all sorts of stuff like if you want to for some reason, if you want to be walking around your hotel room and your underwear, but you also want your phone with you, then they’ve got you covered.
[00:48:46.370] – Tamara Gruber
Yeah, I’m really picturing the pocket, you said.
[00:48:50.210] – Scott Tharler
Yeah, there’s there’s all sorts of fun ways that could go. But but basically I, I always have something. I always have like one or two things with me that are like it’s usually like a polo shirt and a t shirt or, you know, like a camping shirt and a t shirt that have these pockets built in. And it’s just it’s nice. And it’s also I think people nowadays are more accepting of the fact that you’re going to have tech with you, but you still don’t want to look like you’re schlepping around a bunch of stuff.
[00:49:18.610] – Scott Tharler
So it’s good at hiding the fact that you have definitely.
[00:49:22.150] – Kim Tate
I agree. Yeah.
[00:49:23.380] – Scott Tharler
The other one that I tend to bring with me, it’s an Italian shoe company called ACBC and it stands for anything can be changed. And basically these are these you might have heard of these. They’re like zip up shoes. And what I mean by that is that you bring along like one pair of soles and then you zip the tops off like and right here I’m actually holding them in my hand. And so if you’re hiking during the day and you’re walking around another part of the day and then at night you’re going to be going to some nicer event or just going out to a nice dinner, then you could basically have just three sets of the tops that you zip on to the bottom and it takes up way less space.
[00:50:04.480] – Scott Tharler
You know, like when I go to the annual Consumer Electronics Show, I could have five pairs of shoes, but it takes up not that much more than just one or two pairs of shoes in my bag.
[00:50:15.550] – Tamara Gruber
Oh, that’s really neat to look into, though, because I’ve not heard of it, I am familiar with, like the women’s flip flop brand that has where you switch out like the top, you know, the thong part, but interesting.
[00:50:26.840] – Scott Tharler
Oh, it’s funny you mention that actually, because there’s a new company that I just I know you guys are fans of Oofos, but there’s one that I just found out that they’re based out of Israel and it’s called Link. And they have what they call flip shoes. And they’re like flip flops, except for they don’t have the top part, just like the bottom part only. And so the bottom part goes like around your foot and hugs your foot and then you don’t your front two toes don’t have to grip on to the thong for dear life that like your foot, you walk out of your shoes.
[00:50:59.630] – Scott Tharler
So those look really cool. I haven’t tried them yet, but they look really amazing.
[00:51:04.090] – Tamara Gruber
Sounds like modernistic space agey.
[00:51:06.910] – Scott Tharler
Yeah. Yeah, definitely.
[00:51:09.100] – Kim Tate
Well, Scott, why don’t you tell our listeners where they can find you online? Because I know a lot of this tech they’re going to want to kind of see and you probably have a lot of reviews and pictures. So where can they find you?
[00:51:19.570] – Scott Tharler
So the company is called the Family CTO. And of course, we have channels on Twitter and Instagram and Facebook. There’s a podcast you can look up wherever you listen to podcast, you can look up the family CTO. But really, the website is the great launching pad. So if you just go to TheFamilyCTO.com, then there are links to all of that stuff.
[00:51:41.960] – Tamara Gruber
Well, we will link to all of that in our show notes, as well as a lot of the products that you mentioned today. And so I know I’m going to be Googling a lot of things after this interview and looking things up. So I hope that our listeners found it very helpful. And I really appreciate you coming on and sharing all your knowledge. You have gone much deeper than either Kim and I think I’ve ever done into a dove into this, you know, family travel tech.
[00:52:06.350] – Scott Tharler
Oh, it’s my pleasure. I love talking about it. And thanks for having me on the show.
[00:52:14.030] – Tamara Gruber
So we’re back. And I just wanted to give a shout out to one of our listeners, Lee. He wrote in because he was listening to the episode that we did with Nate from Room Steals about tips for finding hotel deals. And I know that Nate was asking us recommendations for comfortable men shoes, and we didn’t really have a lot to tell him. So anyway, Lee recommends Cole Hahn. He really loves those. And he said that their souls were actually made by Nike, which I did not realize.
[00:52:37.530] – Tamara Gruber
So that explains why they’re a little more comfortable. So guys that we’ve been ignoring, sorry about that. And we have some more recommendations for you. So thanks, Lee, for giving us an email and and giving us your tip.
Yeah, that’s a good tip. I actually, you know, my husband has a very Cole Hahn working shoes that, you know, are kind of like loafer style.
[00:52:55.940] – Kim Tate
So I should have thought of that. But anyways, well, we appreciate you guys joining us and you will want to tune in again in two weeks because we are going to be talking about a really popular destination that a lot of people are thinking about, and that is the Grand Circle Road trip through the big five of Utah and the Grand Canyon. So join us then.