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The Top 8 Gadgets for Getting Through a Grueling Flight

Courtney McCaffrey, @bitsalife
09.27.16
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Photo credit: Gonzalo Baeza

Anticipating a 14-hour flight can put a huge damper on your travel excitement. But thanks to technology, long-haul flights aren't as boring as they used to be. You can leave your worn-out copy of Moby Dick behind, because these eight gadgets are guaranteed to make your next long-haul flight better than ever before.

1. SleepPhones

Unless you're one of those people who can sleep absolutely anywhere, a cramped airplane seat isn't an easy place to catch some Zs. Many travelers invest in expensive noise-canceling headphones to diminish some of the airplane noise (including crying babies), but bulky headphones aren't ideal for getting comfortable and actually falling asleep.

SleepPhones are compact, comfortable headphones that are installed in a headband that keeps them from falling out place, whether you're watching a movie, listening to music, or snoozing. They're available in corded and wireless setups -- we recommend the wireless ones for better rest.

2. Kensington AbsolutePower

One of the few problems that arise when pairing flights with technology is that not all airplanes are equipped with charging stations. The Kensington AbsolutePower laptop, phone, and tablet charger eases worries about dreaded "low power" notices. It uses 100 watts of power to charge up to one laptop and two USB devices at the same time. It's compact, light, and powerful.

3. Kindle Voyage E-reader

Photo credit: bfishadow

Books are the entertainment that have gotten us through flights since planes first took to the skies. Although, packing books for your journey means you lose space for other items, and with baggage fees on the rise, that means more money out of your pocket. The Kindle Voyage E-reader allows you to pack an entire library in your carry-on, and you don't have to worry about power, because the battery lasts for weeks.

4. Apple iPhone 7 Plus

The anticipated iPhone 7 Plus is just starting to hit the hands of travelers around the globe, and you'll be glad you have one on your next long-haul flight. This iPhone boasts the best battery life and performance ever, so you can stay entertained longer. The new Retina HD Display, an upgraded stereo speaker system, AirPod headphones, and a 5.5-inch screen make the iPhone 7 Plus the ultimate item for in-flight entertainment.

5. Nintendo 3DS XL

Unleash your inner gamer on your next flight with the Nintendo 3DS XL handheld game console. This award-winning gaming system has two screens offering 3D viewing that doesn't require glasses. It's easy to use, it's affordable, and the more than 500 available games are digital, so you don't have to travel with a bag full of cartridges. Even better, the Nintendo 3DS XL will keep you entertained without depleting your smartphone, laptop, or tablet's battery power.

6. RIF6 Cube

The RIF6 Cube is one of the smallest and coolest gadgets for travel, especially when you're with family or friends. Known as the, "First big screen that fits in your pocket," the RIF6 Cube is mobile miniature projector that turns your smartphone screen (or any screen) into a high-resolution display that can be seen anywhere. Measuring just 2 inches by 2 inches by 1.9 inches, the Cube can even fit in your front pocket.

7. Apple iPad Pro

Photo credit: Brett Jordan

Tablets are travel tools that can often eliminate the need of carrying a bulky laptop along on your adventures. Their larger screens, high-quality displays, and optimal storage space make them more useful for staying entertained in flight. The Apple iPad Pro is available in 9.7- and 12.9-inch models and features the highest resolution of an Apple iOs device. The 64-bit A9X chip and M9 processor also mean it's ideal for working, gaming, or watching on the go. Ten hours of battery life help you make it through long-haul flights without having to bust out a battery pack.

8. Mophie PowerStation XL

Staying powered in flight is the key to staying entertained in this digital age, so it's essential we include two power stations in our list. The Mophie PowerStation XL is a 10,000mAh universal battery that can power your smartphone for an additional 48 hours or your tablet for an additional 14 hours. You'll never have to worry about running out of power in-flight again.

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