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Our Writers’ 18 Favorite Travel Gear Items on Amazon [Black Friday]

Chris Hassan's image
Chris Hassan
Chris Hassan's image

Chris Hassan

Social Media & Brand Manager

Countries Visited: 21U.S. States Visited: 24

Chris holds a B.S. in Hospitality and Tourism Management and managed social media for all Marriott properties in South America, making him a perfect fit for UP and its social media channels. He has a ...
Edited by: Jessica Merritt
Jessica Merritt's image

Jessica Merritt

Editor & Content Contributor

Countries Visited: 4U.S. States Visited: 23

A long-time points and miles student, Jessica is the former Personal Finance Managing Editor at U.S. News and World Report and is passionate about helping consumers fund their travels for as little ca...
& Juan Ruiz
Juan Ruiz's image

Juan Ruiz

Compliance Editor & Content Contributor

Countries Visited: 40U.S. States Visited: 27

Juan has been involved in credit cards, loyalty, travel, and personal finance for more than 10 years. He has worked for several outlets including The Points Guy and Forbes and was previously Editor-in...

We may be compensated when you click on product links, such as credit cards, from one or more of our advertising partners. Terms apply to the offers below. See our Advertising Policy for more about our partners, how we make money, and our rating methodology. Opinions and recommendations are ours alone.

The holiday season is officially upon us, and at Upgraded Points, that means lots of travel and keeping an eye on sales!

Black Friday is the biggest shopping day of the year, with almost every retailer rolling out some sort of promotion or discount on popular goods.

Our writers have shared their favorite travel-related items easily accessible on Amazon, so if you’ve been waiting to upgrade your travel gear, now is a great time to do so while saving a few bucks.

The Upgraded Points team travels year-round and puts our travel gear to the ultimate real-world test every day. So whether you’re looking for a new travel laptop, a surprisingly effective eye mask, or something to keep your gear charged on the road, we’ve got the best of the best for you.

Let’s take a look!

Upgraded Points’ Top 6 Travel Tech Items

1. Cheap Wired Earbuds

“My kids have a knack for losing earbuds, so I buy them in bulk. These earbuds work and have cute colors but are cheap enough that I’m not too worried if they go missing.” — Jessica Merritt, Editor and Content Contributor

2. Twelve South AirFly Duo Bluetooth Transmitter

“I love the Airfly Wireless Transmitter because I can’t go anywhere without my AirPods Pro. I love the noise cancellation abilities — especially on an airplane where it’s noisy. After using my AirPods for a couple of years, I can’t return to “normal” wired headphones. So until airlines adopt Bluetooth-equipped IFE systems on a wider scale (it’s coming!), I’ll make sure to have my Airfly in my backpack.” — Nick Ellis, Editor and Content Contributor

3. Anker Foldable 3-in-1 Wireless Charging Station

“Nowadays, we all travel with a lot of devices, and finding outlets in hotels or vacation rental properties can sometimes be a challenge. This is exactly why I ordered a wireless charging “mat.” I found the price on this model from Anker to be very reasonable; plus, I’m a fan of its portable power banks, and I’ve been just as happy with this product. It allows me just to use a single outlet and charge 3 devices at the same time — my iPhone, my AirPods, and my Apple Watch. This is ideal for traveling when outlet space — and time to charge — can be at a premium.” — Nick Ellis, Editor and Content Contributor

4. Apple MacBook Air with M2 Chip

“After years of resistance, I finally upgraded my old Dell laptop to the blazing-fast MacBook Air with an M2 processor. My only regret is not doing so sooner. Besides being lightweight with a beautiful 15-inch screen, the battery lasts all day — which means I don’t need to unpack as many cables when sitting down for a flight. Plus, it works seamlessly with my iPhone 15 Pro.” — Chris Hassan, Social Media and Brand Manager

5. Apple AirTags

DISCOUNT: 20%
Apple AirTag 4 Pack
106,767 Reviews

“The Apple AirTags 4-pack is one of my favorite Amazon purchases. I’ll be buying a second pack this season for my family, as I’d like to stick them in my husband’s wallet and my purse for our next Barcelona trip (pickpockets, beware!) and am even considering putting one on my toddler, who loves to randomly take off running in crowded parks. They make excellent stocking stuffers for friends and family, too — especially those who’ve been burned by recent lost luggage meltdowns.” — Lori Zaino, Content Contributor

6. Power Strip Travel Adapter

“With so many gadgets in my family, getting them charged up while traveling is a priority. However, not all hotel rooms (or lounges) have enough outlets. This 5-foot power strip solves that issue with 3 extra AC outlets, plus USB-A and USB-C ports! To top it off, it comes with U.S. (Type A), EU (Type C), and U.K. (Type G) wall adapters, so regardless of which side of the pond you’re on, you can get a good charge.” — Chris Hassan, Social Media and Brand Manager

Upgraded Points’ Top 7 Items To Pack for the Journey

1. Motion Sickness Bracelets

“Great for boat trips and flights, these bracelets are stylish and functional. It could be a placebo effect, but my family likes wearing these bracelets while we travel, just in case. They’re easily adjustable and nice for fidgeting, too.” — Jessica Merritt, Editor and Content Contributor

2. Mario Badescu Facial Spray

“I’ll definitely be restocking my stash of travel-size Mario Badescu facial sprays this holiday season. They’re ideal for so many situations — a quick spritz of lavender before snoozing on an overnight flight or a refreshing cucumber cool down at the beach during a heat wave. I’ll gift a pack to my best friend and my mom this Christmas, too. Affordable and handy, I love the variety of scents you get for a relatively low price.” — Lori Zaino, Content Contributor

3. RFID Credit Card Wallet

“I used to travel with just my regular wallet but switched to this wallet that holds 40 cards after a few instances of not having the right card with me. Before a trip, I make sure this is loaded with all of the credit cards I could possibly need (so, basically all of them), as well as my Priority Pass card and ID. This ensures I always have the right card on hand no matter what comes up.” — Katie Seemann, Senior Content Contributor

4. trtl Neck Pillow

“It took me years of traveling, but I finally found my favorite neck pillow! The trtl is far and away the best travel pillow I’ve used because it is so soft, supportive, and easy to pack.” — Carissa Rawson, Senior Content Contributor

5. Philips One by Sonicare Rechargeable Toothbrush

“I’ve been on the electric toothbrush train for years now, but I just picked up the Philips One rechargeable toothbrush this year. I’m a huge fan of the portability, as the toothbrush is incredibly slim and fits in a portable case. No more clunky chargers and worrying about a big toothbrush case. The charge holds up to 30 days, so it’s great if you’re constantly on the go.” — Stella Shon, Compliance Editor and Content Contributor

6. Manta Sleep Mask Pro

“The Manta sleep mask is so expensive that I wondered if it’d be worth the cost. However, after a quick try from a friend, I was convinced. I immediately ordered the Pro version and have brought it on every flight since. It’s a total blackout, washable, customizable mask and doesn’t touch your eyes. Most importantly, as a side sleeper, this thing stays ON. Highly recommend.” — Carissa Rawson, Senior Content Contributor

7. JetKids by Stokke CloudSleeper

“Whether traveling to stay with family, squeezing into a smaller-than-expected hotel room, or just having a sleepover at home, the CloudSleeper inflatable mattress continues to be an essential piece of travel gear for my family. Its compact size makes it easy to pack, and it’s quick to inflate, thanks to the built-in pump. Having a comfortable bed that doesn’t take us too much space can be a lifesaver for families on the road.” — Chris Hassan, Social Media and Brand Manager

Hot Tip:

Be sure to read our full review of the JetKids by Stokke CloudSleeper.

Upgraded Points’ Top 5 Items To Make Packing a Cinch

1. Osprey Aether Plus 85L Men’s Backpacking Backpack

“My rule of thumb when it comes to travel is to go low-tech, not pack anything I’ll miss if it gets lost or stolen, and not to splurge. I threw all that out the window when it comes to what I carry my stuff around in: the Osprey Aether 85L. I replaced my old backbreaker of a backpack with it over a decade ago, and since then, it’s been my portable home for months at a time, from posh European cities to war zones, the Arctic Circle to tropical rainforests. I’ve hoofed through sand, snow, mud, and worse with over 50 pounds of photographic and electronic work equipment, a month’s worth of clothes, and more in it, and I’ve never gotten so much as a nick on a lens cap or a crick in my spine, thanks to Osprey’s sophisticated suspension system. And the mesh back means I don’t get that weird sweat rash on my back after walking all day with it near the equator. Plus, the company’s customer service is quick and responsive — as I learned that time I lost a latch to a volcano in Costa Rica.” — Michael Y. Park, Editor

2. Nylon Mesh Travel Cases

“I made the mistake of paying with the wrong foreign currency once on a trip that involved 2 countries, and it cost me dearly. Never again. I keep my foreign currency separate with these brightly colored mesh zipper bags that fit in my purse. Then, when I return, the currency is easily stored for future use.” — Christine Krzyszton, Senior Finance Contributor

3. ebags Classic Pack-it-Flat Toiletry Kit

“I love this toiletry kit because it holds all of my necessities in a compact way that, just as the name suggests, packs flat in my suitcase. It’s a great space saver when traveling with a carry-on bag that won’t fit a bulky toiletry case. Plus, it has a hanging hook so I can easily access all of my essentials without taking up valuable counter space. This is especially handy when traveling on a cruise ship, where bathroom space is at a minimum.” — Katie Seemann, Senior Content Contributor

4. Amazon Basics Packing Cubes

“I was late to the packing cube scene, but now I’m a full believer. Traveling with kids on extended, international trips means lots of packing and unpacking and constantly trying to fit the same stuff into the luggage it came in … which is harder than it sounds. Packing cubes help keep things organized, and we can unpack only the stuff we need. These Amazon Basics packing cubes come in multiple sizes and colors, and the price is better than most of the competition.” — Chris Hassan, Social Media and Brand Manager

5. WANDF Travel Backpack

“These lightweight backpacks fit as personal items and allow us to pack the essentials for nearly a week away with no baggage fees. I love that they zip all the way open for easy loading and have deep side pockets for drinks and snacks. And the side handle came in handy when I needed to carry a bag for one of my kids.” — Jessica Merritt, Editor and Content Contributor

Hot Tip:

Check out all of our top go-to travel products in 1 comprehensive guide!

Our Favorite Cards for Amazon.com Purchases

Person shopping on Amazon on phone
Image Credit: Amazon

If you are like many Americans, you likely spend quite a bit of money each year on Amazon.

By using the right credit card for your Amazon purchases, you can earn a significant amount of cash back or points to use toward travel. From the Prime Visa Card to the Chase Freedom Flex℠, there is a card for every shopper.

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CardWelcome Bonus and Annual FeeAmazon Benefits
Prime Visa card
  • Get a $100 Amazon Gift Card instantly upon approval exclusively for Prime members
  • Annual fee of $0
  • 5% cash-back on Amazon and Whole Foods purchases (must be an Amazon Prime member)
  • Visa Signature benefits
  • Purchase protection, extended warranty
Amazon Rewards Visa Signature Credit Card
  • Annual fee of $0
  • 3% cash-back on Amazon and Whole Foods purchases
  • Visa Signature benefits
  • Purchase protection, extended warranty
Chase Freedom Flex℠
  • Earn a $200 bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months.
  • Annual fee of $0
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
  • Earn 75,000 miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
  • Annual fee of $95 (rates & fees)
  • 2x miles on every purchase, including Amazon purchases
  • Extended warranty
American Express® Gold Card
  • Earn 60,000 points when you spend $6,000 on purchases in the first 6 months.
  • Annual fee of $250 (rates & fees)
  • 4x points at U.S. supermarkets (up to $25,000 per year; 1x thereafter) — our tip is to buy Amazon gift cards to receive elevating earnings
  • 1x points on all other non-bonused purchases
The Platinum Card® from American Express
  • Earn 80,000 points after spending $8,000 on purchases in the first 6 months.
  • Annual fee of $695 (rates & fees)
  • 1x points on all non-bonused purchases
Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express
  • Earn a $250 statement credit after spending $3,000 in purchases in the first 6 months.
  • Annual fee of $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95 (rates & fees)
  • 6% cash-back at U.S. supermarkets (up to $6,000 per calendar year; 1% thereafter) — our tip is to buy Amazon gift cards to receive elevated earnings
  • 1% cash-back on all other purchases
Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express
  • Earn a $200 statement credit after spending $2,000 in purchases in the first 6 months.
  • Annual fee of $0 (rates & fees)
  • 3% cash-back on U.S. online retail purchases (up to $6,000 in purchases each year; 1% thereafter)
  • 1% cash-back on other purchases
Hot Tip:

For a full list of the best credit cards for Amazon.com purchases, including options for small business owners, check out our detailed guide.

Final Thoughts

We know from experience that having the right tool for the job, or in this case, travel gear, can make all the difference when on the road.

Our team has tested these items in the real world so that you can buy them with confidence and focus your efforts on finding a great travel deal instead!

Be sure to grab these products at Amazon when they are on sale for Black Friday!

The information regarding the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
The information regarding the Amazon Rewards Visa Signature Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
The information regarding the Chase Freedom Flex℠ was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.

For rates and fees of the American Express® Gold Card, click here.
For rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of the Blue Cash Everyday® from American Express, click here.

Chris Hassan's image

About Chris Hassan

Chris holds a B.S. in Hospitality and Tourism Management and managed social media for all Marriott properties in South America, making him a perfect fit for UP and its social media channels. He has a passion for making content catered toward family travelers.

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