Thursday, January 18, 2007

I Use the Travel Gear I Write About

You read a lot of travel gear blogs and travel gear magazine articles that are obviously written by desk jockeys sorting through press releases. Even though the magazine has a 6-month lead time, the review magically appears the same time the item hits the shelves. The review text often sounds eerily like the gear company's own promotional material--probably because nobody has actually tested the thing.


In the Practical Travel Gear Blog, you'll mostly read about items that have been road tested and have performed. Sometimes a company will send me a sample. More often I've bought the item retail because I needed it--or thought I had to have it, like the flip-flops with a bottle opener in this photo. That's part of the reason you won't read about aspirational items in here that cost what most of us earn in a week. I'll leave those purchases to the stockbrokers and surgeons who feel a need to show off.

I also travel a lot, which is another key difference. I'm not a perpetual backpacker anymore, but I did do that for years on end. Now I am on the road about seven or eight weeks a year, at different budget levels of accommodation and in varied climates. So the items you read about on this blog will probably be worth carrying around.

P.S.--I try to spend a week or two a year at the beach pictured above, in a fishing village called Chuburna, near Progreso in the Yucatan. You can also have this beach almost to yourself by renting the Chuburna Mexico beach house sitting a few steps away. Like the items I cover here, it's a good value at $250-$300 per week.

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