15 Smart Devices You Can Take Using A Travel Router

15 Smart Devices You Can Take Using A Travel Router

June 22, 2021 Travel Blog Travel Gaming Travel Internet Security Travel Tech Blog Travel WiFi Blog 0

If you are like most American’s you life at home now includes streaming TV channels, smart speakers, smart assistants and many other WiFi and internet connected devices. Even when you may not consider yourself a “techie” your life has likely changed in the last few years thanks to these devices.

While attempts to bring internet TVs to hotels and even smart assistants in some rooms, when it comes to travel the experience is often highly mixed. What you may not know is thanks to a smart little device known as a travel router you can easily take many of these devices from your home with you when traveling.

If you travel regularly you likely have already tried or considering bringing them. But even for a long weekend or a week at the beach, it can be surprisingly easy to bring your smart devices along with you.

In this blog post we cover 15 popular smart devices you may not have thought you could take with you when traveling, but with a travel router, you can.

Why Most Smart Devices Don’t Work When Traveling

Most smart devices are not designed to be moved from one location to the other. Traveling to a hotel, visiting family, an Airbnb or even a time share means a different WiFi network. Most smart devices are really only designed to connect to WiFi networks once – when they are initially setup. So of course when you change locations you often need to complete reconfigure the device for the new location. For most travel this simply isn’t worth the effort.

Another reason many smart devices don’t work when traveling is because hotels and other locations have something known as a captive portal. A captive portal is the screen you see when connecting to a WiFi network, usually requesting you accept terms and conditions or enter some information about yourself. Many devices have problems connecting due to captive portals, including gaming consoles and streaming sticks. Even some that do, it may not work well or with all captive portals.

How A Travel Router Lets You Bring Smart Devices When Traveling

Travel Routers create your own personal private network when traveling or on the go out of the existing WiFi network at your hotel, Airbnb, RV park or other location. The advantage is that you control your own private work, including the name. By having the same network name no matter where you travel to, all of your smart devices can connect without needing to be reconfigured.

As an added benefit you can actually name your private network the same thing you call your WiFi network at home. This means when take smart devices from your home with you when traveling, you don’t need to change anything at all. When the devices startup, they will connect.

Another advantage travel routers bring is security. Unlike most travel WiFi networks which are shared with user travelers, travel routers let you completely isolate your smart devices from other travelers.

15 Smart Devices You Can Bring While Traveling

While there are literally dozens and dozens of smart devices that you can take on vacation or business travel thanks to a travel router device, we’ve listed the Top 10 we’ve found for travel. Each of these 10 devices are common in most households and enhance the travel experience. They are not are presented in any specific order.

Streaming Sticks – Roku, FireTV, Google Chromecast, Google TV, Apple TV, Onn

Among our favorite smart devices to take when traveling is a Roku. Most American’s now get their entertainment from streaming and a Roku lets you enjoy those shows when traveling for business or vacation. Roku’s make great travel devices because they are small and easy to setup. Plus, taking your own Roku gives you access to more entertainment and is more secure than using the hotel or Airbnb’s internet TV, if they even have one.

Of course, don’t get caught up in having to be a Roku. Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Google Chromecast, Google TV and Onn streaming devices all work great when paired with a travel router.

Smart Speakers – Sonos, Apple Homepod

Sono’s themselves recognize the value of their devices on the go by offering no one, but two travel focused devices in the Roam and Move. Having the flexibility of a Sonos, especially when traveling for longer periods of time or places like the beach or mountains where you have more downtime is hard to beat.

While Sonos does have those portable speakers the experience on the go without a travel router is not like the experience at home. When away from home these speakers only operate like typical Bluetooth speakers. With a travel router you get the complete Sonos experience, including the ability to use the Sonos app to control what is playing from any device.

While Apple Home Pod doesn’t come in a portable version they also can make great travel speakers. Small in size with built in Siri they double as a smart assistant on the road. Of course, you won’t be able to get connected very easily without a travel router.

Gaming Consoles – Nintendo Switch, XBox, Playstation 4/5

While every gaming platform can work when traveling with a travel router, we love the Switch for travel specifically. First, it’s small and easy to take with you. Second, by nature of the games it is often family friendly. When you are traveling for vacation a goal is often to spend time with the family. Because Nintendo Switches don’t support captive portals you won’t be able to connect to the internet for online gaming or download new apps. With a travel router that isn’t a concern.

Playstation 4 and 5 and the XBox Ones (all generations) also will work when traveling with a travel router, but won’t without it. Whether you are a gamer or have kids who are gamers, they make great additions to travel.

Smart Assistants – Amazon Echo, Google Home, Apple Homekit

You could easily pick your favorite smart assistant here. Smart assistant devices are often inexpensive, they are becoming really popular and you can do a lot with it when traveling. Most smart assistants can pair with many of your other devices – including Roku or Fire TV if you bring that traveling (and you should). It also can connect to a Bluetooth speaker to play voice control music. Or even act as a speaker itself.

Other travel benefits are it’s ability to act as an alarm clock and task organizer. While you may not to other with either when on vacation, for business travel they are a lot better than that hotel room alarm clock.

Of course, if you love talking to Alexa or Google at home don’t expect to do it when traveling without a travel router. Smart assistants are not easy to reconfigure for each travel destination and it definitely won’t connect to hotel WiFi.

Picking The Right Travel Router

There are lots of reasons to have a travel router in addition to helping you get connected. And while any travel router will let you connect these devices when traveling, not all travel routers are the same or have all of the benefits you may want. If you are looking for the easiest and fastest way to bring each of these devices with you when traveling, make sure the travel router you are considering can do the following:

The Travel Router Is Actually Designed For Travel

While this may seem to be common sense, most of the travel routers on the market were not designed originally for travel. They are simply “small” versions of routers designed for your home. This includes both the device itself and the software that controls them. They generally are not designed to be easily changed from one travel location to the other.

You want a travel router that is focused on what you need when traveling This includes easily moving between different WiFi connections as you change locations, helping to improve poor performing WiFi and providing security,

Simple To Use

You want a travel router that is easy to use and easy to configure for each different travel location. Most routers are aimed at a technical audience. While nearly everyone could benefit from one, they just aren’t built for the average user. Even if you are good with technology, there is no reason to waste valuable vacation time trying to get connected. Stick with a travel router that is easy so you can spend your time enjoying yourself, not getting setup.