Our Photo Diary prompt for June was all about your go-to items to take along on professional travel. What do you and your colleagues consider must-take supplies when going to conference? We’re reporting back just in time for your ALA Annual packing lists.
From Angie Manfredi:
Now that we can’t live without our devices, I think traveling anywhere should require a back-up battery power pack. But while these devices are always useful, during conference they’re essential. They can keep you connected throughout the whole day without ever needing to plug in. I first found out about the PowerGen from Kelly Jensen and I’ve taken it to conferences and on travel for over a year now. While I was live-tweeting the Best Fiction for Young Adults feedback session in Philadelphia my phone’s battery actually died, but the PowerGen kept it live the whole time. You can recharge the PowerGen and when it’s fully charged I can get at least two full charges for my phone out of it. It comes with many different interchangable adapters to fit lots of devices. The one I bought is at the low end of the PowerGen family, so it has that dangling cord, but more expensive versions have a wrap-around cord. You can read more about PowerGen here.
I have a new addition to my battery pack family for this conference: this smaller Rayovac booster. It has a much shorter charge life – you basically get about an extra hour or two of charge out of it, but it’s more compact and the unit itself recharges must faster. It’s cheap too and I found mine at Lowe’s!
Another conference must-have is a good lanyard/badge holder. I got this one over six years ago at conference and now I always travel with it and use it. Not only do I not have to struggle with the cheap plastic ones they have at every conference but this one is more sturdy, gives me lots of room for my buttons, and as you can see from the back side, has pockets that fit everything from business cards to a few dollars in cash and even my phone in a hurry. This works as a wallet during the day and keeps everything secure and in reach. As I said, this was a freebie (lucky!) but I’ve looked at similar ones used for international travel – I’ll be investing if this one ever gives up!
From Brooke Rasche:
I think the most important thing to bring is snacks! I love snacks and usually think I’m starving if I haven’t eaten in more than 2 hours. It can be pricey to buy snacks at convention centers though, so I always make sure to bring my own.
From Amy Koester:
I never go to conferences without my networking supplies–professional business cards, my new personal blogging cards (from moo cards), and Storytime Guerrilla conference ribbons to share with all you BA ninjas.