Technology & Travel {And The Next Adventure!}

Huge thanks to Verizon for hooking me up with the iPad and TravelPass. I was not paid for this review; thoughts and ALL CAPS OPINIONS are my own!

I’m really curious to hear your thoughts on this one!

Prior to Will and I leaving for the Camino, we had a meeting with the folks over at Verizon. You know, that little cellular company that likely provides cell service for at least a few of you out there?! {If you’re in Colorado, there is darn good chance you are on Verizon since they are THE ONLY COMPANY THAT GETS SERVICE IN THE MOUNTAINS HERE. But I digress.} Verizon wanted to know if I was interested in testing out a few of their products and services. I’ve been a longtime Verizon user anyway {see previously referenced shouting in all caps!} so I was happy to peruse the options and let them know. Turns out, there was a service Will was psyched about: TravelPass.

Have y’all heard about TravelPass? Truthfully, I hadn’t until it came up in our conversation. Turns out, Verizon allows you to pay a fixed amount per day while you are traveling which then enables you to use your phone’s current data plan on a single device. It doesn’t have to be your phone; it can be a laptop or an iPad. The fee is only $2/day in Canada or Mexico, $5 in Spain, or $10/day in this massive list of other countries.  The bonus part: you only pay that flat rate fee on days when you actually use data on the device. So, no harm, no foul.

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Photos: Will Rochfort

Verizon set us up with a loaner iPad, equipped with TravelPass for the entirety of the Camino. {For full transparency, they covered all the costs.} It worked in both Spain and France so we had digital access the entire trip. And this is where I surprised myself. At first, I wasn’t so sure about the entire thing. Sure, it’s nice to have access to data, but did I really want that? To stay connected? And while I was backpacking{ish}, no less?

Guys, I loved having TravelPass! I didn’t transfer any contacts so things like texts and whatnot didn’t push through. But what I did love was the ability to edit and share photos in real time! Since Will and I are now *both* shooting on manual cameras that photo in RAW, we can’t post anything without editing first. Usually, we just wait until we get home and then….sometimes forget about it. For the Camino, we uploaded the Lightroom app to the iPad so that we had a decent sized screen to use. Then, once we finished editing the photos, I could immediately use the data from the TravelPass to upload them to Facebook or Instagram.

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Trying to figure out where we live for the evening

Social media aside, the TravelPass came in handy once we hiked into Pamplona, too. We had booked an AirBnB rather than an albergue, thinking it would be nice to have some space and get out of dorm living for a little bit. But once we trekked into Pamplona, we realized we had absolutely no idea how to get to the apartment! This may sound minor but imagine walking into a good-sized city without really knowing what side of town you are on, where you are going, and your only means of transportation is your own two feet. Somehow, you have to get to that darn apartment! I just plunked down on a bench, used the iPad to figure out where we were in Google Maps, and then figured out the most direct walking route from there. Truthfully, I shudder to think how many extra miles we would have walked that day had we not had the TravelPass. {Okay, maybe it would have been like three miles but we already walked 14 miles that day; we were done!}

The entire experience surprised me. I’ve never loved staying connected while traveling; I typically prefer to shut off my phone a get away from everything. But the beauty of having TravelPass loaded onto something like an iPad was that it was *not* a small device like a phone, which prevented you from constantly pulling it out of your pocket. It was packed away in my backpack most of the time, so I only thought of it when I really needed it for something. Plus, it was a fantastic way to keep in touch with my sister back home who couldn’t make the trip.

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OH! And I forgot to mention the best part! Thanks to TravelPass, Will and I bought plane tickets for our next adventure while sitting on the airplane to Paris…

…..New Zealand, here we come!

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Where do you stand on technology and travel?

11 Comments

  • Reply Whitney October 14, 2016 at 7:18 am

    That’s a great point about how since it wasn’t a phone you didn’t check it all the time, because I agree about disconnecting! I’m definitely bad about being on my phone. I don’t have Verizon but should get it before my next trip!

  • Reply Kelly October 14, 2016 at 11:24 am

    A friend told me about Travelpass when we were going to Canada last Jan. I was traveling without my husband, so it made it really easy for me to keep in touch with him while I was gone. Plus, I always like to be able to post pics for my family to see when I’m traveling, and who can do without the GPS???

  • Reply Amanda L. October 14, 2016 at 11:40 am

    I’m going to Iceland next month with a group of friends (eek!) and this sounds like such a great idea! Just wanted to give you a heads up that the link you posted for TravelPass isn’t working. I’ll find it with google, but thought you might want to know. Thanks again for sharing!

    • Reply Heather October 16, 2016 at 9:20 pm

      Thanks for the heads up. Should be all sorted!

  • Reply Claude October 14, 2016 at 12:45 pm

    You will LOVE NZ, the country and it’s friendly people! Ironman 1991, Auckland, and Ironman 1999, Lake Taupo.

  • Reply Patrice October 14, 2016 at 9:11 pm

    New Zealand!!!! Be still my heart … Can’t wait to hear more. And, if you need ANY info, you should know who to ask 😉

  • Reply Lesley Glenn October 14, 2016 at 10:06 pm

    YES. We used Travel Pass when we went to Iceland. And BTW, we had access everywhere in Iceland. It was amazing.

  • Reply Rachel @ Better LIVIN October 15, 2016 at 8:17 am

    I was sad to leave Verizon when I left the States because they were such a great company! What a great tool!

  • Reply Rebecca October 17, 2016 at 1:54 pm

    I love TravelPass, I use it every time I travel internationally. The best part is how they send you a txt to let you know the 24 hour clock is about to reset. I got one about 20 minutes before I got on my flight out of London so I was able to shut it down and save $10!

  • Reply Megan October 23, 2016 at 1:42 pm

    I think I am done reading your blog. Nearly all of the posts in the last year or two read like long advertisements. I don’t blame you for taking advantage of the financial benefits of running a blog, but personally I think I would rather read about more authentic experiences and thoughts.

  • Reply Vivian Vu October 28, 2016 at 1:57 am

    I had never heard of TravelPass until just reading this post. That’s an amazing idea! You may think it’s a minor inconvenience to get lost finding an AirBnb, but honestly after traveling so many times having data on your phone SOLELY to use Google Maps would have been soo nice. It’s difficult navigating a six hour trip around Italy when you’re driving, let me tell you! Great post, I would totally do this if I had Verizon.

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