Seven handy airport tech tricks

Picture this. You’re at an airport with no battery power on your phone, and you forgot to charge your tablet or laptop before you left your house or hotel. There are 100 passengers waiting in the gate lounge, but only four power points at which to plug in a charger. You need to call your family and tell them of your whereabouts. What do you do?

Well these handy airport tech tricks may make this less of a dilemma the next time you travel.

Charge your phone in Airplane Mode

There is a widespread belief in the tech community that your phone will charge quicker in Airplane Mode. Because fewer functions are in operation when your phone is not connected to the internet, wifi or bluetooth, there is lower strain on your phone’s processor. So, in theory, it should charge faster in this mode.

Use FaceTime to make phone calls

Airport reception is not great at the best of times, but now that most airports offer free wifi, you can use a VOIP app, such as FaceTime to make calls and send texts without having to take a hit on your phone’s data plan. You just need a wifi connection along with the required app. Read this article to find out how to use FaceTime on your phone, laptop or tablet.

Keep your tech organised

Keeping all of your gadgets and their associated cables in the one place not only makes it easier to find, but also gets you moving through security lines much quicker. A laptop bag or satchel is a good way to keep your travel tech tidy.

Access the airport lounge

If you’re really desperate for faster wifi, or looking for a power point so you can charge your phone, tablet or laptop, airport lounges are the place to be. Lounges are a niceway to relax before a flight or during a transfer, and can be accessed for a nominal fee or use of your frequent flyers points.

Carry a compact power strip

Have you ever had your phone and tablet on zero battery power at the same time and had to make the tough decision on which one to charge? Well that decision becomes much simpler if you have a portable compact power strip at hand the next time you travel. Portable power strips are quite affordable, and their compact size means, whilst they won’t take up too much space in your carry-on baggage, you’ll always have a spare point from which to power up. Some even come with USB ports, so with only one power point, you can charge all of your essential tech with ease.

Secure luggage with a digital tracker

If you’re a constant traveller, you’ve probably experienced the panic of lost baggage at some point. Rather than worry about your lost luggage, get yourself a digital tracker such as the Tile, or purchase a digital luggage tag from Qantas. These tags use GPS or GSM tracking, and many can be paired with a smartphone app or connected to a website that makes it easier to find your luggage anywhere in the world. That way if you’re ever in a missing baggage situation you’ll know exactly where it is and you may even be able to make the baggage handler’s job a little easier by being able to point them in the right direction.

Get free wifi

If the public wifi at your airport isn’t of the free unlimited variety, here’s a handy little trick you can use to bypass paying for the privilege. Next time you log on, head to the complimentary ‘free’ sites on offer with the wifi you are trying to access,then open a new tab. With any luck you’ll have skipped the payment section and tricked the wifi into thinking you are paying for access. It is worth mentioning that this trick doesn’t always work, but you’ve got nothing to lose by giving it a try.

Do you have any airport tech tips for our members? Why not share them below?


Written by Leon Della Bosca

Publisher of YourLifeChoices – Australia's most-trusted and longest-running retirement website. A trusted voice on Australia's retirement landscape, including retirement income and planning, government entitlements, lifestyle and news and information relevant to Australians over 50. Leon has worked in publishing for more than 25 years and is also a travel writer and editor, graphic designer and photographer.

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