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Four Finds for (Female) Travelers

Shannon with Backpack

Refining the contents of my backpack is a process that will last as long as I’m on the road. With space at a premium, every item that goes into the bag has to be well thought out. I’ve downsized and streamlined, but I’m always on the lookout for resourceful products that make packing easier and take up less room.

Here are a few of my favorite finds:

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How to Stream U.S. Television Shows While Traveling Abroad

Unable to Download

Just imagine, you’re in the Rome airport staring down the barrel of a five-hour layover. Fortunately, you came prepared. You fire up your Netflix account hoping to while away your downtime watching House of Cards only to be greeted by a message saying you can’t watch anything from your current location.

One of the annoying inconveniences of traveling overseas is the inability to stream domestic televisions shows while outside the country. License restrictions generally prevent services like Netflix and Hulu from working internationally. Sure, you can buy a Game of Thrones episode off Amazon’s Instant Video service from anywhere in the world, but you won’t actually be allowed to watch that video until you’re back in the States. Even otherwise free content from the big broadcasters, like NBC, won’t stream overseas.

Good thing there are some work arounds.

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A Traveler’s Guide to Protecting Your Identity, Accounts, and Information on the Road

If you’re like us, your entire life is on your computer. And if someone wanted to steal your life, or access your bank account, there’s no better roadmap for doing it than the files on your computer.

We carry everything from our resumes to our tax returns on our laptops. It’s hard to understate the damage a knowledgeable criminal could do with that information. And while we’re careful not to store bank account information or passwords anywhere, it is ridiculously easy to hack into many online accounts once you have control of someone’s computer. In a minute, we’ll show you just how easy and how you can protect yourself.

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Two Extreme Climates. One Tiny Backpack. What I Packed.

Hot and cold tops

Hot and cold tops

When I see women traveling with backpacks larger than mine, sometimes I feel a flash of envy. What are they stashing in the extra space? More shoes? A hair dryer? Faced with the challenge of packing for a six-week trip to Hawaii and Alaska in a 40-liter backpack, I almost gave in to size envy and upgraded.

I’m glad I didn’t. Despite the fact that my backpack was purchased for a nine-week Central American trip that required solely hot weather wear, the same reasons I originally selected it still trumped the enticement of another pair of shoes.

First, a larger backpack would mean frequently being separated from it—checking it at airports, surrendering it during bus rides or airport taxis—and I’m kind of neurotic that way. I like arriving at my destination knowing I’ll have my clothes and other essentials in hand. With six flights on the Seattle-Hawaii-Alaska-Seattle itinerary alone, that would be six times a bag could go astray; and since we’re frequently in places for a short amount of time, often only a night or two, reuniting with an errant bag could be difficult.

Second, being on the move so much means having to re-pack every few days. The less stuff, the shorter amount of time that chore takes.

Third, the bigger the bag the heavier it is to tote around.

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How to Build a Mobile Business



Shannon at work in Caye Caulker, Belize; just one of her many temporary offices.

There are multiple paths to a successful mobile business. Shannon’s route to fame and glory reflects her specific skills, interests, and professional network. Your path will be different and should be planned around your own unique abilities and passions. Here’s how to get started:

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