Whether you are off for the final week of SXSW or looking forward to the next in line of this season's many music festivals, you need to be well prepared. These festivals are fun, but they are also busy and exhausting — be ready!
AT&T Unite Pro by NETGEAR: We're obsessed with this brand new next-generation mobile hotspot that can connect up to 15 Wi-Fi devices and has up 16 hours of battery life, essential for surviving the fast past of SXSW. ($49.99 with contract, ATT.com)
Mophie Space Pack: If you are like us, you are always running out of juice — whether on a long busy day at home or on the road. Save yourself from battling other conference-goers for power outlets with this combination battery life extender case and portable storage solution. It extends your battery life AND offers more storage. If you can't afford it, at least carry your cord so you can charge at the next available outlet — you will have to fight for them, but they are out there! ($149.99, Mophie.com)
Airtame: Whether working on a presentation for work or catching up on your favorite TV shows, sometimes you just want a big screen over your tiny laptop. Plug this device into your monitor or TV and you can wirelessly stream your screen onto the hotel TV. ($99, Airtame.com)
Polaroid Socialmatic: Love sharing your photos with friends? This digital touchscreen camera will revolutionize the way you share photos throughout your trip. You can not only upload your photos instantly to your social channels, but you can also print your photos immediately after taking them. ($199, Anthropologie.com)
Consider investing in an Eye-fi for your cameras. It lets you take photos for your DSLR and wirelessly upload images to your smart phone to post images online instantly. ($35, Newegg.com)
While you'll find endless lounges with alcohol and caffeine, it is oddly hard to come across water. Pack a reusable water bottle like these cute neon pink varieties from Sigg (MySigg.com, $39.99) to stay hydrated.
It's an ugly truth, but big crowds — even for the best of reasons — are a breeding ground for theft. nio Tag (Niostore.com, $69) prevents the loss of your smartphone and other valuables while out and about. As the first Bluetooth-powered security tag, you simply attach the tag to any item you want to keep track of while en route (i.e. luggage, purse, laptop case, etc.). Should you become separated from the item, an alarm will alert you – acting as an invisible, electronic leash.
Bring plenty of business cards, swag and/or flyers if you represent a company, band or film — there are hundreds of places to slap a flyer, drop postcards and swap business cards. And a Moleskine notebook, iPad or something to take notes with, jot down ideas and/or exchange contact information with others. If you are socially savvy, use iPhone apps like Bump to exchange personal contact info and SXSW’s app that allows you to connect with others, save your schedule and is updated regularly with changes to the agenda and breaking news, weather alerts, etc. Eventbrite also helps keep track of all the parties you’ve RSVPed to.