Why would you want to bring convenient gadgets while commuting? Welcome to the daily grind. You ride the train to work, get crushed by the rush hour, and clock in. Eight hours later you clock out, ride the train back home, get crushed by the weight of humanity’s tired retreat. The next day, you rinse and repeat the circle of life.
That’s the reality for the working class, who typically see commuting as a part of their everyday routine.
Commuting can be just as stressful as your job, but it doesn’t always have to be like that. You can turn the daily grind into an enjoyable ride, though you may need to bring a few things.
Here are some examples of gadgets that make your commute enjoyable.
If you love reading but don’t have the time for it because most of your day and energy is spent commuting, you may want to take an e-reader with you. They’re better suited for reading than your phone as e-readers—with their specialized displays—mimic the look of a paperback, while smartphones have the typical screen glow that hurts your eyes if you stare at them for extended periods.
E-readers allow you to carry your library around with you without the paperweight burden. And when you’re using an e-reader over your phone, you’ll be conserving the latter’s batteries.
Almost every gadget—like your smartphone and the items in this list—requires electricity to run. Though the obvious solution would be to bring a power bank with you. The more economical alternative is a portable USB charging station.
Besides, a power bank is only useful for one or maybe two devices. USB charging stations can accommodate multiple gadgets at once. Thus, you’ll save time, and you won’t have to keep plugging and unplugging the cord.
Don’t worry about power outlets. Nowadays, you can spot public outlets in trains, subway stations, convenience stores, and even some buses like the ones from Greyhound Lines. Probably the only time when people need a power bank these days is when travelling to remote, off-the-grid areas.
Commuting exposes you to the cacophony of the chaotic world. Some urban dwellers may have grown inoculated to such noise that the city’s din becomes static to their ears; however, if you’re constantly bothered by it, the stress could affect your health. So it’s a good idea to filter out the hurly-burly with a pair of earphones.
Earphones let you replace the commotion of the commute with music, audiobooks, podcasts, or even some calming ambience. Though you could buy noise-cancelling headphones, they’re bulky, which becomes a problem on tightly packed trains or busy buses. On that note, you should consider getting Bluetooth earphones. Those with wires may get snagged on objects or become a nuisance.
You may also shut out distractions by getting distracted yourself, and you can do that with video games. You could play on your smartphone, but it’s better to get a handheld console as those have games with better immersion and gameplay.
Many consider Nintendo as the leader in handheld gaming, and their latest console, the Switch, got released to global acclaim in 2017. A lot of titles from other platforms (including the PC) have been ported to the Switch; thus, you have a massive archive of video games to play on the go. Some of the best Switch games focus on the simple, easy going fun that Nintendo’s known for—perfect for de-stressing while commuting.
For catching up
Missed your favorite TV show again because you filed for an overtime or you were struck in traffic? Make your commuting life less boring and more entertaining by watching your shows on your handheld tablet. Binge watch your line-up of Netflix shows or watch interesting documentaries on the go. You may want to enable the subtitles especially if the noise is unbearable and you can’t hear what the characters are saying.
Apart from those . . .
You can also find enjoyment in the simple things during your commute. For example, you could ease your mind and meditate during a long bus ride or you can just enjoy the passing view on your window.
If you’re commuting everyday, don’t stress yourself about it. It’s part of your life, so just go with the flow.