Gadgets: making travel easier
Happy headbangers hats
Sunrocket solar kettle
Happy Headbangers Club Hats
A first world problem with many cycling helmets is that they’re so darn dull and ugly – so kids often just don’t want to know. Here’s a smart, simple idea from a pair of Irish mums to help get junior cyclists onside with wearing them, other than simply laying down the law. The Happy Headbangers Hats are in soft fleece to pull over helmets and they come in 16 designs to suit all interests from a dinosaur to a bunny, a princess to a shark. So suddenly your bike helmet has a lot more character and thanks to reflective patches, more visibility in low light too. Smart and simple.
€22 from happyheadbangersclub.com or direct from designer-mum-co-founder, Jane Carroll’s Design shop in Blackrock, Co Dublin
One of the real buzzes from travelling alone is bumping into like-minded solo flyers. Here’s an app from two well-travelled Irish brothers, Shane and Ronan Diffily, to take some of the random uncertainty out of such meet-ups. Simply enter your location into Wandermates mobile or desktop app and a selection of local possible fellow wanderers will come up. For security, the app only shows a female traveller other women and you can tag a meet-up for a particular adventure activity, such as rock climbing – no, not that other adventure you’re thinking about!
Free, see wandermates.com
Sunrocket Solar Kettle
Pure solar power at work here. Fill up the tube reservoir, open the curved reflective panels and it can heat 500ml of water in 30 minutes. Not quite so fast under our skies perhaps, but it will get there eventually. Once hot, close the panels and seal in the heat like a thermos. Though it’ll never boil for a proper Irish cuppa . . . $60 from sunkettle.com