1. Cell phones. Important for emergencies and an immediate link to family, friends and services.
2. Laptop Computer. Laptops today do everything (except vacuum)—surfing the net, composing e-mail and the blog, Facebook, storing/organizing photographs, recipes, researching products and the list goes on and on.
3. Internet Satellite Dish. Internet access is a must for researching places to stay, places to see, stores, and services. Many full-time RV’ers use the RV park internet connection, but we prefer the security and reliable connection of our own dish. http://www.motosat.com/
4. Television via Satellite Dish. We still like a little passive entertainment. After all, we are not on vacation; full-timing is a lifestyle. The ability to record television shows on a DVR is also a must for us. Not only can you watch a television episode on your schedule, but fast-forwarding through commercials is a sanity saver. http://www.directv.com/
5. GPS (road). We do well navigating with maps, but GPS makes travel (and life) so much easier. Making a wrong turn with a large RV in tow can be…
6. Digital Cameras. The small “no bigger than my hand” digital camera to the more sophisticated SLR camera make it easy to take multitudes of photographs and allows picture-taking to become a daily habit. We love re-living our travels through pictures. http://www.usa.canon.com/
7. Digital Clock/Temperature Gauge Combo. We have two; one for the outside temperature, and another located in our 5th wheel “basement” When we are camped at a high elevation or during the winter, it is important to know if our pipes are still above freezing. The receivers/clocks are located indoors next to the bed and the reading projects to the ceiling. A quick look above keeps us informed. www.lacrossetechnology.com/
8. Kindle (eBook). Clutter is your enemy in a 300 square foot living space. The Kindle helps you avoid maintaining an inventory of space-hogging paperbacks. Plus, you can avoid a trip to the store—the Kindle downloads a bestseller in 30 seconds. http://www.amazon.com/
9. Printer/Copier/Scanner (Wireless). Wires are irritating and why put up with them with the invention of wireless capability? Printing out the next RV Park confirmation, copying a receipt for a mail-in rebate, or scanning in a document for an e-mail attachment are functions we have used. http://www.hp.com/
10. GPS (trail). Hiking and walking have become a daily event—anywhere from 30 minutes to 4 hours. A trail GPS keeps us on track and tells us how far we have traveled. And the geocaching capability makes our hike that much more exciting. http://www.garmin.com/
Bonus Item #1: MP3 Player. Our iPod stores thousands and thousands of songs on a tiny device (another huge space-saver). And you can put together a playlist to suit your mood—a little piano jazz for an intimate dinner, blues with our BBQ and brews and new RV Park friends, yoga-themed tunes for morning stretches—you pick the songs and the length. http://www.apple.com/
Bonus Item #2: XBox. When you absolutely cannot get a satellite signal for television or internet, the XBox has been our salvation. Plus, it is tons of fun. The Lego game series (Batman, Indiana Jones, Star Wars, Harry Potter) are a kick in the pants. http://www.xbox.com/
Well, there you have it. Our top ten (and a couple more). Just ten years ago, half of this list would not be available—just a twinkle in a geek’s eye. We will always be on the look-out for new or improved technology, but what we have is much appreciated.