What Every Speaker Needs to Have When Traveling to a Conference

Anyone speaking on the international/national level has run into AV difficulties and there is nothing more stressful than not being prepared to handle it.  In this post, what every speaker needs to have when traveling to a conference, we (Salim Rezaie, Natalie May, and Anand Swaminathan) have listed the things we take with us anytime we travel to speak at a conference to ensure our presentation works no matter what connections a venue may have.

Our Current Laptops

13” Macbook Pro

13” MacBook Air

Our Recommended Cables

Thunderbolt to HDMI

Thunderbolt to VGA

7 Pin Lightning to VGA to Connect Your Phone

USB to Lightning Cable

Our Power Sources

Macbook Standard Plug

Universal Plug Converter (International Travel): Monoprice Compact Cube Universal Travel Adapter

 Our Slide Advancer with an Extra Pair of Batteries

Logitech R400 Wireless Presenter Remote Control

Kensington 33374EU Wireless USB presenter and Laser Pointer


Our Portable Speaker

Kitsound Mini Buddy and Portable Rechargeable Universal Wired Speaker(with 3.5mm headphone jack insert) plus associated USB charging cable

Our Lecture Backup

If you use PowerPoint, you are likely going to be fine no matter where you go as that’s pretty standard tech.  However if you are using keynote, you should always bring your laptop and all adapters as many places won’t have keynote software (this has occurred at conferences such as SEMPA and ACOEP)

Also, always have other talks you have given in the past as back up.  There have been a few scenarios where other speakers were not able to travel due to weather and there lecture spots needed to be filled.  Have seen this occur on two separate occasions and was able to step in and give another lecture in their stead.

Samsung 128GB USB Flash Drive with a copy of your presentation and PDF versions of your talk

For Our New Ideas

Small Moleskine Notebook & 2 pens (in case the ink runs out of one), sharpie markers

Storyboard Sketchbook

Post It Notes

Our Travel Accessory Organizer

Cocoon 10BKB – Black GRID-IT Accessory Organizer

We hope you have found this post helpful and please leave other tips and tech you have found useful and why in the comments below.

Cite this article as: Salim Rezaie, "What Every Speaker Needs to Have When Traveling to a Conference", REBEL EM blog, May 26, 2018. Available at: https://rebelem.com/what-every-speaker-needs-to-have-when-traveling-to-a-conference/.

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