This first Gotta Have Gadget is not just for a cruise but for any trip. The Briggs & Riley BU125X is a 25” expandable piece of luggage. My father-in-law learned the hard way of purchasing less expensive luggage. As soon as we picked the bags up at Tampa International Airport, his wheels were broken meaning I had to carry his bag. I packed the BU125X to the brim which weighed in at 48.6 pounds. Being just less than 50 pounds, my luggage was tagged as “heavy” but I didn’t need to pay any additional fees. I thought being that heavy, I would have trouble with the wheels, but even at just under 50 lbs the Briggs & Riley BU125X stood up to the test. Internal and external pockets and compartments made it easy to pack my flip flops, and Vans to keep them away from my clothes. Not only did this luggage exceed my expectations, the “lava” color had me walking with style! To see all the features of the Briggs & Riley BU125X visit them on-line at www.briggs-riley.com.
As you may have read in my trip report (http://www.thewdwdads.com/carnival/) I went snorkeling in the Grand Caymans. Although snorkeling gear is provided, I like to bring my own set. There is just something about using a mask and snorkel that was used by someone else. I turned to U.S. Divers after some research and tested the Regal LX Mask, Tuscan Snorkel and Tuluam Fin Set. I was amazed at how many people brought their own gear and how many of those were U.S. Diver kits. The two key features here were the Mask with a hypoallergenic Silicone face skirt which was extremely comfortable and the Snorkel that could go under water and with a quick exhale would clear any water from the valve. This was ideal as we had good 3-5 foot waves that from time to time would crash over my snorkel. As I saw others taking in water, I blew out the water and continued to swim. All three pieces of snorkel gear fit perfectly in the supplied travel bag which made it easy to pack and easy to carry off the cruise. U.S. Divers has gear for beginners and expert snorkeling with custom sizes to fit your needs. Check them out at www.usdivers.com to find the right set for you.
Whether you are swimming, fishing, parasailing or snorkeling, I recommend a good pair of water shoes. The Adam™ by Altra is my choice. I wore them through a season of fishing in various ponds; I take them for swimming in public pools like at Disney and on the cruise, and wear them generally anytime I am around water. What I love about the Adam™ is they are extremely comfortable and the soles provide a grip on any underwater surface. Believe me when I say I have tested these on every surface at various boat launches. The Velcro straps make it easy to put them on or take them off and provide a tight fit. These were easy to pack and extreme comfort makes Altra’s The Adam™ a must have for any trip involving water. You can see all the benefits on-line at www.altrazerodrop.com