Anyone who travels frequently outside of their home country knows how expensive — not to mention challenging — it can be to stay connected while abroad. Free and reliable high-speed WiFi is not as ubiquitous as we’d like, roaming rates can be quite high, and buying SIM cards for multiple devices is both costly and cost-inefficient, lacking the ability to share data plans.

GlocalMe_G2-5-smallEnter GlocalMe, exit connection worries. I’ve eliminated the stress of figuring out how to get online with my laptop, tablet, and smartphone (at the same time) and do it without breaking the bank.

The GlocalMe Mobile Hotspot uses cloud-based SIM technology without the SIM card, and it works in 108 countries (and counting). Securely connect up to 5 devices at a time on it’s private, encrypted network, and choose from either pay-as-you-go or the more affordable pre-paid plans (if you use a lot of data, the latter is a great option, if you use very little, you’ll spend less with the former). Although I reviewed the GlocalMe G1s, the company will soon be releasing their G2 model (shown in the photo), with a larger screen and faster (4G) wifi speed.

As if being a convenient, secure, compact travel WiFi router were not enough, the folks at GlocalMe added in a power bank that lets you charge your mobile phone or tablet at the same time……allowing you to leave one less power adapter/charger at home (sweet!), and although it’s simple enough to manage directly from the device itself, my favorite feature is the smartphone app that lets you manage the router and easily add more data to your plan if you need it right from your smartphone.

At roughly the same size as an iPhone (albeit a bit thicker), it takes up very little space in your bag, and although the built-in power bank gives it a little heft, it’s just a hair over 7 ounces so it won’t weigh you down. Just like my American Express card, my GlocalMe is something I never leave home without!