by: Melanie Warner 

As a travel and lifestyle journalist for 20 years, I have taken many road trips with my kids who are 16, 12, and 4. In the old days, a road trip was about disconnecting and getting away. Today, it’s about getting away – while staying connected. With many map and GPS devices draining cell phone batteries, you can often get stranded without fully charged phones. Some cell phone chargers have actually sparked and short-circuited my car’s power supply. I often find that I personally outlast all my electrical devices and gadgets – even when fully charged. Normally, when we travel as a family – we can’t go very far without someone threatening to take a hostage. Most of the fights are over the one plug that is expected to charge 4 iPhones and 3 iPads. It seems that no matter how long we charge them overnight, they still drain quickly in the car (just like the driver!).

I have tested many chargers over thousands of miles. The best device that I have found is the Enercell 150W Power Inverter and car charger. It’s a 150-watt inverter that allows you to operate 110VAC equipment from your vehicle’s power adaptor through the cigarette lighter. It also has a plug for a traditional 3-prong power plug so you can plug in laptops or games. It even has a USB plug. We plugged a six-plug power strip into it and were able to charge all 7 of our devices at once. Since it has built in ventilation, it never overheats. It peaks out at 300 watts and never let us down, even in the hot desert sun.

Enercell is Radio Shack’s in-house battery brand. I have found this to be the best brand for the value. It’s been Mom tested, kid tested, road trip tested – and has never overheated, sparked or quit – like all the others that didn’t survive before it. Life is too short for road warriors to wait at a rest stop to recharge! Enjoy!

Enercell 150W Power Inverter

Model number KS 150 PLUG – Catalog #22-134

Price $39.99

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