Travel Tech Q&A: Freelancer.com's Matt Barrie

Travel Tech Q&A: Freelancer.com's Matt Barrie

Summary: Entrepreneur and head of Freelancer.com, Matt Barrie, shares with us his top tips for tip top travel, including how to beat global roaming data charges, as well as about a Japanese freeway bar housed in a shipping container.

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TOPICS: Travel Tech
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Entrepreneur and head of Freelancer.com, Matt Barrie, shares with us his top tips for tip top travel, including how to beat global roaming data charges, as well as about a Japanese freeway bar housed in a shipping container.

Matt Barrie

Matt Barrie
(Credit: Freelancer.com)

What tech do you travel with and why?

The killer tech to travel with is a prepay MiFi device for each country I go to. I have one for the UK, US and Canada. It's a bridge between the 3G/4G mobile network and Wi-Fi. Turn it on, and anywhere I go in the US I have 100Mbps internet and no data roaming bills. Also, Skype works on it as well!

Apart from that, the standard laptop for work, iPad for leisure, iPhone for emails and calls.

What tech do you miss from home?

A large screen!

What's your favourite phone app for travelling and why?

FlightTrack, it taps into the airline systems to tell you about flight delays or changes before it's officially announced.

Most memorable travel story/experience?

I have a hilarious story that's too long to share here about searching for a nightclub on a freeway in a forest near Narita airport late one night in Japan. After three hours of searching back and forth in the snow, I discovered it was a makeshift Karaoke bar in a shipping container. What happened next I'll leave to your imagination, but it was out of a David Lynch movie!

Personal travel advice/tip?

I hate travelling through LAX [airport]. Arrive at the wrong time and you can spend up to three hours in processing. The American airlines generally are awful, so try to avoid them where possible. Some flights have Wi-Fi on-board now for the domestic US, which makes the trip go really fast!

How do you deal with jet lag?

Push through when you arrive and try to sleep at a normal time. A couple of beers helps with that!

What (if any) travel websites do you use?

Skyscanner and Wotif.

Is there one thing you must do before you leave home?

Make sure someone is feeding the cat!

What is the best airport you've visited and why?

Singapore airport rocks.

What was your last tech purchase?

Buying our VP of Strategy her 23rd iPhone. She's lost that many.

Where is the best place you've been for duty free tech shopping?

I don't know about duty free, but the markets in Hong Kong and the Fry's Megastore in the USA are lots of fun!

What tech do you expect in hotels when you are travelling?

Wireless!

Favourite destination city to work/visit & why?

Well if it's tech, it's Silicon Valley. That's ground zero for technology, everyone's there — there are events on every week all over the place, as well as a bunch of stuff at Stanford University.

Name one thing you wish your iPod/phone/laptop could do that it doesn't do now?

It would be great if you could edit documents and write code on the iPad effectively, so that the laptop could be dropped. It also needs a USB port and the ability to plug into a projector.

Topic: Travel Tech

Luke Hopewell

About Luke Hopewell

A fresh recruit onto the tech journalism battlefield, Luke Hopewell is eager to see some action. After a tour of duty in the belly of the Telstra beast, he is keen to report big stories on the enterprise beat. Drawing on past experience in radio, print and magazine, he plans to ask all the tough questions you want answered.

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