Review of the New Activeon CX Action Camera

by Alex Schnee
( November 18th, 2015 )

Activeon Camera Review

I was recently asked to try out the new Activeon camera while on my journeys. I was sent a camera, waterproof shell, plates to change the color of the camera, a selfie stick, mounts, mini SD card, and head strap from the Activeon representatives. I thought I would give to a try on my recent trip to Mexico and see how it compared to some of the other action cameras on the market like the GoPro—a staple accessory for Generation-Y travelers over the past few years.


After charging it up, I immediately thought I would take the camera to the beach where I could test out the underwater shell, the selfie stick, and the head strap. One of the major positive aspects of this camera is that it costs less than many of the action cameras on the market. While the basic GoPro Hero4 retails at $299 (and GoPro Hero Silver with an LCD screen goes for $399), the Activeon CX is only $199.99. I felt this was much more reasonable to ask of Generation-Y members to pay than the GoPro.

Chacala Mexico Activeon

The picture quality was also impressive, and I thought the best part of the camera. I took a few underwater videos and felt like the HD quality was more than up-to-par from what I had experienced with a GoPro camera. The waterproof shell also worked extremely well and I was satisfied with all of the pictures I took and the quality.


One of the biggest issues I ran into with the camera was how reliant it was on having the cellphone app to run it. I know this is the biggest problem with action cameras to begin with, but it would have been nice to be able to take a selfie or walk a few feet away from my phone without having to worry about whether I was getting the footage I wanted. It’s definitely an option to go without connecting to the app with the WiFi-integrated camera, but it was impossible to actually use the selfie stick for what it was for—you would have had to set a timer function.

Ocean Mexico Activeon

The LCD screen was both a plus and a minus. It would be hard to have a camera without one at this point (especially after the view we get with our cellphones), but it also made navigation hard. I longed for a button that I could press and not to have to worry about the rest like a simpler model of the GoPro.


I will absolutely keep using this camera, and I look forward to playing around with it a little bit more—I think it’s the kind of thing that requires some time and experience in order to get the maximum benefit out of it. I am definitely planning on using it this winter as part of my travels.

Mexico Beach Activeon

Stills are pictures that I took with the Activeon CX. Thanks to the Activeon team for the camera and accessories!

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Volunteering Abroad: Things to Keep in Mind

by Alex Schnee
( November 5th, 2015 )

Volunteering Abroad

One of the things I love about being a Generation-Y traveler is being involved with so many other people who love to help others on their journeys. We are an age group that has grown up with the idea that it’s important to help the environment and others, and as a result, we can often see this as a reflection in the places we travel to. I often scroll through Facebook and admire where many of my friends and acquaintances have ended up and how they are helping various causes throughout the world.

I’m often asked about how we can be more aware about using travel as a way to improve the world rather than just as a way to vacation. I think the most important thing to keep in mind is to be aware of what your idea of “volunteering” is and how you plan on making a difference. You might not be aware that many organizations that encourage travel through volunteering really aren’t doing all that much—they just plan on taking your cash and very little goes to help people in need. That’s why it’s a good idea to do some research ahead of time and look into which programs have made the most impact.

You might also want to think about whether the reasons you are choosing to volunteer are the right ones. Many choose to volunteer while traveling solely for the experience of going abroad, and that can be a fine line to cross. A location should be considered when you are planning on doing some volunteer work, but it shouldn’t be the main reason why you choose to go abroad. Think of it this way, you can always choose to go abroad for your own purposes and if you want to be a tourist in that location. Choosing to go for other reasons can mean that your trip is less of a vacation—if you understand that, then you are more likely to manage to do good while abroad.

Also, you will want to do some research to which programs can offer you the best opportunities to help the organizations that you admire. There are a few websites that can put you in touch with different nonprofits so you can find the best tours that work for you and what you want to accomplish. I find extremely helpful when you are looking for short-term tours in multiple areas. Finding the right tour or program for you can make all the difference when you want to help others.

Have you ever done volunteerism abroad?

Image courtesy of South African Tourism.

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An Afternoon at Sagamore Hill: Checking Out Theodore Roosevelt’s Home

by Alex Schnee
( October 28th, 2015 )

Sagamore Hill NY

I’ve been staying on Long Island for a few months now and since I was in the Oyster Bay area, I was excited to check out Teddy Roosevelt’s old digs at Sagamore Hill. I’m a history lover, so taking a little expedition like this was the perfect way to celebrate fall in New England. Not only did I learn a lot about our 26th president, but I also had a great time sampling some corn, learning about Long Island bee harvesting, and meeting some furry friends.

We were there for his 157th birthday celebration, so the day’s activities were free except for lunch and any other products we might have been interested in purchasing. Normally it costs about ten dollars to get into the National Park, but after a short bus ride from the Oyster Bay train station we were able to enter the house without paying anything. It was also probably busier than normal, but it wasn’t overwhelming at all—the grounds are so extensive that it was easy to walk around and not feel rushed.

Sagamore Hill Sign

The best part of the day was definitely the house itself. It was the first private home in the area to have a telephone—which was the way Theodore conducted his business when we was away from the White House during the hot Washington summers. The house was also home to over 6,000 books—the Roosevelts were avid readers and owned books on multiple subjects.

Sagamore Hill House

I was also fascinated about the amount of traveling Teddy managed to get done before his stint in the White House. Not only was he all over North America and an extremely prolific hunter, but he also traversed all over Africa and South America. As a Generation-Y traveler with access to flights to pretty much anywhere in the world, it was amazing to imagine the amount of time and effort it would take him to voyage to each place. At the time, it was a lot more difficult to get to various destinations. The ideal place to get an idea of Theodore’s personality was in the North Room. Not only can you view various gifts some diplomats or personal items that he collected himself, but you also get a feel of who he was as a person and his sense of humor.

Have you ever been Sagamore Hill? What are some historical sites in your location?

Image courtesy of Doug Kerr and uberdadofthree.

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