Travel Gear | Classic Journeys Blog
  • Travel Accessories Hero

    Holiday Gift Guide: 12 Must-Have Travel Accessories

    <br>A quick look through the calendar of Classic Journeys president and founder, Edward Piegza, reveals that he took 52 flights on 23 itineraries to nine countries plus seven cross country trips… in the last 12 months alone. As you might imagine, owning a travel company means traveling quite a bit, and after more than two decades he’s got it down to a science. With the holidays in full-swing, gift givers among us want to know what to get the travel lover on their list. So, we unpacked Edward’s suitcase and found his 12 must-have travel accessories that make life in the air a little less tourist class and a little more of a, dare we say, classic journey. <br><br><b><a href="https://www.travelpro.com/maxlite-5-22-expandable-carry-on-rollaboard" target="_blank">TravelPro Maxlite</a></b><b><a href="https://www.travelpro.com/maxlite-5-22-expandable-carry-on-rollaboard" target="_blank">Roallaboard</a></b><a href="https://www.travelpro.com/maxlite-5-22-expandable-carry-on-rollaboard" target="_blank"><b> Suitcase</b></a><br>The Maxlite® 5 22” Expandable Rollaboard® gives you domestic carry-on convenience in a roomy all-in-one suitcase. Edward says, “The key to success with this bag is the four independent wheels make it so you can roll it standing up anywhere rather than pulling it. That’s a major upgrade over traditional rollerboards.”    <br> <a href="https://www.travelpro.com/maxlite-5-22-expandable-carry-on-rollaboard" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ein9&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015rwX" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><i>Buy here: <a href="https://www.travelpro.com/maxlite-5-22-expandable-carry-on-rollaboard" target="_blank">Travelpro | 129.99</a></i><br><br><b><a href="https://www.apple.com/airpods/" target="_blank">Apple </a></b><b><a href="https://www.apple.com/airpods/" target="_blank">Airpods</a></b><br>“Wires drive me crazy—especially when you’re on the go! They catch on the arms of airplane seats, get stepped on, and wrap themselves into knots, says Edward.” Not only are these wireless headphones compact, but their charging case also holds multiple additional charges for more than 24 hours of listening time.<br><a href="https://www.apple.com/airpods/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ein9&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015rwc" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a> <br><i>Buy here: <a href="https://www.apple.com/airpods/" target="_blank">Apple | $159</a></i><br><br><b><a href="https://www.patagonia.com/product/stormfront-roll-top-waterproof-pack-45-liters/49226.html" target="_blank">Patagonia Stormfront Roll Top Pack</a></b><br>“I can take this bag everywhere… from longtail boats in the Mekong Delta to South Kensington in London. This pack has just enough space to haul your gear in any environment.” <br><a href="https://www.patagonia.com/product/stormfront-roll-top-waterproof-pack-45-liters/49226.html" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ein9&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015rwh" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><i>Buy here: <a href="https://www.patagonia.com/product/stormfront-roll-top-waterproof-pack-45-liters/49226.html" target="_blank">Patagonia | $149</a></i><br><br><a href="https://flight001.com/contoured-eye-mask/" target="_blank"><b>Flight 001 Contoured Eye Mask</b></a><br>“I don’t like the confining feeling of a mask on my face. This one is slightly raised, so it doesn’t actually touch your eyes, making it more comfortable. It also features wide elastic straps with a Velcro closure for an adjustable fit.”<br><a href="https://flight001.com/contoured-eye-mask/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ein9&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015rwm" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><i>Buy here: <a href="https://flight001.com/contoured-eye-mask/" target="_blank">Flight 001 | $18</a></i><br> <br><a href="https://www.apple.com/iphone-xs/" target="_blank"><b>iPhone X (specifically for Camera)</b></a><br>“Your best camera is the one you have with on you—which in my case is my iPhone X. The portrait mode has transformed my enjoyment in picture taking and the quality of my shots.”<br><a href="https://www.apple.com/iphone-xs/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ein9&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015rxQ" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><i>Buy here: <a href="https://www.apple.com/iphone-xs/" target="_blank">Apple | $999</a></i><br><br><a href="https://www.patagonia.com/search/?q=nano%2Bpuff%2Bjacket&amp;lang=en_US&amp;start=0&amp;sz=24#tile-5" target="_blank"><b>Patagonia Nano Puff Jacket</b></a><br>“I enjoy this jacket for many reasons. It folds up super small into my bag—which is a great space saver. Also, it&#39;s very comfortable in a wide range of temperatures.”<br><a href="https://www.patagonia.com/search/?q=nano%2Bpuff%2Bjacket&amp;lang=en_US&amp;start=0&amp;sz=24#tile-5" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ein9&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015rwr" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a> <br><i>Buy here: <a href="https://www.patagonia.com/search/?q=nano%2Bpuff%2Bjacket&amp;lang=en_US&amp;start=0&amp;sz=24#tile-5" target="_blank">Patagonia | $199</a></i><br>[Side note from Edward: “I also recommended all you gentlemen out there to pack a blazer… It makes organizing a breeze and you get extra style points! I like<a href="https://www.thomaspink.com/" target="_blank"> Thomas Pink of London</a>.”]<br><br><a href="https://www.johnstonmurphy.com/toliver-lace-to-toe/12200.html" target="_blank"><b>Johnston &amp; Murphy Toliver Lace-To-Toe sneaker</b></a><br>“When you want something more dressy than a regular sneaker but less fussy than a dress shoe. These sneakers are great while traveling—easy to slip on and off, plus stylish and extremely comfortable. “<br><a href="https://www.johnstonmurphy.com/toliver-lace-to-toe/12200.html" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ein9&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015rww" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><i>Buy here: <a href="https://www.johnstonmurphy.com/toliver-lace-to-toe/12200.html" target="_blank">Johnston &amp; Murphy | $150</a></i><br> <br><a href="https://store.nike.com/us/en_us/pw/nike-free-shoes/9zmZoi3?redirect=true&amp;vst=free&amp;ipp=72" target="_blank"><b>Nike Free Running Shoes</b></a><br>“For days filled with walking and exploring, you can’t go wrong with a pair of Nike Frees.”<br><a href="https://store.nike.com/us/en_us/pw/nike-free-shoes/9zmZoi3?redirect=true&amp;vst=free&amp;ipp=72" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ein9&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015rx1" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><i>Buy here:<a href="https://store.nike.com/us/en_us/pw/nike-free-shoes/9zmZoi3?redirect=true&amp;vst=free&amp;ipp=72" target="_blank"> Nike | ~$100</a></i><br><br><a href="https://shop.lululemon.com/p/men-ls-tops/5-Year-Basic-LS" target="_blank"><b>Lululemon Basic Long Sleeve</b></a><br>“This shirt is lightweight, soft, and durable—perfect for those temperature changes while on board an aircraft.” <br><a href="https://shop.lululemon.com/p/men-ls-tops/5-Year-Basic-LS" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ein9&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015rx6" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><i>Buy here: <a href="https://shop.lululemon.com/p/men-ls-tops/5-Year-Basic-LS" target="_blank">Lululemon | $68</a></i><br><br><a href="https://www.anker.com/store/astro-e1/A1211012" target="_blank"><b>Anker Astro E1 Portable Charger</b></a><br>“This portable charger is the size of a candy bar, making it ultra-compact. It also has optimized charging for any device.”<br><a href="https://www.anker.com/store/astro-e1/A1211012" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ein9&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015rxB" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><i>Buy here: <a href="https://www.anker.com/store/astro-e1/A1211012" target="_blank">Anker | $15.99</a></i><br><br><a href="http://www.purebodynaturals.com/bath-and-body/salt-scrubs/blueberry-facial-scrub" target="_blank"><b>Blueberry Oxygen Facial Scrub</b></a><br>“When you travel your skin feels dry and tired. This blueberry scrub smells great and has a gentle graininess that feels like a mini spa treatment.” <br><a href="http://www.purebodynaturals.com/bath-and-body/salt-scrubs/blueberry-facial-scrub" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ein9&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015rxG" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><i>Buy here: <a href="https://www.purebodynaturals.com/bath-and-body/salt-scrubs/blueberry-facial-scrub" target="_blank">Pure Body Naturals | $19</a></i><br><br><a href="http://baijibottle.com/" target="_blank"><b>Baiji Collapsible Silicone Water Bottle</b></a><br>“You have to stay hydrated while traveling, right? Well, the baiji water bottle is easy to store and easy to clean, making it the perfect H2O container while on the go.”<br><a href="http://baijibottle.com/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ein9&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015rxL" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><i>Buy here:<a href="https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00UGQBTP8?tag=googadwo0ca-20" target="_blank"> Amazon | $14.97</a></i><br> 

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  • Man using a Camera in Apulia, Italy

    Best Travel Cameras

    <p>Technology has made it much easier for anyone to take great photos. That said, if you’re new to photography, buying your first “serious” camera can be a daunting task—even more so when you’re planning on taking that camera on a Classic Journeys trip! Whether it’s getting a close-up of <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/galapagos-tours/" target="_blank">a friendly sea lion</a> or snapping a panoramic portrait of a <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/provence/" target="_blank">Provençal vineyard</a>, travel photography presents its own set of unique challenges for even the most experienced photographer. Here’s what you’ll want to consider before you purchase a camera for traveling.<br><br><b>Where Are You Going?</b><br>It’s important to think about the type of travel you’ll be doing. Will you need a waterproof camera in <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/morocco/" target="_blank">Morocco</a>? Will you want to carry a tripod and a bag full of lenses up <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/peru/" target="_blank">the Inca Trail</a>? Consider the activities you’ll be doing, and the locations you’ll be visiting. This will help you determine the size, weight and even functionality of your ideal travel camera.<br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/morocco/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ej6f&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015srY" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><b>What Kind Of Pictures Will You Be Taking?</b><br>It’s probably safe to say that most of us take photos to simply preserve our experiences and share those experiences with others. If your ambitions for publicly sharing your photographs don’t extend past Instagram and <a href="https://www.facebook.com/ClassicJourneys/" target="_blank">Facebook</a>, you probably don’t need to spend a whole lot of money on a fancy rig—your smartphone should do the trick! But if you’re more ambitious - looking to take a picture of sea lions underwater, or capturing the full-color spectrum of a glacier—then you may want to consider something more advanced. (We’ll get to those in a bit.)<br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/galapagos-tours/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ej6f&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015srO" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><b>Budget, Bells, and Whistles</b><br>Photography can be a very expensive hobby—a high-end camera can count thousands of dollars, and components can also drive your expenses up. Relevant to where you’ll be traveling is the question of what you’ll really want and need from your camera—some models even come with WiFi and GPS!<br><a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/peru/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ej6f&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015srd" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><br><b>The Four Types of Camera: Which One Is Best For You?</b><br>Cameras can be broken down into four basic categories:</p> <div style="margin-left: 40px;"><b>DSLR:</b> DSLRs are the choice of professional photographers because they allow the user to fully adjust the photo settings in-camera. Advantages: They’ll enable you to take fantastic pictures, and you’ll have a wide range of lens to choose from. Disadvantages: They’re heavy, can be very expensive, and can be daunting for entry-level photographers.</div> <div style="margin-left: 40px;"><i>[Top pick - <a href="https://www.usa.canon.com/internet/portal/us/home/products/details/cameras/eos-dslr-and-mirrorless-cameras/dslr/eos-rebel-sl2-ef-s-18-55mm-is-stm-kit" target="_blank">Canon EOS Rebel SL2 / 200D</a><b>: </b>Small for a DSLR, making it travel-friendly</i><i>! The flip-out screen is clear and the camera focuses brilliantly when using live view or when shooting videos.]</i></div> <div style="margin-left: 40px;"><br><b>MIRRORLESS: </b>Mirrorless cameras—called that because they don’t have an internal reflex mirror—are a step down from DSLR, both in size and price. Advantages: They’ve got most of the features found in a DSLR. Disadvantages: They’re still heavier than compact cameras or your phone, and may have poor battery life.</div> <div style="margin-left: 40px;"><i>[Top pick - <a href="https://www.getolympus.com/us/en/e-pl9.html" target="_blank">Olympus PEN E-PL9</a><b>: </b>This camera gets major style points and is perfect for getting those Instagram worthy shots of landmarks, night scenes, and cityscapes.]</i></div> <div style="margin-left: 80px;"> </div> <div style="margin-left: 40px;"><b>COMPACT: </b>The classic point-and-shoot digital camera is a favorite among travelers, and you’ll no doubt see a lot of your fellow Classic Journeys guests carrying them. Advantages: Price, compact size and rugged build make them a perfect addition to your daypack. Disadvantages: The photo quality may not be as good as a DSLR or Mirrorless camera, and a lack of interchangeable lenses. </div> <div style="margin-left: 40px;"><i>[Top pick - </i><a href="https://www.usa.canon.com/internet/portal/us/home/products/details/cameras/point-and-shoot/advanced-cameras/powershot-g1-x-mark-iii" target="_blank">Canon PowerShot G1 </a><a href="https://www.usa.canon.com/internet/portal/us/home/products/details/cameras/point-and-shoot/advanced-cameras/powershot-g1-x-mark-iii" target="_blank">X III</a><b>:</b><i><b> </b>For the traveler who wants the best possible quality in the smallest possible package. This camera is sharp, lightweight and even comes with a zoom lens.]</i></div> <div style="margin-left: 40px;"><br><b>YOUR PHONE: </b>Yes, your phone is a great travel camera—in fact, for many seasoned travelers, it’s the best option!</div> <div style="margin-left: 40px;"><i>[Top pick - <a href="https://www.apple.com/shop/buy-iphone/iphone-xr" target="_blank">Apple iPhone X</a><b>: </b>Portrait mode… need we say more?]</i></div> <br><br><br><br><i><b>A little about the author: </b></i><br>Jason Avant is a freelance writer based in Carlsbad, California. An avid surfer, hiker, and backpacker, his outdoor passions fuel his love of adventure travel. He’s traveled extensively across the U.S., including three years spent in Alaska; he’s also journeyed through Mexico, Costa Rica, France, and Italy.

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  • Hikers in New Zealand with backpacks

    The Best Daypacks for Travel

    <p>I’m not ashamed to admit it... I have a thing for daypacks. Right now, I have three in my rotation, and I’m fairly certain I need at least one more. As a hiker, surfer, traveler and freelance writer, my adventures (and my work) require me to carry around a bunch of stuff, from my laptop to a pair of boots to a damp wetsuit—often at the same time. Daypacks have become increasingly technical, and figuring out which one is the best option can be confusing. Here’s a look at the different types of daypacks, and which ones would be perfect for your next <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/dates/" target="_blank">Classic Journeys adventure</a>.<br><br><br><b>No Frills? No Problem - Ultralight Daypacks</b><br>Sometimes all you need is a bag with shoulder straps—especially if you’re a frequent air traveler who needs to free up space in your suitcase. Ultralight daypacks have become increasingly popular; these packs weigh just a few ounces and can be compressed easily, allowing them to fit into any suitcase. Typically free of pockets, gear loops, or even padding on the shoulder straps, ultralight daypacks are great for short jaunts around a city or down a well-traveled trail. Like many hikers, I’m a big fan of Marmot’s Precip rain jacket, and the company makes a terrific ultralight daypack. The <a href="https://www.marmot.com/kompressor-meteor-23970.html?dwvar_23970_color=1774&amp;dwvar_23970_size=0085ONE&amp;cgid=equipment_backpacks-and-luggage_backpacking-and-daypacks#start=1" target="_blank">Kompressor Meteor</a> has the features of a bigger, heavier pack—a waist belt, water bottle pockets and even a removable back pad—but can be folded up and tucked away into an internal pocket, making it very easy to pack into your luggage.<br><a href="https://www.marmot.com/kompressor-meteor-23970.html?dwvar_23970_color=1774&amp;dwvar_23970_size=0085ONE&amp;cgid=equipment_backpacks-and-luggage_backpacking-and-daypacks#start=1" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ejaf&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015u4K" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><i>Cost: $50</i><br><br><b>Hydration Systems Take The Hassle Out Of Hauling Water</b><br>If you’re planning on walking in warm weather (whether it’s a stroll through the <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/bryce-tours/" target="_blank">red rock spires of Utah</a> or a <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/costa-rica-tours/" target="_blank">Costa Rican rainforest</a>), you need to stay hydrated. Carrying around water bottles can be a hassle, and that’s why many hikers and travelers prefer daypacks with hydration systems. Essentially, the pack comes with an internal water bladder and a sipping tube, keeping your hands free. I’ve gotten years of use out of my <a href="https://www.camelbak.com/en/packs/R01028--Rim_Runner_22?color=0f39d5b3f54f48a1b8bff2a281977191" target="_blank">Camelbak Rim Runner</a>.<br><a href="https://www.camelbak.com/en/packs/R01028--Rim_Runner_22?color=0f39d5b3f54f48a1b8bff2a281977191" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ejaf&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015u4P" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><i>Cost: $100</i><br><br><b>Gonna Get Wet? Waterproof Daypacks Will Keep Your Stuff Dry</b><br>Heading into rain or snow? From <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/iceland-tours/" target="_blank">Iceland </a>to <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/ireland-tours/" target="_blank">Ireland</a>, some of the most beautiful places on earth still get a bit wet. But that doesn’t mean your stuff will. Most daypacks are made of water-resistant nylon, but a few go the extra mile, incorporating materials and coatings that’ll keep the contents of your pack nice and dry. Patagonia’s Black Hole line of water-resistant bags and packs is a favorite of travelers. The daypacks come in a few different sizes; the <a href="https://www.patagonia.com/product/lightweight-black-hole-backpack-26-liters/49050.html?dwvar_49050_color=BRYG&amp;cgid=luggage-black-hole-bags#tile-17=&amp;start=1&amp;sz=36" target="_blank">Black Hole Lightweight 26L</a> is a great choice for active travelers.<br><a href="https://www.patagonia.com/product/lightweight-black-hole-backpack-26-liters/49050.html?dwvar_49050_color=BRYG&amp;cgid=luggage-black-hole-bags#tile-17=&amp;start=1&amp;sz=36" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ejaf&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015u4U" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><i>Cost: $99</i><br><br><b>Urban Daypacks - For City Adventures</b><br>Walking up the <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/italyfamily/" target="_blank">Spanish Steps in Rome</a> isn’t exactly like <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/peru-tours/" target="_blank">hiking the Inca Trail</a>. For your city adventures, it’s possible to have a daypack that’s functional AND stylish. Long known for making sturdy backpacks for surfers and snowboarders, Dakine has become a favorite of city dwellers.<a href="https://www.dakine.com/en-us/bags/backpacks/street-backpacks/factor-22l-backpack/" target="_blank"> Dakine’s Factor 22L</a> looks great, comes in a variety of colors, and can hold everything you need for a day in a foreign city.<br><a href="https://www.dakine.com/en-us/bags/backpacks/street-backpacks/factor-22l-backpack/" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ejaf&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015u4e" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><i>Cost: $48</i><br><br><b>The All-Rounder: One Daypack That Does Everything</b><br>Classic Journeys founder, Edward, swears that you can take a <a href="https://www.classicjourneys.com/dates/" target="_blank">Classic Journeys trip</a> with only a carry-on. He’s the expert, and the folks at Cotopaxi would back his claim. If I were going to take a trip with just one pack, I’d go with <a href="https://www.cotopaxi.com/products/allpa-35l-travel-pack?variant=12875047108669" target="_blank">Cotopaxi’s Allpa 35L Travel Pack</a>. With a ton of features, water-resistant coating, and a huge amount of storage space, the Allpa might very well be the only pack you need. Even so, the Allpa has a storage compartment that holds the company’s smaller Batac daypack. For daypack aficionados like me, that’s a great bonus!<br><a href="https://www.cotopaxi.com/products/allpa-35l-travel-pack?variant=12875047108669" target="_blank"><img alt="User-added image" src="/servlet/rtaImage?eid=a2Y1T000002Ejaf&amp;feoid=00N50000008QRzC&amp;refid=0EM1T0000015u4j" style="height: 355px; width: 500px;"></img></a><br><i>Cost: $220</i></p>

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