Until we all have easy and reliable portable translators, this may be the most genius -- not to mention fashionable -- travel accessory to date.
It's called the IconSpeak t-shirt and it has 40 universal icons on the front of it so you can communicate with locals no matter the formidable language barriers. According to Bored Panda, the innovative shirt was designed by three Swiss “pen-pushers” who came up with the idea while drinking late into the night in Vietnam.
The founders, George, Steven and Florian, explained the story behind their product, saying,
Many times we were confronted with a language barrier that was only to be overcome by drawing signs, symbols or icons on a piece of paper, map, or into the dirt. We thought it would be great to have an essential set of icons with you, permanently, so that you could just point on whatever you need – and people would understand. Soon the notepad was pulled out again and we started listing more or less essential icons that would have been of great help during not just ours, but basically anyone's trip.
Obviously, this shirt would be super useful if you're ever lost in rural China, but it sounds like it could also be a lifesaver when you're pretending to be deaf to avoid people at your cousin's wedding. And at $33, it's a tool we can all afford.
You can find more info about IconSpeak's t-shirt and mission on their website at IconSpeak.world.