I recently took an international trip with my iPad in order to evaluate it as my sole travel device. On the day of departure, however, I had a lot of anxiety about only taking my iPad and decided to bring my laptop along. I am so glad I brought my laptop because I realized that the iPad has a lot of shortcomings as a "work" and travel device. First off, typing on the iPad is a nightmare. I didn't want to lug the wireless keyboard as well, so I ended up using the device to type. This was a real pain, as my wrists really hurt from typing.
Another shortcoming is that the iPad doesn't have a built in world clock like the iPhone. I downloaded and app called "Night Stand HD" however this didn't have the features I wanted and needed an internet connection to detect location.
I did find some good uses for the iPad as a travel device. As a mobile eReader, I found the portability of the iPad supreme. I could take it everywhere and have good reading material. The battery life is great, and I found I didn't need to recharge it much. I used the "Sundry Notes" app to jot travel notes and addresses on the fly. And for keeping up to date on news and current events, it was very easy to stay in touch with the iPad.
A very useful app when in French speaking countries was "iTranslate". This little app can translate words and phrases in about 50 languages. When we were in very remote areas of Reunion Island, I found this app useful in communicating simple phrases like "There's a poisonous spider in our room!" and "Where is the bus stop?"
I still feel quite tethered to my laptop and am not sure if I could part with it for the iPad. But I do feel the iPad does have a niche in the world of portable devices. I guess I am still personally trying to find that place for my iPad.