Best Travel Laptops (2018)

Recommended lightweight travel laptops, from budget to high-end

Last Updated: July 2018

If you're in a hurry, check out my top pick:
Dell XPS 13
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Portability, battery life, storage space and of course price are some of the key considerations when buying a travel laptop.

When it’s a device that will be with you on the road it’s important to consider raw specs like memory and processing power, but it’s equally important that your laptop is versatile and lightweight, easy to use, and that it can easily store everything you need (as WiFi or mobile data is never guaranteed, especially if you’re travelling abroad).

The following laptops are our current top picks for nomads, frequent travelers, or anyone else needing a good computer on the go. We’ll start with some affordable budget options before getting to some higher-end lightweight laptops.

— by Marek Bron & Saptam Bakshi

Quick Overview: The Best Travel Laptops

Image Product Details
it-table__imageTop ChoiceDell XPS 13
  • 7th generation Intel Core i5-7200u 2.50 GHz Processor
  • 8GB lpddr3-1866mhz included
  • 128GB SSD storage
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it-table__imageAcer Aspire E15 (2018 version)
  • Intel Core i3, i5 or i7 processor
  • 4, 6 or 8 GB of RAM
  • Offers 256GB SSD
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it-table__imageAcer Spin 1
  • Intel Celeron N3350 Dual-Core Processor (Up to 2.4GHz)
  • 11.6" Full HD (1920 x 1080) Multi-touch widescreen LED-backlit IPS display
  • 4GB DDR3L Memory, 32GB Storage
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it-table__imageAsus ZenBook UX330UA
  • 13.3 Inch Anti-glare FHD 1920 x 1080 Display
  • Latest 8th Gen Intel i5-8250U 1.6 GHz Processor
  • 256GB SATA 3 M.2 SSD
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it-table__imageMicrosoft Surface Book 2
  • 8th generation Intel Quad Core i7 Processor
  • 512 GB of storage
  • 16 GB RAM
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it-table__imageHP Spectre x360
  • 12.0-Inch diagonal wuxga+ IPS wled-backlit IPS touchscreen Display
  • Intel Core m3-6y30, 0.9GHz, dual-core Processor
  • 4GB LPDDR3 SDRAM Memory
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it-table__imageAcer Chromebook R13
  • MediaTek Quad-Core CPU, 13.3” Full HD Touch Display
  • 4GB Memory
  • 32GB eMMC
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it-table__imageAsus Chromebook Flip C302CA
  • Flexible 360 Degree hinge and 12.5" full-HD touchscreen
  • Intel Core Processor with 64GB storage
  • 4GB RAM
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Best budget Windows travel laptops

Get this if: you need to run Windows apps but don’t wish to splurge on an ultrabook

Price range: $300 – $600

If you need a fast and highly capable laptop that is also light and portable, then ultrabooks are truly the best category to look at (scroll down for our ultrabook recommendations). But if you’re on a tighter budget, or if you don’t necessarily need a ton of horsepower, then there are some good budget Windows laptops to consider.

The following are our 3 top picks. They’re perfectly suitable for Office work, browsing, and media — and they can even run apps like Photoshop decently well. But if you’re a more demanding user, you may feel these are a little slow and lack sufficient storage space.

 

Acer Aspire E15 (2018 version)

Price: $699.00 view on amazon

You don’t usually expect much from a sub $500 laptop — they tend to be poorly made, provide a lousy performance and offer only the bare minimum most of the times. But surprisingly enough, Acer Aspire E15 outperformed most of its competitors and offers those features that we expect only from the relatively pricier laptops. Let’s give it a closer look then.

It comes with either an Intel Core i3, i5 or i7 processor along with 4, 6 or 8 GB of RAM. One of the biggest wow-factors of Aspire E15 is that despite being a cheap laptop it does offer an SSD, whereas most of the others include the slower HDD. Although small, the provided 256 GB solid state drive should be enough for your day-to-day stuff.

E15 comes with 2 types of display- the cheaper models feature an HD (1366 x 768) panel whereas the relatively costlier models feature a much better FHD (1920 x 1080) display. Surprisingly despite its compact stature, it comes with an array of useful ports. It touts 2 USB 2.0 ports, 1 USB 3.0 port, a full-size HDMI port, an Ethernet port and also a USB type-C port. It also includes the old school CD drive… in case someone still uses those!

It’s decent performance-wise and can handle a moderate amount of multitasking. Although there was no significant delay or stutter while watching videos and running dozens of browser tabs, the performance starts to degrade if you burden it anymore.

In terms of portability, it lasts for nearly 8 hours when surfing the web or doing light tasks. Not an outstanding performance by any means but it will be enough to survive a day’s worth of use. A big drawback of this laptop is, however, the weight. At 2.5kg or 5.6 pounds it’s nearly twice as heavy as your average ultrabook. We recommend the Acer Aspire E15 for anyone who needs good specs at a low price, but won’t mind lugging a heavy machine around.

 

Acer Spin 1

Price: $329.99 $289.10   -12% view on amazon

You think a good 2-in-1 have to be costly? Or maybe the cheaper ones must be terrible? Well, you’re not half wrong, but Acer Spin 1 is certainly an exception. It’s powered by either an Intel Celeron or Pentium processor which is accompanied by 4 GB of RAM. The included eMMC Flash storage (which usually range from 32 to 128 GB) may be insufficient unless you also use the microSD storage. The biggest positive of this convertible undebatably is the 11.6″ FHD panel which is one of the best in terms of clarity and brightness in this price range. It allows you to use the stylus which is supplied along with the laptop for scribbling and taking notes directly on the screen. The port selection is quite good as well including a USB 3.0 port, a USB 2.0 port, an HDMI port and a microSD reader although it doesn’t include a USB type-C port.

Along with all the positives, there indeed are a few drawbacks as well. Firstly, the battery backup is decent at max at 7 hours while surfing the internet. And secondly, as mentioned earlier, the in-built Flash storage may be limiting even for day-to-day chores.

 

Asus ZenBook UX330UA

Price: $749.00 view on amazon

ZenBook UX330UA is slightly costlier than the rest of the entrants in this list, although that’s for a good reason. This aluminum armored knight is powered by either an Intel Core i5 or i7 processor along with 8 gigs of RAM. There’s is either a 256 GB or 512 GB SSD for your storage needs which is pretty average in terms of transfer rate as it’s pretty darn slow. The 13.3-inch FHD IPS display, on the other hand, is simply excellent thanks to both a high color coverage and brightness. At just 2.6 pounds or 1.2kg, it’s highly light and portable.

The port selection is good overall which includes 2 USB type-A ports, a micro HDMI port, a card reader and also a USB type-C port. The performance is simply fantastic as there was no noticeable lag even after burdening it with dozens of browser tabs. One key drawback is that the touchpad is somewhat lousy.

 

Best high-end ultrabook laptops

Get this if: you need a high-end laptop that lets you be highly productive on the road

Price range: starting around $800 but can go up to $3000

Ultrabooks are high-end laptops that have the best combination of power and portability. As such these lightweight laptops tend to be the favorite tool of many nomads, remote workers, photographers, videographers, and other high-end users.

Despite typically weighing about 3 pounds (1.35kg) or less, ultrabooks tend to have impressive processing power for their size. Most ultrabooks advertise between 6 to 12 hours of battery life, though as always expect to hit the lower end of these estimates if you put it through a lot of intensive use.

If you do a lot of video editing, image editing, or a lot of multi-tasking, then an ultrabook is almost certainly the best type of travel laptop for you. But even for regular office and internet use, you may wish to consider an ultrabook if you’re a demanding user.

Dell XPS 13

Price: $795.00 view on amazon

The XPS series from Dell undoubtedly is the spearhead of the portable, general purpose laptop section. Dell XPS 13 is powered by an Intel Core processor and you’d get either a Core i3, Core i5 or a Core i7 chip. It’s accompanied by a DDR3 RAM which, once again, varies according to your specific model. For the storage needs, it comes equipped with a PCIe Solid State Drive which makes it much, much faster and snappier than a standard hard disk drive powered machine.

The XPS 13 features a 13.3-inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) anti-glare display. If you, by any chance, are not satisfied by the FHD display (or simply, are a fan of the QHD panel) you can opt for the rather expensive QHD+ model which also supports touchscreen. But that can have a negative impact on the battery life of the laptop. The panel brightness is pretty darn good at 370 nits and 310 nits making them perfect for working outdoors.

XPS gives a pretty solid show in the performance department as well. There was nearly no sign of lag or stutter even upon opening dozens of tabs in the browser while streaming videos. You can stay assured that this laptop would be able to handle almost any task that you can throw safely at a 13-inch notebook, although the Core i7 model is much stronger than the i3 or the i5 variants.

Okay, let’s talk about the connectivity of this laptop. Unlike the previous XPS 13 9360 model, it comes with 3 USB type-C ports. While the type-C ports help it charge from external power sources (such as an external power bank which is very useful for the travellers) and transfer data much faster than your usual type-A ports it still is not as widespread as the type-A ports. So, if you’re not very pleased after hearing this news I think you should go for the previous 9360 version.

Battery life is influenced greatly by the internal configuration of the laptop. The basic model with the FHD panel was able to last nearly 12 hours while the high-end, flashy version with the QHD+ panel lasts for only 8 hours. If you want even more juice out of your laptop I would recommend you to go for the 9360 version as it comes equipped with a slightly bigger battery which enables it to run for a whopping 15 hours!

Now, let’s not forget that nothing in this world is perfect- not even the XPS. Firstly, it doesn’t come with a dedicated graphics unit. The integrated Intel HD Graphics GPU maybe is good for amateur video or photo editing but would run out of juice for gaming or other intense uses. Even games like Dirt 3 would run only in the lowest possible settings. One good alternative would be the XPS 15 model which comes with the option of NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050. Secondly, as stated earlier there is NO USB type-A port which means you could have trouble connecting the older gadgets as type-C ports are still not that widely used. Finally, in order to make the XPS screen so thin-bezelled, the webcam is somewhat awkwardly placed in the bottom-left corner.

That said, the Dell XPS is one of the thinnest and fastest lightweight ultrabooks around, making it one of the best Windows travel laptops you can buy.

 

Microsoft Surface Book 2

Price: $2,499.00 $2,143.00   -14% view on amazon

Although aesthetically Surface Book and Surface Book 2 aren’t that much different, the internal configuration has been changed quite a bit. Surface Book 2 comes in 2 sizes- the smaller 13.5 inch and the bigger and pricier 15 inch. You can use it in any of the 3 modes- the laptop, the convertible or the tablet. The PixelSense QHD display alone is enough to spin some heads with its crystal clear visuals. But the biggest attraction indeed is the battery life – it can easily last for a good long 15 hours even when used for watching movies. That would be more than enough to survive long flights with ease.

Although Microsoft has put quite a bit of effort in making it nearly perfect it still has some drawbacks. First and foremost, the price is simply way too steep for a general purpose laptop. Even the most basic version without the dedicated GPU would cost you over a thousand bucks. Secondly, there’s no Thunderbolt-enabled port although you get a USB-C port. Instead, you get the Surface Connect ports which, if you ask me, are simply overhyped. And lastly, even after paying the top dollar (and burning a hole or two in your pocket) you won’t get the Surface Pen with it; you have to buy that $100 stuff separately. Quite a bummer!

 

HP Spectre x360

Price: $1,999.00 $899.00   -55% view on amazon

Do you still believe that a 2-in-1 have to be a bland piece of metal and can’t look gorgeous? You haven’t met the HP Spectre in that case. This svelte looking convertible comes in 2 sizes as usual- the 13 inch and the 15 inch. It offers either the standard FHD display or the eye-catching UHD panel. Spectre x360 13 includes both the USB type-A and type-C port which makes it convenient for charging on the go with the help of external power bricks. The battery backup of the FHD variant under everyday workload is around 8-10 hours which is pretty standard. The backup comes down to a meagre 6 hours in the power-hungry 4K version.

One of the major drawbacks of Spectre x360 13 is that it doesn’t have the option of a dedicated GPU; you have to make do with the onboard Intel UHD Graphics 620 which can, honestly speaking, serve you only that much. If you are looking for a bit of serious graphics work or gaming I would suggest you to go for the 15-inch version which gives you the option of NVIDIA MX150 which is pretty decent performance-wise.

 

Budget Chromebook laptops

Get this if: you want an affordable ultraportable… and can make due with a simpler OS

Typical price range: $300 to $500

Want a no-frills inexpensive travel laptop? Then a Chromebook can be an incredibly tempting option, so long as you know what to expect.

Chromebooks don’t run a full operating system like Windows 10, but a more basic one designed around the Chrome browser. This does make them more efficient (and free of typical Windows bloatware) as well as a lot cheaper.

You can’t run professional-grade video editing software or Adobe Photoshop on them, and instead of Microsoft Office you’ll have to use the free Google Docs and Sheets apps or Microsoft’s Office Online for Chrome. That said, for internet browsing, watching movies, basic photo editing, and everyday office suite use, a Chromebook will easily get the job done. Many recent models will also run Android apps (much like any tablet), making them excellent travel companions.

Chromebooks tend not to have a lot of storage space and are limited in which apps they can run. But if you need a laptop for simple word processing, online work, or entertainment, then they can be a clever budget option.

Acer Chromebook R13

Price: $469.99 $404.90   -14%  view on amazon

Acer has made some nice Chromebooks over the years, but with the R13 and R11 they truly start to feel like… well, proper laptops. Even though we are normally ultrabook users, we’ve been very happy to use the Acer Chromebook R13.

Why do we like it? For starters it’s just amazing value, with the 13″ version selling for under $400 and the 11″ version selling for around $300. Judged on specs alone it might not seem like the fastest machine, but since it’s optimized for Chrome it’s surprisingly snappy in day-to-day use. It can easily handle dozens of browser tabs open while playing music or videos or running many browser extensions in the background.

Mind you, it isn’t a premium laptop. The screen has a thick bezel that looks nowhere near as sleek as a Dell XPS or Macbook screen. The standard trackpad is quite clicky and not as buttery smooth as a glass trackpad found on many ultrabooks. You also won’t look your best on Skype owing to a very low resolution webcam. But given the price, you really can’t complain. This laptop can handle most things that most people need a laptop to do, it’s affordable, and it’s incredibly easy to use.

The Acer Chromebook has a touchscreen with a 360-degree hinge, which means you can fold it up and use it like a tablet. This is great for traveling as there’s often little space on airplane tray tables or in trains and buses, yet the tablet mode lets you easily watch a video or flick through your travel guide PDFs from your lap. Both the R13 and R11 let you run Android apps (this feature is currently in Beta). The battery life is between 9 and 12 hours, which again is ideal for travel.

The R13 model is the better and faster laptop overall, but the R11 is a lot more lightweight.

You should get the R13 if you like the bigger keyboard, 2 hours more battery life, a 1080p full HD screen, and a USB-C charging port (this lets you charge the laptop from a portable power bank with a USB-C port if you’d like).

You should get the R11 instead for greater portability and a lower price. The screen is only 720p but it’s also much more comfortable to hold in tablet mode.

 

Asus Chromebook Flip C302CA

Price: $499.00 $480.52   -4%  view on amazon

Unlike most of the other Chromebooks which concentrate more on the pricing Asus Chromebook Flip C302CA took a slightly different path and is more concerned about the quality. It packs an Intel Core M (or sometimes a Pentium) processor along with 4 or 8 gigs of RAM and eMMC storage of 32-128 GB under the full aluminium body. The attached 12.5-inch FHD display is simply fantastic for the price range with a good colour coverage and brightness. The port selection is certainly not great but at least covers the most essentials including 2 USB type-C ports which lets you charge it by external power banks and a micro SD card reader. The battery backup is overall good, if not great, at 9 hours under standard web surfing workload. It’s a tad bit pricier than most of the available Chromebooks. But other than being costly, as mentioned earlier, there’s another issue- it doesn’t have any USB type-A ports meaning you have to use an adapter for connecting your regular gadgets.

 

Best travel laptops in 2018:

Note: this post contains some affiliate links. I get a small percentage fee of purchases made through them (at no extra cost to you), which helps me do more in-depth posts like these.

 

55 comments

  1. Marcin Reply June 12, 2018 at 9:44 am

    I do a lot of travelling, and for me, a full system for work on a VPN network (MacOS or Windows are OK), is a must. The battery life is really important. Being spill resistant is nice too (I once had an Asus transformer and spilled beer on my keyboard at the airport, which stopped working immediately). So either a spill resistant notebook or a notebook from a company that has spare parts everywhere. And then the weight and size ultra important when you travel only with carry on luggage. My choice is Lenovo Yogabook at just 700 grams in weight, its ultra portable. It has no real keyboard (the keys are displayed which makes it spill resistant, but at the same time difficult to type until you get used to it).

    My next notebook will be either the 12 inch Macbook (not the Pro) or stick with the Lenovo .

    By the way, the yogabbook can be charged using a powerbank !

  2. Steve Reply June 10, 2018 at 7:38 pm

    @Agnes I totally agree with you. Looking for the cheapest, lightest, laptop that is not a Chromebook. When on the road travelling, I need to sometimes do word processing etc but also want to store videos, music, documents and pictures offloaded from the camera. This requires decent hard drive space and enough capacity to still be functional in areas where wifi is spotty or slow or non-existent. I have a nice laptop at home but do not want to bring it travelling. I think about $500 is the maximum I would like to spend on a dedicated travel laptop

  3. Gulya Reply May 31, 2018 at 10:25 am

    Hello! I am looking for a light and small laptop or chromebook. I am a student and need to do presentations, protocols ect., also lightroom and photoshop are needed. Is there any advise :)? Is it possible to use Office 365 on Chromebooks?

    • Marek Reply June 4, 2018 at 10:01 am

      Office 365 works on a Chromebook, but if you need Lightroom and Photoshop then definitely get a Windows laptop (as they don’t exist on Chrome). I don’t know how far your student budget stretches or how important it is that it’s lightweight, but a basic config Dell XPS or an ASUS ultrabook will run Adobe apps very well and have sufficient storage space for that sort of thing.

  4. Harriet Reply April 22, 2018 at 5:12 pm

    Marek, thanks for this post. It informed my research in an invaluable way on what I should get for a 6-month-plus trip I’ll be starting in October. I want the Dell xps 13 but there are so many versions of it out there I have been overwhelmed. It’s also a little expensive for my budget…..howeverI found a factory refurbished Dell XPS 13.3″ Touch-Screen Laptop i7 2.2GHz 16GB 512GB SSD for $900. I’d love your opinion on that. Thank you for your awesome and informative and well written blog! I just love it and I’m buying your book this week!

    • Marek Reply April 22, 2018 at 7:21 pm

      Hey Harriet. Yeah they do come in a staggering number of configurations! The one you mentioned sounds like a great deal though. It’s very fast and has lots of memory for that price.

  5. Agnes Reply April 1, 2018 at 11:00 am

    I always find this kind of article a bit frustrating because it overlooks the largest part of the market: people who want a cheap laptop they can take travelling while leaving their better laptop (safe) at home.

    A Chromebook does that for some people, but if you need certain applications like image editing, proper offline word processing and so on (i.e. most people who are working on the road – like website editors) it doesn’t quite cut it.

    Tablets (or 2 in 1s) and high end (but light) laptops aren’t hitting that market either. You want a cheap laptop you can take that you don’t mind too much about losing, not something expensive.

    • Marek Reply April 1, 2018 at 9:07 pm

      Hmm, I currently do just that with a Chromebook. I have a desktop PC at home and use a cheap Chromebook for word processing on the go (which works offline just fine).

      But I guess you’re suggesting cheap Windows laptops that aren’t necessarily ultrabooks? I suppose that’s not a category covered here but it’s something I could look into more. I’ll consider your point. 🙂

  6. Tom Fitzgerald Reply March 24, 2018 at 10:03 pm

    I travel by travel trailer pulled by an old truck mostly in the continental USA. I stay in touch when I am on the road with emails and sending photos. I want a laptop with secure, self-contained email / internet access capability so I do not need to rely on random wi-fi spots (that are not secure BTW). I realize that costs must include a data plan and separate cell phone being built into the device. Any ideas?

    • Marek Reply March 24, 2018 at 11:51 pm

      I’d say you could just get any laptop you want and then add a USB dongle with a 4G internet connection from a mobile internet provider.

      Some tablets have that stuff built-in but this isn’t a common feature for laptops.

  7. Bruce Reply February 25, 2018 at 10:33 am

    I travel OS a lot with work…lots of 14+ hour flights.
    Whether I am going away for a few nights or a few weeks, over the years I have learned the benefits of traveling super light.

    For all but a few of 25 OS business trips in the last 5 years, I have taken carry on only. It makes a big diff when you hit airports with poor customs staffing.

    Usually, I aim to keep my carry on <7kg. So a lightweight puter is essential.

    Currently I use a Dell Latitude 5289 12.5inch weighing 1.34kg. Our company got a deal of several dozen. It's a full windows 10 pro machine with 16GB memory, a 7th gen Intel cpu, and 512GB ssd. It is absolutely fine for everything I do, including the occasional video and photo editing. Dell has by far the best international warranty service and that's a major consideration. Wherever I go for work, I can have a Dell certified technician at my door within 24 hours.

    I have used Microsoft surface pros and they are a good machine, but I detest Microsoft as a corporation, and am fast going the same way with Google. VPN and cloud services are becoming more important on the road.

    So I may be looking at a chromebook in the near future. Computers are going back to the future where a computer is just a cheap dumb terminal that relies on cloud storage and applications. That's fine by me, as long as connectivity is reliable and not exorbitant. It is also insurance against computer theft or damage. In the last 5 years of travel, I've dropped two laptops which became unusable within a few days, and left one at airport security. (it happens when you are jetlagged and late for connecting flights).

    Thanks for this article. My next laptop bulk purchase was shaping up to be XPS 13's, but I think I'll look into the Chromebooks more carefully. My last tie to windows 10 is that I still use some heavy xls spreadsheets. But most are on google drive now. At least we've kicked MS Word.

    • Marek Reply February 26, 2018 at 9:54 pm

      It can be difficult to wean yourself off Win 10 / Office. I haven’t quite managed it on my home PC, but pretty happy with Google Docs now on the laptop. 🙂

  8. Giorgio Reply February 2, 2018 at 11:21 am

    Thanks for the great review. I was thinking of getting a Chromebook myself. I sent you a private message also.
    Thanks gain

  9. Dani Reply January 19, 2018 at 2:36 pm

    Great post. Just wondered if you have any recommendations for me?
    I am looking to start blogging and photo editing potentially alongside travelling so I am looking for a lightweight, fast laptop that will allow me to edit photos using adobe software. I’ve had a HP chromebook for a few years but it has recently died and as much as I love my chromebook I wouldn’t be able to do the photo editing I want to do on it. So I’m looking for an alternative replacement but on a very small budget.
    Any recommendations will be greatly appreciated!

    • Marek Reply January 19, 2018 at 7:13 pm

      Given you’re on a budget but still need Windows I’d probably go for a cheaper ASUS or Acer Ultrabook. Not sure how small your budget is exactly though!

  10. Hamid Reply November 27, 2017 at 11:00 am

    tnx for the article
    would you plz update de prices of laptops?

    • Marek Reply November 27, 2017 at 12:50 pm

      They are automatically updated every day.

  11. Nancy Bryant Reply November 8, 2017 at 6:56 am

    Love chromebook! Been using it for years now being a traveler and an online worker at the same time. Price is just right, lightweight, great speed and functionality. Planning to get a new unit. Since it still tops the list, will stick to chromebook :)Thanks for sharing!

    • Marek Reply November 8, 2017 at 3:31 pm

      It’s crazy how much functionality you now get for your money with a Chromebook. I think it really hits the spot for many users!

  12. Liam Wright Reply October 16, 2017 at 5:07 pm

    I like ultra book as they are lightweight. Love the asus zenbook. If you are a traveler you must care for battery life.

  13. Ryan Biddulph Reply October 7, 2017 at 2:10 am

    Hi Marek,

    Excellent review dude.

    I am in love with my Acer Chromebook.

    Being a digital nomad for the past 6 years, I have tried a few laptops. The Chromebook beats them all, for its lightweight nature, fabulous functionality and yep, the price does not hurt either.

    Toss in its speed – no hard drive to bog things down – and if you have a halfway decent internet connection you can get so much done with this super fast, light lappy.

    Thanks for sharing Marek.

    Ryan

  14. Isaac Reply September 20, 2017 at 9:10 pm

    Hey, Merek and Mathew. Great post there! I can vouch for the Chromebook when it comes to portability. Those little machines can be light yet reliable. Yes, they do not do much but who needs huge processing power and ram while travelling?

  15. Kate Reply August 23, 2017 at 9:23 am

    OK now, I need help. I have a HUGE 17 inch gaming computer (i7) and I was thinking of selling it as it is 3 kg heavy. What would you recommend? Keeping it or selling it? I am travelling around the world starting this March- going to hot and cold places(- Alaska, Patagonia,) etc. I will be working during the trip using videoconferencing tools and skype for business. So, my priority is good audio and lightweight. I can spend up to 1000 euros. (if I sell my old one the difference will be affordable)

    Thanks a lot.

    • Marek Reply September 20, 2017 at 11:40 am

      3kg is a lot! Unless you absolutely have to play games while you’re travelling, I would personally sell it and get something lighter. I’ve just updated the article above with some new recommendations, so you may wish to give it another read. On a budget of 1000 euros, an XPS would be pretty great. It doesn’t have a dedicated GPU though so it’s pretty useless for gaming (unless it’s 2D games or very basic 3D games).

  16. Mike Lee Reply August 22, 2017 at 8:45 am

    Perfect post since I am looking for a nice laptop to buy. Although I always like Chromebooks from the point of view of travel, the new 2-in-1s that are in the market are really attractive and quite user friendly too. I was leaning towards the Yoga but will check out the Surface Pro after reading your recommendations. Thanks

  17. Alison Reply July 27, 2017 at 5:38 am

    My roommate and I will be traveling around the world for a year. Going from trouist destinations to rugged not well known spots. I’m buying a high quality camera for excellent photo quality and video. We’ll also be wearing Go Pros most of the time. I’m needing a computer that can survive my trip of freezing temperatures to treks across a desert. But it has to be able to offer an app or application that allows for video and picture editing and creating a movie. Any recommendations would be highly welcomed and very much appreciated. Price is not an issue.

    • Marek Reply July 29, 2017 at 11:18 am

      How hot will those deserts be and what kind of freezing temperatures? Extremely low temperatures can affect battery charge and the liquid in an LCD display can even freeze, and at very high temperatures the CPU on an average laptop can easily overheat. It’s not a topic I have honestly done much research into myself as I’ve travelled in non-extreme environments, but you may wish to search around for ‘hardened’ or ‘rugged’ laptops.

  18. Jessica Reply May 13, 2017 at 1:48 pm

    Hi
    I am looking for general travel equipment list which will allow me to manage a blog (including editing films etc). So a good laptop but also if you have any advice on best cameras for shooting film while on the road and taking images that would be amazing. Any other advice such as chargers, portable drives and so on would also be appreciated. In short what would your recommended perfect digital blogger tool kit be for working on the road. Thanks Jessica

    • Marek Reply May 19, 2017 at 10:37 am

      Hmm, maybe the gear list is something I should cover in a separate blog post. For serious work and editing video, I would highly recommend a high-end laptop such as Surface Pro 4, latest Macbook Air, or Dell XPS 13. I’d pair it with a 2TB portable drive, like the ones by Western Digital or Seagate, to ensure you have plenty of space to save raw footage.

  19. David Meyer Reply April 27, 2017 at 5:54 pm

    Hi there,
    I’m looking for a light-weight laptop to work on the go, basically for writing blog posts, e-mails, social media and Youtube. I’m interested in buying MacBook Air but I think I should go for Chromebook for my needs. What would you suggest?

    • Marek Reply April 27, 2017 at 6:58 pm

      It all depends on your budget! Chromebook is fine for such basic tasks. I love ultrabooks as they have a better screen, keyboard, processor, etc. and can do so much more – but it also costs more. 🙂

  20. Jephiter Reply April 10, 2017 at 1:56 pm

    Bottomline for finding a travel laptop is that it must be lighter and efficient energy saver. This will reduce your load while traveling.

    Thanks for the article.

  21. Gary O Reply February 3, 2017 at 4:00 pm

    When I was looking for a new high-end laptop I almost went for Dell XPS 13 last year. But it was a bit too pricey so “settled” for another model, ASUS ZenBook UX305CA. It’s great as well.

  22. Sara Reply August 22, 2016 at 10:57 am

    Hi,

    I am just starting college and want something that will satisfy both my “college needs” and my blogging. I am especially looking for something lightweight, with a good processor (i5 or i7) and good memory. I also have a £650-ish budget… I would like a new laptop but I am willing to try a second hand laptop. Could you, please, either recommend some good laptops brands or advise me where I can find a reliable source selling second hand laptops?

    Thank you!

  23. Daniel Reply August 15, 2016 at 5:52 pm

    Hi there,
    I am planning on going on a trip to china, Australia and Hawaii for a total of 10 months (a gap year). I also still have one year of high school to finish and will need a laptop for that do you guys have any recommendation for a good lightweight travel laptop with lots of battery that I can also use for my last year of high school before I leave. My budget is around 500-600 euro’s I live in the Netherlands so preferably a non american site so I dont have to worry about shipping and electricity issues with the laptop. I prefer a windows computer however would it be smarter to buy a cheaper chromebook?
    thank you for any information

    • Korinna Reply August 16, 2016 at 6:40 am

      Hey Daniel,
      you can also try to go for a more expensive laptop (with a good quality) and then go for a used one. In this way, I just recently got a used Macbook Air for only 500€!
      Think about it 🙂
      Good luck with whatever you decide to do.

  24. Elizabeth Reply August 13, 2016 at 8:18 pm

    Hi there, thanks for this informative post. I’m going to Africa and need to something light weight and simple. Do you think the chrome book would be a good fit ? I will mainly be blogging, using Facebook and email.

    • Marek Reply August 14, 2016 at 5:16 pm

      Yeah a chromebook is great for that – lightweight and simple 🙂

  25. Korinna Reply June 27, 2016 at 11:41 am

    Hey Marek,
    nice compilation! Never heard of Chromebooks before but the concept sounds quite interesting. I will go on a 6-months trip soon and I’m looking for an ultralight laptop that I can take with me. I’ll need it for working on my blog and for simple image editing. Not more, not less. I will bring an external hardware anyway. Should I give it a try or you’d say for image editing better go for an ultrabook?
    Thanks in advance!

    • Marek Reply June 27, 2016 at 4:12 pm

      For simple stuff, like adjusting contrast/brightness, cropping, etc. a Chromebook can be just fine (Chrome OS has a very basic image editor included and you can find apps for it too). For anything more serious I’d be more inclined to recommend an ultrabook. There’s a big price difference obviously so if budget is a concern, a chromebook can be a great option.

      • Korinna Reply June 27, 2016 at 10:44 pm

        Thank you very much for the quick reply! I will have a look at the app store to see what is available there.
        In general I wanted to dedicate my 6-months trip to improve my photography skills, especially to switch to the RAW format. I guess there won’t be s possibility for that on a Chromebook?

  26. [email protected] Bharat Reply June 27, 2016 at 6:25 am

    Wow there no cheap laptop where i can edit my youtube videos? I’m going to Thailand & Philippines very soon on a budget & just wishing 11.6 Inch Acer Aspire Chromebook could edit videos…

  27. Rai Reply June 26, 2016 at 6:29 pm

    Hi Marek! As a student, I own a Macbook Pro 13″. I’m planning on travelling around the world after my graduation. Would it be okay to travel with that or should I switch to Air while I still can? Haha.

    • Marek Reply June 27, 2016 at 4:25 pm

      There’s nothing wrong per se with a Macbook Pro if you already own one. Though if I were buying a laptop specifically for travel, I’d easily go for the Air, as it means about 800 gr less weight. Whether you want to switch depends on how important you feel this is. For me, travelling light is super important, especially on a long term trip. If you could still sell your laptop second hand and maybe put in a bit of extra money for an Air, it could be worth it. 🙂

      • Korinna Reply June 27, 2016 at 10:36 pm

        Hey Rai,
        I recently took my Macbook Pro 13″ on a 10-days backpacking trip, I can tell you that thing was a pain in the ass.. if you are able to change, do it 🙂 I mean of course it depends on the kind of travelling you do: will you have to walk a lot with your backpack? How long is your trip?
        Good luck with your decision anyway 🙂

        • Hapa Reply September 19, 2016 at 10:44 pm

          It would help if you explained how the MacbookPro13 was a pain in the ass for you.
          I, personally, think Macs are a pain in the ass overall, but others would benefit from an explanation.

  28. carlos sims Reply June 2, 2016 at 1:56 am

    Wow there no cheap laptop where i can edit my youtube videos? I’m going to Thailand & Philippines very soon on a budget & just wishing 11.6 Inch Acer Aspire Chromebook could edit videos…

    The main thing be doing on internet is uploaded pictures on facebook & replying to messages, emails, watching videos, movies, surfing the internet. I don’t see why i can’t upload pictures & videos (Edit videos to) on 11.6 Inch Acer Aspire Chromebook
    ?

    • Marek Reply June 2, 2016 at 11:52 am

      Uploading pictures or videos works fine on this type of laptop. There are some (very basic) video editing apps for Chrome OS as well, so you can edit video on them if you want. I just wouldn’t strongly recommend it as it’s slow and cumbersome on this type of device. I suppose it depends on what you mean with ‘edit videos’ though. If it’s just selecting a part from a video and exporting it to youtube, that’s much more doable than having a big timeline full of shots with lots of transitions and effects. Rendering will be very slow in that case and there are no programs like Adobe Premiere or GoPro Studio that let you do more sophisticated video editing on a Chromebook.

      • carlos sims Reply June 2, 2016 at 5:57 pm

        I can only imagine it taking 2 hours to upload a video to youtube on this computer but it ok. Sorry to ask this dumb question but what do you mean by cumbersome? lol.

        By edit i mean just delete some parts in my video (That i mess up on) & then uploaded it to youtube. That all i’ll be doing.

        • Marek Reply June 3, 2016 at 6:47 pm

          Yeah for simple edits like that, it might be just fine. The computer just might take long to save the file after you’ve edited it. Uploading can take long but this depends on the WiFi, so it’ll be the same no matter what laptop you use 🙂 Cumbersome means inefficient/complicated

          • carlos sims June 3, 2016 at 8:10 pm

            Yea i’ll be edit my videos in Thailand & Philippines but i hear the wifi is good in those country, but not great like here in USA but as long as it upload than that be ok even if it takes hours, maybe i be out & about or on beach or something…

            How well these the wifi work for you in Thailand & Philippines?

  29. Gabi Reply April 20, 2016 at 6:20 am

    Great way of start thinking what the f. should I buy!!! Thanks a lot for doing part of my homework!!

  30. Linda Reply March 31, 2016 at 6:58 am

    Wow!, this post couldn´t be more perfect. I am in a huge need of a new laptop but still haven´t decided for which one to go. Great help!

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