Are you wondering which are the best travel laptops in 2021? You’ve come to the right place! In this guide we’ll explain how to pick your travel laptop and suggest the best travel laptops according to us.
Many travelers don’t need to travel with a laptop since our smartphones have become more powerful, and they can do almost anything. You can watch movies, write emails, do research, and many other things.
However, there are still times when you might need a laptop. For example, if you are a digital nomad, working on your smartphone has its limits so you might prefer to bring your laptop with you.
Working on a laptop is definitely faster and easier since you can do multiple tasks at once and you have a much wider screen to work with. Whether you’re a programmer, a translator, or a photographer you’ll find it much easier to work on your laptop.
How to pick your travel laptops
Not all laptops are equal, and some are more travel-friendly than others. You want a laptop that is powerful but not too heavy, one that is durable and has good battery life.
Your travel laptop has to be thin and light so you can easily carry it around in your backpack. If you need a laptop for streaming and research, a less powerful laptop will be enough. But if you need one to work while you travel, you’ll need a more powerful laptop.
There are several factors to consider before buying a new travel laptop. Let’s see our top considerations:
Price is often one of the most important characteristics when buying a new laptop. Most people have a budget and look for items below their budget.
There is also no need to spend a huge amount of money since there are lots of great laptops that are affordable. Also, you don’t want to buy a poorly performing machine that you won’t be able to use just to save money.
So, consider the features that you need and buy a travel laptop that will perform well and be durable.
Battery life is really important for a travel laptop. You are likely to find yourself in places that don’t have charging points and your laptop needs to have enough battery life to last at least the time of a long flight.
Even if you’re in an airport where there are charging points, they are limited and could already be taken by other passengers. So, make sure your new travel laptop has good battery life.
We suggest a battery life of at least 8 hours but if it lasts longer it’s even better. Often manufacturers exaggerate a bit so try to find laptops with a 12+ hours battery life.
Since we’re talking about travel laptops, portability is one of the most important features. Your new laptop should easily fit in a backpack and be light enough to carry it around.
It should probably weigh between 1 kg and 1.5 kg and measure less than 13”. Of course, you could find a smaller one but you’ll have to compromise on performance or a bigger one that would weigh more.
It depends on your needs and preferences but, keep in mind that your luggage will already be heavy so the lighter the better.
Storage space is also very important because if it has too little storage space you’ll run out quickly and need to delete files often.
If you just need a laptop for regular use less storage space is ok. But if you need one for work then pick a laptop that has at least 512 GB.
Clamshell or 2-in-1
Another choice you can make is between a clamshell model and a 2-in-1 or convertible model.
A convertible model is a hybrid between a laptop and a tablet. It flips the touchscreen screen all the way back and converts your laptop into a tablet.
Convertibles are a bit heavier, and they aren’t as comfortable to use as a tablet which is usually thinner.
Disclosure: we only recommend products we would use ourselves and all opinions expressed here are our own. If you buy through the links we may earn a small commission.
The best travel laptops
Dell XPS 13
Dell XPS 13 is the best travel laptop, whether you need it for work or entertainment. It is small, light, and can fit easily in your backpack.
It is also very aesthetically pleasing, and it is available in white or silver and black. Dell’s XPS 13 is also very powerful, despite its small size.
You can choose between the latest Intel 11th-generation processors, RAM up to 32GB, and storage up to 2 TB. You can also choose between an FHD+ screen or a UHD+ touchscreen.
The touchscreen is more expensive and in our opinion is not worth it since it decreases a lot battery life. We prefer the FHD+ screen and longer battery life.
The battery life is up to 14 hours so it has enough power to last a long flight.
The XPS 13 had the webcam at the bottom of the display when it came out and after many complaints, Dell finally moved it up to the usual place. So, if you buy an XPS 13 now you won’t even have the weird camera angle!
If you’re an Apple user, MacBook Air is a great travel laptop. It is small, light, and powerful enough even for users that use it for work.
It is fast and has good battery life. You can choose between storage of 256GB, 512GB, 1 TB, or 2 TB and RAM of 8GB or 16GB.
One unique feature of the MacBook Air is Apple’s Retina True Tone screen. It has vibrant and crisp colors and adjusts the brightness and white balance depending on the ambient light.
MacBook Air’s battery life is up to 15 hours, so slightly more than Dell’s XPS 13. Unlike the XPS 13, there is no facial recognition with the MacBook Air but it has a fingerprint sensor.
With MacBook Air, one of the best features is probably the great customer service offered by Apple.
HP Spectre x360
The HP Spectre x360 is one of the best 2-in-1 laptops. It is available in silver, black and blue and has a unique cut that reminds of a gemstone, with beveled edges and corners.
This is the smallest convertible laptop, and it weighs only 1.3 kg so you can comfortably carry it around.
The screen is available in Full HD, Full HD WLED IPS anti-reflective display, and 4K UWVA AMOLED display.
The HP Spectre x360 supports facial recognition authentication which is a nice feature. You can choose a storage memory from 256GB to 2 TB, and RAM of 8 GB or 16 GB.
It has the latest 10th generation processors, so it has a good performance that will satisfy most travelers. Finally, the battery life is lower compared to the previous models. It has a battery life of 10 hours and it’s equipped with a fast charge (with 30 minutes of charge you can charge 50% of the battery).
ASUS ExpertBook B9450
Asus ExpertBook B9450 is great if you want a laptop with really long battery life. If you travel for work or are a digital nomad that needs a powerful laptop Asus ExpertBook B9450 is probably right for you.
Despite being a 14” laptop, it only weighs 0.87 kg, so it is super lightweight. It is also really durable, so you won’t need to change it for a while.
You can choose between storage of 512 GB, 1 TB, and 2 TB, and RAM of 8 GB or 16 GB. And the webcam supports facial recognition authentication and the fingerprint sensor.
The keyboard is slightly elevated and inclined which not only provides better ventilation but is also more comfortable.
Finally, the battery life, which is the most impressive feature of this laptop, is of 24 hours with a single charge. It also has a fast-charging that charges 60% of the battery in 39 minutes.