- Asus C202 – For writers and bloggers.
- MacBook Pro – Best Laptop For Most Digital Nomads
- Dell XPS – Best Windows Digital Nomad Laptop
- Windows Surface – Best 2-in-1 Digital Nomad Laptop
Here are my top picks for the best travel laptop for digital nomads in 2019! Ideally, I would love and it would be absolutely amazing to travel without a laptop, never having to check my emails and just wander around the world living the life, eh? Sadly that’s easier said than done!
For the digital nomads and freelancers on the road a laptop is nearly a necessity, however being in the day and age we live it right now, it is no longer necessary to carry around a bulky and heavy piece of metal!
There are some basic factors to consider before buying a laptop especially one you plan on traveling with. Here are the factors I consider when making my purchases or recommendations.
- Size: Size is one of the most important factors right out of the bat! You want your travel laptop to be small enough to fit in your backpack, yet not so small that it’s cumbersome to work on.
- Weight: Weight is another major factor that will play a big role when it comes to picking your travel laptop. Whether it’s being able to travel only with a carry on or if you try something adventurous like me and climb the world’s 3rd highest mountain pass with everything you own. The weight of your laptop will play a big role in these situations.
- Operating System: A writer who’s just writing or a blogger like me running his social media channels will need less functionality than a web developer building a web app or a video editor rendering video in 4k. Also then there is a preference between windows and mac which is again a personal choice. While some techies will prefer a Linux based system.
- Processing Power: Based on what you are going to be doing on your machine, you will need either a Chromebook to check Facebook and reply to a few emails or an Intel i7 powered machine with 8+GB of ram for more processing-intensive tasks.
- Storage: You will most probably want to be able to store a lot of data if you going to travel. Whether it’s a couple of movies to watch on a day with bad weather or if you want to backup all your pictures in an easily accessible location as you can’t always be sure when is the next time you will get access to a good WiFi connection.
- Battery Life: How are you going to get that picture of you sitting in a hammock on a beach if the battery like of your travel laptop doesn’t let you work away from a plug? Lol On a serious note, the battery life will play a big role when it comes to picking your laptop so that you don’t always have to be stuck to the plug.
Best Digital Nomad Laptop
Chromebooks are great for travel and will fit the needs of most travelers and backpackers, but not the best for professionals (hence the “?”)
Almost all of the Chromebooks on the market right now are available for under 250$ and after reading this article you will understand why.
Chromebooks are basically the Chrome browser on steroids, you can’t run Microsoft word or do any high-end video editing, however it’s great for those people who spend all their time in a web browser like are just going to be doing a little writing, streaming a little Netflix or just reply to couple of emails. I actually use ChromeOS on my laptop and already decided on buying new Asus C202 Chromebook.
The newer Chromebook let you install Android apps from the Play store as well, so basically it’s like expanding your phone onto a bigger screen. I would only recommend Chromebooks for bloggers like me who outsource most of the heavy-duty work or to someone just on a vacation and looking for a travel laptop where they can stream movies and reply to emails.
The battery life on most Chromebooks is absolutely amazing at 10 hours on average which makes it great for traveling! Storage space is always limited on Chromebooks usually around 16-32 GB so you will almost always have to have an external hard disk or store everything in the cloud which isn’t always feasible due to the uncertainty of WiFi.
The main reason I like Chromebooks as a travel laptop for my personal work is the cost and the fact that everything is backed up. So in case of the unlikely event of my laptop being stolen or if it breaks. I can easily order another one and just boot up and have all my work easily accessible. However its functionality is limited and won’t work for 99% of freelancers and Digital nomads who need more functionality then a browser.
Pro: Cost, Weight, Size and Battery Life.
Con: Limited Functionality, Processing Power, and Storage.
Recommended For: Bloggers, Influencers, Managers and Writers.
ASUS Chromebook C202 – The Best Chromebook For Travel (Price)
The C202 was designed for students in a classroom and thanks to the reinforced rubber, it’s shockproof and can be dropped from a meter!
It also comes with a spill-resistant keyboard, so you don’t have to worry about the waves that might hit you haha!
Features like the 10-hour battery like, High-Quality Anti Glare HD display and a 180-degree hinge make it an absolute steal for a machine that costs less than 200$! Cons of the C202 include the normal cons of a Chromebook and the screen is only 11.6″ which might not be big enough for a few.
ASUS Chromebook Flip C302 – Best Chromebook with Touch Screen (Price)
This Chromebook comes with a metal body that’s comparable to a MacBook that would cost over 3 times more! The C302 also comes with a touchscreen that works amazingly well with the hinges that allow you to rotate the 12.5 inches full HD screen 360 degrees, so you can use it in Laptop, Stand, Tent, or Tablet mode.
The inclusion of the back-lit keyword is great for those nights when you’re typing away trying to reach the deadline! The storage space is a little more than most Chromebooks with 64 GB internal storage.
This Chromebook is great if you’re looking for a 2-1 that gives you a little more freedom and more processing power than your typical Chromebook.
Macbooks seem to be the cliche device in all those pictures of someone “working” on a beach! I’m not a fan of Macbooks but I have to definitely include them on this list as they’re popular for a good reason. Even on this post on Reddit in the digital nomad subreddit, Macbooks are quoted quite often.
MacBook Pro – Best Laptop For Digital Nomads (Prices)
The MacBook Pro has an insane retina display which remains till date, one of the bests displays in the industry (graphic designers, you reading this?). Also at an insanely light-weight and being extremely thin, the Mac is a definitely a great laptop to travel with!
Depending on your needs, you can get the Macbook Pro with a 13″ and a 15″ screen. The 13″ is more convenient for traveling but might not fit everyone’s needs.
You have plenty options to choose from when it comes to Ram, processing power and SSD storage. From 8 GB to 16 GB, 2.3 Ghz Intel i5 Dual core to 2.9 Ghz Intel i7 quad core and 128 GB to 512 GB respectively.
Macbook Air – Best Laptop For Backpackers (Prices)
The Macbook is a favorite among backpackers and people on a gap year around the world, however being completely honest the Air line hasn’t been updated in a while and the 13″ 1400×900 screen isn’t as good as other windows laptops in the same price range.
However many features of the Macbook Air is still appealing when it comes to travel, other than the insane lightweight (it’s called *AIR* for a reason lol) other appealing features include 1.8 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 processor which can be Turbo Boosted up to 2.9 GHz and an 8 GB ram.
The Macbook Air only comes with a 13 inch screen but is available in 2 storage sizes of 128 GB and 256 GB SSD
Dell XPS 13″ – Best Windows Ultrabook For Travel (Price)
A stunning 13 inch display with Quad HD+ resolution 3200×1800 fitted in a tiny body the size of a 11 inch laptop weighing just 1.29kg is insane!
Fitted with either a 7th generation Intel i7 or i5 processor and 8 GB ram, the Dell XPS doesn’t lack the processing power for those resources exhaustive tasks!
If you are a windows user and looking for the best travel laptop to work from while on the go, Stop now as this laptop is your guy!
ASUS ZenBook – Best Value For Money Ultrabook (Price)
At a price below $700 the ZenBook UX330UA is slim, lightweight, has plenty of storage and ram as well as features like a fingerprint sensor!
The base model that costs less than 700$ comes with a 13.3 Inch wide-view Full HD Display, the Latest 7th generation Intel i5 processor and 256GB SSD with 8 GB RAM
This Ultrabook won the reddot design award in 2016, the fact that it weighs just 2.6 makes it a great laptop for traveling with! It’s the best value for your money when it comes to a travel laptop!
2-in-1s have been getting really popular lately! And for good reason, we are already using our fingers with our phone so why not continue to do so one a little bigger machine. The newer 2-in-1s are great for travel as they have the power to get work but also can be converted into an entertainment center.
Surface Pro – Best 2-in-1 for Travel (Price)
With nearly 2000 reviews on Amazon, the previous generation Surface Pro 4 was an insanely popular 2-in-1 laptop!
Microsoft has just made it even better with the new Surface featuring the latest 7th Gen Intel core processors and expanded battery life up to 13.5 hours of video playback!
The 12.3″ on the surface pro is absolutely stunning at 2736 x 1824 resolution touchscreen that accepts pen input for designing and other uses!
Lenovo Yoga 910 – High-Performance 2-in-1 Laptop (Price)
There’re a lot of options to pick from when it comes to the Yoga 910, between a 8 or 16 GB of RAM, 256 or 512 GB of SSD storage. There’re also 2 versions of the display, one with a 1920×1080 14 inch display, or a high-res 3840×2160 version 14 inch display.
The display covers with Gorilla class which makes it better for traveling as you never know what might happen while on the road.
Other great features include a back-lit keyboard, fingerprint sensor and good battery with 9 hours of video playback.
I hope that this list of the best travel laptop helps you pick a laptop that’s easy to travel with without giving up on functionality. Let me know what you think about the suggestions in the comments below.