So you’re all set for some traveling adventures, be it for work or pure discovery and leisure. You’re looking forward to conquering far away mountains, diving in exotic waters or sampling game-changing cuisines. Perhaps your journeys ahead will find you seeking a break from technology somewhat? Perhaps you will want to keep the experience digital for the sake of your work, memories or simply staying connected in the land of the digital nomad. Many people feel that a smartphone will be plenty when you are traveling, but if you are a writer, or working as you travel, you might feel otherwise. Perhaps you are traveling for longer periods of time and want more of the same conveniences you had at home? One of the many questions likely to be hurtling around your mind right now is which device to bring along the way. When it comes to traveling, is it better to opt for a laptop or a tablet?
If you know that you will be needing to do plenty of writing or other work that’s usually best completed with a sturdy keyboard, then the laptop is probably the way that you want to go. Having said this, you can always invest in keyboards to combine with your tablet, along with, for instance, tablet stands to make them more stable and easier to use. If you invest in such equipment, your tablet might fast become more of a contender to complete your work? Or you might still feel that the laptop is an all-around easier option (without having to purchase any additions). Either way, it depends on what works for you and your planned usage of your device.
For some of you, travelling light will be top of your priorities list when you are making your travels. The idea of that extra weight and responsibility may be something that you just don’t want on this trip and if that’s the case you are better off opting for the lighter tablet to take with you. On the other hand, if you are travelling light in general with your clothes and other essential items, then your laptop might not make much odds to you as part of your baggage, (especially if you feel that you really need it)! Watch out for those luggage restrictions too as you don’t want to get caught out (and remember never pack your laptop in a checked bag).
Stolen or lost
Unfortunately, we know all too well that when traveling from country to country, theft is an issue. It’s also not so strange to end up losing some of your possessions when you’re amidst exciting adventures and moving around a lot. Tablets are generally less expensive than laptops so it may be reassuring knowing that if the worst happened, you won’t be paying so much to replace your device. Another thing that some travelers do is to purchase a less expensive laptop to travel with (and leave their main squeeze Macbook at home)! Either way, by making sure that you have everything always backed up on the cloud, you have ensured that any loss or breakages don’t affect all of your important photographs and files, etc.
In general, if you take a laptop with you, as opposed to a tablet, you may end up spending more time on your laptop procrastinating. This would be a shame when what you will really want to be doing is getting out there and making the most of your trip whether it’s meeting new friends, or exploring some beautiful places by yourself. Often with technology, we can find ourselves in habits and patterns that are hard to break; this goes for smartphones too. So unless you absolutely need a laptop for working while traveling, this may be an excellent opportunity to have a good-old break from it and just use your tablet occasionally when you need it.
While you will likely have travel insurance, you will want to check that your policy will cover a more expensive laptop, if you are travelling with one, and also, under which circumstances your laptop (or tablet) will be covered. Shopping around and doing your research in preparation for a worst-case scenario will stop you from worrying and give you peace of mind so that you won’t be so set-back if something goes wrong.
If you are fairly sure that you won’t be needing your device to blog, work, or that you won’t be bothered about netflixing on your down times, then you may feel that you don’t need either a laptop or a tablet. Many people feel that a smartphone does the job just fine for taking pictures, staying in touch, checking social media or map-based apps to help you get around. You can also use your smartphone for your boarding passes and book your train or bus tickets in many cities. The issue here is, relying on a single small device can be problematic if it is lost or broken. Some people end up travelling with an old back -up phone so that they have something to use in these situations.
Some travelers end up going for netbooks as these are essentially smaller laptops and generally less expensive than laptops and tablets both while also being very portable and light. If you are unsure whether you are sold on the idea of bringing your laptop or your tablet traveling, then you may want to do some research into one of these devices to see if you can find what you are looking for?
The best thing to do is to work out what your traveling needs are, in terms of your device, and write a list of pros and cons that are based on your desires and uses. If you do this and then also don’t skimp on the insurance you should be good to go! You’ll be basking in the land of the digital nomad in no time at all. Happy travels!