One of the big decisions to make before any trip is what gadgets to bring with you. It’s not just about which fits in your luggage, there are lots of elements to think about when picking your travel electronics. We’ve weighed up some of the pros and cons of travelling with a laptop or a tablet.
It’s fairly obvious that no ones going to carry a laptop around with them to take photos. Tablets are much smaller and easier to manouvre. However, even though the tablet clearly wins this round, we would recommend a camera or a phone for snaps instead!
If you’re a serious photographer, then you’re likely to bring a digital camera travelling. A few tweaks and changes can be the difference between a postcard perfect shot and being skimmed past on facebook, so editing is essential. Tablets have a few basic apps for editing photos but nothing to suit detailed editing. However, laptops provide an endless list of editing software at your fingertips, from photoshop to illustrator.
When it comes to security, it’s not necessarily about the gadget you bring, but the software you use. Laptops and tablets both have tonnes of resources for tracking them down if they are lost, as well as ways of efficiently reporting them stolen. You can read about our favourite tracking apps here. However, you can also protect your electronic belongings by disguising them a little. A protective, discreet case can do the trick of hiding your gadget. Although these kinds of cases are available to both laptops and tablets, the latter arguably has a lot more choice.
Tablets are great for lone travellers, no matter how small your seat is on the coach, there’ll be space to pop your screen on your lap. Laptops, however, provide a much larger, hands-free screen for groups and couples. You may be surprised to hear, though, that for the size of the screen, many tablets have better pixel quality than your average laptop. However, laptops have the edge when it comes to saving your films as there is plenty of space to store as many films as you need for months of travelling!
When it comes to keeping touch with people at home, the laptop and the tablet have similar features. They both generally have decent cameras and accessibility to Skype as well as plenty of available communication programs. However, if your priority is keeping in contact with loved ones, we have to recommend the tablet. You can whip this baby out discreetly at any time of day or night, or carry around in your day bag until you need to get in touch.
If you’re going to be doing business on your travels, you need a reliable device that can save, edit and send all your documents and photos easily. You’ll also want a gadget that is user-friendly and compatible with all the booking sites you’ll need to use, whether they’re for activities, rooms or flights. We believe the laptop definitely meets both these needs best.
The device best for your blogging needs varies broadly depending on what blogging platform you will be using and whether writing is your profession or your hobby. In general though, any task that involves lots of typing is much more comfortable with a full-size keyboard.
For many serious gamers, a keyboard is essential for online pursuits. However, these kind of games are usually played for hours on end and require a strong internet connection. We imagine most travellers won’t be spending hours on end gaming in the hostel, hopefully they’ll be exploring instead! So, we’ve picked the tablet as the best gaming device as there’s plenty of quicker games and apps to entertain yourself for a couple of bus journeys and train rides.
Tablets are better for travellers who are crazy about communication, not technology. If your main priority is keeping in touch with your loved ones at home, tablets are great for quick online chats and Skype dates. They’re also the best choice for people who like to watch short videos or play games, no matter how small your quarters are, you can find a space to wedge your tablet and catch up on Candy Crush (though, we wish you wouldn’t).
Best for: Entertainment Junkies & Social Butterflies
Laptops are best for those who take their travelling seriously. You may me doing business while your on the road, editing photos as you go or booking important, last minute flights. The laptop is unequivocally better for these scenarios as you can guarantee all websites will work and there will be a compatible computer program for whatever you need.
Best for: Business Nuts & Flashpackers