Traveling for a Month, Advice?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by rick3000, Sep 10, 2011.

  1. rick3000 macrumors 6502a


    May 6, 2008
    West Coast
    I'll be traveling to Europe for a month, and I expect to take lots and lots of photos. I would like to take a computer to back up the SD card, and have internet access, email, etc. I haven't gone more than a few days without a computer since the 90's so I am hesitant go with just an iPad/iPhone or just an iPhone.

    The 11" lacks an SD card slot, no big deal, but it's maybe too tiny for me. The 13" may be too big for the hotel safe, though. I will be on a bus for a few hours here and there, so being able to watch a movie would be nice. Any thoughts, ideas? Perhaps, keep a 13" in my suitcase and lock it to the furniture? My 15" MBP is too big, expensive, heavy to take.
    Thanks! :)
  2. Cool Runnings macrumors regular

    Feb 24, 2010
    Take the iBook... if it´s decent specced it will do the trick...
  3. Moccasin macrumors 6502a


    Mar 21, 2011
    Newcastle, UK
    I went travelling with the 11" 2010 MBA and found it perfect. Am using it now as a main computer. I don't find the screen too small and its very easy to slip in the bag when wandering around during the day. As its so small, you can fit it in a fairly standard bag rather than a bag made to carry a laptop.

    The other option is to take/get an iPad and the camera connection kit. My brother got one and uses it all the time - he posts the pictures to flickr.
  4. willieva macrumors 6502

    Mar 12, 2010
    The iPad makes for a great travel companion. Easier to use in tight spaces, better battery life, and the gps is a really handy feature sometimes if you get the 3G version. I don't miss my laptop when I travel, granted I haven't been away for a month.
  5. caonimadebi macrumors regular

    May 7, 2009
    Netbooks are the best travel companion, for a few reasons:
    1. Low cost: My Dell Mini 1012 was only $200. When I checked my luggage with the hotel after checkout, I don't have to worry about a $1000 computer getting stolen. Not a big loss even if it is lost.
    2. Relatively durable and low profile: At such a low price I was never worried about it getting scratched or banged up getting through the security screens. Using a lowly Dell netbook was also low profile that I didn't have to worry about attracting thiefs.
    3. Long battery life: 6-Cell Battery easily gives me 6-7 hours of web browsing on windows 7
    4. Perfect size for airline tray table: 10" is really the perfect size for watching a movie.
    5: Connectivity: Many netbooks come with SD/MS/CF readers, as well as 3 USB (you only find that on a 17" MBP!). All these can mean one less adapter/dongle to pack.

    Credential: I have travelled to Europe and Asia with 15" MBP, 13" MBA, and iPad. There's no doubt my Dell Mini 1012 and Kindle (don't have to turn off at take off/landing!) are favorite travel combo.
  6. palpatine macrumors 68040

    May 3, 2011
    i take my ipad on trips. it does everything you are wanting to do. i used the camera adapter to download my photos into the ipad and then upload them to dropbox (make sure to change dropbox settings so that it doesn't try to shrink pictures and ruin them). it worked great. i also use it for work, so i brought my external keyboard.

    besides doubling as an ereader, costing less than the mba, and having a long battery life, if you bring one of those little external power supplies (i use splash) you'll be good for the duration of an international flight.
  7. wordoflife macrumors 604


    Jul 6, 2009
    I tend to agree with this.
    It will be more than enough for copying your photos to your HDD and having a "real computer" in case you need one.
  8. Macman45 macrumors G5


    Jul 29, 2011
    Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
    I'd Take My iPad

    And my DSLR, wouldn't really want to risk taking MBA and the Toshiba is too damn big and heavy.

    A decent camera and an iPad with connection kit and you should be fine.
  9. plumosa macrumors regular


    Mar 17, 2007
    For me, I would either bring the old ibook and not have to worry about it if it gets stolen, or I would get an iPad. You already have other laptops so it seems a bit silly to get another one just for one month.

    Since you are probably just going to be consuming media and other time wasters you won't need a traditional computer and an iPad's battery life will definitely make you happier than an MBA's. Plus the iPad's camera kit will give you SD capabilities and its a pound lighter than the 11" mba.

    That being said, I LOVE my 11" MBA, and its my only computer now that I've moved to Australia for the next year. But since you need it for only a short amount of time it just seems to be a waste to me since you have other capable laptops already. YMMV.
  10. PT123 macrumors member

    May 19, 2011
    Slightly off topic but I stopped being paranoid about hotel thefts a long time ago. I travel a lot and have come to the conclusion that most cleaners need their jobs too badly to get caught stealing. Take whichever laptop does the job best and hide it under some clothes in the hotel.
  11. nastebu macrumors 6502

    May 5, 2008
    I agree with this. Having things stolen out of your hotel room is much more of a fear than a problem.

    But I would also ask yourself if you need a computer at all. What do you plan to do with it? If it's only back up and light email, really, an iPad is perfect, even an iPhone. Particularly since you can bring a bluetooth keyboard along with you for writing. If it's been so long since you've spent time away from the computer, maybe that time has come to try.
  12. BLondony macrumors newbie

    Sep 5, 2011
    Travel light

    Depends, which parts of Europe will you be travelling to?

    Generally, I would suggest travelling as light as possible, or bringing a cheap/old laptop that you don't have to worry about.
  13. rick3000 thread starter macrumors 6502a


    May 6, 2008
    West Coast
    Basically, all of Western Europe: London, Paris, Barcelona, Zurich, Morocco, Florence, Venice, Rome, Vienna, Prague, Berlin, and Amsterdam. I'm seriously considering a 3G iPad 32GB and then an T-Mobile SIM card w/ the Euro Booster option. Then I can stay connected for emails and things while I'm on the road.
  14. palpatine macrumors 68040

    May 3, 2011
    i would definitely take the ipad :)
  15. entatlrg macrumors 68040


    Mar 2, 2009
    Waterloo & Georgian Bay, Canada
    Buy both!

    I travel with the iPad and an 11" MBA and use both extensively.

    The Air for work tasks, photoshop, illustrator, and a high volume of emails.

    The iPad for referencing pdf's and data while I'm using the Air, and also for entertainment, GPS, photo viewing etc. Its perfect, and using it for certain tasks each day saves the battery and on my Air.

    So if you can get both ... buy a backapack to carry them and your other stuff in and you'll have a organized productive trip. (I said backpack instead of messenger bag ..., style aside they don't work well, the strap cuts into the shoulder, walk lopsided, and if you cinch it up so it's square on your back, you've got a tight (sweaty when hot outside) strap across your chest.

    I've traveled a lot international miles .... For a months travel plan carefully, pack light, function over form for that duration.
  16. ombrenelcielo macrumors regular


    Jan 21, 2011
    Helsinki, Finland
    I use to bring with me my MacBook Pro always when I travel..
    I think if you are going away and you need to do some business related tasks you might need your laptop with yourself.

    For my minor trips I use often the combo iPad->ssh to my Mac if there are some things I might want to drop there or informations to retrieve.
    Though 16gb of memory on the iPad are always less than what I need if I have also a camera with me..

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