Im going travelling to Thailand, Cambodia and Laos as part of a RTW in September.
I know the laptop question gets asked so many times but i cant seem to see what i want to know.
I have an old laptop which i wouldnt be distraught if it got lost/damaged whilst i was travelling. Being an older model it is relatively heavy so i was going to leave it at home, but some friends have recommended taking it for using wifi when im away.
I was thinking of getting an ipod touch for wifi instead but as i dont have one yet im not sure how easy they are for this purpose? I have an older ipod already which i can use for music etc so the ipod touch was a cheaper/lighter solution for the wifi aswell as using it for watching dvds, games etc.
Any suggestions on laptop versus ipod touch would be great!
#1 loup86 has been a member since 10/8/2009. Posts: 6
It all comes down to what your intentions and priorities are!
I'm doing exactly what you described - bringing an old Dell laptop (12-13inch) which is reasonably light. It's not worth anything for me these days and I won't be heartbroken if something happens to it while travelling. I couldn't see the point in forking out for a netbook or iTouch when I also have a perfectly good iPod.
Reasons for wanting to take laptop (in order of priority):
- photo backup
- writing blogs and emails off-line, at a time when it suits.
- WiFi access - more convenient than going to internet cafes
- to hold electronic travel guides (and will print them out as I go at internet cafes or wherever).
- to keep on top of bookkeeping work for a small business that will continue in my absence
- movies (very low priority - but I am taking advantage of having the laptop, just in case I end up bored silly in some remote location with no one else around)
Obviously there are alternatives to each one of those, but when I weighed it all up along with my reluctance to fork over more money for a new iTouch or Netbook that I WOULD worry about losing, this is the option I am running with.
I am also buying a Pacsafe 'Innersafe' that I can use to lock up the laptop, camera, passports or whatever I am not carrying around on the day. http://www.pacsafe.com/www/index.php?_room=3&_action=detail&id=78
PS. I remember reading somewhere (on TF maybe?) about an interesting security measure. They wrapped duct tape around their laptop to make it look like it was being held together by, well, duct tape, and therefore of no value to anyone! Interesting
I have an ipod Touch, it's a fabulous little machine and browsing the web on it is surprisingly good. But it's not fast and I imagine on a slow internet connection it could get downright painful. Complicated sites also sometimes don't work very well on the small screen. For instance, if you plan on doing online banking, I wouldn't recommend it.
I'd agree with everything busylizzy says above. Photo backup is the best reason to have one, especially if you bring your DSLR (I'm looking at your other thread and you should bring it). The camera can be replaced, the photos can't. Always have more than one copy!
#3 scafire_jesse has been a member since 1/3/2008. Posts: 17
The reason i considered taking a laptop was for wifi convenience - just for things like checking emails and internet banking really. To be fair i think i may leave the laptop at home and just stick with my ipod rather than getting an ipod touch. Ive decided to take my DSLR but can use my ipod to store the photos on as its 30gb. And to be honest i cant carry a whole electrically store in my bag! lol.
Thanks for the comments. They've been really helpful
#4 loup86 has been a member since 10/8/2009. Posts: 6
Good choice, for your needs. And I know that that are plenty of internet cafes in Thailand and Cambodia (not sure about Laos as I haven't been there yet).
I really can't understand why someone would bring a laptop on a backpacking trip, assuming that's what you're doing. If you want to back-up files, etc why not just bring some flash memory (usb or external HD). You'll find internet cafes in most destinations, certainly in any 'big' city or town, and in some cities the number of internet cafes will outnumber guesthouses and restaurants. Writing a blog offline can be done with a pen and paper for a fraction of the weight, and how often will you do internet banking? Once a week?
And what if it does get stolen? Certainly wouldn't want any important info in the hands of the wrong people. Just something to think about. The iPod touch seems reasonable, as it doubles for music/videos and can fit in your pocket. Leave the laptop at home if you ask me ;)
#6 cdnexplorer has been a member since 19/8/2009. Posts: 28
I have an old, heavy lap top, too and there is no way I would take it travelling. If its heavy, it'll be a complete pain, in my view.
I've bought a netbook (1kg), which we are to take with us. They do cost, though, so budget may be an issue for you. The IPod Touch was an option, also and looks good. Depends on what you want to use it for and how often and what your budget is. But if you want to do internet banking, do not use internet cafes.
Im definately leaving my laptop at home. Will just be taking my normal IPOD as didnt feel an IPOD Touch would have enough benefits for me to justify buying. Cant afford a netbook unfortunately so am going to make do with internet cafes. I will need to do internet banking to keep on top of my money - are hostel networks more secure than internet cafes?
#8 loup86 has been a member since 10/8/2009. Posts: 6