In this post, I’m going to be briefly reviewing what I believe to be one of the best laptops for travelling if you are on a budget – the Asus T100TAF. This is the laptop that I relied on throughout my entire backpacking trip and for six months afterwards as I set up a life in Taiwan.
To get straight to the point, this is by no means the best all-around travel laptop. I’m sure you could find a variety of better products if money is not an issue for you. However, I’m writing this review for people who are planning to travel for an extended period and want to pick up a portable laptop which they can take with them for a minimal investment.
I remember that in the couple of months before I took off travelling I was looking everywhere for a portable device that I could buy for my travels and use on the road. I considered buying some type of tablet but most of the options were out of my price range and didn’t really meet my requirements. I would have loved to take a 13 inch MacBook, but again this was way too expensive for me at the time.
I stumbled across the Asus Transformer T100TAF and realised it was the perfect option for someone in my situation for three main reasons.
First off, it is $200 mark which was very affordable. I had spent the last year saving up and barley had enough money to take off travelling so spending as little as possible on a laptop was ideal.
Secondly, this laptop is small at 10 inches and lightweight at just over 0.5 kilograms. The last thing I wanted was to be carrying around a heavy electronic device in my bag while travelling – it was my goal to be as free as a bird! You can’t even notice the weight of carrying the Asus Transformer in a backpack which is amazing considering the laptop that provided me with so much value. Because the laptop is so small it might take a little while for you to adjust to typing on the keyboard but it really is fine once you get used to it.
Thirdly, the Asus T100TAF has a touch screen that can be detached from the keyboard and used separately. This was fantastic as it allowed me to use the device as a laptop for working and as a tablet for general browsing. I was able to read books and watch movies as a tablet, while also do more serious tasks such as make bookings, write and even teach English online!
Another thing to mention is the battery life which is obviously important if you are on the road. There’s good and bad news here. The good news is that the battery life lasts for a while – but remember to turn on flight mode when you are not using it. The bad news is that it takes quite a while to charge (at least in my experience) I think this is because the device comes with a tiny phone like power adapter. Having to deal with a 4-hour charging time did get slightly frustrating but wasn’t a big problem if you charged overnight.
So, should you get the Asus Transformer T100TAF for your travels? I would say it depends on your usage requirements and the money you are prepared to shell out on a device. One of the main flaws with the Asus Transformer is the lack of space. At only 32BG I found myself running out of storage space often which did get a little bit frustrating. It’s for this reason that I wouldn’t recommend this laptop for anything involving video or any other task that is going to require a large amount of storage.
With that said, this is the perfect purchase if you are in the same poor man situation that I was in before travelling and you are planning to use the device for basic tasks rather than anything that is going to require a lot of processing power.
You can find the Asus Transformer T100TAF here. There is also a newer (but more expensive) model available which can be found here.