Tuesday Travel Tools: Travel Power Bank

What is a Power Bank?

A portable power bank is basically a rechargeable battery that you can charge handheld electronics with. They let you store electrical energy (by charging the power bank) to later use to charge a mobile electronic device (by plugging it into the power bank).

Most are small, lightweight, fast-charging, and incredibly convenient, but there are literally thousands of options for power banks, so you’re sure to find one that fits your needs (and even your style… you KNOW my fave is the bright blue color!).

Why I recommend a Power Bank

Power bank for travel

Charge in transit

If you’ve ever been stuck on a plane without a USB outlet or a seatback screen, and you need to rely on your quick-die tablet to keep you entertained, you know why you need a power bank.

Or if you have a long bus ride (again, sans USB outlet or seatback screen), but you need to conserve your phone battery to use Google Maps or Uber when you arrive, you know why you need a power bank.

Charge in case of emergency

For some reason, my iPhones (all 10+ of them) have always seemed to go through battery life unreasonably quickly. This has left me stranded more times than I’d like to count, whether I was relying on Uber for a ride home, or I was in an unfamiliar city where I didn’t speak the language and was depending on Google Maps to get me back to my hotel.


You can easily get a power bank for under $10, but the more powerful ones will cost a bit more. I scored my power bank for under $10, and it lasts a few full phone charges at a time, which is more than enough for me.

Tips for Traveling with a Power Bank

Power bank for travel

Watch your voltage

In order to be allowed on a plane, the power bank needs to be less than 20000mAh/100Wh.

Smaller the better

I had a bigger power bank at first, and I’d rarely carry it with me when I was going about my day (I like to pack light). Since switching to a small, lipstick-size power bank, though, I’ve used it SO much more. Now, it’s a staple in my purse or backpack.

Don’t forget to charge it

Make charging your power bank a part of your pre-trip routine, and something you do each night of your trip. If it’s not charged, it might as well be a rock for all the help it’ll give you.

Downsides of a Power Bank

Most are made with plastic, which means that they’ll end up in a landfill after they’re no longer usable. 🙁

Other options

Say “fuck technology” and enjoy your unplugged existence when your devices run out of juice.

Pin it for Later: Why You Need a Power Bank For Traveling

Top Travel Tool: Portable Power Bank

Do you use a Power Bank while traveling?


A short vacation in Thailand turned into a life abroad with a canceled ticket home. Nearly a decade later and after living in Bangkok, Rio de Janeiro, Puebla, and Puerto Vallarta, Steph is on to her next adventure and living back in beautiful, cosmopolitan Mexico City. She is living, traveling, and working (both as an expat therapist and an international health insurance representative) around the world to find the beautiful, inspirational, and interesting while sharing it with you!

Find me on: Web | Instagram | Facebook

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