If you’re looking for the best laptop for digital nomads, you’re in the right place. As a digital nomad myself, I’ve spent a ton of time researching the best laptop for remote work and can confidently say that this roundup has a computer for everyone, no matter what the nature of your job is.
Digital nomad laptops come in all shapes and sizes, with different features in every model you’ll come across.
It can be overwhelming with so many options to choose from… And plus, laptops are a serious investment so you want to ensure you pick one that’s going to serve your purposes best and last you for years to come.
To help narrow down the massive pool of digital nomad laptops, I’ve picked out the top 10 options to help you find your new best friend and travel companion.
Keep reading to find the best laptop for digital nomads, and continue to the end for key considerations to keep in mind before purchasing one!
Our Picks for the Best Laptop for Digital Nomads 2022
Overall Best Laptop for Digital Nomads: Macbook Air
Best Laptop for Digital Nomad Bloggers: Asus ZenBook 13 Ultraslim
Best Laptop for Digital Nomad Visual Artists: Microsoft Surface Pro 7
Best Laptop for Digital Nomad Video Editing or Using Software: Macbook Pro
Best Convertible Digital Nomad Laptop: Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 Convertible
Best Laptop for Digital Nomads on a Budget: Acer Aspire 5
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Compare Laptops for Digital Nomads
|Macbook Air||2.8 lbs||13.3"||Up to 18 hours||$$$|
|Macbook Pro||4.3 lbs||16"||Up to 11 hours||$$$$|
|Microsoft Surface Pro 7||1.10 lbs||12.3"||Up to 10.5 hours||$$|
|Acer Chromebook 15||5.84 lbs||15.6"||Up to 13 hours||$|
|Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 Convertible||6.09 lbs||13.4"||Up to 10 hours||$$$|
|Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5||3.63 lbs||14"||Up to 10 hours||$$|
|Acer Aspire 5||3.97 lbs||15.6"||Up to 7.5 hours||$|
|Asus ZenBook||2.45 lbs||13.3"||13+ hours||$$$|
|Lenovo Ideapad||4.84 lbs||17.3"||Up to 9 hours||$$|
|Asus Vivobook||3.75 lbs||15.6"||15+ hours||$$|
10 Best Laptops for Digital Nomads
Here’s a complete round up of the top 10 best laptops for digital nomads, for both Mac and PC lovers.
You probably aren’t surprised to see the Macbook Air topping our list of best laptops for digital nomads as it really is a fan favorite among this particular community.
Extraordinarily lightweight with a whole host of features, Apple devotees will not fall disappointed when it comes to working on one of these featherweight models. They’re superiorly convenient to transport, which is a huge plus when it comes to working on the go and will hardly weigh down any travel bag.
When it comes to functionality, Macbooks are renowned for having powerful processors, gorgeous displays and a plethora of storage capabilities, which will come in handy while working online.
The new Macbook Air boasts a whopping 18 hours of battery life (a key selling point for any digital nomad), an HD camera for video calls, Touch ID, and Apple’s custom Magic Keyboard with a Force Touch trackpad for precise, custom control.
The bottom line when it comes to the Macbook Air is that it’s expensive but well worth it. I personally had mine for 5 years before it died out on me, which justifies the price tag, in my opinion. This is a laptop that can come anywhere with you, making it truly a best laptop for digital nomads.
I will say, though, that the newer Macbooks only come with USB-C ports which can be a real pain in the ass sometimes.
If you’re looking to ramp things up a notch, opt for the Air’s bigger sibling… the Macbook Pro. The Pro is the most powerful choice when it comes to an Apple laptop and comes complete with an ultra strong processor, heaps of RAM and all the regular bells and whistles that come with a new laptop… and then some.
After my Macbook Air died, I upgraded to a Pro and couldn’t be happier with the decision. Though it’s significantly heavier than the previous model, it still remains paper thin, making it extremely easy to stow away, even in already stuffed backpacks.
Another plus is that the Macbook Pro has an all day battery life which is a total god send when it comes to the best laptop for digital nomads. You’ll be able to work outside the entire day without having to search for an outlet, just so long as you aren’t running tons of programs at the same time.
However, even if you do need to run lots of software simultaneously, the Pro will be able to accommodate this no problem, unlike other laptops that will overheat and shut down. And it won’t even slow down a bit.
It also comes with lots of fun features like the customizable Touch Bar that changes with every application you open, an unparalleled Retina Display, and a six-speaker sound system (seriously, this thing bumps).
Overall, the Macbook Pro is the best laptop for digital nomads who are going to be doing lots of video or photo editing (it comes in a 16” model for extra screen space), or someone who’s looking for a long term investment in a powerful computer.
If you’re not an Apple person, or simply don’t want to shell out $1,000+ for a new laptop, the Microsoft Surface Pro 7 is a worthy contender when it comes to the best laptop for digital nomads.
This super lightweight tablet/laptop hybrid will work well for versatile digital nomads who are looking for the benefits of having both of these products. It has all the perks of a computer, like a 10th Gen Intel Core professor and 10+ hour battery life, with the conveniences of a tablet such as a touchscreen and removable keyboard.
A top choice for digital artists or designers, the Microsoft Surface Pro 7 is able to sync with your other devices (even if you have an iPhone), allowing you to access your files with ease, and is compatible with the Surface Pen for drawing your heart out, or simply navigating your screen by touch.
When you feel like using it like a traditional computer, you can hook up the Surface Arc Mouse (which comes in lots of fun colors), set up the kickstand, and multi-task with a split screen running different programs.
With a 12.3” display, the Surface Pro is hardly smaller than other lightweight laptops, but still manages to cram in up to 16GB of RAM, USB-C and USB-A ports and a front facing camera, making it a top pick in our books.
For the best budget laptop for digital nomads, the Acer Chromebook 15 knocks it out of the park. This durable aluminum model was designed to enhance productivity, a core pillar of any successful remote worker.
Decked out with a wide angle display and top-facing speakers, this laptop is great for both business and pleasure. With a battery life of up to 12 hours, you’ll have no problem working from sunrise to sunset (if that’s your thing), and since this is a Chromebook, you’ll also have access to more than 2 million Android apps for whatever you may need.
The Acer Chromebook 15 comes with HD graphics (great for Netflix binges or high quality PowerPoints), a 15.6” touchscreen display, and 4 GB of memory. If you’re worried about storage space, no stress! Your purchase also comes with 100 GB on Google Drive, backing your files up automatically.
While it’s not the strongest laptop in the books, it’s certainly among the most affordable and will get the job done if you aren’t interested in breaking the bank for a computer. It’s also rather slim and only 4 pounds, making it a practical option for frequent travel.
Another solid option if you’re looking for a laptop that can double as a tablet is this powerful number from Dell. Recently outfitted with the best that Dell has to offer, the XPS 13 is one of the best laptops for digital nomads for a plethora of reasons.
One of the most attractive qualities of this laptop is the InfinityEdge HDR display on the anti-reflective screen, allowing you to work wherever, whenever (beach included) without struggling to see what’s on your laptop.
It’s also a touchscreen, which will come in handy for any graphic designers, visual artists, or anyone who prefers to tap rather than click. Simply open the laptop and bend it back on the torque hinges to use it tablet style.
If you’re worried about traveling with a fragile laptop as a digital nomad, the Dell XPS should dispel those concerns as the machine is crafted out of a single piece of aluminum, making it far more durable than laptops that have multiple parts. It’s also outfitted with Corning Gorilla Glass for damage resistance that will even withstand drops.
Though it’s a heavier model than some of its competitors (weighing just over 6 pounds), this laptop is fierce with a wicked fast processor, plenty of RAM and all day battery life.
This 2-in-1 computer is similar to the previous listing, but is a fraction of the price and comes from Lenovo.
Like most flexible computers, this versatile laptop has a 360° hinge that allows the 14” touchscreen to bend back so it can be used as a traditional tablet. This comes in handy if you’re torn between the two tech options and want the benefits of both as a digital nomad. It also comes with an Active Pen – ideal for all the visual artists out there!
You won’t have to stress about how this laptop performs as it comes with a strong processor, along with 16 GB of memory and up to 10 hours of battery life.
And if that’s not enough, by way of features, this bad boy is fully stacked with a touch-ID fingerprint reader, a great keyboard for writing, and digital pen support for drawing or real-time editing on the go. Not to mention the built in Alexa if you have any questions!
This speedy laptop is a solid choice if you’re looking for a good entry-level model that can do it all. It may struggle to run tons of advanced software all at once, but for basic digital nomad work, this is a solid choice.
A super slim option for all of my overpackers, this is definitely among the best laptops for digital nomads and even gives you the choice to customize it to your personal style.
Coming in 5 different colors, this laptop may be small but sure is mighty with an Intel Core i7 processor, up to 16 GB of RAM and heaps of storage space should you find yourself working with large files. This will come in particularly handy when it comes to multitasking, which is a primary pillar of remote work.
The display can’t be beaten either, with full HD color intelligence and a narrow border that allows you to see as much of your screen as possible without disruption.
This digital nomad laptop definitely ticks all the boxes when it comes to both work and play, such as a long battery life and a lightweight design, making it a worthy pick if you’re on a tight budget, but still want a powerful computer.
This tiny computer is well regarded as the best laptop for digital nomads. Though the screen is a generous 14 inches, the laptop is extremely thin and less than 3 pounds, making it the perfect travel companion for your remote working adventures.
The saying “good things come in small packages” certainly rings true with this computer as it really does pack a punch in terms of performance and features.
With an 11th Gen Intel Core i7 processor, you’ll be able to complete multiple tasks at once without your computer dying out on you. It also has up to 16 GB of RAM and an astounding option of 2TB of storage space, to ensure you have room for all of those travel pictures or large documents.
You’ll find the anti-glare display coming in handy when you want to work in the sunshine, and the chicklet keyword was designed to enhance your writing experience if that’s your digital nomad jam. It also has military grade durability, so you won’t have to worry about this laptop getting banged up.
This is the best digital nomad laptop for anyone looking for something super lightweight and slim (aside from the Macbook Air) that doesn’t compromise on quality. Seriously, this is a well loved laptop in the digital nomad community and will serve you well for years to come.
Lenovo laptops were built to last and the Ideapad line is king of them all. The newest Lenovo Ideapad definitely gets classified as among the best laptops for digital nomads thanks to the tried and true features, and a few new bells and whistles that make this computer worth the buy.
First of all, if you’re looking for a computer with a larger screen, this will definitely fit the bill with a 17.3” display, which is even bigger than the Macbook Pro. You’ll find this particularly useful for video or photo editing, gaming, coding, or anything you may desire more screen for.
It also comes fully complete with a 10th Gen Intel Core i5 processor, 20 GB of RAM and up to a TB of storage, so you won’t have to stress about performance here.
With 9 hours of battery life, a flexible hinge, and less than 5 pounds of weight, this laptop will do the trick if you’re a digital nomad looking for something highly functional for remote work (and play).
For a compact design, this is the best laptop for digital nomads, hands down. It was designed so that you “see more, carry less” thanks to the 15.6” display and 3.5 pound weight. You’ll never dread lugging your laptop around again!
Here you’ll be treated to a 4 way NanoEdge display, with an HD camera, all the ports you could need, and an ErgoLife hinge which essentially tilts the keyboard to give you a more comfortable position while typing (bloggers rejoice!).
The keyboard is also backlit and designed for the most optimized typing experience possible with a key dish design.
What’s more, the Asus Vivobook has a built-in fingerprint sensor on the touchpad for unlocking the laptop or filling in passwords, giving you uncompromisable custom security.
With an ultra-powerful Quad Core processor, plenty of RAM and storage, and comforts that make this laptop unique, this is sure to be any digital nomad’s new best friend.
Key Considerations for Buying a Digital Nomad Laptop
When it comes to buying a digital nomad laptop, there are a few key considerations to keep in mind to ensure you get the best device for your use and travels.
Here’s what we recommend thinking about before clicking “buy”.
Size & Weight
There’s arguably nothing more important in a digital nomad laptop than its size and weight. The last thing you want is to end up with a bulky ass machine that you have to lug everywhere you want to go.
Nope, we don’t want that at all.
To avoid this, be sure to check out the specific size and weight of any model you’re considering. While a few pounds or inches may seem minute, remember, as a digital nomad, you’ll have to carry your laptop with you most places you go so ultimately, you want the most portable and convenient to carry laptop out there.
Luckily, these days there are plenty of models that are light as a feather and the size of a tablet, making this an easy buying concern to mitigate.
Another key consideration to keep in mind is a laptop’s performance. This is especially true if you plan on running lots of software on your laptop or doing plenty of video editing.
When it comes to performance, these are the qualities you want to look out for:
Strong Processor: Having a strong processor is what’s going to allow you to have multiple softwares open at the same time without your computer totally crashing.
Fast CPU: The CPU is the central processing unit and ensures that your experience working on the computer is smooth and quick. So as a digital nomad, you’ll want a fast CPU which will allow you to edit blog posts, answer client emails, and create new Reels all at the same time.
RAM: A lot of a laptop’s performance comes from the RAM or the random access memory (this is commonly denoted as just “memory”). The more RAM your computer has, the more space there is to store working data with whatever you’re doing. With increased RAM comes increased processing power to get you your information fast.
As a digital nomad, battery life on your device should be a top priority. What if you go out to work at a cafe with no outlets? Or want to sit by the beach and write a new article? The last thing you want is your computer dying after only 20 minutes of work.
This is why the best digital nomad laptops will have a battery life that will last all day… or at least for several hours, allowing you to get your work done without being tethered to an outlet.
You’ll typically see storage space on a laptop denoted as SSD, which stands for “solid state drives”. This is essentially where all of your data is stored, and can be called upon whenever you feel like accessing a document or file.
Digital nomads who do a lot of graphic or visual work may benefit from a laptop with plenty of storage space so they can save their larger files without an issue. You’ll find computers with up to 2TB of SSD, allowing you to truly store everything without the stress of running out of room.
However, if you already have cloud storage or don’t work with tons of massive files, you should be fine with a standard amount of SSD.
The last thing to think about before buying a digital nomad laptop is how much you want to spend on it.
I’m sure I don’t have to tell you that laptops don’t come cheap and are a serious investment if you want the top model. But at the same time, there are plenty of budget options out there if you want to dip your toes into the water of remote work.
It all boils down to what you’ll be using your laptop for. If you need a computer that’s top of the line and can run a ton of software, be prepared to spend more than a grand on it. However, if you’re just looking for a starter model to get your life as a digital nomad off the ground, you’ll be fine with one of the more budget friendly options on this list.
And there you have it! A complete list of the 10 best laptops for digital nomads. Are you surprised at all the options out there?
While buying a new computer can be intimidating, it doesn’t have to be. Take the time to carefully weigh your options, think about your primary use for a new laptop and what features are most important to you. You’ll end up with the perfect match in no time.
Looking for more digital nomad tips? Check out these articles:
- How We Get Paid to Travel the World
- 33 Best Travel Jobs to Make Money While Traveling (You Can Do it Too!)
- How to Start a Travel Blog in 2021 (With Step-by-Step Videos)
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