Best travel power system

So this forum is somewhat on the quiet side after the giveaways they did way back to reward attention here (hint: Anker!)

I moved my portable devices to USB and now my portable life is all USB and I travel now with only USB devices and chargers and powerbanks. The shrinkage of total traveling luggage size is impressive, I have reduced my multi overnight bag from 40L to 16L (not all technology, clothing changes also) so now I can pretty much travel the world indefinitely just with this.

That bag contains a coat to get me to 20F, food, water, laptop, all the chargers, cables, two change of clothes.

The liberation of being to walk anywhere, Uber/Lyft, be the last to board and no concerns of roller bags, and to be able to not care about access to mains power, to last off-grid for days, is a cool feeling.

A couple of weeks ago I was in a snowy airport heading to an airport which had approaching bad weather and my flight had an “indefinite delay” so as I only had this luggage I walked quickly to a service desk and negotiated. It ended up me getting the last seat about to fly out due to no checked bag to move, no need to check a bag and took a small seat in a plane fully stuffed with luggage, I could just walk on, sit and down. This in effect let me queue jump. I got home hours earlier. On that flight, I had no power, no Wifi, no entertainment and watched downloaded videos and got home all devices charged.

I am about travel about 25,000 miles over 3 weeks and in the last couple of months been trialing kit options on shorter trips to find what works better/worse. These are my 2017 “best travel power system” current views:

  • Best battery: Powercore 10000. The 10Ah is a sweetspot as its pretty much a phone full recharge and a tablet full recharge which gets you a >1 full day. In worst case once tablet drained then just use the phone. I have tried the Powercore Slim 5000, Powercore 26800, and also the Powercore Fusion 5000.

  • Best charger: Powerport2 (but for reasons related to airports, hotels). This one is the most complicated. I like the Powerport5 USB-C for its port density but the cord length is the problem. Either the mains power is right there in front of you, or it is the Powerport5 distance away, or it is further away. You cannot predict. If you use the Powerport5, then if the mains socket is immediately there you have a more complicated setup, if the mains socket is too far away you can’t reach it. So what I find works in all situations is a 12ft mains extension cord. Then a Powerport2 plugged in. This works internationally as at the end of the 12ft cord is the local country plug adapter. The typical USA extension cord plugs in 3 devices, so then I attach multiple chargers. This allows to cover for the more esoteric power recharging needs, such as my OnePlus3T “DASH” charger which is proprietary.

  • Best USB cables. Well here I go with a couple of the free short ones with the Anker devices and a couple of really long ones. This then solves all the most cramped to the most extended situations. The shorter ones tend to suit mains power close or if you’re using the Powercore in a flight, the longer ones for the intermediate or extreme situations. The longer the cable the most the quality matters and I use the Powerline+, the shorter cables I use microUSB and USB-C adapters.

The 12ft mains power extension is handy for hanging laundry drying. The 2 changes of clothes = one on, one in the wash, one ready to wear, so drying is part of the system. Not all hotels have all their room parts just right, sometimes you need a strong rope.

Not Anker related but FYI these are my non-Anker gadgets:

  • Google Pixel C. Tough, fast, good battery life, 3A 5V input. The Powerport2 2.4A 5V is a close match.

  • OnePlus3T. It has a proprietary charger, so I carry it and it falls back to 2A 5V from the Powerport2 so I can use the Anker or proprietary charge.

  • Spare / fallback tablet: Nexus 7. This suits cramped airline seats

  • Spare / fallback phone: Moto G4 Play. This last days of a charge.

The spare devices represent carried internal charged batteries so collectively mean I don’t need to carry a whole lot of Mah in Powercore. If you ever look at the added external battery capacity due to the 3.7V/5V difference with Watt-hours, a spare fully charged device is about the size of the added external battery power.


  • what is your best travel system?
  • how much does Anker suit you?
  • where are Anker’s product gaps?

Funny, I was thinking the same thing today. It is very quiet out there and tough to even get any comments when you create a post. I may just have to spend my time on other things for a while. Trying to answer your three questions as good as I can.

My travel is primarily by vehicle so to answer your questions will be a bit off your topic.
I use the Anker dual USB car charger in my truck that allows me to plug in my Sirius radio and my cell phone so that I can use maps for navigation.

When overnight camping I use an inverter in my trailer that has USB ports to allow power to all my devices. Nothing Anker makes helps me out here as the powerhouse is not available where I live and is 10 times the price of my inverter.

The only thing that Anker could do to help my travel needs is to offer a type of phone connection/charging that could be done easier than plugging the cord in to the phone. I sometimes exit my vehicle 10 times a day and have to plug or unplug the cord every time. One of those magnetic types of cords interest me but the ones I have seen offered have very poor reviews and so I will wait until one the big companies make one that is good. My magnetic cell phone holder works flawlessly for holding my phone just above my speedometer and if they could incorporate a wireless charger into one of those I would be very happy.

I have never used a device on a plane other than my Asus laptop and Anker cannot help me with that so I get my 1.5 hours of up time and then sleep.

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Is that a hint toward move giveaways or less? :grin:

Company specific forums have a tendency to have quieter moments as you can only discuss so many things about the products they make, without repeating threads / posts…oh wait a minute that happens quite often :grinning:

Nice compact kit though @nigelhealy , I only have limited regular travel requirements so a PowerCore 10000 and mini lightning cable is normally the full extent of my needs.

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That’s pretty much all I need for the 2-3 train commute :slight_smile:

I’m impressed! Nice job! :thumbsup:

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have you ever forgot to empty out that water bottle before going through security?? I forgot once and got a free trip to a special room for additional searching while in Vegas, ha

I leave for airport with empty water bottle, then refill post security. Yes sometimes I might forget but by the airport I’ve usually been moving for a while so thirsty enough to drink it empty. Only 500ml aka a pint.

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Anker has a product gap or two for sure for car drivers. You can add a small wireless charging plate under phone case if phone does not include wireless charging, then there are wireless charging universal car mounts. Not Anker.

The smaller packed size is cold 20F-30F as that is just a down coat which squishes to fit at top of bag.

The largest ironically is when warmer like 40F with rain then it’s waterproofs, umbrella.

So some cities in winter need more than others. Probably the worst is NYC as it flips quickly between 20F 50F. Easier is say Chicago, Minneapolis.

If I’m heading out for longer trips I take spare everything, what that represents is added charged devices so I need least Powercore capacity.

Heading off now for 3 day trip and packed Anker Soundcore Nano.

The biggest single shrinkage in packed traveling is ditching a traditional laptop, they are huge, power hungry and often fragile. I’m a fan of the Pixel C for when moving.

Common charging standard multi purpose shrinks the PSU and cables.

Inverters are large heavy inefficient, more suited for when in a powerful vehicle. I have a UPS at home for power outages, and a 400W inverter in car for longer trips.

I agree the Anker Powerhouse is expensive. It reviews quite badly.

Safe travels! The Nano is definitely travel-friendly!

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Very true but like I said I am commuting via vehicle so weight and size is not a concern. My inverter is 1.5 lbs but my batteries are 70 lbs each. My Trojan t-105 golf cart batteries are rated at 200Ah for the pair , the .4 amp draw on my inverter is negligible and my 100 watt solar is giving me 7 amps per hour on peak times. 2 hours of sun would power my little inverter for 35 hours and I only maybe use it a couple hours per day and switch it off when not in use. When powering anything via the USB on my inverter the inversion is bypassed so the only power used is what my device needs. see my youtube channel for specs on my inverter… BTW is a UPS not just an inverter in a nice package?

Yes a UPS is an inverter with battery in a nice package, a UPS though is pass through in that you connect items to it which do not contain batteries and when mains power goes it then changes modes. UPS suit items like say Wifi routers, raspberry pi.

Anker Soundcore Nano for in the hotel room or any ad hoc conference calls.
Anker IE20 for moving (good for talking with Uber drivers).
Anker Powercore 1000, mostly for the tablets
Anker Powercore Slim 5000, mostly for the phones.
Anker USB-C Ethernet USB dongle.
Anker Powerport 2
Anker Powercore+ cables

Non Anker is Pixel C, Nexus 7, Moto G4 Play, Bose Bluetooth headphones (just had a 4 hour flight, next is 11 hour flight), Sony SW3 Android Wear, and the OnePlus3T taking the photo.

To make this work international just add local country adapter to the end of the extension or just to say the Powerport2.

The advantage of standardizing on USA mains and just add the local country plug is the USA plug is very compact, the PSU have folding pins, and USA extension cords can pack 3 sockets in the space of 1 UK plug.


We are always planning new giveaways or discussing new ways to reward our Community users. However, we don’t want them to be too frequent or else the novelty will wear off very fast.

I’m surprised that everything can fit in that backpack, especially with your laptop, clothes, and coat! Can you try fitting the PowerHouse in there too? :slight_smile:

I shrinks the needs to shrinks the problems to shrinks the solutions. Powerhouse solves problems better solved other ways.

Just this morning I was thinking that the ANKER Cube is my favorite thing to travel with. After traveling with it for 6 months, I just can’t imagine going anywhere without it. Here it is in my hotel room this morning:

Charging ALL my stuff with a 3-prong plug still to spare. The extension cord aspect of it is really nice too. I’m using a plug on the other wall around the corner to power this setup.

In a week’s time I’m moving across 3 countries with backback and laptop. Only 2 types of power sockets, UK and US (passing through Ireland with UK type plugs). I have to take a full laptop as working. There may be a 16 mile mountain walk in the middle of it. Love a challenge!

Now then, if Anker made say a 60W 4-5 C19 Powerport then I’d need fewest chargers. So like a decent Atom 4. Darn it it there’s me thinking I was in 2019 :older_man:

Yes! That would solve everything for me, and improve on the form factor. I think the powerports are easier to pack than the cube. Theres something about a cube shape that bothers me when packing, like theres no way to optimize it.

If this did 45W USB-PD it would be all I need, I’m mostly on UK ports in my next trip so I’d put a UK C19 cord on it and carry a UK to US plug adapter for a brief airport spell in US on way home.

I’ll do some packing experimentation next weekend, I not taken a full laptop which can take USB-PD and a mix of USB and Type devices before, there will be a sweetspot. I’ll share photos once I hit best of what I can do.

But to twist the knife in, if Anker make 4 port 60W USB-PD which did 45W PD, I’d have bought it and used that.