8 of the Best Portable Chargers and Power Banks for All Your On-the-go Adventures
Technology is an important part of any adventure, whether you're using your phone's GPS to find your way to the beach, an iPad to keep your kiddo entertained on a cross-country road trip, or your laptop to send work emails from a long train ride. You can rely on electronics to make traveling easier and safer, so it's important to keep them well-charged at all times. A proper portable power bank, which is essentially a portable battery or charging station, can help you do just that. If you're looking to keep your favorite devices charged wherever you go, we've rounded up the best power banks for all your away-from-electricity endeavours.
- Editor's Pick: INIU Portable Charger
- Runner-Up: Anker PowerCore Fusion 5000
- Best Wireless: Anker PowerCore 10K Wireless
- Best for Apple Users: Mophie Powerstation Plus XL
- Best Socket Design: NOVOO AC Outlet Power Bank
- Best for Gamers: Belkin Boost Up Charge Power Bank 5K + Stand Play Series
- Most Versatile: Goal Zero Sherpa 100 AC Portable Power Bank
- Best Heavy-duty: Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 1000
What to Consider When Choosing a Power Bank
Input and Output Ports
A power bank is essentially a rechargeable battery with ports that you can use to charge other electronic devices. Thus, it will usually have an input port that's used to charge the battery itself, and then one or more output ports that will allow you to charge other devices. Common output ports you will find on power banks are USB-A and USB-C, but some even have AC outlets (like those you would find on the wall of your home) or can serve as a wireless Qi charging pad.
Before you buy a power bank, you should take a look at your most-used devices and the types of chargers you use for them. Make sure their connector types are compatible with the ports on the power bank you are looking to buy. Also, it's important to note that some devices can be charged with multiple port types, but it just depends on the cable you use. For instance, I own an iPhone 11 Pro Max and AirPods, and I can charge both devices using either my USB-A to Lightning cable or USB-C to Lightning cable charger. I always forget to charge my AirPods, and I'm constantly using my phone, so these are the devices I usually find myself needing to charge when I'm out and about. That's why the INIU Portable Charger is the best match for me. It has one USB-C and two USB-A ports, so I can charge both my AirPods and iPhone simultaneously, regardless if I packed one USB-A and one USB-C style charger or two USB-A style chargers. It's important to pick a portable charger with the output ports that best meets your needs and habits.
Since power banks are essentially batteries, size has a tendency to correlate to power. Most chargers on this list will need to be carried in a backpack or bag of some sort, rather than in a jacket or front pants pocket (though it depends on the depth of your pockets, and some may be able to be comfortably tucked into back pants pockets). As a tradeoff for not being universally pocket-friendly, you'll be able to charge your phone fully multiple times or charge more than one device at the same time. Mini portable chargers are better for a few hours of battery boost, rather than for complete charges or fueling multiple devices on a long trip.
When looking to buy a power bank, one of the most important specs to look at in the product description is mAh, which stands for milliampere-hour and is a unit used to measure electric power. This spec essentially corresponds to how much power is packed inside the battery and how much power you can use before needing to recharge your power bank. The higher the mAh of a portable charger, the longer and more times it can power up your devices.
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