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Time for a “shocking” (not) confession: I love to read. Yup, without a doubt, I love, love, love my books. And my passion for the written word isn’t a recent development either.
Folks, I’ve adored my collection of books ever since I was an adorable five year old. I’d read anything I could get my hands on like the back of a shampoo bottle. I even used to be obsessed with illustrated kids’ editions of classic novels.
Years later, my passion hasn’t wavered at all either. I’m not kidding, let me loose in a book store, and I’ll leave a much poorer person. I can’t help it. Books are more important than rent, anyway.
… Right? Right.
Although Blond Wayfarer mainly focuses on solo travel and self-improvement, I originally went into the blogging game with lofty hopes of starting a literary travel-based website. My bookish love runs that deep in my veins, ya’ll.
However, my reading passion ebbs and flows sometimes. What I mean is it’s true that I hit reading slumps throughout the year. I blame Reddit and Netflix. I’m not immune to the whims of the internet, although I’m trying to lower my usage (key word: trying).
The struggle is super real.
Let’s Talk About Traveling with a Kindle
However, regardless of any technological distractions, the summer months are still perfect for catching up on my never-ending “to read” list.
I’m sure you agree that there’s nothing quite like curling on the beach with a thrilling novel or poignant memoir in your hands. In my opinion, the epitome of the perfect afternoon is chilling on a blanket, with the sea breeze whipping around you, as you’re engrossed inside a favorite book.
Buuut summer also means lots of traveling around the world. Of course.
So I’m dedicating this post to traveling with a Kindle, particularly the ways how this portable device completely changed my reading game on trips.
Now a couple disclaimers before I get into the specific reasons why traveling with a Kindle is an awesome idea for everyone.
First and foremost, this piece isn’t sponsored. I’ve owned my trusty Kindle for a year, and it was purchased with my own hard-earned cash. I might trade it in for a new one soon, but there are no sponsorships here. Just love.
Furthermore, with the release of the all-new Kindle Oasis, it’s fairly obvious that these e-readers won’t be disappearing any time soon. So why not embrace technology a little bit?
Read More: Reasons I am a Proud Literary Traveler
The 5 Reasons to Go Traveling with a Kindle
Are you still not sold on the idea of traveling with a Kindle yet? Perhaps you’re more of a traditional book person? You love the unique covers and smell of the pages, and don’t want to bother with sterile technology?
First of all, I don’t blame you for feeling reluctant. To tell you the truth, I was very resistant to the idea of a Kindle for the longest time.
For example, I remember being stopped at Atlantic City International Airport for having tons of Charles Dickens novels packed in my luggage. What can I say, I was a pretentious graduate student.
In addition, I still buy physical books on a regular basis. I don’t think I will ever live in an apartment without a full blown library.
However, traveling with a Kindle is so practical, especially if you want to accomplish certain reading goals. Let’s get down to it!
1. Kindles Are Easy to Pack
As travelers, we all have limited space in our backpacks and suitcases. We want room for our clothes and shoes along with extra space for cool souvenirs to show to all our friends and family.
Not to mention, the airline’s weight restrictions only make space even more valuable. Do you want to pay an extra fee for overweight luggage? Uhhh, I didn’t think so! That money is much better spent on the ground in your new destination.
So, ultimately, I love paper books as much as anyone, but let’s face it, books aren’t practical to pack for long trips. Period.
Kindles, on the other hand, are very small and easy to slip into your backpack or purse. You won’t have to stress out lugging around a Kindle. It’s tiny.
For example, the latest Kindle Oasis weighs only 6.6 oz. (188g). Not bad, huh?
2. Eating Alone is Less Scary Traveling with a Kindle
Argh, time for some real talk.
As you already know, I babble a lot about solo travel tips on this blog. And, alas, a part of being an independent traveler is eating alone at restaurants. I’m not the best eating alone in public.
Having a Kindle makes eating alone a million times easier. Let’s be real, even though the other diners are probably NOT looking at you, it’s much less stressful to focus on a great story than wondering if the couple at the next table pities you, haha.
Your Kindle will distract you. Not to mention, reading at the bar eludes confidence. When you’re too excited about your book, your nerves about eating oysters alone will diminish into nothing.
Kindles are great for solo travelers who are especially nervous about going out for meals.
3. Kindles Help You Pass the Time En-Route
Like most of you, I’m not a fan of moving between countries and cities. It’s stressful and long and uncomfortable and all kinds of blah.
But, if you’re a well seasoned adventurer, then you already know there’s nothing we can do about it. Traveling takes a lot of time. Teleportation doesn’t exist.
As for me, I know especially on planes my mind has to be distracted (or else). And even if you’re not flying long hauls, you’re still taking trains and buses to different cities.
Kindles will make the time go by way faster. I’ll give you a specific example. On my Milan – Newark flight, I was absolutely engrossed in Amir Levine’s book “Attached” (don’t ask…), and was actually surprised when the cabin crew announced that we were only thirty minutes away from landing in New Jersey.
Believe me, if a Kindle can distract me, fearful flyer extraordinaire, then you’ll find yourself engrossed in a book on a plane too.
4. Keep Up with Your Reading Goals
If you’re a big time book lover, then traveling interferes with your reading goals. You’re constantly on the go and seeing new sites, which isn’t helpful for reading a book. Reading takes time that you might not want to waste on your adventures in a new city.
However, by traveling with a Kindle, your books are all conveniently stored in one place. Having this device makes it a million times easier to read a few pages of a novel when those quiet moments DO happen. Like in a hotel room or as you eat a quick lunch at a trendy bar.
I know quite a few readers who participate in the Goodreads Yearly Challenge and feel very passionate about achieving their goals. If you’re that type of reader, you don’t want your travels to slow you down too too much.
So a Kindle is especially helpful if you really care about reading a certain number of books in a year.
5. Kindle Pays for Itself at Airports
All large international airports have bookstores. It’s nothing new or shocking. But you know what else airports have? Airport pricing. Yikes.
Not to mention, language barriers might cause some problems if you’re planning on buying all your books in airports.
For instance, on my last trip to Milan, I saw a couple travelers returning popular paperbacks (while shaking their heads, haha), because they didn’t realize all book editions were written in Italian, not English. Whoops.
I’m not saying that international airports have to sell English books. Business owners can sell whatever their hearts desire.
However, having your Kindle ready to go solves this problem, because you simply won’t have to worry about whether English books are available. Done and done.
Bonus: Perks of Traveling with a Kindle
Okay, so now you know why traveling with a Kindle is an awesome idea, but I promised you some extra perks, didn’t I? Of course I did.
1. Crazy Long Battery Life
I cannot say enough good things about the Kindle’s battery life.
After all, battery life is the most important thing to consider when buying a kindle for travel. You don’t want a device that’s dying every fifteen seconds. It’s just not practical.
How much battery life are we talking about regarding the Kindle? Weeks, my friends.
Yes, you correctly read that. Your Kindle will stay charged for weeks on end, especially if you switch your device into Airplane Mode. It’s freaking fantastic.
2. The Kindle is Now Waterproof
Do you want to take your Kindle to the beach or the poolside? Worried about damage if a sudden wave crashes over your beach chair? Never fear! What I love about the Kindle is that it’s waterproof.
The waterproof features make traveling with a Kindle easy and safe. You won’t have to worry about an unexpected rain shower damaging your device and wiping out all your books.
Peace of mind goes a long way.
3. No Annoying Glare on Your Screen
Argh, one of the reasons I hate using my laptop outside is because the glare makes it impossible to read the screen. My poor eyes.
The Kindle Paperweight and Oasis’s screens are customized to look like actual paper. I feel no different reading off my device than I do reading a paperback book.
These screens are especially helpful if you’re reading on a sunny afternoon in a park or beach.
4. A Kindle is Now Compatible with Audible
Honestly, I think audiobooks are wonderful for avid travelers. Listening to the latest bestseller will ensure that your flight time will feel like nothing.
Not to mention, if you suffer from motion sickness, audiobooks are a fantastic choice. Gone are the days that you shut your book and groan in pain in the back of the bus.
So what is Audible? It’s a subscription service that offers the world’s largest collection of digital audiobooks. And obviously it’s easy to use on your Kindle. As a new member, you’ll receive two free audiobooks to try out. Give it a shot! I already have a bunch of audiobooks ready to go for my next couple of flights.
Which Kindle Should I Buy?
Okay, with all the reasons and perks said and done, what type of Kindle should you buy for your upcoming trip? Because, yeah, there’s more than one model floating around for you to buy.
For the final part of this post, I’m going to write about two different options here, and then you can pick whichever device suits your needs better.
The Kindle Paperwhite has 8 GB of space to upload a full library of great books. You may also purchase 32 GB if you’re an insane reader like me.
As an older model, the Kindle Paperwhite is cheaper than the newer Oasis. The lower price point makes the classic paperwhite a more attractive option for anyone on a tighter budget.
I have the older version of the Kindle Paperwhite, and it still works wonderful well after a year. I have no reason to replace just yet. That should tell you all you need to know, yeah?
Purchase Your Kindle Paperwhite for Your Travels!
In July 2019, the new Kindle Oasis was released to the public.
A main feature of this Kindle is that you’re able to change the shade of the light depending on your preferences. I think the amber color looks stunningly pretty. By changing the color, you’re able to read in any sort of lighting both outside and inside.
The e-ink technology will allow you to flip through the “pages” quickly with very little lag time. It allows for a very smooth experience.
Another cool feature is the automatic rotating page orientation. Flip your new Kindle Oasis upside and don’t lose your place!
Purchase Your Kindle Oasis for Your Trip!
Do you read on a Kindle? What are the last books you’ve read? Share all your thoughts in the comments. Thanks for reading!