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Agree with the above.

I thought alot of hostels in OZ/NZ have internet anyways.

I couldn’t imagine having to lug a laptop around and worry about it being stolen or damaged. Advice from my friends who have travelled, is you’d be mad! Thats 8 people, they all took stuff that they thought would be good and turned out to be crap idea!

     
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At the end of the day it’s up to you, if you have the space and want to why shouldn’t you take it!  There are always loads of arguments about what you should and shouldn’t take - I got pounced on by someone very rude (not on gapyear!) who was having a go at me for taking my hairdryer travelling.  Well sorry but it’s my travels and I’ll take what I want thanks!

Hope that didn’t sound rude.  I just think that everyone is entitled to take what they want on their trip, and if it’s a laptop then so be it .

P.S.  The laptop my husband is taking is a tiny 12 inch one, and weighs hardly anything :D And yes I have travelled before so I’m not a ‘new’ traveller (as someone who posted earlier seemed to think all of us taking laptops had never been away before).

     
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LOL  LOL Hairdryers and straighteners are a whole other debate LOL  LOL

As you say, each to their own - it’s you that has to carry it and look after it. Personally I wouldn’t even take a mobile phone and have thought hard about whether an mp3 player is worth the hassle.

My advise (and it is only advice) is to pack as little as possible - you tend to need a lot less stuff than you think you will.

     
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yeah i agree with honey, it is just a personal choice.

I think its wrong of people who generalise and say it goes against the idea of backpacking.

for a start, who says it is backpacking. this is a gap year/travel web site.
just to be pedantic, a gap year for someone could be staying at home doing nothing, or going to do a job somewhere (that maybe isn’t necessarily connected to the career you want or do.)

sometimes be a tad judgemental, they get too involved in their own opinions, they forget that every single one of is different and has different dreams and ambitions.

if someone wants to travel the world just to see a beach in every country, hey you may think thats not a justified traveller, but who are we to judge,

to me, if you can die, knowing you’ve lived your life with no regrets and done things that make you happy, then your life is a success.

sorry for that slight rant, wasn’t to peeve anyone off.

anyway, i still am undecided, and its nice to hear opinions from those who have done it, if it was a mistake or not.  from people who haven’t you are speculating as much as me, and so your bias of opinion can sometimes cloud your judgement, but still nice to hear.

personally, i’m not looking to take it to asia, when i will be moving around a lot, or to south america (ditto) but i am greatly considering it for when i spend a year in oz. especially as i want a car or camper for some of it, (so i wont be lugging it on buses etc.)  but then again if me and the chap break up i might change my mind. as it is keeping in contact with him that i am concerned about. and just think skype is such a bonus and would save me loads of cash.

My main aim to travel was that i sometimes really dont like living in this country anymore, but i also realise the grass is always greener on the otherside. and i want to live and work in australia, to have as normal a time as possible to see what life is like. but then if i’m doing that i will also move around to see oz, and seen as going, its as good a time as any to see some of the world on my way, so i’m doing asia on my way, and south america on my way back.
as yet i have no pre conceived ideas as to what any part of it will be like, the travelling, or working.  But that is part of travelling which i think we can generalise everyone into, whether its the culture chasers, the beach lovers etc etc, is that we are doing these things for new experiences.

so bring it on he he.

(not sure how related that was to laptops, i’ve just wanted to say those things for a while now)

     
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Pro’s : Being able to play football manager during your time away

Con’s : It’ll be nicked

     
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haha nicely put Goose86!!!

it is everyone’s own choice on what they pack it doesnt make you any less of a traveller if you take a laptop or not - its you who has to carry the thing and if your happy doing that then fine.

we have to take ours as we will be staying in oz for a year.

hey ho its all good as long as we all get to see the world right?!?

     
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also charging it up could be a problem in some places. its all well and god takin a laptop, but then theres the charger and the plug adapters and voltage converters…..i personnally would love to tak my laptop, but i value it a lot and there are a lot of risks of gettin it stolen. im willing to pay for internet cafes while im away becausse searchin for them is likely to help me find little back street cafes that i wouldnt know was there otherwise…..well, thats what i was thinking anyway… rolleyes

     
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laptop or no laptop….mmm

I cant decide..
I am already taking £1500+ worth of camera equipment…so taking a laptop is just adding to a considerable weight on my mind, I’d be gutted if I lost/broke anything.
But on the other hand..
The thought of coming home with at least 5k+ of photographs to go through is daunting, so having a computer to go through them occasionally as I go would be handy..

     
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I take my laptop and most of my camera gear everywhere these days, mate. It’s sometimes a bit of a bum, but on the whole I find it totally worthwhile.

I always carry them as hand baggage on flights, which does mean that you can’t take much else on with you, which can also be a bit of a shit.

This is the best thing I’ve ever bought, and far cheaper than the Lowe Pro alternative:

http://www.pixmania.co.uk/uk/uk/666588/art/case-logic/slrc-4-rucksack-for-camer.html

     
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PS - these guys are great for insurance:

http://www.eandl.org.uk/digitalcamera

     
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Personally, I would say don’t take it unless you’ve got one serious reason to need one.  If you feel you have to have one then you could consider an Asus EeePc 4G.  They are this years big thing and in very short supply but at £220 and weighing less than a kilo, they’re pretty ideal for travellers with a computer addiction.

     
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From what I gather, it’s not a computer addiction, but more because Gavin’s a photographer. And he already owns a laptop.

I take mine purely for photography and nothing else. It’s a widescreen laptop and it’s pretty big, but then a small cheaper machine with a less advanced screen isn’t much use, because you don’t get anything like a true image representation on smaller machines with cheaper screens.

The backpack I plugged above takes the hassle out of things, though. I don’t realise I’ve got it all with me sometimes.

All that said, there needs to be a balance - you’re meant to be enjoying your travels afterall. Personally, I only ever take a couple of versatile lenses and opt to carry more in the way of filters and things instead, and then leave the rest of it for manipulation on the laptop. For good digital photography, a computer’s just as necessary as the camera itself.

What laptop do you use, Gavin?

     
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PS - these guys are great for insurance:

http://www.eandl.org.uk/digitalcamera

Cheers for that, I was just wondering today where I should have a look for insurance.

That Asus looks alright actually, but like Tommarvelle says, the screen quality will make or make or break it. Whenever I shoot gigs,on the train home, I’m checking what I shot on the screen, thinking ‘Brilliant, they have come out great!’ only to get home and notice problems when they are viewed large, a particular problem is getting focus correct, you just cant see on a small screen.

I would probably only use a laptop to sort through photographs and post anything decent on my blog and flickr for people back home if I was in a hotspot. I can see you have to draw the line somewhere, but really all I would have a laptop for is photography related..I wont be bothering with a phone or anything, so there would be no way I would be glued to a screen all day

Atm I use a Tosh with a 16” widescreen, so its not exactly compact..may sell it and get something a bit more compact theres a few compact sony VAIO laptops that look good.
But again you have to think about whether or taking a laptop is worth the risk at the end of the day.

     
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I’m taking the Asus EEE pc with me and i can say it is absolutely fantastic.  Fair enough the screen is on the small side as it displays 800x460 pixels but it’s very clear easy to use.  Keyboard is a bit on the small side for my big hands but it will just take a few hours to get used to it.  Its a luxury that i don’t need but will come in handy for doing my blog, movies etc.

     
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The Asus EEE looks great but it’s the teeny tiny solid state drive that puts me off, and also the lack of a DVD/RW. I’m also debating taking a laptop with me travelling for my photographs, but I’d like it to have a decent amount of storage space and preferably a DVD/RW so I can burn my own DVDs if I want to.

Sure, you can use a portable hard drive and DVD/RW but by then you may as well take a regular laptop. I’m holding out from buying one until they make a 7-11” 40+GB laptop with DVD/RW. If anyone knows of one under £500, let me know! smile