Life without coffee is miserable. That’s a scientifically proven fact that’s not up for debate. When you’re at your home base - the coffee flows plentifully (or it should!). But when you’re off traveling, it can be tough to keep the spigot running.
Trust me - as someone who is location independent, I know the struggle of relying on hotel coffee makers. That’s why, instead of spinning the roulette wheel on whatever crappy coffee maker your hotel maybe has, you should just get your own portable coffee maker so that you can brew some mud on-the-go.
In that spirit, I decided to collect some of the best travel coffee makers. Because you shouldn’t need to be without the elixir of life just because you’re on the road.
Summary: In my opinion, the AeroPress is the best travel coffee maker for most situations. Here’s why it’s what I pack in my bag when I need coffee while traveling:
But while I think the AeroPress is the best travel coffee maker in most situations (it’s what I use in real life!), it’s definitely not your only option. You can also find coffee makers that are even more portable (or offer more advanced options).
Look - if you’re a coffee lover, you don’t need me to tell you that there’s more than one way to brew a cup o’ joe. So it makes sense that there’s more than one type of coffee maker you can bring with you on your travels.
For this post, I specifically looked at 3 types of travel coffee makers:
Pour over coffee makers are basically a "cone" and a filter that you pour water into. As the coffee brews, it drips down into the cup below.
If you're looking for the most compact travel coffee maker possible, pour over coffee makers usually offer the smallest dimensions. Many even fold down to be even more portable.
Total immersion is a method of brewing coffee where you completely submerge the ground coffee in hot water. French press is the most well-known example of total immersion, but it's not the only method.
Total immersion coffee makers are usually a little bigger than pour over, but still plenty portable.
Espresso is brewed by forcing a small amount of very hot water through through finely ground coffee. As a result, it needs a slightly different approach than the other two methods.
While it's possible to find a travel espresso maker, your options are going to be a bit more limited and expensive than the other methods.
Not sure which is right for you? Here's a summary of all the portable coffee makers I looked at:
Primula Single Serve
4.2 x 4.2 x 1.6
Kuke Silicone Drip
4.8 x 2.5 x 4.2
4.8 x 4.5 x 2.5
4.1 x 4.1 x 10.8
Bodom Travel Press
3.5 x 3.5 x 9.1
Espro Travel Press
2.8 x 2.8 x 8.1
10.9 x 4.6 x 4.3
2.8 x 2.4 x 6.9
Skip straight to what you're interested in...
For now, that wraps up my list of the best travel coffee makers! I hope you enjoyed and found a coffee maker that will work for you.
As I said, my tool of choice is the AeroPress - at this point, I use it both at home and on the road. But if you think you know a better solution, I'd love if you told me about it in the comments!
Howdy, I’m Colin. I’m the guy behind Nonstop Newcomer. Since 2014, I’ve been living and working abroad. Currently, I’m living in Hanoi, Vietnam and paying my bills with freelance writing. Stick around for my thoughts on travel, location-independence, and the best gear to make those things happen.