When you’re traveling, especially backpacking, there will be a lot of downtime. Plane rides, bus rides, train rides… you name it. An e-reader is a fantastic travel companion. It is one of my favorite inventions in my lifetime.
Yes, it’s not the same as reading a real book. You won’t have the satisfaction of flipping the pages, smelling the ink, and trading/sharing books with others. But, for backpacking, there’s no better device out there. It’s the size of a small tablet, and it can hold more books than you’ll be able to read in a lifetime.
In terms of practical entertainment, nothing comes even close to touching it. There’s no device out there that is this small and light, and yet can keep you entertained for several weeks on a single battery charge.
And no, reading on your tablet or phone isn’t even nearly the same kind of experience. The screen of an e-reader is like paper. It does not not reflect like glass, which makes it perfectly readable in bright sunlight. The screen itself also doesn’t radiate light like a phone/tablet/computer screen, which means you can read for hours without tiring out your eyes.
I own the Kindle Paperwhite, which has a backlight. This is very practical, as it’s basically a built-in reading light. It’s the first generation backlit Kindle from 2012, and it still works great. The one you buy today is several generations newer and better.
Amazon has three different readers for sale today.
- Kindle: standard model with a backlight
- Paperwhite: deluxe model with higher resolution screen, smoother design, better backlight & waterproofing
- Oasis: super-deluxe model with an adaptable, variable color temperature backlight, ergonomic design, automatic orientation, physical page turn buttons, premium materials
You can’t go wrong with any of them.
In case you’re not reading books, you should really start. There are few better things to do with your free time. This is a list of books I personally recommend.