Best Portable Charger for Any Device
Best Portable Charger for Any Device

There are tons of portable charger options out there. Seriously—a quick search on Amazon reveals thousands of top picks, suspicious dupes, and hidden gems for budget buyers. Some power banks work for years and others will break in the middle of your first trip, so how do you make sure you’re getting a good option that actually satisfies your needs? We’re here to help!

Why You Should Trust Us

Every tester on our team has used dozens of portable chargers, battery banks, and power banks over the years while one bag traveling, vacationing with friends and family, and solo trekking around the globe. In the modern era, traveling without a battery bank often means being without your phone, tablet, Nintendo Switch, and headphones if they die while you’re away from your accommodations. We're all for unplugging to experience new things, but why not have a backup plan? By pairing our experience with the market's newest and best portable chargers, we're here to share some of our favorites for your next trip, no matter where you're going and how you'll get there.

How To Test A Battery Bank

In addition to testing how well these battery banks fit into your pocket, sling, or travel backpack on your next trip, we got more technical in our testing. Brands advertise voltage, milliampere-hours (mAh), and watt-hours differently, so knowing exactly how much juice you'll get out of your new portable charger can be challenging.

To test this, we purchased an electronic USB load to trick the battery banks into thinking they were charging something and a multimeter to test the amps, volts, watts, and milliampere-hours through the process. Though we looked like we had a nuclear button on our desk for a week, it was worth better understanding how these portable chargers work to more accurately recommend what to expect when they arrive on your porch.

Best Portable Charger for Any Device
Best Portable Charger for Any Device

We understand these tests aren't foolproof. For example, a device used to test portable chargers will eat up some of the power, there are two connections where energy can be lost, and some juice is also lost through heat. Still, we tested all of these battery banks using the same method and got valuable data from those tests, including how much deviation each portable charger is from the average tested mAh. This is handy for determining which model offers the best bang for your buck; the closer the tested mAh is to the actual mAh, the better.

You can see the results of our test in the chart below. We tested each battery bank with a set amperage of 2, as that's what most modern cell phones use and what most chargers can handle.

Model Advertised Capacity (mAh) Tested Capacity (mAh) % difference mAh Tested Wattage Tested Output (volts) Tested Watt-Hours Weight (grams) Packability Rating
Anker MagGo Power Bank (10K) 10,000 6,209 62.09% 9.93 4.96 30.80 250 Good
Clutch Charger Pro 5,000 99.2 Incredible
Ugreen 5000mAh Magnetic Power Bank 5,000 3,193 63.86% 10.01 5.16 16.01 146 Good
NITECORE Carbo 10000 Power Bank 10,000 6,199 61.99% 10 5.01 31.04 157.1 Great
Satechi Quatro Wireless Power Bank 10,000 7,234 72.34% 9.86 4.91 35.52 269 Okay
VRURC 3 in 1 Magnetic Wireless Portable Charger 10,000 6,494 64.94% 10.3 5.18 33.64 222.26 Okay
Belkin BoostCharge Plus 10,000 6,369 63.69% 9.88 4.95 31.53 226.80 Okay
Rolling Square TAU 2 2,000 48.2 Great
ESR Wireless Power Bank (HaloLock) 10,000 6,708 67.08% 10.01 5.03 33.71 215 Good
NITECORE NB20000 20,000 13,595 67.98% 9.7 4.86 66.07 324.5 Okay
Tribit StormBox Micro 2 Portable Speaker 4,700 314.7 Good

By dividing the tested mAh by the advertised mAh, we could determine the percentage of capacity compared to what’s printed on the package. The average of all the battery banks was 65.50% with a standard deviation of 33.73%. When we speak about a battery bank out- or under-performing the average, that’s what we’re talking about!

Let's dive in before we lose you with our technical jargon!

1. Anker MagGo Power Bank (10K)
Anker MagGo Power Bank (10K)

The Anker MagGo Power Bank is a MagSafe-compatible portable charger that attaches to the back of your phone and charges your device without you needing to bring an extra cable. It has a 10,000 mAh capacity, which will give you between a full charge and two, depending on your device and how much you're using it while it's charging. One of our favorite features about this portable charger is the stand on the back, which turns your phone into an alarm clock on your bedside table. Well, it already was an alarm clock, but you know what we mean. The LED screen on the side is helpful for understanding how much charge you have left while on the go, as most chargers only have LED lights that slowly disappear as they lose charge, leaving you guessing exactly when you'll run out.

In our testing, this charter had 62.09% of the marketed 10,000 capacity, leaving us with 6,209 mAh to top up our phones almost twice—but not quite. While we've seen other battery banks of this size perform better, we think the added features make up for any lost charge.

Why We Like It
  • You can use it with MagSafe-compatible devices
  • The LED screen tells us exactly how much charge is left in the battery bank as it charges a phone
What You Should Know
  • It's pretty bulky in hand compared to other 10,000 mAh chargers, but it's a trade-off considering it attaches securely to your phone
  • We wish there were other capacity options in a similar size
See Details & Buying Options
2. Clutch Charger Pro
Clutch Charger Pro Review

The Clutch Charger Pro has been a Pack Hacker favorite since we first got our hands on it in 2023, and we've been using other versions of this battery bank from Clutch since 2021. With an advertised 5,000 mAh capacity, this is a step up from the older Clutch models that were a battery topper, not a full charge. Some larger phones still won't reach 100% with the Clutch Pro, but it does more than some competitors. Plus, it has MagSafe capabilities, so you can use your phone without worrying about where to put the charger. And, since the charging cable is attached, you don't have to bring a separate one. However, like other portable battery banks in the Clutch line, you only get one cable and can't swap it for another one. That means if you buy the Lightning version, you'll only be able to charge items with a Lightning port.

Similar to other battery banks with built-in charging cables, we were unable to test the bank using the multimeter and load tester. However, we've used this during days at the amusement park and other active trips where we're walking a lot but still using our phones a lot, and it's kept us topped up all day.

Why We Like It
  • It has an incredibly small footprint for a 5,000 mAh power bank
  • The cable is built in, so you don't need to bring a separate one
What You Should Know
  • You can only charge with the cable that comes attached, so choose wisely
  • The Pro version is slightly thicker than the originals, which means it's not quite credit card size; however, it's still one of the thinnest we've seen
See Full Review & Buying Options
3. Ugreen 5000mAh Magnetic Power Bank
Ugreen 5000mAh Magnetic Power Bank

The UGREEN 5000mAh Magnetic Power Bank is far from the portable charger with the highest capacity on this list; however, it still has redeeming qualities. It's small enough to fit in a pocket and still charges a phone roughly once over on a single charge, which is precisely as much as most users need. Plus, it comes at a budget-friendly price point, so you won't break the bank by adding it to your packing list. We also like that it's MagSafe compatible, and it feels incredibly secure on our phones; no amount of shaking made this thing fall off! If you want to use it to charge your watch or headphones, there's also a trickle charge mode that delivers the right amount of power to smaller devices.

However, it's worth noting that our testing nets this charger out to 3,193 actual mAh. While that's not enough to fully charge most smartphones, it's just below the average mAh difference at 63.86%. With that in mind, this is a great option if you want to top up your phone throughout the day but don't often need a full charge.

Why We Like It
  • It's budget-friendly without sacrificing durability or build quality
  • The MagSafe compatibility keeps it locked to your phone
What You Should Know
  • The tested capacity is slightly lower than average compared to other portable chargers we tested for this list
  • Some older iPhones are not MagSafe compatible
See Details & Buying Options
4. NITECORE Carbo 10000 Power Bank
NITECORE Carbo 10000 Power Bank Review

If you've followed Pack Hacker for a while, you've likely heard us talk about the NITECORE Carbo 10000. With its large capacity, lightweight design, and pocketable footprint, there isn't much to dislike about it. You can use the USB-A or USB-C port to charge your devices, and it'll fit anywhere, from your pants pocket to the interior of your smallest travel sling. It's very technical looking, which isn't a huge deal if you're not concerned with aesthetics; however, when it comes to lightweight, small, portable chargers, there aren't many better than this.

That said, it performed below average in terms of its tested capacity. It only reached 61.99% of the 10,000 mAh rating (6,199 for those of you who hate even simple math). That sounds bleak, but it's still enough to top up at least one phone (and maybe half of another), so we think it's still worth considering if weight is your biggest concern.

Why We Like It

  • It's incredibly lightweight and smaller than most 10,000 mAh battery banks we've seen
  • The carbon fiber has a great strength-to-weight ratio, so we have no concerns about durability
What You Should Know
  • It's more expensive than similar size battery banks due to the premium materials
  • We've noticed that the LED lights can bleed into each other, so we sometimes find it difficult to tell how much charge the bank has left
See Full Review & Buying Options
5. Satechi Quatro Wireless Power Bank
Satechi Quatro Wireless Power Bank Review

If you've been waiting for a device that will blow your socks off, it's finally arrived. If by socks you meant Apple Watch and AirPods, anyway! The Satechi Quatro has a spot to wirelessly charge your Apple Watch and AirPods at the same time; plus, you can connect your phone via the USB-C or USB-A ports to charge that simultaneously. However, we sometimes have trouble finding the exact spot our phones need to be in for the wireless charging to kick on. It's a little fiddly than we'd like, but not a dealbreaker.

At 10,000 mAh, its capacity is more than adequate for charging multiple devices at once. This is essential if you're looking for the best portable charger for devices within the Apple ecosystem. While this is one of the largest on this list, we think it's well worth the space considering all the things you can use it for (at the same time, too).

The Satechi Quatro also outperformed the other banks by a solid chunk, rating at 7,234 mAh according to our tests. That's 72.34% of the advertised mAh on the box. Compared to other battery banks in the same league, the Satechi did quite well. Paired with all those awesome features, like Apple Watch and AirPod charging, the Satechi is a force to be reckoned with in the portable charger world.

Why We Like It
  • You can charge your iPhone, Apple Watch, and AirPods simultaneously
  • The battery bank outperformed the average in terms of actual capacity
What You Should Know
  • The large footprint is less packable in comparison to other battery banks with this capacity
  • We sometimes have trouble finding the exact spot that our phone needs to be to activate the wireless charging
See Full Review & Buying Options
6. VRURC 3 in 1 Magnetic Wireless Portable Charger
VRURC 3 in 1 Magnetic Wireless

The VRURC Magnetic Wireless Charger is one of the best travel Apple Watch chargers we've come across. In a vacuum, you might think it's too large to earn that title; however, it can do things others can't. The Apple Watch charger pops up, so our testers with Solo Loop bands are able to rest their watch on the side instead of on its back. On top of that, there's wireless charging for your AirPods or phone (with MagSafe to keep it in place), and you can use one of the USB outputs to charge whatever device isn't resting on top. The other port is what you use to charge the battery bank, so if you leave everything plugged in overnight, you'll wake up as refreshed as your devices and ready to explore all day long. Best of all, it comes at a budget-friendly price point, making it one of the best portable chargers for those who don't want to spend an arm and a leg.

When it comes to tested capacity, it came out to 6,494 (64.94% of—you guessed it—10,000), which is a little under average compared to the other battery banks we tried. Between the budget price and almost exactly average performance, we think there are plenty of reasons to reach for this battery bank.

Why We Like It
  • The Apple Watch charger pops out, which is easier to manage
  • It’s incredibly budget-friendly
What You Should Know
  • It isn't the most durable-feeling portable charger that we've held
  • Sometimes, it's challenging to charge all your devices at once if there isn't much space to work with
See Details & Buying Options
7. Belkin BoostCharge Plus
Belkin BoostCharge Plus

The Belkin BoostCharge Plus combines many of the things we like from some of the best portable chargers for travel. In addition to having attached USB-C and Lightning cables, you can attach your own with the USB-C port on the backside of the charger. The 10,000 mAh capacity will get you close to two charges with most phones. However, it isn't the smallest battery bank on this list, so you'll need to ensure you have the space for it in your pack. It isn't the cheapest, either; however, the attached cables and the additional USB-C port are convenient, which may make this battery bank worth it for some travelers.

Though it's not by much, this battery bank does fall under the average tested mAh difference. In practice, you're left with 6,369 (63.69%) of the marketed 10,000 mAh, which we think is still more than enough to get you through a day or two—especially if you're not charging your devices from zero every time. Combined with the built-in charging cables, we think this option is more than worthy of consideration.

Why We Like It
  • It has attached USB-C and Lightning cables for quick charging
  • You can use the USB-C port as an input or output
What You Should Know
  • It isn't the smallest 10,000 mAh battery bank that we've seen
  • The price isn't very competitive for what the product offers
See Details & Buying Options
8. Rolling Square TAU 2
Rolling Square TAU 2 Review

If you're looking for one of the smallest portable chargers on the market, look no further than the Rolling Square TAU 2. It comes with a charger that you can mount to your wall at home, which we like because it makes it easy to keep the charger topped up whenever we're not using it, but it can also be repowered with the attached USB-C cable while you're traveling. It also has Lightning and Micro-USB, so between the three different ports, you're pretty much covered. The 2,000 mAh capacity is on the lower end, so it won't give your phone a full charge, but it works great for topping up during a long day of exploring. In our daily testing, this works well on a long bike ride around the city where your fitness tracking app will drain your battery, a day at the beach where you'll be listening to music all day, or a transit day when you won't have access to a plug at all times. In short, it comes in handy when you just need a little extra juice to get you by.

When it comes to actual performance, we weren't able to test this battery bank like the others on this list; something in the USB-C charger wouldn't trigger the load tester and multimeter. That said, we tested this battery bank for two weeks and found that it was enough to charge an iPhone 14 about halfway.

Why We Like It
  • It's small enough to fit on your keychain
  • You can recharge it without needing to bring an extra cable
What You Should Know
  • The capacity is smaller than many other portable chargers on the market, so its charging capabilities are limited
  • There's only one light that changes color to indicate how much charge is left, unlike others that have multiple lights that disappear as the battery drains
See Full Review & Buying Options
9. ESR Wireless Power Bank (HaloLock)
ESR Wireless Power Bank (HaloLock)

With a 10,000 mAh capacity, the ESR for MagSafe Battery Pack it'll charge most phones nearly twice. As the name states, it's a MagSafe portable charger that wirelessly charges your phone while it's attached, so you don't need to bring along a separate cable. That said, there's a USB-C port to charge devices that aren't MagSafe compatible or if you have a thick case on your phone. We've also seen this thing go on sale quite a few times, so it's great if you want a quality portable charger without paying top dollar. It packs enough punch to serve you on a trip across the city or globe. Spend the rest on gelato…or bus fare.

It's no slouch when it comes to performance, either. Its tested capacity comes in at 6,708 mAh, which is 67.08% of the rated 10,000. That means it's above average compared to others on this list, so it's a great option if you want the most capacity bang for your buck.

Why We Like It
  • It has a quality design without going over-the-top in price
  • Its actual capacity is above average compared to the others we tested
What You Should Know
  • There aren't many features that "wow" us compared to other battery banks with similar functionality
  • The MagSafe may not work with older phones or thick cases
See Details & Buying Options
10. NITECORE NB20000
NITECORE NB20000 Review

Have you ever wanted a behemoth-capacity portable charger that won't take up all the space in your tech pouch or travel sling? Look no further than the Nitecore NB20000. With a huge 20,000 mAh capacity and four ports for charging devices, this is a solution for travelers looking for a battery bank that's large in juice but not size. It'll fit into most slings and any sizeable tech pouch, and while it's pretty thick, we're also able to slide it into larger pants pockets (though we find it's a little hard if they're tight, so your mileage may vary). The USB-C port maxes out at 45-watt charging, which will work for most moderately-sized devices.

With a tested capacity of 13,595 mAh, this power bank is beefy enough that you can use of all those ports and be left with some capacity to spare. Though that tested number looks significantly lower than 20,000, it's still above the average mAh difference when compared to the other banks on this list. So, if you're backpacking in the woods or across Europe, the NB20000 will work for you. If you're constantly running down the battery on your phone and Nintendo Switch in transit, the NB20000 will work for you. If you have the tiniest pockets in the world, the NB20000 might not work for you, but you could still find a use for it anyway!

Why We Like It
  • It's the smallest 20,000 mAh battery bank we've seen to date
  • The price isn't awful for the capacity and port options
What You Should Know
  • It has a higher capacity than most people will ever need
  • The ports max out at 45 watts
See Full Review & Buying Options
11. Tribit StormBox Micro 2 Portable Speaker
Tribit Stormbox Micro 2 Portable Speaker Review

We're all about products that serve more than one purpose, and the Tribit StormBox Micro 2 is a prime example. It's a small travel speaker with solid sound quality that doubles as a portable charger in a pinch. At Pack Hacker, we aim to make traveling lighter and easier, and one of the best ways to do that is to combine gear when possible. In this case, combining a speaker and a power bank makes more sense than you might think. Overall, it has a 4,700 mAh capacity that's shared between the speaker and the battery bank. Essentially, you can listen to music and then use whatever's left in the battery to charge your phone if you run low on battery while streaming your favorite playlist. Just keep in mind that it's pretty easy to blow through that capacity if you're listening and charging simultaneously, so we recommend prioritizing what you need most (to jam or to text: that is the question). While we don't think that this should be used as a standalone battery bank, it's great for those who always travel with a speaker.

Unfortunately, we couldn't test this portable charger like the others. It continued to lose power with the multimeter hooked up, which is odd considering we have no issues charging an actual device with it. Still, we can vouch for its capacity and were able to charge an iPhone 13 with no problem.

Why We Like It
  • It's a speaker and battery bank in one
  • The capacity is pretty great considering it's doing two things at once
What You Should Know
  • You can quickly run out of juice if you're playing music and charging at the same time
  • It's not very small, so we don't recommend relying on this as your only power bank
See Full Review & Buying Options

So, there you have it: the best portable chargers for travel. Whether you need something to power an entire tech arsenal or just your phone, hopefully, you’ve found the one for you. Enjoy the trip and stay fully charged!

May 23, 2024

Pack Hacker