The 13 Best Portable Travel Coffee Makers [2020]

Coffee Makers

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Whether you are looking for something to perk up your morning commute or want to sip a hot cup of joe on a mountain top in the middle of nowhere, a portable coffee maker is an absolute game-changer.

From single cup heaters to coffee makers you can share with friends, a portable coffee maker is a travel must-have for those who never want to miss a coffee fix, wherever they are headed.

Our Coffee Maker “Quick Picks”

Why Buy a Portable Coffee Maker?

Sure, you could nip into the nearest Starbucks (other coffee shops available) and grab a paper cup on the go. But being able to brew your own favorite hot beverage is far more satisfying and much more cost-effective.

Portable coffee makers are, among other things:

Convenient

An automatic coffee maker can brew up a cup at the touch of a button. Your morning cup can be just as tasty as it is at home, even on the road.

Affordable

Fancy lattes and other brews can be expensive. Nice for the occasional treat, but buying 1 every day can soon add up. Making your own will definitely save you money from the get-go.

Portable

Compact, discreet, and easy to take with you, a portable coffee maker can fit in your carry-on bag and be produced for a brew whenever you need.

Blendable to Suit Your Tastes

Once you get used to using your coffee maker, you will soon be brewing like a barista as you mix blends and flavors to create your own perfect cup.

The Different Types of Coffee Maker

Because not all coffee makers are the same, they offer varying ways to brew your coffee on the go.

The most common types of coffee maker include:

Pour-Over Coffee Makers

Possible the best option for longer journeys, pour-over coffee makers are compact and light as a feather. Carry just a few grams of your favorite blend and voilà — a perfect coffee on the go. The only downside to these types of coffee makers is that you may have to wait a few minutes for your brew.

French Press

French press coffee makers work by immersing all of the coffee in hot water to capture more of its natural flavor, resulting in a rich, strong cup of coffee. While the coffee may be better, the cleaning processes take longer, and some French press coffee makers are more portable than others.

Espresso Makers

If you like your coffee dark, a portable espresso maker will give you big flavors on the go. As the machine applies pressure to the beans, the maximum flavor and oils spill out, giving the same result as bigger coffee machines, but in a compact and completely portable format. These models are definitely the most expensive but will be a big hit with true coffee connoisseurs.

Things to Consider With a Travel Coffee Maker

When choosing your perfect portable coffee makers, consider the following:

Portability

One of the most important features of a portable coffee maker is that it needs to be “portable” — the clue is in the title. Some types of coffee makers are far larger and bulkier than others, so look for one that suits your needs.

Whichever type of coffee maker you favor, it needs to be easy to carry and not take up too much space. Otherwise, you may as well leave it back at home.

Hot Tip: Look for lightweight materials like silicone, and consider coffee makers that are complete and without the need for lots of other fancy accessories.

Durability

Traveling can take its toll on your possessions, and you need to make sure that you buy appliances and devices that will go the distance. Stay clear of delicate glass coffee makers and opt instead for reinforced materials such as plastic, silicone, or even aluminum for guaranteed durability.

Brewing Time

A portable coffee maker is almost pointless if you have to wait half of your journey time for it to brew. Choose appliances that take between 30 seconds to 5 minutes to brew, and you can enjoy speedy coffee on the go.

Ease of Cleaning

Dirty coffee is not good coffee. Consider where you are headed and how easy the coffee maker will be to clean when you get there. If you are hotel-based or have your own apartment, you can enjoy the luxuries of a hot tap and maybe even a dishwasher, but if you are camping in the middle of nowhere, you should choose a coffee maker that is easy to clean, with minimal components.

Volume

Coffee for 1? 2? Or maybe more than a few? The size of your coffee maker could determine how grumpy your fellow travelers will be in the morning. You can be the chief coffee maker for as many as you want, but remember that the larger the capacity of the appliance, the bigger and bulkier it is likely to be.

Power

Nearly every appliance or device you take with you will eventually need charging or require some form of power to make it work. Your portable coffee maker will be no different, but you need to be sure how you need to power it before you go.

Those that don’t run on elbow grease alone will run on electricity or batteries. To ensure your charging needs match your destination, read the instructions and reviews before you buy.

The Best Coffee Makers for Travel

There are many different types of portable coffee makers out there to choose from, all of which will brew you a great cup of coffee. Here are some of our favorites.

Espresso Makers

Big Tasting Coffee From a Tiny Device

Wacaco Minipresso GR, Portable Espresso Machine

Claiming to be one of the smallest and lightest handheld espresso machines on the market, the Wacaco Minipresso could be everything you need for your next big adventure.

Hand-operated and easy to use, the Minipresso uses a semi-automatic piston to allow small quantities of water to be injected into the coffee adapter. After a few pushes, the optimal extraction pressure is achieved, creating a wealth of rich and bold espresso flavors.

This impressive-looking bullet-shaped coffee maker comes with all the accessories you need to brew up a great single cup of coffee, as well as a travel case to keep it safe on the go. It is one of the more expensive models in this list, but its innovative design, sleek good looks, and impressive espresso-making capabilities make the price tag well worth it.

A Travel Mug for Coffee Enthusiasts

Espro Travel Coffee Press, Stainless Steel

Make 10 ounces of great-tasting coffee with this traditional travel mug style coffee maker. Super easy to use and carry with you, this travel-press creates awesome coffee in an instant.

The leak-free mug lets you enjoy your freshly brewed coffee wherever you may be, and the patented double micro-filter keeps your cup free of grit and sludge, allowing you to drink it upright to the last sip.

The insulated double-walled stainless steel construction will keep your brew hot for hours, and the filter press will keep your coffee from getting bitter. Durable build quality makes this an excellent choice for regular travelers and the BPA, BPS, and phthalate-free mugs will keep your coffee tasting completely authentic.

Perfect Espresso Wherever You Go

STARESSO Portable Espresso Machine

This swanky little coffee maker has everything you need to pour a cup of authentic tasting espresso. Measuring just 8 x 6 inches, this is an incredibly portable little device that weighs next to nothing and is super easy to use.

Compatible with both Nespresso pods and ground coffee, all you need is access to hot water to be brewing like a pro. Intuitive and straightforward to use, the patented pumping system means you can make espresso without the use of any electricity, just by using your elbow grease alone. Once you are done, the modular design makes it easy to clean and pack away the coffee maker until your next craving.

Made from high-quality BPA-free material, with a stainless steel pump and coffee chamber, the Staresso is an attractive, sophisticated, and easy to use portable espresso maker for serious coffee lovers.

The Original and Still One of the Best

Handpresso Wild Hybrid Espresso Machine

Designed in France and launched back in 2008, the Handpresso Pump claims to have been the first-ever portable espresso machine. With a unique mechanism that works a bit like a bicycle pump, the pressure builds to around 16-bar to produce creamy, rich, and flavorsome espresso, even on the road.

The Handpresso requires no electricity or batteries and is simply operated via the pump, making it incredibly portable. It is also one of the most lightweight and compact espresso makers on the market, and its durable construction should see it last through many adventures.

The ability to use both pre-ground coffee and ESE pods sets this coffee maker apart from many of its competitors, as it offers the user versatility on how to make their perfect brew. It is also easy to clean and pack away when not in use, making it a firm favorite with serious coffee lovers.

Pour-Over Coffee Makers

Affordable, Portable, Pour-Over Coffee Maker

Primula Brew Buddy Portable Pour Over

Create perfect coffee on the go with an easy personal brewing system that works in minutes. Unlike some of the larger portable coffee makers here, this little device is portable, slimline, and incredibly easy to take with you, meaning that you can make the perfect cup every time.

All you need is a cup and some hot water to create a perfect single cup of coffee. Simply place the Brew Buddy over your cup, add your own coffee, and sit back and brew before enjoying the rich, smooth taste.

Dishwasher safe at home or easy to rinse through on the road, this little gadget also eliminates the need for reusable paper filters, coffee pods, or K-Cups and there is no excess waste from paper filters or plastic pods — perfect!

An All-In-One Brew Method for Great Coffee on the Go

Coffee Gator Paperless Pour Over Coffee Maker

Popular with both baristas and regular coffee fans alike, this pour-over coffee maker gives you much more from your beans. Designed to make up to 10.5 ounces of coffee, this pour-over coffee dripper comes in a 100% BPA-free carafe and offers awesome coffee flavors on the go.

Offering an all-in-one brew method, this little beauty is just right for single-cup perfection. The detachable stainless steel filter adds body to the coffee and is much more eco-friendly and efficient than having to replace paper filters time and time again.

The compact dimensions make this small enough to be carried anywhere with ease, and the Coffee Gator company offers a satisfaction guarantee. Good looks and great brews from this cute looking, single-cup coffee maker.

A Quirky Little Gadget That Delivers Great Coffee

Kuissential SlickDrip – Collapsible Silicone Coffee Dripper

This quirky looking little gadget will give you truly excellent coffee on the go. Negating the need for bulky or expensive coffee machines or filters, you can brew up delicious flavors in minutes.

Made from high-grade silicone, this device is durable and completely portable. Unlike some other cheaper plastic coffee drippers, it will not absorb odors or leave a chemical taste in your brew.

To use the SlickDrip, simply place it over your mug, set the paper filter, add coffee and boiling water, and wait for the flavors to drip on through. Perfect for camping, commuting, at work, or at play, the unique collapsible design of this little coffee dripper makes it easy to clean and more practical to carry than glass or porcelain alternatives.

A Durable Coffee Maker for Every Kind of Adventure

Coffee Gator all-in-one Travel Coffee Maker and Thermal Cup

A personal pour-over brewer with a difference, this travel coffee maker features a stainless steel mesh filter to make your coffee taste great on the go.

Drip coffee directly into the cup and the vacuum-layered, military-grade 304 stainless steel coating with a smart copper lining will trap in the heat for longer. Perfect for long car rides and trips away, the cup has even been designed to fit nearly all car cup holders for awesome ease of use.

The metal filter sets this coffee maker apart from the competition, as well as being more environmentally friendly and cheaper to maintain. This 1-cup coffee maker uses a manual hand drip method to unlock the flavor of your brew. Measuring in at just 8.1 x 4.9 x 4.2 inches, this is a great choice for coffee lovers.

French Press

Share Great Coffee With Your Significant Other

AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker

Perfect for making 1-3 cups of coffee on your travels, the AeroPress promises to offer a fuller flavor brew than a traditional French press portable coffee maker. Complete with a press, funnel, scoop, stirrer, 350 micro-filters, and a filter holder, this impressive press measures in at 9.5 x 4 x 4 inches — just right for taking with you.

The super-fast brewing process promises a full-flavored cup of coffee that is free from bitterness or the acids that can be produced by some lesser appliances. The patented micro-filter helps to eliminate grit and makes this coffee maker super easy to clean in seconds.

Create espresso-style coffee on the go with this lightweight, portable, and compact coffee maker that is perfect for camping trips, days out, morning commutes, and so much more.

Unique Coffee Brewing From a World Leader

KOHIPRESS The Original Portable French Press Coffee Maker

As one of the best selling portable French press coffee makers, there must be something pretty special about this compact little compact coffee maker. Using its patented “Advanced Isolation Mechanism” and a fine mesh filter, coffee lovers can enjoy a rich, flavorsome cup of joe, where the grounds really have separated perfectly from the brew after pressing.

For travelers who appreciate both function and form, the sleek, cylindrical design is sure to impress, and the 3 minute brew time means even quicker coffee.

The insulated double-wall vacuum construction, along with the completely leak-proof design, will ensure that your coffee stays hot and tasty wherever you are headed — a really good quality coffee maker for real coffee-lovers.

Big Brand Beverages From Bodum

Bodum Travel Press

Made by the big brand coffee enthusiasts at Bodum, this travel coffee maker holds up to 15 ounces of coffee and is an impressive little addition to your travel kit. Designed for you to enjoy a single cup of French press coffee, you can guarantee plunger perfection every time and an excellent cup of joe.

Incredibly easy to use by just adding coarsely ground coffee and hot water, stir the contents, replace the lid with plunger up, and off you go. The silicone and mesh filter also helps to reduce sediment to produce a smoother brew.

Made from vacuum-sealed stainless steel with a double-wall design, your coffee will stay hot for longer, and the non-skid rubber base’s non-slip grip makes for perfect, spillproof coffee anywhere you go.

A Beautiful Italian Standard Both at Home and Away

Bialetti 06799 Express Moka Pot

Made from high quality, polished aluminum in the classic octagon shape, this is an iconic Italian coffee maker made by an iconic Italian brand. A real statement piece for your kitchen, you can also take this out and about with you.

Just large enough to hold 4.4 ounces of mocha coffee, this coffee maker is just right for 2. From start to finish, the Bialetti only takes 5 minutes to brew the perfect cup, so you and another coffee drinker can enjoy the very best in next to no time at all.

The distinctive 8-sided shape allows the heat to diffuse perfectly to enhance the aroma of your coffee, and the rich, aromatic flavor is as good as anything you will find in a coffee shop, all in the comfort of your own home.

Single-Serve Packs With Flavor

Presto 02835 MyJo Single Cup Coffee Maker

With its compact design, this single cup coffee maker offers many of the benefits of larger coffee makers in a perfectly portable package.

Using single-serve packs, the Presto MyJo offers a portable and affordable way to make great coffee using a K-Cup. By simply compressing the air inside the reservoir to push water through the pack, rich, smooth coffee will drip into your cup, ready to be enjoyed.

Easy to clean, you only need to rinse the base, while the single-serve packs can be disposed of and replaced by a new one when it’s time to brew again. The hot water reservoir is safe and easy to handle, and this type of coffee maker is a good choice for use in hotels and other bases where no coffee machine is present.

Final Thoughts

If you can’t getting going in the morning without your caffeine fix, a portable coffee maker could be your new best friend. Whether you choose a simple pour-over or a sophisticated espresso maker, the perfect portable beverage is yours for the making.

For smaller budgets, remote locations, and the most intrepid adventurers, invest in a pour-over with easy cleaning capabilities. If you can take your coffee maker home to a dishwasher, or want something that offers a superior brew to better your barista, a French press or espresso maker might be more your thing.

Looking for more travel products? Explore all of our best travel products reviews – all in one place. For coffee-junkies, also check out our travel coffee grinders guide to get that perfect cup of coffee on the go.


Frequently asked questions

Can I take a coffee maker in my carry-on?

Coffee makers and espresso makers can be packed in your carry-on. Just make sure that there is no liquid inside.

Can you use a coffee maker without electricity?

There are many portable coffee makers that do not require electricity or even batteries. For example, the STARESSO Portable Espresso Machine runs on elbow grease alone as does the Wacaco Minipresso.

What is the best travel coffee maker?

There are plenty of great lightweight, affordable, and portable coffee makers that are perfect for travel. Here are a few you should consider:

  • Wacaco Minipresso GR
  • Espro Travel Coffee Press
  • STARESSO Portable Espresso Machine
  • Handpresso Wild Hybrid Espresso Machine
  • Primula Brew Buddy Portable Pour Over
  • AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker
  • KOHIPRESS
  • Bodum Travel Press

Are there battery operated coffee makers?

Some portable coffee machines are battery-operated, but most have a built-in rechargeable battery. Other coffee machines are hand-operated.

How do you make coffee when traveling?

From single cup heaters to coffee makers you can share with friends, a portable coffee maker is a travel must-have. These range from a French press to an expresso machine and are usually simple to use by adding ground coffee or whole beans.

Amar Hussain

About Amar Hussain

Amar was born and raised in England, UK, embarked on an 11 country round the world gap year after graduation and then became well and truly hooked. The first gap year inspired a second which ended up being a 23 country down-the-world trip from Canada to Antarctica. Since then Amar has endeavored to turn his gap year into a ‘gap life’ and has spent the last 10 years traveling the 7 continents.

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1 comment

  1. Wonderful and very informative article. You have collected most of the famous Travel Coffee Makers that can be found in the market. I really enjoyed your article and am waiting for more in the future. Thanks for sharing such an informative article.

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