Last weekend I went camping and, without doubt, the portable charger was definitely a key piece of kit. However, remembering to bring one of these with you is a challenge, so this – the TravelCard – can sit in your wallet or purse ready for you to use when you’re running low on juice.
Available right now from TravelCardCharger.com, it’s $29.99 and we’ve got the USB-C and Lightning version here on test.
Out of the box and, let’s be honest here, it’s not going to be as thin as a regular debit or credit card. You’ve got to have a bit of thickness to get the battery in, but 5mm is thin enough, that’s for sure, and it only weighs 59 grams.
Another thing you need to be aware of is, with the thickness and dimensions, you’re not going to get dozens of recharges from this. It’s a 1500mAh battery, so most phones will charge about half-way from flat. I’m being honest – it’s an emergency charger that you can use when you’re on 1% and you quickly need a boost.
The cards measure in at 92mm x 60.3mm and will fit in most wallets quite nicely. On one side is a standard USB plug – this sits snugly into the unit and pops out so that you can charge it from a standard phone wall charger or any USB port you have free (in a TV, laptop and so on). On the other end, a USB-C port or Lightning port. They also sell a microUSB version and, no matter which one you get, you can charge the portable TravelCard while you charge your phone. As I don’t have a cable in my car, I tended to use this as a cable / charger by plugging it into the USB port in my car, then plugging my phone in. I can drive around charging both the phone and the TravelCard Charger at the same time.
The TravelCard arrives with around an 80% charge and takes just over an hour to charge from flat. You can tell when it’s fully charged because the blue indicator on the side goes out. You then simply plug in a phone and then press the small button on the side to initiate the charge. If that light goes orange then you know it’s time to recharge the card.
Don’t worry about hitting that button whilst it’s in your wallet – it will automatically stop any output if nothing is being charged.
I tell you, I really liked this. It’s well designed and you can pop the cables out easily (but not too easily). You can’t currently get this from a UK store, but you can buy it from TravelCardCharger.com and have it shipped.