10 Best Travel Guitars in 2022

Dave Mostert
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If you’re traveling by plane anytime soon, you’ll want to pack a travel guitar to keep you entertained. It’s a great travel companion. Liven up even the longest trip with a little music.

When you’re looking for a good travel guitar, you want to avoid guitars with a big neck, thick body, and large sound hole. You’ll also want a more compact body as you’ve got to fit it into your suitcase!

The smaller the instrument, the better, but it’s also important to choose a great sound.

So where does that leave you?

Well, latest offerings in the travel guitar market are smaller and more compact.

Here’s my list of the top 10 best travel guitars to consider buying in 2022.

NameCategoryProduct
Martin Steel String Backpacker Travel GuitarBest OverallMartin Steel String Backpacker Travel Guitar
Martin LXK2 Little Martin Koa Pattern HPL TopBudget PickMartin LXK2 Little Martin Koa Pattern HPL Top
Traveler Guitar EG1C BLK V2 Custom Electric Travel GuitarUpgrade PickTraveler Guitar EG1C BLK V2 Custom Electric Travel Guitar

1. Martin Steel String Backpacker Travel Guitar

Our rating: 9 / 10

Martin Steel String Backpacker Travel Guitar

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Pros:

  • Extremely lightweight
  • Easy to tune – even without a tuning tool
  • Versatile – you can play country, blue grass, folk, rock & roll, blues, and more
  • Great value

Cons:

  • Some users would have preferred an acoustic guitar that was completely 100% steel
  • Sound may be tinny for some users

The Martin Steel String Backpacker Travel Guitar is a great way to rock your tunes on the go. This travel guitar features a solid steel neck and is portable, yet powerful enough for performing in small to medium-sized rooms. It’s the ideal guitar to take with you on any trip, vacation, or excursion you know you’re going to enjoy.

This travel guitar provides you with the opportunity to learn about music and play along with your friends or family members. You’ll be able to find that this guitar is a great way to transition from an acoustic guitar to an electric one. Once you’ve learned a few chords and strumming patterns, you’ll be able to pick up the electric guitar like a pro.

2. Cordoba Mini M

Our rating: 8 / 10

Cordoba Mini M

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Pros:

  • Gorgeous craftsmanship
  • Great action
  • Made from durable materials
  • Great for economy travelers
  • Great overall value for money
  • Cover is a nice bonus

Cons:

  • Not the highest quality materials
  • Small body usually comes with some balance issues

Available with nylon or steel strings, the Mini M is one of the smallest, most portable guitars available. This is not the best choice for a pro or experienced player. However, for someone who is just starting out, this makes a great first guitar.

The nylon strings give a clear, bright sound that a lot of beginning students prefer. They are also less likely to damage the room if the student decides to take up the instrument at home. For beginners, the action is exceptionally low and incredibly manageable. It’s also extremely lightweight, so it’s perfect for taking along with you on extended trips.

If you’re a beginner or an experienced student who wants a more portable option, this is the ultimate travel guitar. The tuning is perfect and it’s a sweet little piece of kit. The quality is not exceptional but it performs the way it’s supposed to, and for the price point, it’s a good buy.

3. Taylor BT2 Baby Taylor Acoustic Guitar

Our rating: 7 / 10

Taylor BT2 Baby Taylor Acoustic Guitar

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Pros:

  • Great for beginners of all ages
  • Super lightweight, making it easy to carry
  • Ideal for travel!

Cons:

  • Some say its mid-range sound could be better
  • Short cut-away is seen by some as a drawback

The Baby Taylor is a full-sized guitar that just happens to small. It provides an excellent tonal quality and impressive playability – all while being a practical travel-friendly size.

The Baby Taylor is a full-sized guitar (23.5 inches long) that just happens to small. It provides an excellent tonal quality and impressive playability – all while being a practical travel-friendly size. You can even strap it in your backpack!

The Baby Taylor has a slightly shorter cut-away width than a standard full-sized Dreadnought, which is the reason many players really enjoy the Taylor BT2. It really is a perfect fit and weight for traveling. Even though you are limited on the length of the neck, with the Taylor BT2, you can still easily perform physical movements without getting at all cramped.

4. Martin LXK2 Little Martin Koa Pattern HPL Top

Our rating: 7 / 10

Martin LXK2 Little Martin Koa Pattern HPL Top

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Pros:

  • Portable and light – Weight: 3.9 pounds
  • Folded length: 14 inches
  • Volume and tone controls
  • Easy-to-read instructions for the controls
  • Designed with spruce top and koa back and sides
  • Unique sound
  • Complete with a superior padded gig bag and a pick

Cons:

  • It’s very expensive for a small guitar
  • Has no strap pegs
  • Cannot be taken apart for easy shipping

Martin has introduced a range of small guitars designed for travel and they are some of the best travel guitars to take with you for when you’re on the go. The Martin LXK2 Little Martin Koa Pattern HPL Top guitar is a lovely little guitar that produces a very unique sound – one that you’re probably not used to hearing from guitars.

It’s a scaled down guitar, but features a spruce top and koa back and sides. In fact, it has a distinctly Hawaiian sound — which is perfect if you’re planning on traveling to a tropical destination or are planning to perform at a Hawaiian-themed event. It comes in several solid or semi-transparent finishes.

5. Martin LX1 Little Martin Acoustic Guitar

Our rating: 7 / 10

Martin LX1 Little Martin Acoustic Guitar

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6. Taylor BT1 Walnut w/Gig Bag

Our rating: 6 / 10

Taylor BT1 Walnut w/Gig Bag

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Pros:

  • Works well for a variety of styles
  • Great depth and resonance
  • Built of solid tonewoods
  • Lightweight, but still feels solid in your hands
  • Feels more like a full size guitar
  • Solid tuners
  • Bigger sound than a travel guitar should have
  • East to play with no buzzing or dead spots
  • Solid gig bag
  • Free lifetime set up with purchase

Cons:

  • Nut width is too narrow for most people’s hands
  • Pricey for the size
  • Lack of electronics
  • Some wild overtones
  • Not good for hollow body fans

Taylor Guitars has a couple of well made and sized pick-up guitars that are nice traveling companions, but their BT-1 is a stunner. While it’s not exactly a travel guitar, it comes very close to being one, while retaining the fullness and richness of a full sized Taylor.

7. Traveler Guitar EG1C BLK V2 Custom Electric Travel Guitar

Our rating: 6 / 10

Traveler Guitar EG1C BLK V2 Custom Electric Travel Guitar

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Pros:

  • This is a great entry-level travel guitar
  • With great sound
  • Easy to set up, and tune

Cons:

  • Height adjustment is a little difficult
  • No onboard tuners
  • The input jack feels cheap

Waiting for a flight and want to entertain your fellow passengers? This travel guitar from Traveler is a great choice, and it’s budget friendly too.

Coming in at just 4 lbs. and 15” x 4” x 2.75”, this little guitar folds up easily and fits into the carrying bag included with the package. Plus, the guitar fits even into the smallest of spaces. For the price you’re paying, you’ll be happy with the sound quality as well.

While it’s great for traveling, it’s too small for use as an all-the-time guitar.

8. Traveler Guitar Mark III MK3 MHG Acoustic-Electric Guitar

Our rating: 6 / 10

Traveler Guitar Mark III MK3 MHG Acoustic-Electric Guitar

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Pros:

  • It is much lighter than the previous models, making it more portable
  • You can select from different designs and colors to customize your instrument
  • Sturdy construction and top-quality materials
  • Hard case included for storage and travel

Cons:

  • Slightly pricey
  • Tight neck joint
  • Muted volume

Unlike its other models, Traveler Guitar’s Mark III MK3 is much lighter. This was made possible by getting rid of the mahogany top for a spruce top that’s also much thinner. It’s also only about 3lb 1oz, which is a huge difference from the original 25lb models.

The instrument can still go up to par with Traveler Guitar’s other models, which is why this guitar is perfect for traveling musicians. It also has a sleek design and can be made to match your style and preference. For instance, you can choose a body style (parlour, dreadnought, stage) and an optional top wood (gloss, semi-gloss, satin-gloss, spruce).

The other things to take note of is that it is fully functional, and the materials are of high-quality. It’s got a hard case included, and it comes with a chord, too.

9. Luna Safari Series Muse Mahogany 3/4-Size Travel Acoustic Guitar

Our rating: 5 / 10

Luna Safari Series Muse Mahogany 3/4-Size Travel Acoustic Guitar

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Pros:

  • Great customer service
  • Electronics are included
  • Has a lifetime period warranty
  • Space-saving design for travelers
  • Has a solid spruce top
  • Designed to be both playable and durable
  • It is small enough to fit in the overhead compartment of an airplane or in the trunk of a car.
  • Has incredible resonance
  • It has clear notes and nice projection
  • It has a professional look that resembles the acoustic guitars that are far more expensive.

Cons:

  • The strings are not included
  • Doesn’t come with the strap that is shown in the pictures
  • Has a pretty plain looking dark-brown wooden finish
  • The tuner that is included doesn’t work as well as it should

Luna guitars has manufactured a back pack that is ideal for people who are serious about music. This is a product that has been well designed to make playing the guitar more enjoyable. It has a solid spruce top and a back that is made from mahogany. It is cheaper than other comparable guitars that you will find on the market.

This guitar will give you hours of entertainment. It is faithful to the electric guitars that you are probably already familiar with. This is great for beginners because of the easy price.

10. Fender CT-140SE Acoustic-Electric Guitar

Our rating: 5 / 10

Fender CT-140SE Acoustic-Electric Guitar

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Pros:

  • Excellent value for the price
  • Plays well
  • Top notch built quality
  • Lightweight and compact
  • Great for beginners

Cons:

  • Strings are a bit tough to tune
  • Not great for palm-muting, but you can use a small rubber/piece of suede or felt to dampen the vibration.

The Fender CT-140SE is a great choice for people who want a compact travel guitar or for those that frequently travel. It’s built with precision and quality that outdoes its predecessor, the CT-90. The CT-140SE is a smaller, more compact design that’s easy to carry around.

We like how the CT-140SE has a built-in pickup system that can really help less experienced players and those who need help with their intonation.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Are travel guitars good?

Travel guitars are a bit of a hard sell. They represent the do-it-all concept. Given their size and design, they are not quite a full size acoustic guitar. It's surely too much to call them a high-quality electric guitar.

Whether they are really a good option for a musicianʼs journey is a question that depends on the purpose of travel. For a musician on a long trip, a travel guitar can be a good companion. A full size guitar would be a bit troublesome to carry with, while getting a high-quality electric travel guitar is likely too much for the same purpose.

If the musician is just going to play with his small group of friends, a travel guitar would surely be a great consideration that does not cost much; the traveler would need to understand that the acoustic might not be as good as a full size one.

Are travel guitars easier to play?

Travel guitars have been designed with comfort and convenience in mind. The neck is wider and shallow with fewer frets than a traditional full size guitar. This makes it easier to hold, barring, and playing in general. Some travel guitars even have a strumming bar so you can strum and pick like a traditional acoustic guitar.

Speaking of accessibility, the best travel guitars are usually either smaller in size or have been built with lighter materials. This makes them much easier to cart around town.If you are going to be traveling with your instrument frequently, you'll probably want one that you can take on a plane. This will allow you to save a bit on luggage fees when going to performing gigs on the road as well!

What size is travel guitar?

There are many models in all shapes and sizes available, but they can be categorized as either 22 inches or under, or 22 to 23 inches. The best travel guitar usually falls under the later category.

If that seems too big for you, check out the 18 inch Taylor pocket travel guitar.

The Carvin Travel Acoustic is a full-size acoustic guitar that is still small enough to travel with. It is available in five different colors, and you can even customize the sound with an under saddle transducer. The only thing that would keep us away from this guitar is the price, but this guitar is perfection for someone who is looking for top of the line.

If you are looking for a cheaper option but don't want to end up with a poor alternative, then the Rogue RA-090 Dreadnought is an excellent choice.

What is the best 3/4 guitar?

The perfect travel guitar should have a smaller, comfortable body for easy playing. Smaller guitars are going to be lighter and easier to travel with. The small size makes them more compact and easy to store. Many lightweight and smaller guitars will fold into a compact size to make traveling with them easy.

Choose a guitar which is constructed of light material. Don't go for heavy wood, but rather choose thin, light, and comfortable guitar.

The strings should also be durable to practice and play a lot.

Add a better binding and a better tuner. You might also consider guitar with built-in amplifier for easy amplification.

Conclusion

If you are looking for the best travel guitar, you have come to the right place. We have thoroughly tested a wide selection of travel guitars and found that certain guitar brands are better for travel than others. We hope that this article will help you find the best guitar for your own travel needs.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
Martin Steel String Backpacker Travel GuitarBest OverallMartin Steel String Backpacker Travel Guitar
Martin LXK2 Little Martin Koa Pattern HPL TopBudget PickMartin LXK2 Little Martin Koa Pattern HPL Top
Traveler Guitar EG1C BLK V2 Custom Electric Travel GuitarUpgrade PickTraveler Guitar EG1C BLK V2 Custom Electric Travel Guitar