best travel guitar

The Best Travel Guitar Recommendations for 2021 for Newbies

A guitar is a gorgeous instrument that is a mix of sophisticated and folksy. To make things easier for traveling musicians, guitar craftsmen have come up with the travel guitars – a class of guitars that are compact and easy to travel with. If you want to buy the best travel guitar for yourself or a loved one, then this is the best place to start. We have compiled the best guitars available online in 2021, along with reviews and an expert buying guide as well.

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The Best Travel Guitar for 2021 Review: Key Features, Pros, and Cons

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the number of choices online, don’t worry! To make things easier for the novice musician, we have compiled a list of the 10 best travel guitar models that you can find online. Go through this list and find the guitar that calls out to you!

ImageBrandMaterials UsedWeightType of GuitarDetails
BEST OVERALL
TaylorSitka Spruce, Sapele, & Ebony Neck Wood8 lbsAcoustic and ElectricCheck price
PREMIUM PICK
LAVA Carbon Fiber, HPL, & Phosphor Bronze3.7 lbsAcoustic and ElectricCheck price
BEST VALUE
Johnson GuitarsSpruce3.94 lbsAcousticCheck price
Fender Mahogany & Walnut14.77 lbsAcoustic and ElectricCheck price
CordobaMahogany, Spruce, & Rosewood1.31 lbsAcousticCheck price
Tanglewood Mahogany, Spruce & Rosewood5.29 lbsAcousticCheck price
C. F. Martin & Co.Sitka Spruce, Black Birch HPL, Micarta & Richlite4 lbsAcousticCheck price
LAVA AirSonic Carbon Fiber, HPL, & Phosphor Bronze5 lbsElectricCheck price
MartinSpruce, Mahogany, Hardwood, & Bronze5.29 lbsAcousticCheck price
WashburnSpruce, Mahogany, & Rosetek4.66 lbs4.66 lbsCheck price

1. Taylor Swift Signature Baby Taylor Acoustic-Electric Travel Guitar

BEST OVERALL
Highlighted Features
  • Body made of solid sitka spruce and sapele
  • Fingerboard made of African ebony neck wood
  • Dreadnought and ¾ scale cutaway
  • 6 strings and 19 frets

We love the Baby Taylor travel guitar, and we think it is the most melodious and best travel guitar that you can find online. The craftsmanship of the guitar is exquisite, the back and sides of the instrument is made of solid sitka and sapele spruce wood. The fingerboard is made of African ebony neck wood. The entire guitar is covered in an attractive matte finish also. With 19 frets, the Baby Taylor is a great starter for budding musicians.

Pros
  • The sitka spruce and sapele body lends a clear and powerful tone to the instrument.
  • The craftsmanship of the guitar is beyond reproach.
  • The ¾ scale guitar is perfect for young guitarists.
Cons
  • Like all Taylor products, this guitar is costly.

2. LAVA ME 2 Electric-Acoustic Carbon Fiber Travel Guitar

PREMIUM PICK
Highlighted Features
  • Body made of carbon fiber composite & HPL
  • L2 pickup with percussion effect
  • Phosphor Bronze Elixir Nanoweb Strings

Weighing only 3.7 lbs, the LAVA ME 2 is one of the lightest travel guitars available. The entire guitar is made of carbon fiber composites called ‘Airsonic’ & ‘Super Airsonic’. No matter what kind of environment you are in, you’ll be able to give a wonderful performance with this instrument. The guitar comes with FreeBoost, which uses the rear surface of the instrument as its speaker. I was also very impressed with the transparent case it comes in.

Pros
  • The FreeBoost technology lets you play in public without using an amplifier.
  • The carbon fiber material is extremely light, melodious, and durable.
  • This unibody guitar comes in a cool clear case as well.
Cons
  • The short-scale length of the guitar can be a little irritating.

3. Johnson JG-TR3 Trailblazer Acoustic Travel Guitar

BEST VALUE
Highlighted Features
  • Body made of spruce wood
  • Fretboard is equipped with 21 frets
  • Scale length of 24-¾ inches
  • 6 strings and slim profile

If you’re wondering what is the best travel acoustic guitar, then the Johnson JG-TR3 trailblazer is definitely the right answer. This acoustic machine is made of spruce and weighs only 3.94 lbs. It is capable of delivering a very clear and melodious sound with the slightest coaxing. I was also very impressed with the fact that it comes with 21 frets, which makes it easy to play the high notes. The slim design is also something that I liked.

Pros
  • This is a lightweight travel guitar that is just perfect for travelling musicians.
  • It comes with an adjustable truss rod helpful for the high notes.
  • The slim and petite construction of the Johnson JG-TR3 Trailblazer is very pretty.
Cons
  • The Johnson JG-TR3 Trailblazer guitar isn’t very loud.

4. Fender CD-60S Dreadnought Acoustic & Electric Travel Guitar with Mahogany Top – Most Beautiful And Stylish

Highlighted Features
  • Mahogany body and walnut fretboard
  • Fretboard is equipped with 20 frets
  • Dreadnought travel guitar
  • X bracing for extra resonances

This is actually one of the most beautiful and exquisite guitars that we have ever seen. Crafted out of mahogany, the Fender CD-60S is a beautiful dreadnought instrument that is tough enough to be a reliable traveling guitar. The fretboard is made of walnut wood and provides players with a decent fingerboard radius of 12”. The guitar comes with 20 frets, making it great for all kinds of melodies. This guitar is perfect for public performances too.

Pros
  • This is one of the most beautiful guitars that you can find.
  • The mahogany exterior is resonant, rich, and of very high sound quality.
  • The walnut fretboard is fitted with an X-shaped brace, which provides better sound and resonance.
Cons
  • The tuner it comes with isn’t a Fender.

5. Cordoba Mini M – Travel Guitar with Mahogany Body – Most Compact

Highlighted Features
  • Mahogany back and sides & a spruce top
  • Rosewood fretboard with 18 frets
  • Compact and small
  • Matte finish

Weighing a little over a pound, the Cordoba Mini M doesn’t really seem like much. But, a rainbow of melodies appears the moment you strum the strings of the instrument. This gorgeous travel guitar has a spruce top, a mahogany back, mahogany sides, and a rosewood fretboard. It has a rich sound and is the perfect choice for the nomadic musician. The nylon strings are Aquila. This compact little thing can even fit in the carry-on case of an airplane.

Pros
  • We love how the Cordoba Mini M fits into an airplane carry-on case.
  • Despite being small and compact, the guitar has an impressively loud and vibrant voice.
  • It is the ideal travel guitar – owing to its small size.
Cons
  • The Aquila high A string has a tendency to snap.

6. Tanglewood TW2TS Spruce Top & Mahogany Travel Guitar Bundle – Best for Beginners

Highlighted Features
  • Mahogany back and sides & a spruce top
  • Rosewood fretboard with 20 frets
  • Comes with a gig bag, a tuner & picksy
  • Compact

If you’re a beginner at playing the guitar, then the right instrument can make a large difference in the quality of your music. The Tanglewood TW2TS is the best travel guitar set that we have seen in a very long time. First of all, it comes in a bundle that has a gig bag, a tuner, a strap, plectrums, and a polishing cloth. It also comes with an instructional DVD that would no doubt be very valuable for beginners.

Pros
  • The bundle of goodies it comes with makes it perfect for beginners.
  • The mahogany body and sides give the Tanglewood TW2TS a rich sound.
  • The pack comes with extra strings as well.
Cons
  • Some of the frets are uneven and need to be smoothed out.

7. C.F. Martin – Little Martin LX Acoustic Travel Guitar – Best for Professionals

Highlighted Features
  • Sitka spruce and black birch HPL body
  • Richlite and micarta fretboard
  • Powerful sound

This is a compact travel guitar and is the best answer to the question “What is the best travel guitar for professionals?” The Little Martin LX has a black birch HPL and sitka spruce body that lends the guitar a rich and uncompromising tune. When it comes to tone and versatility, there is no substitute for the Little Martin. If you’re a professional looking for a travel guitar for the road, this model is the most obvious choice.

Pros
  • The sonorous melody of the Little Martin LX makes it the best professional travel guitar.
  • The craftsmanship of this guitar is exquisite and unmatched.
  • The quality of the black birch HPL is very good.
Cons
  • It is difficult to play if you have large hands.

8. LAVA ME PRO 41” Travel Guitar with FreeBoost – Best for Rockstars

Highlighted Features
  • AirSonic Carbon Fiber and HPL
  • L2 PRO FreeBoost technology with Turbo Mode
  • In-Built Preamp for Powerful Stage Performances
  • Plek fret accuracy

We are a huge fan of futuristic guitars, and the LAVA brand has been our constant favorite for a very long time. The LAVA ME PRO is one of the most beautiful and aesthetic travel guitars that we have ever seen. Specifically designed for stage performances, this is the most powerful instrument that I’ve seen. The FreeBoost technology, built-in preamp, and the AirSonic body make it a beast of a guitar. It comes with a Turbo mode as well.

Pros
  • The Turbo Mode of the LAVA ME PRO boosts your playing volume by 50%.
  • Its AirSonic carbon fiber body is lightweight, resonant, and futuristic.
  • The fretboard is compatible for Plek process adjustments as well.
Cons
  • The carbon fiber material can be slippery to deal with.

9. Martin – Steel String Backpacker Travel Guitar – Best for Travel Enthusiasts

Highlighted Features
  • Unique design with spruce body
  • 24-inch scale for proper versatility
  • Comes with sonorous Martin steel strings
  • 15 frets on tonewood fretboard

This uniquely designed travel guitar is a lovely instrument. We think that you will fall in love with its unique melody once you get used to it. The contour neck shape of this guitar and the spruce body gives it a very beautiful melody. It is a steel-string guitar, which means that it sounds a little more metallic and acoustic than other guitars. You’ll lose some volume owing to the shape of the instrument, but it’s a very worthwhile buy.

Pros
  • The sound of this travel guitar is unique, folksy, and versatile.
  • The Martin Steel String Backpacker is a unique guitar for the nomadic musician.
  • This ambidextrous guitar is ideal for left and right-handed musicians.
Cons
  • The guitar’s spruce body warps if the weather is humid.

10. Washburn RO10 STBLK-A Rover Spruce Top Acoustic Travel Guitar – Best for Hipsters

Highlighted Features
  • Spruce and mahogany construction
  • 18 frets, 6 steel strings and ABS rosette
  • Unique design with translucent blue colouring
  • Comes with chromatic tuner, gig bag, and strap

This is a beautiful and unique-looking guitar with mahogany sides and back, a spruce top, and a rose fretboard. The translucent blue color of the guitar is gorgeous and is ideal for hipster musicians who want to stand out from the crowd. The fretboard comes equipped with 6 steel strings, an ABS rosette, and an offset dot fingerboard inlay. We think that this is a gorgeous travel guitar that’s ideal for both novice and experienced musicians.

Pros
  • The Washburn Rover is perfect for beginners and experts.
  • It has a built-in truss rod for easy adjustment and customization.
  • The chromatic tuner can be used to set the guitar up perfectly.
Cons
  • The steel strings are difficult to tune.
best travel guitar

Buying Guide

If you’re new to buying guitars and musical instruments online, then you’re going to need some pointers. Thankfully, our in-depth and comprehensive buying guide has got you covered. Here’s a list of all the things you need to keep in mind if you want to buy the best travel guitar.

Kind of Guitar

What kind of guitar are you looking for? Are you wondering what is the best travel acoustic guitar or electric guitar? The kind of guitar that you’re looking for will play a very important role while you are shopping. If you are just thinking of an acoustic guitar, the Fender CD-60S is a really great choice.

Type of String

The type of string also plays a big role, since it will affect the quality and type of sound that it produces. Nylon strings are widespread, but it’s a good idea to explore different kinds of strings as well. For example, Martin travel guitars come with steel strings. All LAVA guitars have in-built phosphor bronze strings.

Material of the Guitar

Travel Guitars are traditionally light, compact, and easy to carry around from place to place. We would recommend you to pick a material that is durable, lightweight, and resistant to changes in weather. Mahogany, spruce, and sitka spruce are some of the best wood choices for guitars. LAVA guitars are made entirely of carbon fiber.

Manage Your Expectations

Try to remember that a travel guitar is not a proper full-size guitar. These instruments are designed to be much smaller than a traditional guitar. As a result of this, travel guitars usually have a weaker sound as well. However, the guitars that we have listed here manage to provide a powerful sound, despite their size.

Purpose of Your Playing

Lastly, you need to think about the purpose of your playing. Are you buying a guitar for on-stage performances or for personal use? If you’re thinking of a personal use guitar, then the Cordoba Mini M and the Little Martin guitars are the best choices. For on-stage performances, I think the LAVA guitars are perfect.

Frequently Asked Questions

 Q: What is the best travel guitar?

In our opinion, the Taylor Swift Signature Baby Taylor, the Fender CD-60S, the Little Martin and the Cordoba Mini M are the best travel guitars that you can buy online. Despite their compact size, they’ll provide you with a rich, evocative, and mature sound.

Q: Are travel guitars actually worth it?

Yes, travel guitars are a really worthwhile purchase. When you think about what is the best travel guitar, you should remember that these instruments are inexpensive, well-crafted and melodious. If you want a musical companion while you’re traveling, these are a very good investment.

Q: What is the difference between a travel guitar and a regular guitar?

A travel guitar is much more compact than a regular guitar is. In fact, guitars like the Cordoba Mini M and the Tanglewood TW2TS are small enough to fit in airplane carry-on cases. They are also much tougher.

Q: Is the LAVA ME 2 worth it?

Yes, the LAVA ME 2 is a worthwhile purchase. It combines the best of acoustic and electric guitars, and offers musicians the chance to try out the carbon fiber technology as well. If you’re a professional, consider investing in a LAVA travel guitar.

Conclusion

This is basically everything that you need to know before you start to shop for the best travel guitar online. We hope that you’ve found our recommendations useful and we would also like to recommend you to do your own research before you make a purchase. Go through the buying guide and some expert reviews before making an investment. Lastly, we hope that the guitar you buy gives you a lot of joy and sunshine.

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