- The main advantage I see in the Traveler’s Notebook is its versatility. You can put a variety of notebooks in it and in any order. You can also start with any month and day. With the Hobonichi, the order is set and the calendars start in January.
- The size and shape of the Traveler’s Notebook appeals to many people. It is longer vertically than other notebooks, which makes it unusual and distinctive.
- The paper in the Traveler’s Notebooks is good quality, and now you can purchase Tomoe River paper in TN sizes.
- The basic Traveler’s Notebook covers come with no frills. If you want to add more than three notebooks, you have to buy extra elastics. There are no pockets in the covers.
- Although the notebook inserts are versatile, when you use the weekly and daily inserts, you need to be aware that only a few months are covered. So, you’ll have to buy at least two or more inserts to cover a full year.
- If you want pockets for peripherals, you’ll either need to buy a zippered insert or purchase a third-party Traveler’s Notebook cover.
So Which One?
Short answer: I still don’t know.
I thought I had decided on the Hobonichi Cousin at long last because I tend to prefer A5 notebooks. But I don’t like how big and thick it is. If I decide to go with the Cousin in the future, I will probably order the Cousin Avec which comes in two separate six month books that correspond roughly to my semesters at the university. That way, I can have the A5 size without the thickness.
As it turns out, I love the size of the Hobonichi Techo which I thought would be too small. It has all the planner pages I actually use, and I don’t really need the large page size of the Cousin. Essentially, all I write on my daily pages are my to dos and daily schedule. I tried using up the extra space in the Cousin by writing quotes and drawing pictures, but that lasted about a month last year. In my Cousin, most of the daily page remains blank, and I feel like I’m wasting space. In the Techo, I actually use the space provided.
I’m still torn between the two. Maybe I’ll find a use for both.
As much as I like being able to switch out notebooks and rearrange their order in the Traveler’s Notebook, I don’t like how thick it becomes once I’ve added all my notebooks. It won’t lie flat when open, so you wind up having to use bulky clips to keep it open. I prefer the Tomoe paper in the Hobonichi, and even though I can get Tomoe notebooks for the Traveler, they don’t come in all the configurations I like.
I’m also not fond of the plain Traveler’s Notebook covers with their stingy elastics requiring you to buy extra elastics if you want more than three notebooks.