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Best Travel CPAP MachinesWhat Are Travel CPAP MachinesHow to Travel with a CPAP MachineTips for Air Trips with a CPAP MachineTips for Road Trips, Camping or Outdoor Activities with a CPAP machine
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Best Travel CPAP Machines of 2024

Jan 09, 2024
· 10 mins read

When you have been diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), daily APAP or CPAP therapy is essential (in the majority of cases). However, many patients don’t know how to continue their CPAP therapy when they need to travel out of the city or country for a short period of time. 

Best Travel CPAP Machines

So, now that you are aware of travel CPAP devices and their benefits, it's time to take a look at some options you can choose from. Check out some of the best travel CPAP machines for 2024 below.

1. ResMed AirMini AutoSet Travel CPAP Machine

The ResMed AirMini AutoSet Travel CPAP Machine is the most popular travel CPAP machine these days, it is perfect for people who don't want their sleep apnea therapy restricting their ability to travel. This device is tiny but packed with numerous features to ensure you can have a comfortable sleep everywhere.
 

It is equipped with the HumidX and HumidX Plus Heat Moisture Exchangers (HME) Humidifiers, which allow you to have a comfortable sleep without waking up with feelings of dryness in the mouth or throat.
 

The best part is that you don't need to carry water for humidification purposes—this compact and portable CPAP machine is designed with a waterless humidification system. The innovative technology captures heat and moisture when you exhale and subsequently releases it to ensure you have a comfortable sleep therapy all night. 
 

Designed with ActiveAir technology, this small CPAP device ensures more efficiency without any added bulk or extra noise. Therefore, you can have your sleep therapy session without worrying about the noise causing any disturbance to your fellow travelers.

You also gain access to the free AirMini App with this device. Compatible with both iOS or Android devices, the app enables you to keep track of the progress of your treatment with utmost ease. Moreover, you can also set or adjust the comfort settings for your device through the app.


Last but not least, it comes with a travel-friendly bag, making it easy to carry with you everywhere. The small or travel size and high efficiency ensure that you do not have to miss on a night of therapy ever again.


This machine is definitely the best option for those who are looking for a high quality and efficient device, want high portability or those who don't want to compromise on their comfort. 

2. Somnetics Transcend Micro Auto CPAP Machine

The Somnetics Transcend Micro Auto CPAP Machine is the tiniest and most compact device out of all the travel CPAP machines, it is small enough to fit in your purse and light enough to be carried effortlessly, no matter whether you are going on a short camping trip or a long vacation. Moreover, it's packed with a number of efficient features that are sure to enhance your comfort levels during your sleep therapy.


This device comes with the GentleRise technology, which delivers a lower air pressure initially during your therapy session to help you fall asleep. The air pressure then rises gradually until it reaches the prescribed levels. And the best part is that you have full control over the ramp time—you can choose to adjust or disable it as and when needed.


In addition, the AirRelief function aids in making it easier for you to breathe by lowering the air pressure during exhalation.

The machine is very convenient to use—it is compatible with almost any CPAP mask, so you don't need to buy a separate one just for your travels.


You can connect it with a power source when you are at home or in a hotel, or choose to run it on a portable battery in case you are camping or don't have a power source nearby. 


It is also designed with a convenient drying mode that can eliminate all signs of moisture from your mask and tubing easily. All you need to do is to activate the drying cycle after you wake up in the morning, and you’ll be welcomed by a dry mask during the next therapy session.


This machine is definitely the best option for those who are looking for a small and lightweight option, want multiple comfort features (portable battery and drying cycle) or for those who want a machine that's compatible with most CPAP masks. 

3. Z2 Travel CPAP Machine

The Z2 Travel CPAP Machine includes most of the advanced features and functions you would find in a regular CPAP machine, despite being only a fraction of the size and weight of the previous one. Compact and easy to carry, the entire machine easily fits into one hand and won't take up too much space in your luggage. It also has a portable charger (powershell), making it possible to charge your Z2 and use it at the same time through its battery


The machine automatically starts your therapy session once you wear your mask and breathe into it, and stops the airflow once you take it off or it detects a leak. This tiny device is also designed to automatically compensate for minor mask leakage caused by any movement while you are asleep. But, in case there is a major leak, the device instantly issues an alert to inform you


The Z-Breathe comfort feature is included to ensure a comfortable therapy session for you. You can adjust the settings to reduce the air pressure by up to three points when you exhale, thereby making it easier for you to breathe. Moreover, its upgraded motor ensures that the machine does its work silently without causing any disturbance to you or anyone around you.


You don't need to carry around a bottle of distilled water anymore while you travel. This mini CPAP device is fitted with a Heat Moisture Exchange unit that stores and reuses the moisture from your breath to ensure total comfort throughout the night.


In addition, you can also keep track of your progress through the Nitelog app. Compatible with both iOS and Android. You can use the app to view your data and share it with your doctor when required.


This machine is the best option for those who are looking for a lightweight and easy-to-carry device, prefer a silent performance, or those who want a machine with waterless humidification. 

What Are Travel CPAP Machines

Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) machines are the most common and effective sleep apnea treatment. This medical equipment contains a motor and a filter that turns room air into pressurized air and delivers it through a mask into your nose, or your nose and mouth (face mask) while you sleep, to help keep your airway open. Basically, CPAP supplies pressurized air to your air ducts to avoid collapse.

Travel CPAP machines are just like any standard CPAP medical device, only smaller and lighter. These are designed to make it easier for patients to put it in your carry-on their therapy anywhere and are often small enough to fit in the palm of your hand.


But their small or travel size doesn't mean that they are in any way inferior to standard CPAP devices: the results are exactly the same.


Since many travel CPAP machines are new in the market, they are equipped with a range of advanced features but at a considerably lower price range. So, if you are someone who loves traveling, but you’re feeling restricted by your sleep therapy sessions, all you need is a travel CPAP device!

cpap machine travel woman

How to Travel with a CPAP Machine

Whether you’re driving, flying, or hiking, traveling with your portable CPAP machine takes a little extra preparation, especially due to the fact that these devices utilize a lot of equipment that isn’t always easy to pack. 


If you need a travel bag for your CPAP machine and its supplies, Sleeplay has the best types, especially made for these specific models. No matter which model you have, there are stylish options for both the AirMini and Transcend Micro models.


We recommend carefully inspecting your small CPAP machine, mask, tubing, power cord and any extra accessories (such as a backup power supply) two full weeks in advance of your trip, so if something does not look good you will have enough time to replace it. 


If you are not sure what you should bring, keep this checklist at hand:

  • Extra mask cushions (there is always the small chance of mask cushions tearing or getting lost during travel) 
  • Extension cords 
  • Connectors 
  • Cleaning supplies for your mask and tubing 
  • You can add a converter or adapter just in case you are traveling to another country that does not use the US standard 120V. Some machines are dual voltage and having a converter is not a real requirement.

Tips for Air Trips with a CPAP Machine

Now, a few travel tips for when you are flying: 

Take Your CPAP Machine as Carry-On

You can bring your mini CPAP machine on the plane as a carry-on. It is a medical equipment, so it does not count toward your carry-on limit. If you check on the back or bottom of your CPAP machine, you will see it labeled as a medical device.


Pack your micro CPAP in its own travel bag, and save the space in your carry-on bag for other personal items.  


You’ll need to take your CPAP machine out of its carry case to go through the security checkpoints  (X-ray scanner), but you can leave it in a clear plastic bag. If you forget to bring a bag, you can request one from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agent.

You can also label your carry bag with a “medical device” identification luggage tag for airport security. Sometimes, a TSA agent may want to perform an explosive residue test (a small white swab is run over the machine and then analyzed for trace amounts of explosives) on your device, so they will ask you to take out the equipment from the carry-on bag.

air travel cpap machine

Bring a Copy of Your Prescription

Even if you’ll almost certainly never need to, if you have to order new parts or supplies for your machine during your trip, it is mandatory to have a receipt from a sleep medicine doctor. In addition to a copy of your prescription, it’s a good idea to print a copy of your manufacturer’s FAA compliance notification.


We encourage you to get a Medical Device ID Tag for air travel. Most TSA agents will recognize healthcare equipment, but a medical ID tag can make the process move along faster. These tags are an inexpensive way to quickly separate your small CPAP from other electronic devices.

Always bring a backup CPAP Battery

An extra CPAP battery isn’t necessary most of the time, but if you’re traveling somewhere where there’s uncertainty about the stability or availability of electricity, you’ll still be able to maintain your therapy off the grid with an extra battery pack. 

Carefully Pack Your Portable CPAP Machine

Make sure that if your CPAP carry-on bag falls down it won’t get broken. Sadly, airport employees are usually not very careful due to the huge amount of people and luggage they process every day. 

Inform Aircraft Personnel that You Have a CPAP Machine

Due to security statutes, you have to report that you are taking a medical device with you, and the airport has all the right to ensure that you are telling the truth. However, the protocol can be a bit different according to the airline policies. 


For example, if you are going to travel with United Airlines you must inform them at least 48 hours before the flight. In the case of American Airlines, on the other hand, you don’t have to mention it with anticipation. 


If it is a long flight, and you need to use your machine, depending on the policies you can plug it during the flight, or you will need to bring your own FAA-approved batteries. 

Tips for Road Trips, Camping or Outdoor Activities with a CPAP machine

Pack Your CPAP Equipment Properly

Most newer CPAP machines come with a fabric travel case with padded compartments to protect them and keep all the accessories organized, which will make it an easier experience. You should have no problem fitting your machine, power supply, and mask in your travel bag, although it may be a tight fit if you use a full-face mask. 


If you have an older machine, your carry bag may not have compartments, so you would have to place your mask and tubing on top of your machine inside the bag. If you prefer each item to have its own place, you’ll want to look into upgrading your carry bag. 

Check Your Pressure Settings

Most CPAP machines have a pressure range of 4 cm H2O to 20 cm H2O. Be sure your machine is working properly before taking it to an outdoor space where you will not be able to fix it or buy a new one. 

Keep Your CPAP Equipment Clean

You’ll want to thoroughly clean your equipment immediately before packing it. Make sure that your equipment is totally dry to prevent mold and mildew from growing in your mask, tubing, or humidifier. 

Bring Extra Supplies

Depending on how long the trip or outdoor activity lasts, you can include many of the previously mentioned items like the mask cushions and cleaning supplies, but you should definitely include an extra battery pack.


Definitely CPAP therapy has to be continued during the entire trip, you may find yourself tempted to skip your CPAP therapy while on the road for a night, two, or even an entire week. But even just one night without CPAP therapy can be enough to bring back awful symptoms like fatigue, headache, irritability and excessive daytime sleepiness. Why take the risk of ruining your vacation or business trip?

Even if carrying around a standard CPAP device isn’t  a convenient option, it is possible while your machine is approved by the FAA to travel in case you are taking a flight. But Travel CPAP machines are designed for those who travel frequently and doing the entire process with a conventional machine repeatedly gets annoying. 


Having a specific travel machine can make things easier at airports and during the stay in a hotel or camping.  


In summary, you can find the perfect CPAP machine to accompany you on your journeys. Don't let sleep apnea disrupt your travel plans, visit Sleeplay today and start enjoying restful nights wherever you go.

Gabriela Alvarado

Medically reviewed: Gabriela Alvarado

Medical Doctor from the Central University of Venezuela. She holds certifications in Public Health Practice from institutions such as Johns Hopkins University (USA) and Imperial College London (UK).

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