This iPhone accessory was a lifesaver during my Disney vacation

Anker phone charger on iPhone 14
(Image credit: Future)

When you go on a vacation to Disney World, the only thing that drains faster than your bank account is the battery life of your smartphone.

Between taking hundreds of photos and using the Disney Park app — an essential tool for seeing which restaurants will appeal to a finicky 5-year-old, checking wait times on rides and getting reservations for the Lightning Lanes — my iPhone 14 Pro's battery was often hovering at around 40 percent by lunchtime. 

Knowing that my phone was nowhere near the top of our list for the best smartphone battery life, I knew I needed some sort of solution, and searching the Magic Kingdom for an open USB port wasn't one of them.

The solution I settled on was the Anker 621 wireless charger. It's a small battery pack that attaches magnetically to the back of the iPhone and charges it wirelessly. The charger was slim enough so that it fit comfortably in my pocket when connected to my phone, but had enough capacity — 5000 mAh — to keep my phone going long enough to shoot the nightly fireworks. 

The charger costs $60 (as of this writing, it's marked down to $40), and comes in five colors. On the bottom is a single USB-C port, a power button and four status lights indicating the charge remaining in the device. Its magnet was more than strong enough to stay stuck to my phone and its Casetify MagSafe-compatible case. My only real quibble is that the Anker 621 juts out just slightly below my iPhone. It isn't a dealbreaker, just a little annoying. 

Anker 5,000mAh Wireless Portable Charger: was $59 now $39 @ Amazon

Anker 5,000mAh Wireless Portable Charger: was $59 now $39 @ Amazon
This charger is compatible with the iPhone 15 series, as well as the iPhone 14/13/12 series. It measures 4.13 x 2.62 x 0.45 inches, weights 5 ounces, and comes with a 23.6-inch (60 cm) USB-C to USB-C cable, and is backed by a 24-month warranty.

My wife went with the bigger Anker 633, which is more than twice the size of the 621, but has a 10,000 mAh battery. Since she primarily carries her phone in her purse, fitting it and her phone into a pocket was less of a concern. The Anker 633 also has a built-in kickstand and a 18W USB-A port. Its 20W USB-C port works both ways, too — it's used to charge the battery, and can work in reverse to charge your phone faster than using its wireless pad.

Anker 10,000 mAh portable charger: was $79 now $51 @ Amazon

Anker 10,000 mAh portable charger: was $79 now $51 @ Amazon
This charger measures 4.21 x 2.62 x 0.71 inches and weighs 7.7 ounces, and comes with a 2-foot USB-C to USB-C charging cable. It's being replaced by the Anker MagGo Power Bank ($89 @ Amazon), which is a Qi2 Certified 15W charger with a smart display that shows the charge status of your device.

Our trip to Disney was wonderful, if exhausting. After schlepping a child and assorted baggage around four parks, waiting in countless lines, and rushing to make busses, planes, boats and monorails on time, I'm looking forward to doing very little this weekend. Given how dependent we were on using our phones to get the most out of our park experience, I was glad that the one thing I never had to worry about was my phone's battery ending before our trip did.

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Mike Prospero
U.S. Editor-in-Chief, Tom's Guide

Michael A. Prospero is the U.S. Editor-in-Chief for Tom’s Guide. He oversees all evergreen content and oversees the Homes, Smart Home, and Fitness/Wearables categories for the site. In his spare time, he also tests out the latest drones, electric scooters, and smart home gadgets, such as video doorbells. Before his tenure at Tom's Guide, he was the Reviews Editor for Laptop Magazine, a reporter at Fast Company, the Times of Trenton, and, many eons back, an intern at George magazine. He received his undergraduate degree from Boston College, where he worked on the campus newspaper The Heights, and then attended the Columbia University school of Journalism. When he’s not testing out the latest running watch, electric scooter, or skiing or training for a marathon, he’s probably using the latest sous vide machine, smoker, or pizza oven, to the delight — or chagrin — of his family.