I’ve spent a bit more time reflecting on things that affected my computer choice and happiness. The trade-offs for me in addition to size were features. In order to save weight while extending battery life, I went with a model having an SSD drive and only a couple of USB ports, but a built-in SD card reader.
The prolonged battery life and SD card reader have proven to be valuable features for travel. Having only 2 USB ports has proven okay most times, but I find myself using a USB wall plug adapter more often than with prior laptops. That would be a consideration for international travel and charging things in addition to the laptop.
I popped for a 500GB drive because that was the biggest available at the time. It doesn’t take long to fill it with RAW files at busy shooting venues. Read between the lines and plan for portable drives and open USB ports to use them, a consideration if you’re using Lightroom for file management. The capacity of portable drives keeps going up as the price drops (I just picked up a 2TB from Costco for not much over $100), but at some point you end up carrying lots. I have 6 with me on this trip, the total weight approaching that of the laptop.
It might sound “minor” but also consider how you’ll carry the laptop along with your camera gear. Most of my camera bags have slots for laptops, but I find them terribly inconvenient for air travel or computer use in general. Pretty quick you have computer gear scattered all through your camera bag, and it’s always in the overhead bin when you need it. Now the laptop slots on my camera bags are lairs for paperwork, cords and small accessories while all things computer related live in a compact messenger bag which I keep in the space under the seat in front of me. Much more convenient for airplane use, but also for hotel rooms and cars.