In our age of digital planning and calendars, too many people have forgotten the simple delight (and surprising organizational capability) of the good old-fashioned paper planner.
Paper planners are beautiful, customizable, and help keep you organized, and they’re a pleasure to use – there’s just something comforting about sitting down, looking at a planner, and writing down future events, reminders, and other important information.
If you’re in the market for a new paper planner, we’re here to help. We’ve compiled a list of some of the best planners on the market, and added some advice about purchasing that’s sure to be helpful when you’re considering your next planner. Take a look below.
What to Consider When Buying Paper Planners
Not all paper planners are built alike. When selecting the best paper planner for your applications, there are several things to bear in mind.
Bindings can be a big factor in your decision.
- Hardcover and Softcover. Paper planners are generally either made of a stitched binding or glued pages, and while they are nice to hold and use, it’s usually not easy to cleanly remove pages, which can be a problem for some users, and the pages have a tendency not to lay flat in smaller planners.
- Wire Bindings. Are common for paper planners – these inexpensive bindings allow easy removal of pages, if desired, and the pages lie flat easily, which allows quick reference to written materials without a hassle.
- Disc Bindings. Are a relatively new sort of binding developed for daily and monthly planners. These mega-sized bindings are sort of like a combination between three-ring binders and wire bindings, and their generous size allows for easy insertion of papers if they’re hole punched, letting you customize and expand your planner as necessary.
Top 6 Paper Planners Chart
Considerations When Choosing
Beyond binding, there are some other factors that may affect your decision when choosing the best paper planner for your needs.
- Customizability. May also be a factor for you if you don’t enjoy rigid labels and restrictive planners with areas that are dedicated to certain functions.
Planners with higher customizability generally leave these areas blank, leaving you free to label them as you see fit, which is preferable to some planner users; however, planner users who enjoy a more rigid style of planning might find a planner with specific, labelled areas much easier to use – it’s a matter of preference.
- Motivational Quotes. Are often included in day planners – there are many planners built specifically to motivate users to reach their goals. If you enjoy that type of thing, these planners are wonderful – but if you’re not looking to be inspired by your planner every time you open it, you may want to steer clear.
Top 3 Best Paper Planner Reviews
This planner by Tools4Wisdom offers an awesome, goal-driven way of planning. Unlike some standard calendar planners that only include monthly and daily views with areas for notes, this planner is built with goals in mind – in front of each month, you’ll find an area where you can write down personal, professional, and other goals, along with a notes section to help you keep track of your growth.
Beyond its goal-planning structure, this is a well-made planner crafted from high-quality, thick paper. The daily planning sections offer large margins for plenty of additional extra notes, as well as spacious, unlined areas on specific days, so you can have total control over how and where you write your notes.
If you’re looking to not only plan your life, but have a great perspective on your personal and professional goals, this is a fantastic choice.
The DayMinder monthly planner is a much more traditional planner when compared to a product like the Tools4Wisdom planner, but that’s not a bad thing. This planner is available in hardcover, softcover stitched, and wire-bound versions, and the cover is made of a faux-leather material that feels great to the touch, while the paper itself made of a thick, 30% post-consumer waste material.
It’s fairly rigid in its implementation, with each two-page spread containing an entire month, and generously-proportioned lined squares on each day, giving you plenty of space to write down important tasks and events.
Thin, simple, and inexpensive, this is a great option for any traditionalist in need of a new daily planner.
This spacious, wire bound planner is made out of a faux-leather softcover material that feels premium and high-quality, and the paper is made of a bleed-resistant, 30% post-consumer material that’s easy-to-use with pens, highlighters, markers, and pencils alike.
The internal planner layout is fairly simple – each two-page layout contains an entire month of spacious, unlined days which give you plenty of room to jot down notes, reminders, events, and so on. In addition, the right-hand side contains a month-by-month overview of what’s coming up, letting you keep perspective as you go through adding dates and events.
Finally, the first few pages of this planner contain a “Year-at-a-glance” view which – while small – can be filled out with important events and dates to give you a quick look at what events are coming up in the near future.
This planner is a great choice for anyone looking for a quality, inexpensive unlined planner with plenty of extra features.