Yes, a refractometer is quick, requires only a drop rather than a larger sample, and is therefore easier to use with hot wort. But in my personal experience a hydrometer combined with a glass thermometer is the most reliable combination, always giving you an accurate reading no matter what. They measure the GRAVITY of the wort or beer at any time.
A refractometer, on the other hand, gives you the optical refraction of the wort or beer at whatever temperature the instrument has (a drop of wort or beer assumes the temperature of the instrument very quickly). How refraction relates to gravity depends on a number of factors including the sugar profile.
I know several seasoned pros who use a refractometer only to quickly check for deviations from the norm (i.e. to make sure the batch is doing more or less what it should) but if they need certainty and accuracy they break out the glassware.
For the same reason I also never use electronic thermometers. They may drift off calibration and you'll never know it. I've yet to see a glass (mercury) thermometer do that.