Whether you’re taking a long weekend away with your family or headed on the honeymoon adventure of your dreams, you want to be equipped with the needed tools to make sure you and your loved one(s) are able to take amazing selfies at every. possible. opportunity. Kidding! (Kind of.) Over the years, rich and I have gotten really into photography, and now travel with a truckload (not actually, but close) of our favorite cameras, lenses and ancillary equipment. I get asked all the time about what cameras we use, what recommendations we have for travel photography, and what ideas we could offer on how to capture outstanding moments while on vacation. So after years of learning all kinds of terrific ideas and tricks, here are my top travel photography recommendations for making sure your trip is beautifully preserved for posterity and your instagram/snapchat game doesn’t miss a beat.
1 . DITCH IPHONE photos & BUY (OR RENT!) one of THESE CAMERAS
Especially for important trips like a honeymoon, you may want to venture beyond iphone photos and invest in something a little nicer to capture those once-in-a-lifetime moments. As mentioned, we’re really into photography, so we usually bring our Canon 5D mark III and our GoPro. If you’re not a photography freak, there are tons of terrific point-and-shoot cameras like this one which has outstanding capabilities, is incredibly easy to use, and connects directly to your phone. I’ve also heard terrific things about this cam and this camera. However, if getting a new cam for the trip isn’t in the cards, look into rental options. We’ve used BorrowLenses.com repeatedly to rent cam equipment for one-off projects or trips, and even rented a few special lenses from them for our honeymoon. You can rent everything from the simplest point-and-shoot cameras to high-end professional photography accessories like tripods, lenses, extra memory cards, and underwater cases.
2. UP YOUR iphone cam GAME
If you just can’t bear the thought of abandoning your iphone (or Droid, etc.) for a nicer camera, or you rely on your phone’s cam for instagram and snapchat (like me!), there are some tricks to making your phone photography the best it possibly can be. Smartphone lens attachments like this one or this one can really enhance the existing photo capabilities of your phone. Also, check out my favorite photo editing apps like Afterlight, VSCO, Snapseed, or if you’re a a lot more advanced photographer, Adobe Lightroom’s app.
3. BRING A SELFIE STICK (SERIOUSLY!)
Believe me, no one enjoys ridiculing selfie sticks a lot more than yours truly. However, I got one in a gift bag at a conference a couple years ago, and after jokingly deceiving around with it, I actually realized that there are some merits to the devices. [insert embarrassed emoji here] especially if you’re off exploring without lots of other people around to help snap photos, there are easy ways to hold the selfie stick from a side angle so that the embarrassing pole isn’t visible in the picture. No one has to know.
4. PURCHASE extra MEMORY CARDS (WITH special FEATURES)
Not only do I recommend bringing extra memory cards for your cam and/or GoPro in case you run out of space while you’re out exploring, but I also highly recommend getting one of these amazing EyeFi memory cards that connects wirelessly to your phone so you can take a terrific photo with your cam or GoPro, and quickly publish it to your phone for checking out and sharing. Some cameras have this phone connection capability built-in, but lots of do not. With the ability to check out the cam photos instantaneously on your phone, Eyefi memory cards make travel photography so much much easier and so much a lot more fun.
5. COME equipped WITH extra BATTERIES
If you spend all day kicking back on the beach, swimming, hiking and/or exploring, there will be few opportunities to plug in your cam battery. We bought extra batteries for our camera and GoPro so that we always have fully charged backups in our bag. GoPro batteries are especially notorious for dying quickly, so make sure you have a few extras charged if you’re using your GoPro a lot. And, don’t forget to recharge everything each night!
6. INVEST IN AN EXTERNAL CHARGER
In addition to extra batteries, we also always had a portable charger at the ready to refuel our other dying devices (phones and tablets that were used regularly for listening to music, reading on the beach, taking photos, and checking out EyeFi cam photos). I like a portable charger because they’re usually much a lot more powerful, but a lot of people love these charging phone cases which offer the extra juice and phone protection all in one unit. I also highly recommend this portable battery pack for a beach or otherwise-adventurous holiday because it’s waterproof and shockproof, so ifyou slam your backpack during a hike or get a little water splashed in your bag, it will be no problemo.
7. REMEMBER CONVERTERS (AND THE extension cord TRICK)
Going out of the country? Don’t forget a converter or adapter to charge everything! I highly recommend this universal travel adapter which I use whenever I travel internationally, no matter the destination. However, with lots of cameras, phones and other gadgets that need recharging every night, you either need to bring several adapters for each, OR bring a power strip! In the past, we’ve brought one power strip with a dedicated adapter so you can plug all your US-based gadgets into one station for charging overnight. More recently, we purchased this unit that’s an adapter and power strip all in one. It also has four USB outlets, so your phones and tablets are covered as well. This way, you don’t have to bring a million adapters for every single item that needs charging and if you’re staying in a room that doesn’t have a ton of outlets, you’re good to opt for just one or two.
8. BRING A CAMERA-FRIENDLY BACKPACK
If you’re planning on doing some hiking, a backpack is a terrific thing to bring so you can easily carry cameras, snacks, etc. when you’re out exploring. Since we usually travel with lots of cameras, lenses, and other tech accessories, we always bring our favorite ONA backpack that’s specifically created to house and secure cam equipment. We’ve brought it anywhere from hikes in the Seychelles, to game drives in South Africa, to daytrips exploring medieval castles in Portugal. Not only does it keep our cameras, lenses and equipment safe and easily packed, but it also has terrific pockets and compartments for other supplies, layers of clothing, you name it. Especially if you’re a photographer or aspiring photographer, I can’t recommend these bags highly enough! As an alternative, I’ve also heard fantastic things about these Copper River bags as well.
9. DON’T use A waterproof PHONE CASE!
After providing all of the camera accessories that you must bring above, I thought it would be valuable to mention one I would avoid: the soul-crushing “waterproof” phone case. If you’ve used a waterproof phone case that works reliably and didn’t flood your phone, more power to you. However, I know at least a dozen people who have gotten various “waterproof” phone cases to use on a beach vacation, just to find out once they’re far away from civilization and any Apple/Verizon/Whatever store that the case is not really fully absolutely 100% waterproof. After attempting to take some amazing underwater shots on day one, they are now cut off from the rest of the universe for the entirety of their trip. The up side of this situation is a great (forced) holiday from technology, but the downside is that you likely need your phone for traveling, logistics, safety, and supplying your paranoid mother with periodic updates that you’re alive. If you’re not Tom Hanks, the whole real-life Cast Away thing where you start growing a beard and losing tons of weight and calling inanimate objects Wilson just isn’t as cute. Don’t risk it, y’all. Better off investing in a GoPro (or renting one) and its iron-clad under water cases, than risking your phone. Remember, there’s really no way to know whether it works or not until you’re underwater. Soooo not worth the risk, in my opinion!
10. ENROLL IN AN international data plan OR rent A MIFI DEVICE
This one just applies to international vacations: Whether it’s to periodically check your work email, correspond with family and friends, instagram / snapchat like a mad-woman or use in case of emergency, don’t forget to set up for international data to be enabled on your phone during the trip. If that costs an arm and a leg, look into renting a portable MiFi device. Our phone plans are Verizon which has an amazing new(ish) travel plan called “Travel Pass” which is incredibly affordable, but we’ve also used mi-fi devices from Orange in Spain and a lot of recently MyWebspot in Portugal and Denmark (but it works all over Europe). Aside from social media and work, the greatest thing is making sure you have a connection to back up the photos and videos on your phone to iCloud or whatever storage you use. I had my phone stolen in Paris a couple years ago, and because I didn’t have a MiFi device or international data plan allowing my photos to be backed up, I lost two weeks worth of terrific photos. You want to make sure you’re able to connect to the Internet and back those puppies up as typically as possible!
11. use SNAPCHAT everyday and save YOUR stories EVERY NIGHT
During our a lot of recent trip to Europe, we used snapchat consistently everyday to paper little moments that we experienced throughout the trip. From terrific meals, to terrific views, to funny navigational issues we had in the car, to favorite scenes on the streets of quaint little towns, it was a terrific way, aby sme si mohli vyleteli a pamätať si na všetky „malé veci“, ktoré možno nezaručujú skutočný obrázok, ale sú zábavné obzrieť sa na to. Na konci každého dňa som uložil svoj príbeh Snapchat na môj iPhone (funkcia spomienok bola skutočne predstavená na polceste cez našu cestu!), Takže teraz mám príbeh o každom dni cesty, do ktorého sa dá ľahko navlhčiť spolu dlhší film výletu ako celku. Príťažlivosť Snapchat je v tom, že núti okamihy, ktoré sa majú zachytiť za desať alebo menej, takže na konci cesty nemusíte prechádzať cez hodiny a hodiny videozáznamu. Každý deň máme dve až päť minút snímok, ktoré nevyžadujú úpravy, a bude to také zábavné pozerať sa späť. Či už teda chcete zdieľať svoje cesty so svojimi miliónmi priateľov Snapchat, alebo ste v Snapchat úplne nový a nemáte jediného sledovateľa, platforma je úžasným nástrojom na zachovanie všetkých týchto špeciálnych spomienok.
Máte nejaké otázky alebo nápady na cestovné fotografie, ktoré mi chýbali? Zazvonenie nižšie v komentároch !! xx