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Pointers by Paul's Photo

Packing for Travel

I love to travel… most of us love to travel. Seeing the world, meeting interesting people and making awesome photos is so much fun. How do you pack efficiently to make travel fun and great photos possible, with a bag that doesn’t weigh a ton.

First: wear the right clothes to make airport security simple and travel efficient. I choose metal free clothes from top to bottom so you don’t have to “strip down” at airport security. My belt is plastic, and my shoes, shirts and pants are metal free so I can walk through the security screening. BOOM! The travels clothes I choose are sink washable and fast drying so I can wash clothes after dinner, hang them in the shower to dry, and wear them in the morning.  It may not be the most stylish but it sure is convenient, and keeps my suit case manageable.

Second: to carry my camera kit, the Think Tank StreetWalker backpacks have been my choice for over 15 years! The StreetWalker Pro v2 carries my 2 cameras and up to 4 lenses easily!  The bag is comfortable for walking and touring all day and is weather resistant for virtually any conditions. The StreetWalker has room for everything I need for the day including rain-coat, 2 spare batteries, spare memory cards, remote control cord, lens cleaning cloth, hex wrench, water bottle, pen, flashlight, business cards, note pad and a hiding spot for my passport and cash.

Third: I always bring my laptop when traveling to keep up with email and download photos and edit daily. A small laptop satchel or messenger bag may be the right answer. This is my “personal bag” for airline carry-on restrictions.

Finally: what camera gear do I carry? For most trips, that means NIKON Z8 (regarded by many as the best all-around mirrorless camera on the planet) plus my IR Converted Nikon Z8, enabling me to capture amazing color, black & white and infrared photos in daylight and night conditions. A versatile camera (like Nikon Z8, Canon R5 or Sony A1) makes scenic, people, street, detail, action photos possible.

On my camera 75-80% of the time is my “walkaround” lens!  Versatile for in town, on the street and in the country, that’s the NIKON 24-120mm 4 (or 24-105mm Sony and Canon) because of the extended range in a small, lightweight package. Another choice would be the 24-70mm 2.8 if the trip requited lots of low-light photography. You may choose a larger zoom range like 24-200 or 24-240 for more convenience, but you sacrifice low-light ability and image-quality.

A wide-angle lens is needed for temples, churches, museums and grand interior locations plus stunning scenery locations when traveling. The compact 14-30mm 4 is my favorite travel wide-angle lens. A 14-24mm 2.8 or 20mm 1.8 will be ideal if low-light interiors and landscape photography is your goal.

Telephoto lenses for travel are important to capture portraits, people, distant scenes and details.  A compact tele lens, like Nikon new 70-180mm 2.8 is a great way to save some weight without compromising capability.  70-200mm 4 is also a good compact telephoto choice.  You may need a full-sized lens like 100-400mm 5.6 or 70-200mm 2.8 to meet your needs and photo desires.

What are you packing? What pictures do you want to capture? How much can you carry? These are all important questions you need to answer long before your pack your bags. Your friends at PAUL’S PHOTO can help you put together the ideal travel kit to make your pictures possible, in a kit your can carry easlily.