Anyone travelling overseas may want to bring along some of their photographic equipment, and while this is a great idea, it is also advisable to really scrutinize this extra baggage to ensure it is all going to be necessary. Also, it is a good idea to consider the following as well:
• What do you “need” – Few photographers or travelers will require every lens, filter and item in their photographic equipment. Consider just how quickly you might ruin your trip with a sore neck, back and shoulder pain from the weight of a few extra bags of gear, or even worse an insurance claim on lost, stolen or damaged equipment. Think about your travels and pick the minimal equipment required – for example bring the basic body with only one or two lenses, and if the camera is point and shoot this is even easier to transport, a reliable flash, small tripod, extra batteries and memory cards all in a single case if possible.
• Consider the case – If you have costly camera equipment you might want to invest in solid and reliable carrying cases, for every day use as well as for long distance or international travel. Cases intended for camera equipment will have large pockets and padding placed to protect objects from damage or scratching, and may even have isolated areas for spare memory cards, batteries or even film.
• Don’t forget your memory – There is a wide range of light and portable digital photo storage devices available; ranging from the ever-popular iPod to media players intended to store vast numbers of digital images. Each has a unique manner for loading files from a camera or memory card, and if a laptop computer figures into such an equation it may be better to invest in an alternate device or more memory cards to avoid carting around the computer along with everything else.
• Checking in – Prior to arrival at the airport it is wise to investigate your airline’s carry on limitations. You really do not want to arrive for an international flight to discover that you are obliged to “check” thousands of dollars worth of equipment.
• Insurance – It is always a good idea to contact an insurance agent when traveling, especially if the traveler will be bringing expensive equipment along. Many travel agencies make special travel insurance policies available at the time of booking and it is a good idea to consider some coverage for cameras, computer and video equipment if these will be included in luggage for the trip.