With an increasing number of people using digital SLR cameras there are more people wondering if they should take theirs traveling.
If you’ve decided to take your digital SLR camera you’ll probably be wondering how to handle it on the road.
Here are our basic safety tips for traveling with your DSLR:
1. Purchase a good camera carrying bag
Buy a good carrying bag for your equipment and make sure you are happy with it before going away. Find a bag that isn’t too “flash” in order not to attract too much attention, avoid big logos and bright colours.
For a number of years I’ve use a crumpler bag.
They are very well designed bags and add plenty of protection for your camera and lenses plus space for memory cards and the like.
I’ve have found the Crumpler Cupcake Bag has become a little too small for all my gear, but it’s perfect as a day bag for your camera.
I’ve been looking a DSLR Camera backpack that has a bit more space than the over the shoulder Crumpler Cupcake Bag.
I’ve found the Crumpler Easy Weasy Backpack a good option for anyone with a bit more photography gear to carry.
2. Use lens filters
If you are planning to travel off the beaten track it’s likely that you’re lens with have to cope with many different elements. Wind, rain, sand, salt water you name it. It’s a good idea to protect your lens with a filter to prevent unnecessary scratches and markings.
3. Consider using the camera lens hood
Some people avoid using them but as well as reducing contrast and creating flare they can be useful for avoiding knocks and bumps to the front of the lens as the hood takes the impact.
4. Be a savvy photographer and not a stupid one
Learn to know when it’s safe to have your DSLR camera “on show”. In some places you’ll travel to you’ll be able to sense when a place is not quite safe enough to allow you to have you DSLR camera on display for long periods of time. If you have to grab a key shot in this situation, take the shot then put your camera back out of sight again. This will help to avoid any unwanted attention from potential thieves.
5. Know when to take your DSLR camera
Make a decision on when to take your DSLR out with you. If there is bad light or you aren’t going somewhere that you want to take photos then leave it in a secure safe place at your hotel or hostel. Sometimes taking your camera out for the early morning light and the few hours before sunset will produce the better results due to the lighting.
6. Carry your camera and lens when in transit
When you are traveling from place to place you should carry your DSLR with you at all times to prevent it from being stolen. Treat this bag the same way as you’d treat your passport and you should have minimal problems.
7. Take a lens cleaning kit
Don’t forget to take a lens cleaning kit with you in order to clean any dust, marks or sand that may have got onto your lens. There’s nothing worse than having a grubby lens without any way to clean it. If you are going away for a lengthy period of time, consider packing a few kits.
8. Use the hotel/hostel safe
If you aren’t using your camera then make use of your rooms safe. If you haven’t got one then most hostels will have a secure place to leave it. As pointed out in tip number 5 – don’t take it with you if you don’t need to.
9. Get camera insurance
It sounds obvious but you should get insurance for your equipment if you are going traveling. This will give you some peace of mind if you photography equipment is damaged or stolen.
10. Use your common sense
Most measures to prevent getting your camera equipment stolen or damaged simply require a little common sense. Think about where you are taking it and what circumstances will be involved.
It can be a little scary taking your expensive DSLR camera traveling with you. With some camera insurance and common sense you should be able to relax without worrying about what could potentially happen to your beloved camera on the road.