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How to Protect Your Photography Gear when Travelling

Updated on February 3, 2013

Whether you’re on a business, casual or family trip, it’s always a great thing to be able to capture scenes and happenings with your own camera. You may carry a point and shoot, and/or you may take out a bigger ‘gun’ with the likes of a D-SLR. Photography gear is expensive, and that makes it all the more important to protect your investment -- not only from physical damage but from theft.

Although you can’t secure your photography gear 100%, you can still go along way in protecting them. In a number of instances of photography gear theft, the photographer was rather oblivious or just plain careless. It’s a horrible thing to go through, and it should be prevented as much as possible. Good news is that there are ways to prepare, and have a backup plan that in the event of theft, you haven’t lost everything.

Take Bare Essentials

Carrying a lot of gear can be hassling, and risky. It’s better to carry just the gear that you need. If you can, try and carry a general purpose lens that will suit a variety of situations. You may frown at the quality of general purpose lenses, but the point is that if you can limit the amount of stuff you carry and leave your super expensive bodies, lenses and bodies, you may be better off. Besides, a theif’s eyes may open and glitter when seeing the ‘gold’ of high-tech professional gear.

Use low profile Backpacks and Cases

Professional logos like Nikon and Canon scream that you’ve got expensive and valuable photography gear. A number of Photographers recommend carrying black cases/bags and even covering the logo with black tape. Some photographers may be so serious about this that they may remove the logo from their carrying cases/bags altogether! You may even consider getting special bags which are built to secure photography gear from a thief’s access such as the CamSafe and PacSafe models.

Keep Photography Gear on your Person

You may be used to leaving your photography bag near you without any care of the likelihood of theft. What may happen in your territory may certainly not be the same in another. Keep your photography gear extremely close to you. Walk with them everywhere. It’s known that thieves just take up bags as smooth as silk and without much detection because the owner was too careless.

Backup Media Files

Your photos and videos that you take on your trip may be extremely valuable to you. In some cases, those images may be qualitatively more valuable to you than the actual camera gear. So apart from the memory card, you need to have a backup system. You may transfer files to your laptop, netbook, external drive or even upload them to a storage site. Backup as often as you can to make sure that you have all your media files, that in the awful event that your stuff got stolen, you’ll still have your images.

With lots of money invested into your gear, it would be worth considering to insure them. Photography equipment is really expensive, and to protect your investment means that you have to strategize, be alert and probably even spend some extra dollars to make sure you don’t lose thousands of dollars. When in another territory, go low key, carry minimal equipment, keep your stuff on your person, and always backup your files.

Lowepro bags, cases and pouches have a low key appearance, secure equipment well, are comfortable and cost effective. They're well recommended by travel photographers.


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