5 Universal Tips for Photo Traveling Around the World
This post is also available in: Español (Spanish)
The sun is bright above the Zenith. Your camera is ready to capture some amazing Photos. Before photo traveling, make sure you read these 5 easy recommendations
Photo traveling is one of the greatest adventures a photographer can take. Here are some universal 5 tips to make your experience a success.
- Weather Matters
Doesn’t matter where you’re travelling to. Chances are, the weather is different from where you are from ( and even if it’s similar, a photo tour might require you to be exposed to the elements a lot more that you might be used to).
It’s a good idea to carry solar protection at all times as well as wind and rain cover.
Remember, that keeping you warm and dry is half of the equation. Safeguarding your equipment should also be a top priority.
I always carry a lens dust blower and a micro smooth cloth just in case I need to clean up my lenses from dirt and dust.
- Protecting your Gear is not a Cheap Thrill
Exposing thousands of dollars of gear to the elements, without proper protection, is not a very smart idea. Get yourself a sturdy backpack. Make sure everything fits well and comfortably for traveling and, most importantly, make sure that when you open your case your camera body and lenses don’t get loose and unprotected.
Investing in a Good Photo Backpack will Pay off by Itself Over Time
Unfortunately for me, in my previous excursion at Photo Tour South America I had a 19mm Sigma lens E-Mount that got damaged while I was opening my messenger photo bag (I’m still waiting it from the repair shop). You should always be extremely careful while opening your bag!
- Harvest the Power
Many countries around the world have alternative electrical currents. In the United States, when the fierce battle between Nicola Tesla and Thomas Eddison took place, Edison resulted victorious after travelling the country with his spectacular demonstration of Tesla’s ‘deadly’ 220 volt current. He would electrocute several animals as to demonstrate why his 110 volts alternative was the most secure answer.
Despite their controversy, many countries around the world have adopted the 220 current due to its efficiency along distances.
Nowadays, most modern electronic devices are designed for both systems, although you should check yours before departure. Yet, one of the most important electrical factors you would face has to do with the socket itself. Research what type of socket adapter you might need. They vary in shape and plug immensely around the world.
- Legality on the Go
Going abroad is not enough. Look up if the country you’re going to has any visa requirements. This is an important one, since without the proper paperwork, you can be stopped from boarding your international flight.
Get your Papers Straight
When I traveled to China, the visa application had to be done by a special service since you are required to apply in person. There are no consulates that could accept my tourist application locally, so there was no other way. You can usually obtain this information by contacting the embassy of your country of destiny, or by looking at their presence online. They usually have it spelled out very clearly for foreign travel requirements.
- Money Matters
This is true not only while embarking on a photo adventure, but on every type of travel you set up to do. Money exchange might be cumbersome at certain latitudes. Obtaining foreign currency before traveling might prove to be difficult since not many banks have those services. I do know that American Express has that type of service for international travel. For a small fee, they will provide you with the foreign currency of your choice and mail it to your prefer address. This of course would not provide you with the best exchange rate ever, but at least will allow you to travel with some disposable cash from the get-go.
In my personal opinion, you’re better off by exchanging your currency at your destination.
Either the hotel or the money exchange houses in the tourist areas should provide you with better options… and for the rest, there’s always plastic!
Get a Credit Card Without International Transaction Fees.
I can’t recommend you to do this enough! You stop worrying about the problem of transporting large sums of cash. A international card without exchange rate restrictions will free you from this burden, but remember, be conscious about what you spend…. You will eventually have to pay it back at your return!
Photo traveling is a fantastic thing. Capturing photos at a new latitude is a unique opportunity to enrich your talents while providing a new perspective to your understanding of another culture and its environment.