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Travel Photography

A Travel Photographer’s Ultimate Packing Guide

Travel photographer Nicolas Jægergaard gives the ultimate guide to packing lightly and efficiently before embarking on photography trips!
Reading time: 4 minutes.

Table of Contents

Dive into the world of packing hacks and gain first hand personal tips from travel photographer Nicolas Jægergaard.

Create a shot list

A crucial first step before you start packing for a trip, is planning out the shots you are going to be taking. You will be able to save a lot of space on unnecessary items, if you have a clear plan of the shots you want to take and the equipment needed. 

  • Consider the appropriate camera and lens for the shot and maybe whether you will be needing extra equipment like a tripod or drone? 
This is one of the most important steps and also requires research into the locations you’ll be visiting to ensure that you don’t end up missing out on a shot! 
Travel Photography

I usually scroll through instagram locations to see which photos other people have taken in the area. I also get inspired by other photographers that have visited the area. 

Be prepared

I always try to bring as much as possible when I pack photography equipment for a trip abroad. And why is that you might ask?
  • If I go to a place where I know I will have a base such as a hotel, I can leave my equipment there. Then when I need to leave the house (hotel etc.) I can consider what is necessary to bring. 
Travel Photography

Re-pack daily

I prefer to have all my things laid out once I arrive, and then store them at the hotel while I pack a bag with the equipment needed for the specific day.

  • If I know it is a day full of hiking, I will make sure to pack accordingly. 

So If you are able to bring a lot of equipment and keep it in a hotel room, my best advice is to bring as much as possible and pack your bag daily according to the shots you plan to take!

Travel Photography

Bring an extra small bag

Always make sure to bring an extra small bag for additional equipment. If you are going by car, bringing a bag for extra equipment is no issue at all, but other means of transportation can make this a bit more difficult.

Lenses

As a travel photographer choice of lens for a trip is probably one of the hardest decisions. Is it worth it, to compromise and bring fewer lenses and risk missing the perfect shot? or should you just suck it up and bring the extra weight so that you can bring all you’ve got?

  • Whichever you choose just take into consideration the consequences. Will you be settling for a shot that is less than perfect due to your choice of lens? or Will your spirits and mood be affected by the additional strain of carrying around too much baggage? 

These also depend significantly on the type of trip and luggage scenario. If you’re traveling by car or have a hotel room where you can leave your extra equipment during the day, maybe the extra weight isn’t an issue. 

Weather

This is quite an important part of the packing stage. The temperature at the chosen destination will have a large impact on the kind of clothes you’re bringing. Patience and waiting are two things that often describe the process of catching the perfect shot, so if you’re visiting a place that’s cold, make sure to equip yourself accordingly. 

There’s nothing worse than the distraction of your chattering teeth when waiting patiently for a beautiful sunrise in the cold.

Pack Light

Packing light can be ideal to avoid carrying too much. I normally don’t think much about the weight, but more about whether there is space in my camera bag. I like to fill it to the rim with as much equipment as possible!

  • A little extra weight just gives the bonus of a little workout 😉 
Travel Photography

Bring a plastic bag

One trick that I have found to be advantageous more than once, is carrying a spare plastic bag with me. This may sound a bit random but actually it can end up coming in handy! 

  • I have used it to cover my equipment during sudden weather changes, but also as a cover on the ground for shots that require kneeling or sitting!
This is something so simple to carry with you, that can spare you dirty clothes and save you from sudden rainfall! 

The most useful travel accessories

It is up to you what will be the most useful accessories for you. However, after having been on my fair share of travel photographer trips I have definitely built a preference!

But what is in my bag pack?

If you are interested in what cool accessories i cannot live without when I’m out being a photographer, then watch this video below or then check out my youtube!

My specific travel equipment

If you’re interested in the specific equipment that i keep in my travel bag pack, and the equipment that i recommend, then check out my kit or account

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Natascha Kyster-Hansen
Marketing and content creator intern at Lentii with a passion for traveling. I have lived in Copenhagen, Paris, Manchester & Kuala Lumpur over the last 4 years and now live in Aarhus!
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