Photographer tips for traveling with valuables

Photographer tips for traveling with valuables

Traveling can be a wonderful adventure, but it can also be stressful when it comes to keeping your valuables safe. Whether you’re a professional photographer or just an amateur with a camera, it’s important to keep your camera gear and other valuables secure while on the go. So, here are some tips to help you keep your valuables safe while traveling.

Choose the right bag for your needs

Choose the right bag

The first step to keeping your camera gear safe is choosing the right bag. A good camera bag should have compartments for your camera, lenses and accessories, as well as some extra space for other items you may need while traveling. Look for a bag that is durable, weather-resistant, and has a lockable zipper or other security features. Make sure it is comfortable to carry and preferably doesn’t have easy access on the outside for pickpockets. If traveling overseas consider a GPS tracker for not only your luggage but also your camera bag. A great investment for some peace of mind. We bought a Tracki and it works with a mobile App (some trackers have subscriptions).

Use a padlock

A padlock is an easy and effective way to keep your bag secure. Most camera bags have a loop or other attachment point where you can attach a padlock to keep the zipper closed. If your bag doesn’t have a loop, you can always use a cable lock or similar device to secure it to a fixed object. If you’re worried about carrying keys get one with a code.

Keep valuables out of sight

When you’re traveling, it’s best to keep your valuables out of sight as much as possible. This means not leaving your camera bag or other valuables unattended in public places. If you’re staying in a hotel or hostel, use the in-room safe to store your valuables when you’re not using them. If traveling by car, try to keep your valuables as hidden as possible if you have to leave them in the car. This includes suitcases.

Always keep your camera with you
Always keep your camera with you

Carry your camera gear with you

One of the best ways to keep your camera gear safe is to carry it with you at all times. This means not checking it with your luggage when flying or leaving it in the trunk of your car when driving. Instead, carry your camera bag with you as a carry-on item or keep it somewhere safe when driving, not on the seat next to you. As someone could reach in through an open window and take it if stopped in traffic etc. We usually keep gear on the floor behind our seats. This stops it from being thrown around and makes it harder to snatch and grab.

A good wrist strap can be handy
A good wrist strap can be handy

Use a good camera strap

A camera strap is an essential accessory for any photographer, but it’s also a good way to keep your camera secure while traveling. A strap that attaches to both the camera body and the strap lugs can help prevent accidental drops, while a wrist strap can keep the camera close at hand. For safety and security, I use a Black Rapid sling strap. They are far more comfortable than the horrid neck strap that comes with most cameras and there are a variety of types and styles. A good wrist strap can also be handy for safety. I have also seen mentioned not to use the brand straps on your camera while traveling.

Photo by Diogo Palhais on Unsplash
Photo by Diogo Palhais on Unsplash

Be aware of your surroundings

When you’re traveling, it’s important to be aware of your surroundings at all times. This means paying attention to who is around you and where your valuables are. Don’t leave your camera bag or valuables unattended in a busy public place and keep an eye out for any suspicious activity.

Photo by Siyuan Hu on Unsplash
Photo by Siyuan Hu on Unsplash

Backup your photos

Finally, it’s important to back up your photos regularly while traveling. This means copying them to a laptop, external hard drive, or cloud storage service. If your camera or memory card is lost or stolen, you’ll still have your photos safe and sound. We often use a laptop while traveling and a hard drive in my bag. It might be overkill, but I know my images will be secure.

Travel Safe
Travel Safe

In conclusion, traveling can be a lot of fun, but it’s important to take steps to keep your valuables safe. By choosing the right bag, using a padlock, keeping valuables out of sight, carrying your camera gear with you, using a camera strap, being aware of your surroundings, and backing up your photos, you can help ensure that your trip is a success and that your valuables stay safe and secure. Most importantly, don’t forget to enjoy your travels.