Packing for a trip can be full of questions, lists, and forgetfulness. But after you’re done packing your clothes and toiletries, packing camera gear for travel is an important thing to do right before going on your next trip. The best vlogging camera on a budget will get you the best video on your next trip. Here are our tips.
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What You Need to Bring
Although mirrorless cameras are all the craze right now, they can be incredibly expensive. Unless you are already making money on your travel vlogging, you don’t need to spend that much money in the beginning. We do our vlogs with the combination of a GoPro and a good ol’ DSLR camera, with great results.
A note: The items recommended here are all items I am currently using in my vlogging journey. You can venture out, to Canon, to different brands, etc. but these are from my personal experience.
You can find an inexpensive DSLR camera kit for under $500, and this is a great start. However, you may want to go the next step up. My first camera was a Nikon 3300 (now a Nikon 3500), which is an amazing beginner camera.
I now use a Nikon 5600, which is the next step up and it is better suited for vlogging because of one main reason: a flip-out screen. When you are out on the streets recording yourself, you will want to see what you are doing, if you are in focus, if you are in the frame, etc.
A Nikon 5600 kit at Best Buy will cost you around $700, including a lens and a bag. This camera is everything you need to get you started.
Although, as a photographer, I never recommend auto-focus lenses, it is an important tool for vlogging. You won’t have the luxury to focus on your own face while shooting a video.
Although a GoPro may seem like a must-purchase to begin your vlogging journey, it is nice to have but I would not say you NEED it when you first begin. The reasons for this are:
Your DSLR (or mirrorless, if you decide to take that route) can take all the video you need
If you mix your GoPro video with your DSLR video, it can get confusing to your viewers going from a fish-eye lens to a regular frame
GoPros are fairly expensive
I use my GoPro on a regular basis while traveling, and it is a great tool to have, but you should look at a GoPro purchase as an investment. And when you are ready to make that investment, it will add to your collection and make your videos even better.
There are numerous options for assuring your audio works well, whether you are recording yourself in your room or out on the road. You can handle your vlogging audio in a few different ways:
A lavalier mic is a great tool for vlogging, because it will isolate (mostly) the audio from you, and you only. It will limit the background noise around you and make your voice clear to your viewers.
You can purchase a corded or cordless lavalier mic — however, if you are just starting out, the cordless lavalier mics can be pretty expensive ($300-400 or so on the low end). I still use a corded lavalier mic and it works well for what I need.
Find it on Amazon: BOYA BY-M1 3.5mm Lavalier Condenser Microphone for iPhone 7 Plus Smartphones, Dslr, Recorder,Camcorders
You can also use an omni-directional microphone for vlogging. This microphone is a great tool for on-the-street reporting. Especially if you opt for the corded lavalier, the omnidirectional mic is a great way to go.
It may not be quite as good at isolating your voice as a lavalier is, but an omnidirectional microphone is much more handy when you’re on the road and don’t want to have to put the microphone on.
There are many accessories you will need to begin your vlogging journey for travel. Here are the most important ones:
A full-sized tripod is always the best option for recording from your camera, but when traveling it’s not exactly practical. Instead, you should get a small but sturdy tripod that fits your camera.
I have made the mistake in the past of purchasing tripods that were too small for what my camera can handle. Here are a few options for small tripods that are perfect for travel vlogging:
Batteries and Memory Cards
If you are bringing a computer with you, two batteries and two memory cards should be good enough. Because you can offload all your content each night to your computer. However, if you do not plan on bringing your computer with you, I would suggest a minimum of three memory cards for your camera.
You want to make sure you will have enough space for all the video you are going to take, as well as making sure your camera doesn’t go dead before each day is over.
GoPro accessories are similar to what you will need for your DSLR. You will need the following at a minimum:
- A tripod
- Batteries (I would suggest at least 3)
- Memory Cards (I would suggest at least 3)
Find it on Amazon: GoPo Rechargeable Battery for HERO7 Black/HERO6 Black/HERO5 Black (GoPro Official Accessory)
Another great tool for your vlogging is to have a chest holder for your GoPro. That way you can walk around and take video of your walk while you are traveling.
There are plenty of other tools as well for your GoPro. You can usually buy an all-in-one kit from places like GoPro.com, Amazon, or stores like BestBuy.
Another great things to bring would be:
- A remote control for your camera
You will also need a number of cords and chargers for your vlogging equipment.
I would suggest at least two chargers for your camera and at least two for your GoPro batteries. That way you can charge multiple batteries at the same time and not have to wait for one to finish.
One additional thing to think about is if you are traveling to a foreign country, you may also need a converter. All of your chargers will have to share the converter, so I would suggest at least two or three converters for your trip.