Deciding which travel photo lens to bring

If you are planning a vacation, you certainly don’t want to miss out on a lot of good places and capture the memory in photos. That is why bringing a good camera and a good travel photo lens should be in your checklist. But what lens should you take?

travel lens

travel lens

The answer to this question will vary depending on where you are planning to take a trip, how you are going to get to your destination, and what images you are planning to take. Since you are travelling, it is always ideal to travel light. With the camera body itself plus the tripod, the external flash, charger and batteries, you would not want to miss the fun just because you have a lot of stuff to carry.

Different types of travel means different types of lenses. Here are some factors to consider when choosing your travel photo lens to bring.

Your type of travel will determine your lens to use. Are you planning to go to a Safari adventure? Or a romantic vacation to Paris? Or you may consider a bold and daring mountain trekking or a warm stay at the beach?

If you are planning to take a few great shots of animals from your Safari adventure, you will need a high focal length camera lens to allow you to take good shots from your vehicle. Since you will not be able to come closer to the animals, you will need an 18-200mm focal length lens. If, on the other hand, you’ve decided to come to the beach, a wide-screen lens will help you appreciate the serenity of the place. This is also applicable when focusing on architecture or structure. An advantage of wide angle lens, aside from being able to stretch the perspective is that it is more resistant to flare.  A good example would be a 12-24mm lens.

However, when you are travelling with a combination of these, if your budget allows, it would be great if you can bring an 18-200mm lens so that you have a lot of options when taking photos. This is more viable rather than bringing two types of lenses.

Weight. As mentioned earlier, it is always ideal to travel light. This is especially important if you are travelling by foot and would pass by crowded areas.  Aside from the convenience of less weight to carry, you also save yourself from the difficulty of taking good shots just because you brought a heavy lens while in the midst of the crowd.

Distance and lighting condition. These are some of the common difficulties that most people have to deal with when travelling. Most museums, for example, will not allow you to take photos with flash.  Low light conditions downgrades the quality of photos taken. To help you with this, a fast lens will do the trick. If you don’t know the speed of your lens, you can refer to the letter “F” (aperture) indicated in the lens. The lower the number of the aperture, say 1.4f, the more light the lens allows to hit your image sensor and enables you faster shutter speed.

If your itinerary will allow you to take two lenses (wide-angle and medium telephoto lenses) without compromising convenience on your part, that would give you a lot of options when taking pictures. However, if that is not practicable, it is best to have your plans laid out and prioritize the lens which you will likely use more often. Also take in mind if changing lens in the streets will be both safe and convenient for you. You would not want to have unnecessary attention and uninvited guests in your photos, right?

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