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Top 10 Travel Photography Essentials

TravelShannon Guerrero2 Comments
Travel Photography Essentials - Shannon Did What?

For as long as I can remember, I've told people that the reason I travel is for the photography.  I love being able to capture life and the people of wherever I visit in their natural elements.  Over the years, I've acquired multiple pieces of photography equipment and accessories.  Some have worked and some were really just extra baggage.  It's hard to figure out what is actually a great asset.  I've compiled a list of my favorite travel photography essentials.  These are ALL things that I take with me on every trip.  I've detailed why I think they're great below:

1. MINI SURGE PROTECTOR - This has quickly become a must have when I'm traveling.  I always have so many things to charge at the end of the day - camera, phone, portable charger, etc.  It not only has 3 plugs but also 2 USB ports.
2. SONY ALPHA CAMERA - This is my go to camera.  While technically not a DSLR; it basically is the same thing, but smaller, lighter and reacts better in low light situations.  It is part of a line of mirror-less cameras Sony has.  If this one is a little to technical for you, try the A5100 or A6000.  They don't have a detachable lens but are great in quality.
3. GORILLAPOD - I first picked up one of these while in Japan.  It's perfect to keep in your purse (since it's small) and you can attach it to a variety of different things to get that perfect shot.  Want a good shot and no one else around to take it, and see a tree or rail nearby?  Attach this nifty item with its wrappable legs.
4. MEMORY CARD - This seems to be one of the best memory cards out there.  Super fast-processing.
5. INSTAX MINI CAMERA - I love this camera.  Polaroids are definitely the original Instagram.
6. GOPRO CAMERA - I found the wide-angle of the GoPro to be able to capture some scenes better than my Sony camera (with a kit lens).  It's great for adventuring.
7. GOPRO SELFIE STICK - The strap on this selfie stick is key.  If you're walking through the rushing waters of the Narrows in Zion National Park, you don't want to lose a grip on your camera.  I know selfie sticks are so last year, but this makes capturing footage that much easier.
8. WATERPROOF CAMERA CASE - I use this so often - while at the beach, paddle boarding, you name it.  And this one has proven to be super reliable.  I've never had any leaks or scares.
9. BUNGEE TRIPOD - I got this as a Christmas gift a few years ago and will never go back to another travel tripod.  This one is the lightest, smallest and best travel tripod.  It also opens up in literally seconds.
10. MEMORY CARD READER - If you're like me and take a crazy amount of pictures, you may need to dump your pictures on your computer to free up space.  This one is great because it has multiple card size slots.  The GoPro, for example, using a mini SD while my Sony uses a regular size SD card.

Hope these all prove as useful to you as they are to me!

Yours Truly // Shannon


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How to Travel for Less

TravelShannon GuerreroComment

If only traveling wasn’t so expensive right?  I know, sometimes these trips seem like they just keep getting more and more pricey.  I thought I'd share my trick of planning a trip for much less.  I look for package trip deals.  You know - flight and hotel combined.  I hate being on super guided tours, just because it feels like you’re not truly seeing that destination the way the locals see it.  I’d much rather plan it out on my own.  So, most of the trips I’ve seen on here are just that - independent travel but transportation, airfare, hotel and maybe some other perks are all included.

They have everything from hotel deals to full travel packages including airfare and tours.  I love this site because you can browse without having to know where you actually want to go, which works best for me since I never can decide where I want to go!  You can also search by location, of course, and packages including flights.  They also usually have discounts.  I got a small percentage off my recent trip to Bali.  [check them out]

This is super similar to the services you get from Living Social Escapes.  You can search by location and air inclusive or even by romantic getaways, last-minute travel and under $99 among others. [check them out]

I’ve used Gate1 travel in the past and it was a great experience.  There are tons of travel companies out there just like Gate1 that also put together package deals like Living Social and Groupon.  You can buy them with or without airfare, as well.  They have 2 types of packages escorted and independent so you can decide how much you want them to plan out for you.  My only problem with their site is that you can't just browse the deals, you have to search by region, but really that’s not the end of the world.  If you buy super far in advance, sometimes they offer cheaper prices. [check out gate1]

Travel sites that you may normally use for finding the cheapest flight or hotel prices also allow you to search for them as a package.  You can search for these in these combinations flight + hotel, flight + hotel + car, flight + car and hotel + car.

I prefer checking out Living Social and Groupon the most.  If you sign up for the email notifications, you can get a heads up on all of their best deals everyday.  And it will torture you and make you want to travel the world instead of sit at your desk job all day.  Oh wait, maybe that’s just me?

Word to the wise, be sure to call the booking company that is listed for the package or deal that you are interested in.  Sometimes, the company’s will tack on a ton of extra fees if you are not careful.  Just double check these before purchasing!  For example, I purchased a travel package to Panama at the beginning of the year through Groupon.  As instructed after purchasing, I then called the travel company to redeem my waiver and book the trip.  They wanted to charge me an extra $1000 for minor changes to the flight itinerary.  Thank god Groupon allowed us a full refund for the trip.  Lesson learned.

Yours Truly // Shannon

The 'Forget Me Not' Packing Checklist

TravelShannon Guerrero4 Comments

In the midst of packing for my trip to Bali in a few days, I keep thinking I'm going to forget something.  I mean, I have that thought most every time I travel.  And, I'm not talking about clothing or shoe options, I'm talking about the essentials.  Like have you ever forgot your passport and remembered when you're already on route to the airport to travel abroad?  Well, I thought I would put this handy dandy (and oh so nicely designed - if I do say so myself) for you to use when packing for a trip.  I hope it helps you and actually prevents you from having to turn the car around last minute.

Happy Packing and traveling!

Yours Truly // Shannon