Do you ever scroll through gorgeous travel photos your favorite influencers are posting on Instagram—usually with #nofilter—and wonder how they do it? Sure, we can attribute some of it to their finding the right lighting and the perfect angle, but the real trick happens earlier in the process when they select their cameras. You see, when your job (or passion) is to document all of your amazing trips, you’ve got to make sure your camera is top-notch but still practical (i.e., it will fit in your carry-on).
Purchasing a high-quality camera is a major deal—and will run you at least a few hundred dollars—so you want to make sure you're choosing one that fits your needs. There are a lot of things to consider, including how compact it is, its light capabilities, its quality of focus, and last but not least, affordability. And since it can be such a tricky and time-consuming process, what better way to learn about the best cameras for travel than by talking to the women who use them?
We tapped four of our favorite influencers to see which camera they use to take their travel photos, how they went about choosing it, and why it’s number one in their books. Spoiler alert: One camera gets double the love.
Courtesy of Katherine O'Regan
Camera of Choice: Canon 5D Mark III with a 24-70mm lens
Research, Research, Research: "It was a giant purchase for me (at the time I had just graduated college!), and I knew I wouldn't be buying a new camera for quite some time. I had been following a couple of photographers on Instagram who swore by this model/lens, so I started reading other blogs and multiple retailer websites, and I went in the store and looked at it myself. I decided to buy it after about three weeks of research and am so pleased I did!"
Why I Love It: "Although it's a heavier accessory to tote around while traveling, the camera itself has produced some of the most incredible memories for me that can't be replaced. The imagery is stunning, it's easy to use, and the camera itself is incredibly durable. I've traveled all over the world with it and plan to for many years to come."
Follow Me: @kate_oregan
Sarah Mack of All the Places We'll Go
Courtesy of Sarah Mack
Travel Camera of Choice: Nikon D3300
Research, Research, Research: "I was looking for a great starter camera that was compact, not too heavy, and affordable. The Nikon D3300 kept coming up and had fantastic reviews. Before purchasing, I compared the top cameras I was looking at on Camera Decision. Before I made my final purchase, I compared prices. I was surprised by the wide range of prices for the D3300 across vendors. Groupon, Best Buy, and Nikon all offered the lowest prices, and I ended up purchasing my camera through Nikon."
Why I Love It: "I've been using my camera for 18 months now and couldn't be happier with my choice—it's portable, simple to use, and takes wonderful pictures."
Follow Me: @ohtheplaceswellgo
Sher of Sher She Goes
Travel Camera Of Choice: Canon 5D Mark III
Research, Research, Research: "I upgraded from an entry-level Canon camera to the Mark III, as I was looking for a full-frame camera that had great low-light capability and could take my photos to the next level. I did tons of research and tested out a couple different cameras before settling on this one. It's definitely a bit heavy to tote around, but the photos captured make it so worth the weight!"
Why I Love It: "I love the 61-point auto-focus system with the Canon 5D Mark III. It allows you to take any image and make sure that the person or thing in focus is tack sharp, even if the object is in motion!"
Follow Me: @shershegoes
Jessica Wright of Bon Traveler
Courtesy of Jessica Wright
Travel Camera of Choice: Sony a7II with a 35-mm prime lens
Research, Research, Research: "I was really focused on a high-quality camera that was not only durable but light in weight. So many of the competitors are incredibly heavy, and I was determined to not have to lug around a huge camera set. With mirrorless technology, Sony has become a leader in the travel space, as its cameras are competitive in price range and miles lighter than others (which was exactly what I was on the hunt for). Add a prime lens—my personal preference of imagery style—and I had a professional camera setup fit for my travels."
Why I Love It: "I think it's the best camera, as it allows you to enjoy travel in a stress-free way, since you don't need to worry about carrying it, and you can capture incredible content at the same time. Plus, the ability to send high-res images directly from the camera to your phone is a huge bonus while on the go."
Follow Me: @bontraveler
This story was originally published on August 14, 2017, and has since been updated.
Up next: Gorgeous Instagram travel photos that stopped us in our tracks.