Last Updated on 02/10/2023 by Mark Beckenbach
Travel photography often means going through the airport with one bag that’s all tech and another bag with all your necessities. And we’d know better than most that you want to pack lighter. The less stuff you need the better! That’s why we’re rounding up some of the best lenses for travel photographers who don’t want to bring a ton of gear. More importantly, all this stuff is super lightweight.
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Tips for Bringing Cameras and Lenses for Travel Photographers Who Don’t Want to Pack Too Heavy
These tips will guide you as you prepare for your next trip:
- If you’re in America, we strongly recommend getting TSA-Pre check or global entry. They’ll save you loads of time when traveling.
- Zoom lenses make the most sense when traveling. Hence, these are the lenses we’re recommending the most for travel photographers. It makes sense to carry at least one super fast aperture prime lens.
- The lenses for travel photographers we’re recommending are lightweight for Micro Four Thirds. This is a great system for travel photographers because of how lightweight it is.
- The Four Thirds sensor gives a unique advantage that, at a given aperture, more of the scene is in focus compared to full-frame. Further, it means you can shoot at a faster shutter speed.
- Keep all your tech in one bag, ideally a backpack or a roller bag. But make sure you can bring everything with you on the plane. Our staff has horror stories of losing thousands of dollars of luggage when traveling. Keep an eye on everything.
- Always bring a surge protector along with a converter to whatever country you’re going to. It’s a lifesaver.
M.Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm f4 PRO
Travel Tip: This lens is weather resistant and great for telephoto landscapes and even close ups where you want beautiful bokeh.
In our review, we said:
The M.Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm f4 PRO delivers the sharpness of a Pro line lens in a smaller, more affordable package. It’s simple to use, easy to carry around on long hikes, and I even dunked it under a faucet to no ill effects. This lens is pretty durable and feels great in the hands. The images are sharp and the lens flare is fun to work with.
M.Zuiko 12-40mm f2.8 PRO II
Travel Tip: This is undoubtedly one of the most versatile and useful lenses for photographers getting an OM SYSTEM OM-1. It will handle pretty much every situation with no problem.
In our review, we said:
The M.Zuiko 12-40mm f2.8 PRO II lens is a lightweight, fast focusing, and durable lens that deserves to be on your OM SYSTEM OM-1 camera. If you want to carry one lens around all day, this is the one to get. It delivers in every category: build quality, image quality, autofocus, and more. Indeed, it’s one of the best kit lenses you can get.
M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-45mm f4 PRO
Travel Tip: Trust us when we say you’ll pretty much never want to stop this lens down. If you’re photographing the seaside, consider using the LiveND feature on some of the cameras from OM SYSTEM.
In our review, we said:
The colors from this lens are really emphasized by the Vivid color mode on the EM-1 Mk III. I’ve found my favorite to be delivered when shooting with the natural color mode. But feel free to use the Art Filters too for even better stuff.
M.Zuiko Digital ED 20mm F1.4 PRO
Travel Tip: This lens renders a 40mm equivalent field of view. It’s perfect for anything in between the 35mm and 50mm focal length. And honestly, it’s also probably one of our favorite lenses for Micro Four Thirds.
In our review, we state:
The M.Zuiko 20mm f1.4 PRO lens is positively astounding. Small, well-designed lenses like this are why you fall in love with a system. It focuses very quickly, although Olympus tends to prioritize subjects around the center. It’s sharp, has gorgeous bokeh, boasts weather sealing, and is as small as a standard shot glass with a bit more girth.
This piece is presented in partnership with OM SYSTEM. We’ve independently and ethically reviewed all the products in this post already without sponsorship. And we worked with them to recommend a few key gems to you.
The Phoblographer’s various product round-up features are done in-house. Our philosophy is simple: you wouldn’t get a Wagyu beef steak review from a lifelong vegetarian. And you wouldn’t get photography advice from someone who doesn’t touch the product. We only recommend gear we’ve fully reviewed in these roundups. If you’re wondering why your favorite product didn’t make the cut, there’s a chance it’s on another list. If we haven’t reviewed it, we won’t recommend it. This method keeps our lists packed with industry-leading knowledge. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.