Lenses in Carry-on Bags

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Today’s Question: Do you pack your 150-600mm lens into your carry-on bag for flights? Or do you put larger lenses in checked luggage?

Tim’s Quick Answer: Yes, so far I have always carried my 150-600mm lens in a carry-on bag for all flights. As a general rule I don’t put any cameras or lenses into a checked bag. I often do, however, put a tripod and various camera accessories into a checked bag.

More Detail: Like most photographers, I’m a bit nervous about putting my important (and sometimes expensive) photography gear in checked luggage for flights. I’m concerned that the luggage will get lost or stolen, or that the gear will get damaged in transit. So I’d much rather have all of my photography (and computer) gear with me in a carry-on bag.

That can certainly add up to a lot of gear and a heavy bag. For example, the lens in question (https://timgrey.me/150600) weighs 4.4 pounds. But I prefer to keep my important gear with me rather than putting it in a checked bag.

Because I generally want to have a bag that works when I’m on the go once I reach my destination, my carry-on is also my camera bag. I prefer to use a backpack as my carry-on bag, and so I need a bag that provides a good balance between providing lots of storage but still being small enough to use as a carry-on bag.

I generally use the Lowepro Fastpack BP 250 AW II, which you can find here:

https://timgrey.me/fastpack250

Note that today’s question was a follow-up from my recent webinar on “Which Lenses Do You Bring?”. If you missed the live presentation, a recording of the full webinar can be found on my Tim Grey TV channel on YouTube here:

https://youtu.be/d1NFXqL__fw