Good bag combination for flying transatlantic

Started Aug 16, 2011 | Discussions thread
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Jeff Peterman
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Good bag combination for flying transatlantic
Aug 16, 2011

I travel a lot, and there's always a dilema over what camera bag(s) to take. My normal shooting bag is a Tamrac Velocity 9x, but it doesn't have enough space, or padding, to work well as a carryon. In the past, I've packed the Velocity 9 in my checked luggage and carried my gear in a LowePro MiniTrekker, but the Velocity 9 is very bulky when stuffed into a suitcase, taking up a lot of room.

United Airlines and others now allow one carryon for the overhead, and a second "personal item" (which can be a purse, briefcase, laptop, or small camera) that fits under the seat in front of me. Unlike Virgin, they don't have a weight limit on carryon bags.

For my recent trip to the UK, I tried a new combination, which worked well. For flying, I had my 7D, 70-200 f2.8L IS, a 17-55, a 10-22, a 55-250, a 580EX flash, plus a Panasonic FZ40 in the Minitrekker. The bag fit all the gear easily, with room to spare, and didn't take up much room in the overhead. Plus, the Minitrekker was comfortable on my back going to and from the plane, without looking heavy/bulky. For my second bag, I took a Think Tank Urban Disguise 60. The Think Tank easily carried the tablet PC, all my cables/chargers, a few spare clothes, reading materials, an external hard drive, and a bottle of water - yet it looked like a briefcase/laptop bag, and fit under the seat in front of me. Once I was in the UK, I unloaded the Think Tank and re-arranged the dividers to make it back into a camera/day trip bag, mostly touring with the 7D, 10-22, 17-55, and 70-200, plus tablet PC, or switching the 70-200 for the 55-250 when I needed something lighter. It worked OK as a shooting/shoulder bag, and I could attach the back-pack straps and carry it on my back when needed.

I'm happy with this bag combination and will use it again. Now I just have to figure out how to manage on my next trip, which will include a segment on a smaller plane with a one-bag limit, and that bag must fit under the seat! I may have to manage with just the Think Tank.

One final thing - I was in London and Manchester around the time of the riots, and I felt much safer carrying a bag that didn't scream "$5000 in camera gear inside" than I would have done with something that looked like a camera bag. The Urban Disguise was named well!
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Jeff Peterman

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 Jeff Peterman's gear list:Jeff Peterman's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ40 Canon PowerShot S110 Canon EOS 7D Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM +16 more
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