Travelling is fun, but did it even happen if you can’t show off to all your mates back home what you’re doing and where you’ve been?!

That’s where backpacking gets tricky. You’ll need your camera, laptop, GoPro, chargers, external hard drives – and that’s only for starters! But how do you know how much tech is too much?

Well after travelling South East Asia for a considerable amount of time, we think we’ve got a pretty good idea what you need to be bring with you to get an effective little mobile studio going so you can get your Instagram game strong.

Disclaimer: If you’re lazy and don’t fancy reading this article, head over to the video to see me show you what we’re packing too!

So, here’s what you need:

1) Portable Charger

Anker Powercore Charger

The Anker 20100MaH Powercore – Handy!

Without a doubt this will be your lifesaver when you’re out in the sticks with absolutely no internet at all. The best part is a good portable charger usually comes with two USB ports (or more!) so you can charge your phone and your GoPro at the same time!

The future is now, and its called Anker Powercore 20100 – it’ll charge your iPhone at least 3 times and also charges via micro USB which is super handy for when you need to recharge your charger. Delivering 4.8Amps output means it’ll be just as quick at charging your iPhone as if you were using a regular outlet (on the official charger supplied with iPhones).


2) GoPro

GoPro Hero5 Black

GoPro Hero5 Black (or 6, they look identical)

You’ve probably read all this before so I’ll spare you the details and just say, if you don’t have enough spare cash (and what backpacker has spare cash really!) to fund a decent camera, a GoPro is a safe bet. We use a GoPro Hero5 Black, purely because it was the best one at the time, however the 6 is now available too if you’ve got the budget.

If you haven’t, grab yourself the Hero5 Black. It does auto stabilisation at 1080p which is brilliant for them action shots of you jumping into a waterfall. Go preowned if need be! Just avoid the GoPro 4 or below if you can, you’ll thank me later when you see that crisp 4K video.

I mentioned it’s waterproof without housing right? That’s right, go ahead and get that classic underwater shot of you doing a peace sign off the coast of Koh Phi Phi.

Failing all of that, the Hero session is a great addition for some neat shots where you don’t need to see a visual display.

3) Laptop

Macbook Pro 2015

Macbook – shiny right?

Some may say that this isn’t really needed for backpackers, but if you’re away for more than 3 months I’d say it’s gonna be one of the handiest things you ever thought to bring travelling.

Not only will you be able to watch Netflix on a screen larger than your small in comparison phone, you’ll also have access to be able to do a lot more than watch videos, write blogs and play games from your phone. For us personally, we use our laptop for our video editing, photo editing and also for our website updating, it’s super handy and without it, none of this would probably exist today!

Once again, if you’ve got the budget, go for the newest Macbook, it’s got all the grunt to even do some light video editing too! But as always, cheaper options are always available! Head on over to Amazong and get a nice 2-in-1 laptop (the Dell Inspiron 13 is a good shout, but try and get the SSD variant) giving you all the benefits of a larger screen, plus the added addition of what is essentially a tablet in a great form factor!

4) Camera

The Panasonic G7 – just look at that fancy screen

Getting shots on your GoPro is great! But what’s even better is having granular control over every part of the perfect Instagram shot you’ve been waiting forever to take whilst the tourists get out of the way! Personally we use a LUMIX G7 – it’s perfect for video and photos, in fact, it’s the younger brother of the Lumix GH5 which is the professional grade micro four thirds camera by Panasonic. However, it can be a bit bigger than what the average backpacker will need, and if you’re looking mainly for photos, maybe give the Panasonic Lumix ZS50 a try – only if you’re not interested in videos.

The form factor of the Lumix G7 is mirrorless, which means it’s thinner than standard DSLR’s (because it has no physical mirror to reflect the light from the sensor) but shoots just as well – in our opinion at least. The screen also flips out too which is perfect for video and selfies!

Going anything larger or meatier than the price point of the G7 for us, unless you’re attempting to shoot professional grade photography or videography, is in vein.

5) External Hard drive/Additional SD Cards

So you’ve got all your photos done, you’re slowly filling up your SD card on your camera and your laptop is wheezing under the strain of them beach pictures. The easiest thing to do is to upload it to the cloud right?

Sure! If you was in a country with decent WiFi, of which will be rare in South East Asia at least. In fact we’re writing this right now in the middle of Laos and we wouldn’t dare attempt to upload or download anything in case is drops the connection. So you’re gonna need something to store them photos until you’re ready to pump them photos up to iCloud.

Go ahead and grab a 1TB hard drive, Western Digital is usually the brand to go for here. We’ve used them a lot and they were perfect for what we needed. But if you want something a little more rugged go for this. Stick to HDD instead of SSD, for an external hard drive a SSD is a bit overkill for you photos.

Bonus: When you’re there

Your backpack is full and don’t even get me started on how sweaty you are once you stepped off the plane in Bangkok, so the last thing you wanna be doing is worrying about your tech right?

Well we can say wholeheartedly it’s 100% worth grabbing a SIM card the second you land in Thailand. But for our sakes, please don’t grab the first tourist SIM from DTAC. You’ll want to head to a DTAC retailer and get one of their meatier data sim cards which gives you unlimited data for only 800 baht for 30 days at 4MB/s (that’s enough to stream Netflix at 1080p two times over).

Which in comparison to the tourist sim (which only gets you a 2.5GB data package at full speed then any data above that the speed is 312kb/s) is a huge upgrade.


So now you know

Backpacking the world isn’t easy, and its even harder to get the gadgets right and this article is your first step in making sure you don’t miss out on capturing them great moments and enjoying every second whilst it lasts.


If you liked our article…

Please view our other blog posts on the homepage, we’ve got great travel tips and advice for backpackers both new and experienced.

Better yet, you can follow us on Instagram @wanderlustlab to view all of our adventures!

About The Author

Wanderlust Lab is a collaboration between Abbie and Luke for the sharing of travelling knowledge to help backpackers and travellers all across the globe. Live Wanderlust.

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