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Simple Steps to Start Shooting Cinematic Travel Videos

Simple Steps to Start Shooting Cinematic Travel Videos

A Food Fun Travel Guest Post

For experienced travel bloggers shooting eye-catching videos might appear like a no-brainer. Still, if you’re just starting out in this fascinating industry, you should take note of some helpful tips to learn how to create effective video content for your audience. Below are some of them!  

Determine Your Project’s Tone 

So, you’ve got your location picked out. And you can’t wait to get there. But before you set out on a journey of your lifetime, you should figure out what the tone of your upcoming project is going to be. Say, you’re going to the mountains during the winter time. Do you want an upbeat blog style or want to capture all your friends doing crazy activities. Or you’re striving to put together a cinematic short film that’s more slowed down and focused on storytelling rather than on action. 

Once you decide on your tone, you’ll be able to plan out your video, select the locations that are well suited for the overall mood of your project, determine what gear you will need for the shot you want to capture, etc. 


Even though you’re excited to start filming, you need to factor in and plan out every aspect of your journey beforehand. For this, you’ll want to research a ton of locations on the Internet, social media, or go on Google Maps and look around. Try your best to find the spots that will fit the tone of your video. You can even contact locals to see if they have any locations other tourists might not know about. After that you should plan activities and things to do for those spots. You might want to look for a cool mountain overlook and then arrange for hiking up to it or welcoming sunrise at its top. 

Once you have a bunch of locations jotted down, start mapping out the distance between stops and determine what would work best for each day. Videographers often tend to forget that it takes time to get to those locations. So, make it your rule to not just plan for filming but also plan for traveling. It’s also a good idea not to make your itinerary too specific as you never know what might get in the way of your plans and arrangements. Be ready to go with the flow and capture content you didn’t expect to. 

Plan Out Your Budget

The least fun part of your trip is budgeting. But if not considered carefully, it might ruin your journey altogether. With this in mind, you need to sit down and plan out your budget before you embark on your trip. Going on an expensive, lavish vacation is definitely fun. But if you strive to create truly effective videos immortalizing the brightest and most significant travel moments. No wonder, most professional vloggers merely don’t view their journeys as vacations and plan their budgets carefully before they set foot on a hitherto unknown land. So, make sure to prioritize things that are essential for your video projects. 

Pack Your Gear 

Photo by Andre Furtado:

There’s no right or wrong answer to what gear you should use for travel shoots. It’s highly contingent on the purpose of your project, location, and budget, your own artistic vision and videography skills. Still, not to overburden yourself with unnecessary equipment, you want to refrain from taking too much camera gear. You’ll find it way easier to pack only the bare essentials. Note that travel can be hectic and fast-paced. It’s a good rule of thumb to pack one handheld camera, one to two lenses, a drone, some ND filters, a tripod, and the batteries and cards you might need. Unless your project requires it, you might not want to take such things as stabilizers or gimbals because they represent another big piece of equipment that you may or may not even use. Whatever camera gear you decide to bring, make sure you know how to use it effectively and strive to only take the gear you absolutely need. 

Stay Organized

After all the planning and packing, the time has finally come. You’re away on your trip and starting to capture some epic travel content. To stay on top of your itinerary, make sure to keep everything you brought organized, especially your camera gear. You don’t want to miss the shot because your camera dies or you can’t find that extra battery hidden somewhere in your bag. Always know where things are and keep it that way. It would be a great idea to get a dedicated camera bag that affords plenty of useful space for all your gear and things like chargers, electronics, food, etc. 

Furthermore, transfer all footage from your cards to portable hard drives at the end of every day or shooting process. It’s also a great idea to sort your content into folders by day or location. This way, when you go to edit everything, it’s easier to find, use, and make post-production run way smoother. 

Organization also applies to categorizing your video editing software. Decide what tools you might need to further enhance your videos and keep them on hand. Unless you’re using online video editors, like the background remover from, you’ll want to put your apps and tools in dedicated folders to easily access them when need be.  

Strive for Shot Variety 

Photo by Saeid Anvar:

Unless some company hires you to make a bunch of landscape shots with the same scenery, same focal length, same lighting, etc., make sure you have plenty of shot variety and don’t be afraid to try something new. Try to maximize the creativity of the shot you can get with the gear you have. Experiment with shots, camera angles and movements to wow your viewers with truly cinematic and unique videos. Various ways to do this is to shoot at different times of day with different lighting and weather conditions. Go to a wide array of sceneries and landscapes, utilize different lenses and focal lengths, have subjects in your shots engaged in different activities, use gimbal shots, handheld shots, FPV drone shots, and much more. Whatever fits the tone and vision of your video, just do it!       

Post Production 

Now you’ve completed the tip and are finished with shooting your travel video. Now it’s time to bring this project to life. And this is where all the hard work of planning and shooting is paid off. Note that it’s always to capture too much than to not have enough. You can’t use the clip that you don’t have but you can always delete the clip that you don’t need. So, with all this footage and an empty timeline of endless possibilities, you need to begin the post-production process.

Some vloggers find it easier to edit their footage in chronological order. And once you have your clips organized, you may go ahead and enhance them the way you see fit. You can do some touching-up to make your face appear more refreshed and cheerful on camera, add some cool visual effects to your video, move and scale your subjects, remove unwanted objects from footage, and much more. 

Be creative and let the world enjoy the fruits of your creativity!