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Best Tripod for Travel [2021 Review]

In: 
Published: 30/07/2021

Photographers understand that their gear would be incomplete without a good tripod. A good travel tripod is vital for getting sharp shots, particularly if you’re moving constantly. We've compiled a list of the best tripod for travel to help you get stable shots.

Our Top Travel Tripod Reviews

Tripods are an essential part of every trip photographer's toolkit and ensure that you obtain the sharpest images possible. These are the best lightweight tripods for travel for taking beautiful shots or videos with your camera.

Brand
Best Overall
SLIK Professional
Best for the Money
Vanguard Alta Pro
Best Cheap Pick
Joby Gorilla 5K Kit
Product
SLIK Professional 4 Carbon Fiber Tripod Legs with...
Vanguard Alta Pro 263AB 100 Aluminum Tripod with...
JOBY GorillaPod 5K Kit. Professional Tripod 5K...
Material
Carbon-fiber
Aluminum
Aluminum
Weight Limit
44 pounds
15.4 pounds
11 pounds
Rating
Best Overall
Brand
SLIK Professional
Product
SLIK Professional 4 Carbon Fiber Tripod Legs with...
Material
Carbon-fiber
Weight Limit
44 pounds
Rating
Price
Best for the Money
Brand
Vanguard Alta Pro
Product
Vanguard Alta Pro 263AB 100 Aluminum Tripod with...
Material
Aluminum
Weight Limit
15.4 pounds
Rating
Price
Best Cheap Pick
Brand
Joby Gorilla 5K Kit
Product
JOBY GorillaPod 5K Kit. Professional Tripod 5K...
Material
Aluminum
Weight Limit
11 pounds
Rating
Price

Best Overall Tripod for Travel: SLIK Professional 

The SLIK Professional has a super-heavy build and is intended for use on a large-format camera. The tripod can withstand a maximum load of 44 pounds. That is great for carrying the heaviest equipment while counting with stable support. 

SLIK Professional 4 Carbon Fiber Tripod Legs with...

The carbon fiber legs have multi-angle locks throughout the leg sections, giving you access to various viewing positions. Because of the center column and multi-angle leg locks, the tripod can also be used for Macro photography.

Even though the tripod has a heavy-duty design and a high load capacity, its carbon fiber construction keeps the weight hard to manage. 

Pros

  • Performs admirably in both the studio and on the field
  • Excellent height range of 100 inches, which allows for more imaginative shots as oppose to Manfrotto hybrid tripod, which has a height range of 72.24 inches

Cons

  • There are no movable leg protectors
  • It does not have a head like the Vanguard Alta Pro tripod to hold the camera steady while taking pictures
SLIK Professional 4 Carbon Fiber Tripod Legs with...
  • The "Professional" series tripods are designed for the professional photographer, and feature ultra...
  • Combined with a short column (purchased separately), this full sized tripod can be lowered to just...
  • The Grand PRO CF 4 has multi-angle leg locks that allow the angle of each leg to be positioned...

Best Travel Tripod for the Money: Vanguard Alta Pro 

The Vanguard Alta Pro is one of the most adaptable tripods for traveling. More shooting angles are possible due to the unrivaled versatility and steadiness. The Multi-Angle Central Column System features three leg angles and a central column adjusted in longitudinal and transverse directions.

Vanguard Alta Pro 263AB 100 Aluminum Tripod with...

Each of its three-section legs has its spread and flip locks for portability. The rapid-release plate has a non-slip rubberized surface. Two built-in bubble levels are positioned along the clamp's sides. The bag is not as well-made as the others, but it will be good enough for getting from one place to another.

Pros 

  • The central column can be more flexible using the Multi-Angle Central Column system
  • Premium magnesium die-cast canopy with instant swivel stop-n-lock system to reposition center column movement

Cons

  • This tripod is too heavy, weighing 5.37 pounds, compared to the light Manfrotto Befree Advanced Carbon that’s easier to walk around with it
  • It can take a long time to set up, unlike the Benro Aero tripod, which is incredibly easy to set up and remove
Vanguard Alta Pro 263AB 100 Aluminum Tripod with...
  • 26mm 3 section aluminum alloy legs adjust to 25, 50, and 80-degree angles to enable extreme low...
  • Smooth fluid-like SBH-100 ball head rotates 360 degrees and includes quick release plate QS-39 and...
  • The MACC (multi-angle central column) system allows you to move the central column from 0 to 180...

Best Cheap Tripod for Travel: Joby Gorilla 5K Kit

The Joby GorillaPod 5K is a sturdy yet lightweight tripod. It is so tiny that it can be carried anywhere, making it an ideal little accessory for photographers seeking to get into those difficult-to-reach situations. The odd, bendy shape is fun to play with. However, it cannot withstand harsh circumstances or heavier loads in some scenarios, rendering it useless in other situations.

JOBY GorillaPod 5K Kit. Professional Tripod 5K...

Composed of high-quality polymers, rubber, aluminum, and stainless steel, this tripod can carry up to 11 pounds of camera and gear, which is rather remarkable given its compact size. It has legs with various joints that allow you to wrap the tripod around objects or on uneven ground, providing incredible versatility.

Pros

  • It is versatile and handy for handling a variety of cameras
  • This tripod is made from rigid, long-lasting materials like aluminum
  • In comparison to the Manfrotto Hybrid, which is heavy, the size and weight are ideal for travel

Cons

  • It may take some time to get the wrapping mount to stay in place
  • It does not extend to the same height as a standard tripod because its extending height is just 14.5 inches, as opposed to 100 inches for the SLIK Professional tripod
JOBY GorillaPod 5K Kit. Professional Tripod 5K...
  • Flexible: Grip it, wrap it, stand it, wrappable legs allow you to secure professional camera...
  • Efficient: Arca-Swiss system compatible quick release plate stays connected to camera for instant...
  • Accurate: Numbered scale on base lets you accurately repeat 360 Degree pans, secondary knob locks...

Best Travel Tripod for Connectivity: Manfrotto Hybrid

This Manfrotto Hybrid has a rich professional head with robust design and innovative connecting technology. This tripod bridging technique makes the pan friction control intuitive and straightforward to use and protects it from hits.

Manfrotto MVK502055XPRO3 Photo Video Hybrid Kit...

Pan and tilt have independent locks, and drag for both is configurable in a continuous range from zero to the maximum level. This enables you to use the integrated pan bar to manipulate the head with confidence and smoothness. The sole disadvantage of this tripod is that it is more expensive than the Vanguard Alta Pro, which is more affordable.

Pros

  • It incorporates an easy dual-link, allowing both the tripod and its leg to access various accessories while in use
  • It can support a safety payload weight of up to 15 pounds

Cons

  • Camera mounting track rubber track can deteriorate
  • Has a high cost of replacing lost parts
  • It is bulky in comparison to the MeFoto Roadtrip, which is exceptionally light at only 3.1 pounds hence easier for travel
Sale
Manfrotto MVK502055XPRO3 Photo Video Hybrid Kit...
  • Big Savings: By purchasing these video heads with our photo legs together in a kit, we are able to...
  • Dual Easy Links: Both the tripods and heads feature our Easy Link 3/8” connection system which...
  • Flat Base Video Heads: Lightweight heads with a wider platform for HDSLR bodies and CSC Cameras that...

Best Compact Tripod for Travel: Manfrotto Befree Advanced Tripod

The Manfrotto Befree Tripod is made of aluminum and has a maximum height of 59.1 inches and a folding size of 15.7 inches and this aids in essential transport. This tripod also comes with a traveling bag.

Manfrotto Befree Advanced Camera Tripod Kit with...

Because of the tiny legs and the way they fold in at a right angle near the bottom, its weight is a little top-heavy. However, it is small and sleek, and it is a fantastic travel companion despite the balance issues. A fundamental relation accessory is located at the top of the leg region and lets you attach appropriate equipment.

When traveling, you can easily use the tripod because it is lightweight, decreasing the amount of stuff you need to carry. To minimize skidding and keep the tripod stable on most terrains, rubberized feet are used.

Pros

  • When contrasted to the Manfrotto Hybrid, which is heavy, it is exceptionally light at only 4.1 pounds

Cons

  • It has a couple of odd mechanics
  • It has a lower working height of 59.1 inches, compared to SLIK Professional's excellent height range of 100 inches, allowing for more creative shots
Sale
Manfrotto Befree Advanced Camera Tripod Kit with...
  • PORTABLE: Intuitive to use and easy to configure, this travel tripod is convenient in all travel...
  • COMPACT: The exclusive M-Lock locking system has a Twist closure that leaves no protruding parts and...
  • COMBINABLE: The supplied plate is compatible with the most common standard head attachments -...

Best Video Tripod for Travel: Benro Aero 

The Benro Aero is one of the most valuable tripods for video. Travel videographers will require a customized tripod to produce high-quality footage. The legs are made up of three pieces that may be locked into fixed positions using a flipping mechanism. 

Benro Aero 4 Travel Angel Video Tripod Kit...

The legs can be positioned in the standard angular distances. However, the most significant angle that this tripod’s legs can be set is not as comprehensive as comparable tripods, resulting in a somewhat high minimum height. 

Pros

  • Tripod head that works well and performs the tasks of a standard tripod
  • Unlike the Manfrotto 290 Xtra, which is difficult to adjust, this tripod is simple to construct and disassemble, as well as to set the head

Cons

  • In comparison to MeFoto Roadtrip, which weighs only 4.1 pounds, this tripod is quite heavy
  • Videographers can only use Micro Four Thirds and APS-C cameras with this tripod
  • The fast-release plate screws are twisted
Sale
Benro Aero 4 Travel Angel Video Tripod Kit...
  • Combines a removable flat base video head and 3-stage aluminum tripod legs.
  • Easily converts to a monopod by combining the center column with the removable tripod leg.
  • Equipped with interchangeable screw-in rubber feet and stainless steel spiked feet for increased...

Best Lightweight Tripod for Travel: MeFoto Roadtrip

The MeFoto Roadtrip is a small portable photography tripod that folds in half to become a monopod. Featuring two-position leg angle locks, the tripod's legs can also be extended separately. 

MeFoto RoadTrip Lightweight 61.6' Carbon Fiber...

It has a bubble level on the ball head and a recessed hook on the central column to add weight for stability in windy circumstances. This tripod is still prone to shake, particularly when fully extended. This is most likely due to the tripod's modest weight and the fact that the legs are divided into five portions, which is inconvenient.

Pros 

  • Extremely light compared to the Slik Professional tripod, which is 8.4 pounds and this tripod is only 3.1 pounds
  • A bubble level is included, as well as a pan lock and a scale
  • It can also be used as a monopod, unlike the Manfrotto Befree Advanced Carbon tripod, which does not have this capability

Cons 

  • This travel tripod is much shakier than the others in this review
  • Extending and retracting is difficult
Sale
MeFoto RoadTrip Lightweight 61.6" Carbon Fiber...
  • The MeFOTO RoadTrip is a compact travel camera tripod that folds up inversely and turns into a...
  • 360-degree Panning Accurate panoramas can be easily orchestrated using the graduated panning scale...
  • Recessed Center-Column Hook: A spring loaded recessed hook, located in the bottom of the...

Best Sturdy Tripod for Travel: Manfrotto Befree Advanced Carbon

This Manfrotto Befree Advanced is a great all-around travel tripod with a low price tag. The tripod's weight, sturdiness, and value are all excellent. This tripod's carbon fiber variant weighs only 2.75 pounds and compresses to 16.14 inches.

Manfrotto Befree Advanced Twist Camera Tripod Kit,...

The Befree Advanced comprises four components, each of which is tightened and fastened in seconds using the M-lock twist locks, which function with a quick 90-degree turn. A back lever allows you to adjust the leg at different angles with the press of a button, enabling low-angle photography.

This tripod has the disadvantage of not converting to a monopod and not having a place to keep your backpack or weight in windy conditions.

Pros

  • Extremely lightweight compared to the Slik Professional tripod, which is 8.4 pounds and this tripod is only 2.6 pounds
  • Maximum extension that is acceptable
  • Legs are made up of three parts that are simple to extend

Cons

  • It is challenging to get down to the ground level
  • Unlike the MeFoto Roadtrip tripod, which can be used as a monopod, there is no option to utilize a monopod with this tripod
Manfrotto Befree Advanced Twist Camera Tripod Kit,...
  • TRAVEL FRIENDLY: Weighs just under 3 pounds and fits easily into backpacks and carry on luggage.
  • CENTER BALL HEAD: Manfrotto 494 center ball head with three independent control knobs.
  • QUICK SETUP: Side pull selector for fast setup with both hands.

Best Entry Level Tripod for Travel: Manfrotto 290 Xtra

The Manfrotto 290 Xtra is built of robust but lightweight aluminum, making it portable and sturdy when set up. The three-section legs of this tripod have flip locks that allow you to adjust the length of each leg separately. The locks are simply adjustable, which aids in maintaining a tight lock throughout the life of the tripod.

Manfrotto 290 Xtra Carbon Fiber 3-Section Tripod...

Rubber feet on one of the tripod's legs make it easier to handle, while rubber feet keep it stable on slick surfaces. A built-in spring helps with head tilting by adjusting for larger lenses and off-center loads on cameras. The most significant disadvantage is that it is difficult to adjust the head.

Pros

  • Leg locks are never blocked and can be extended completely
  • It is simple to use and travel because it is light and only weighs 3.4 pounds, contrary to the 8.4-pound SLIK Professional tripod

Cons

  • Difficult-to-adjust head
  • It lacks ahead, in contrast to MeFoto Roadtrip, which has a ball head to keep the camera steady when taking pictures
Sale
Manfrotto 290 Xtra Carbon Fiber 3-Section Tripod...
  • Premium Italian design
  • Lightweight carbon composite tubes
  • 4 leg angles

Features to Consider in a Tripod for Travel

Given the numerous types and options available, deciding on the best tripod for travel can be daunting. The following are some tips to take into consideration when choosing the best tripod for travel.

ProductMaterialWeight (Pounds)Height (Inches)
SLIK Professional Carbon Fiber8.4 100
Vanguard Alta ProAluminum5.37 68
Joby Gorilla 5K KitAluminum Alloy, Plastic, Rubber1.6 14.5
Manfrotto HybridAluminum5.3 72.24
Manfrotto Befree Advanced TripodAluminum4.1 59.1
Benro Aero Stainless Steel, Aluminum6.3 65
MeFoto RoadtripCarbon Fiber3.1 51.2
Manfrotto Befree Advanced CarbonCarbon Fiber2.6 59
Manfrotto 290 XtraCarbon Fiber3.4 65.2

Tripod Material

Aluminum or carbon fiber are the most common materials used in the best tripods for travel. Carbon fiber is the recommended material for all high-end travel tripods since it is both lighter and stronger than aluminum. Examples of tripods with carbon fiber material are SLIK Professional, Benro Rhino, MeFoto Roadtrip, Manfrotto Befree Advanced Carbon, and Manfrotto 290 Xtra.

Tripod Weight

When looking for a portable tripod, the weight is arguably the most crucial thing to consider. Therefore, we also suggest purchasing a travel tripod that weighs less than 4 pounds. You probably do not need to worry about a few additional ounces unless you are going on a multi-day backpacking trip.

Make sure that if you want to lighten your tripod, you will probably have to make some concessions. For example, a lighter tripod like the Manfrotto Befree Advanced Carbon and MeFoto Roadtrip will lower maximum height and be less stable than a heavier tripod.

Man using a travel tripod to shoot an outdoor area

Leg Lock Type

Leg locks are the mechanisms that hold the parts of each leg together on a tripod. They allow you to lock the legs in place while using the tripod and then unlock them to collapse it quickly.

Leg locks are available in two different styles: twist locks and flip locks. For example, the SLIK Professional has a twist leg log type.

Height

The best tripod height to choose is entirely dependent on your photography and travel preferences. For some, having a tripod that can take eye-level photographs is a crucial component of their style. In contrast, others want a tripod that can be attached to trees and used to support your camera. Finally, you can select a tripod like the SLIK Professional, which has an excellent height range of 100 inches.

Frequently Asked Questions

What's The Difference Between Ball Joint Tripods And 3-way Pan And Tilt Tripods?

The tripod heads with a 3-way pan and tilt allow for movement up and down and side to side. This could suggest that they pan smoothly in specific directions. However, it could also mean that rotating to diagonal angles is difficult or impossible. Ball joint tripods work on a sphere, allowing them to be adjusted to practically any angle, enhancing versatility.

What Is The Difference Between Tripods Made Of Aluminum And Carbon Fiber?

Aluminum is a less expensive material, but it is also not as light or as robust. Some lightweight camera tripods are composed of carbon fiber. However, they are more expensive in exchange for being more robust and lighter than an aluminum model of the same size.

Conclusion

The best tripod for travel should be light, compact, strong, and simple to assemble. A well-made tripod should last for years; therefore, it is good to invest in one. These best travel tripods will help you enhance your real estate photography by helping you take creative images and increase camera stability.

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