Travel Videos or Photos? 


I am all for living in the moment, mindfulness all the way, but after every trip, I look back and wish I had documented my travels better.

Amidst a million pictures, a 3 min fun video on my summer trip to London :)

After all, a vacation has to be an unforgettable experience. And while a camera continues to remain my go-to memory keeper, I have consciously switched the mode from photo to video . And to me, videos have become more holistic travel time keepers than mere still photographs.

Yes, a picture – the visual is a powerful source, and while it might be perfectly possible to convey a story in a photograph, it’s going to be more fun, interesting and alive via motion pictures ie videos.

It’s just that videos contain more stuff: movement, dialogue, facial expressions, and consequently, more emotional resonance. When I’m trying to capture a selfie against a destination marvel, I don’t want the best moment around it. I want the truest moment—I want to remember exactly what it felt like, what it sounded like, what was my mood, the people moving, why I appeared over-the-moon- all at once. And for authenticity—or, better authenticity—videos beat photos. Hands Down

And unless you have spectacular talent or a DSLR camera, the pictures, more or less tend to come out looking the same. Here’s a video that created quite a stir recently. It shows how most people take and put up almost the same pictures on Instagram:

But, the single most exclusive travel souvenir that you own is what and how you felt when you went to a place. And video-documenting ‘your experience’ is something that can you can own across the millions of similar looking travel images.

Here are a few reasons why travel videos win over photos:

1. Videos are better story tellers

By their very nature, videos are more able to convey a sense of story-telling than their still counterparts. The sheer fact that videos can have sound and photos can’t gives video a huge advantage.

In a travel video, you can hear the wind blow through the trees. You can hear the water rush down the waterfall. You can hear the people crossing the busy street as car horns are honking. Try photographing all of that, and let me know how that goes.

What I’ve found is that a video takes me back to the moment in time more than any number of pictures could.

2. Lights, Camera, Action!

Imagine- However, I’d much rather think happily about the time I slept in a cave in Malta after watching a three-minute video than after seeing a photo of it. Actually seeing people, nature and other things move around in your (or other people’s) travel videos can be enough to provoke emotions that would be impossible to capture in a photograph

Especially for action/adventure scenarios, it’s much easier to make a travel video that captures the essence of what you were feeling at the time than take a fitting travel photo.

3. Video Making is simple

Until recently, the only problem with video was that it was too hard to do it well—or, rather, it looked a little too complicated to be made. Taking a good photo was easier than taking a good video, so not just out of laziness , but even if you wanted to act fast, it was easier to snap. But that’s changed. Thanks to all the video editing apps, well you can put together a fast, fun, engaging video in no time.

So again, no excuses!

4. More Attention. More Eyeballs. More Likes

Social Media has led to impatience, receding attention span and well and the constant urge seeking novelty, there’s very little time we wish to give to posts on our newsfeeds -unless they’re interesting. And that’s where travel videos definitely score. Let’s admit, its way more fun to watch a quick travel video than to scroll through a sea of photos.

Also, social videos generate 1200% more shares than text and images combined. And admit it, with a 15-second video you can show off more of your vacation than just the cliché of a group picture or a beautiful sunset.

5. Its Unique

The places you visit stay constant for anyone and everyone who goes there too. But the only thing that will be yours to share, would be your experience of being there. What did you do new, how and why was it special, what made it so special, and the fun things that made it so cherishable. Isnt that the reason why we seek inspiration? To make our travel more memorable?

Well, then there you go, make a video of your experience and be rest assured, that’s something which will be all exclusive in the sea of wanderlust pictures.

7. Skill Building!

Video making is a great skill to develop. Besides making really engaging travel videos, you will be able to put this skill to capture special moments, occasions and even work related things. And if you pursue it seriously, video making can be pursued as a weekend/ alternative career option as well.

And at the cost of sounding arrogant and overly general to the (still) photography community- I must clarify- I don’t intend to proclaim the death of one form of expression in favor of another. And maybe they can co-exist. But with the intent of travel that most of us share, its important to rationalize the benefits. And here is where I feel videos bring alive the trip much better.

What's your take? :)