5 Options for Backing-Up Your Photos on the Move

To prevent losing all your precious photos and videos, the best idea is to keep your data regularly backed-up. However, if you’re travelling or on the move, then this can be easier said than done. We’ve reviewed a few of the most practical options for backing-up your snaps that are on the market right now.

1. Multiple SD cards


Various branded SD cards

Rating: 8/10
Storage: 500MB – 64GB
Price: $5 – $30

Memory cards are the smallest, lightest option for backing-up your photos. At the size of a coin, you’ll have no problem fitting them into your luggage. They are also the most direct option as they are inserted into you camera or phone and save everything straight from the source. There’s no scrimping on quality either as they save photos at the resolution you take them at.

The only hassle is remembering to regularly swap your memory cards. Obviously, the more often you replace your memory card with a new one, the less chance you have of losing all your photos if your camera is lost or stolen. This leaves you with two options; occasionally finding a computer with internet access to upload your photos to an online storage system, or having enough memory cards to switch over throughout  your travels. We recommend the latter.


– Low budget
– Small/Medium storage needs
– No internet access
– Occassional computer access
– Digital camera or phone use
– Limited luggage space

2. Cloud Storage


One Drive, Google Drive and Mega

Rating: 9/10
Storage: 15GB – 50GB
Price: FREE

This doesn’t just mean ‘the cloud’, there are tonnes of cloud storage services. Our favourite have to be: One Drive, Google Drive and Mega. They all offer free storage space with relatively easy set ups. There is a surprisingly generous amount of free storage on each program. In fact, you will probably find it hard to use up Mega’s whopping amount of 50GB. However, if you somehow manage, you can upgrade any of these accounts to have more storage.

This is the best option if you are travelling in countries where you can regularly reach wifi. Cloud storage is suitable for both phone and digital camera use. The best thing about this option is that it is free and it’s not something that can be stolen (unless you’re a celebrity with naked selfies…) Unlike some of the physical storage options, if your belongings go missing then you won’t wont be at risk of losing your camera and your photo back-ups.


– Low budget
– Large storage needs
– Regular internet access
– Regular computer access
– Digital camera use
– Limited luggage space
– Back-up cannot be stolen

3. USB Stick / Portable drive


Verbatim portable hard drive and various branded USB sticks

Rating: 6/10
Storage: 8GB – 2TB
Price: $5 – $100

Yes, we know, a USB stick sounds like a pretty old school device. However, it’s still one of the best! A basic USB stick is usually compatible with all the stone-age computers that you will encounter in hostels and internet cafes. It’s also as small and light as a pack of gum so you won’t need to worry about heavy hand-luggage. The USB is also one of the cheaper options and is unlikely to be stolen.

The portable drive, on the other hand, is a little more pricey but obviously has much more storage space than a USB stick. With up to 2TB of storage at your fingertips, most photographers would find it very difficult to run out of space. However, other than the huge storage space, we found there weren’t really any extra benefits of having a portable hard drive rather than multiple SD cards, it’s just a matter of preference.


– Low/Mid budget
– Small/Large storage needs
– No internet access
– Regular computer access
– Digital camera use
– Limited luggage space

4. Chromebook / Tablet


Google Chromebook and Microsoft Surface tablet

Rating: 7/10
Storage: 4GB – 32GB
Price: $200 – $550

This is more of a ‘flash packer’ option. If you would like the flexibility of backing-up and editing your pictures wherever you please, then this is by far the best option. You don’t need internet for this method so you won’t be spending hours trying to connect to your hostels dodgy wifi. Tablets and netbooks are also substantially lighter than laptops so it may be worth splashing out on something smaller so save yourself sore shoulders and overweight luggage costs.

For a tablet, the only accessory you will need is a ‘tablet adaptor’ or an ‘SD card’ which you can buy on Amazon for as little as $4. For the chromebook, or any netbook, your camera/phone should come with a USB cable that is compatible.

On the otherhand, tablets are definitely the most delicate option. They are more likely to be damaged in transit and they are obviously more likely to be stolen than the cheaper back-up options.


– High budget
– Medium storage needs
– No internet access
– No computer access
– Digital camera use
– COMFORTABLE luggage space
– Secure accommodation
– Full control and flexibility; photo editing, etc.

5. Storage App


ShoeBox app

Rating: 8/10
Storage: Unlimited
Price: Free

There is an aready of apps to backup the photos on your phone. Our favourite had to be ShoeBox as it had unlimited storage (yes, you read that correctly – unlimited!) and it was easy to use. However, we actually found most of the apps to be fairly similar. So, it’s just a matter of finding your favourite provider. Or, if you are particularly precautious then you can download more than one app and keep multiple backups of your snaps.

The only downside of using a phone app to back-up your photos is that most of them need regular internet access and the program needs to be running to do its stuff. However, the majority of the apps are free, have generous storage and, if you’re travelling in a place with plenty of wifi options, are definitely the most hassle free option for photos on your phone.


– Low budget
– Large storage needs
– Regular internet access
– No computer access
– Phone use
– Limited luggage space
– Back-up cannot be stolen!


Overall, we found that there are so many free storage options with plenty of memory that there isn’t much point in splashing out on expensive storage. On the other hand, most of the free options are reliant on regular internet access.

Overall, our favourite back-up options for photographers on the move are; Mega for digital camera users and ShoeBox for phone users, providing you have internet access. For those who don’t have regular internet access, a handful of compatible SD cards/MicroSD cards are the best option for both phone and camera users.

If you have lost or found a digital device and would like to return the pictures, contact us on Twitter.


3 responses to “5 Options for Backing-Up Your Photos on the Move

  1. Pingback: 8 Travel Essentials for Techies |·

  2. Pingback: 7 Ways to Prevent Theft of Your Gadgets on the Road | It's Somewhere·

  3. Pingback: How To Protect Your Stuff in Hostels | It's Somewhere·

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