Choosing the best travel camera under $200 requires careful research. Here we examine point-and-shoot cameras as well as other compact cameras that produce high-quality images and are ideal for your travel needs. When evaluating a travel camera, travelers should consider the locations they will visit (especially if a waterproof camera is needed), compatibility with other devices (such as smartphones and tablets), desired features (such as autofocus, action shooting, color settings, video capabilities), and overall value and consumer reviews.
Unlike many professional DSLR cameras, today’s high-tech digital compact cameras in the “rugged camera” class are easy enough for even amateur photographers to master and produce decent image quality and video recording capabilities and are a must for any traveler who wants to try her hand at Vlogging.
As you plan your journey abroad, we’ll help you through the ins and outs of choosing a reliable and high-quality travel camera for under $200.
How to Choose the Best Travel Camera
Continued advancements in technology have brought us an impressive class of point-and-shoot cameras in this budget category. They are jam-packed with sophisticated features such as wide-angle lenses and quality image sensors and are designed for even beginners to produce decent image quality with ease. The ability to capture amazing action shots or high-quality video recordings is easier than ever before. Coupled with the easy image transfer process to smartphones and other devices, the use of compact digital cameras is key to staying connected during travel. With the simple push of a button, these “action cameras” can transfer images to mobile devices and allow you to share them on social media platforms.
When researching travel cameras, you should consider these questions:
- What is the size and weight of the camera? Is it durable and easy to carry around?
- How will the lens perform in low lighting and what is the optical zoom?
- Can the camera sync to my Wi-Fi network and will I be able to transfer images easily?
- Is the camera equipped for geotagging, to record the locations of my images?
- Is the camera waterproof, shockproof, and freezeproof?
- Does the camera have HD video capability?
- How are the autofocus settings reviewed by users and can I use manual settings as well?
- How is the color quality rated in images produced by the camera, including those shot underwater?
- What is the typical battery life?
- What accessories are included and does it come with a warranty from the manufacturer?
Recommended Best Travel Camera Under $200
Three affordable options travelers may wish to consider in the "Best Travel Camera Under $200" category are: the Nikon Coolpix W100 Rugged Digital Camera, Canon PowerShot Elph 180 Digital Camera and Sony DSCWX220 B 18.2 MP Digital Camera. Each of these models boasts features ideal for travelers who need a lightweight and durable camera.
Nikon Coolpix W100 Rugged Digital Camera Review
Nikon Coolpix W100 Rugged Digital Camera - Countless hobbyist photographers have proclaimed the Nikon Coolpix W100 Rugged Digital Camera to be one of the best travel cameras on the market.
- Comprehensive LCD display, Waterproof and Shockproof body, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity and SnapBridge app
- Nikon offers it as part of a bundle which includes memory card, travel charger and tripod
- Top rated for video recording
Full Review: Nikon Coolpix W100 Rugged Digital Camera Review
Canon PowerShot Elph 180 Digital Camera Review
Canon PowerShot Elph 180 Digital Camera - Ideal for the infrequent photographer who just wants some outstanding photographic memories of their well-deserved vacations.
- Compact body, image stabilization, face detention and package bundles including SD cards
- Image recovery software
- 8x optical zoom
Full Review: Canon PowerShot Elph 180 Digital Camera Review
Sony DSCWX220 B 18.2 MP Digital Camera Review
Sony DSCWX220 B 18.2 MP Digital Camera - The compact Cyber-shot DSC-WX220 from Sony is a great choice for the amateur to moderate photographer and videographer.
- Optical Zoom, full HD video recording in 1080/60p, Sweep Panorama mode
- Long Battery Life
- Wi-Fi Connectivity, Lightweight design, multiple color options
Full Review: Sony DSCWX220 B 18.2 MP Digital Camera Review
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Cameras Under $200 Amazon Best Sellers
- DON'T MISS A THING WITH NEST ALERTS: Whether the kids just came home from school or the dog has decided to eat those new pillows you just bought; the Nest Cam sees it all! Get alerts through your Nest App whenever the camera detects movement and activity. And the coolest part is that the Nest Cam can tell the difference between movement from say a hand getting into a cookie jar, and a person entering a room. Person Alerts and Activity Alerts can help keep your home safe even if you aren't there.
- BE HEARD WITH NEST: Nest Cam Indoor has a built-in speaker and mic, so you can hear what's happening at home. Or tell the dog to get off the couch.
- SET IT UP ANYWHERE: The compact size of the Nest Cam makes installation a breeze. Nest Cam Indoor's stand works in all kinds of homes, on all types of surfaces. Set it down on something flat, like a table or shelf. The Nest Cam has a built-in magnet so you can stick it to something metallic. Use the removable wall plate to attach Nest Cam to a wall. Or you can unscrew the camera from the base and attach it to any standard tripod mount.
- WORKS WITH NEST: Nest has worked hard to design thoughtful devices to help keep you safe and secure. Nest devices not only communicate with each other but also with the other smart devices around your home. Your Nest Secure can use your smart light bulbs to help get your attention in the event of an emergency; your smart washer and dryer can take the data from Nest and run the next load of laundry when energy demand is low. Look for the Works with Nest badge and let Nest handle the rest.
- THERE'S NO PLACE LIKE A NEST HOME: We love home. It's the best place in the world. But not everything inside our homes is lovable. Some things beep at us; fail without warning; keep us in the dark. There are things we've learned to ignore. We think these things should do more. Nest is focused on making simple, human, delightful things. That's how we're creating the thoughtful home: A home that takes care of the people inside it and the world around it.
- 20.1 megapixel plus 35x zoom brings detailed subjects close - 3.0" LCD screen for easy viewing and photo editing
- Optical SteadyShot image stabilization reduces blur
- Capture your videos in 720p HD Movie mode
- Does not support Wifi
- Works with Alexa for voice control (Alexa device sold separately).
- 100% Wire-free - Free of power cords and wiring hassles
- 1080p HD - High quality video with sharper and brighter details
- Activity Zones - Highlight areas in your camera's view where you want to receive motion alerts (Available when plugged in and used indoors)
- Optional 24/7 Continuous Video Recording - Upgrade to keep nonstop recordings in the cloud (Available when plugged in and used indoors)
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