On my flight to Las Vegas to cover the CES 2012 event, I booked a seat on Bombardier Q400, so I could use my local airport instead of driving 90 minutes to San Francisco International. The tradeoff is that the Q400 is a much smaller plane than those servicing SFO. The overhead compartments are particularly tight.
I decided to go with my most powerful carry-on companions: the Pro Messenger 200 AW and the Pro Roller Lite 150 AW. Both fit under the seat or in the overhead compartment of the 60-seat Bombardier Q400.
To give you an idea of how compact the Pro Roller Lite 150 AW is, here’s a shot of it in the standard US Airline “carry-on luggage check,” and you can see that there’s room to spare. But room to spare here doesn’t mean that it fits in the overhead of a smaller plane. Fortunately, in the case of the Roller Lite 150 AW, it does fit.
Inside of the Pro Roller Lite 150 AW, I have two DSLR bodies and a Olympus PEN. Plus it holds flash, 5 lenses, my iPad, accessories, and more. I put my MacBook Air in the front pocket during travel in an Acme Made sleeve.
I put all of my clothes in the Pro Messenger 200 AW. When I arrive at my destination, I put the personal belongings in the hotel dresser, then load up the photo gear I need for the day in the shoulder bag. I keep the roller locked up in the hotel room. I like to bring a bike cable lock so I can secure it to a stationary object.
I just spent 3 days working in Las Vegas with this combination. I’ve written articles, published photographs, and managed to have a nice meal or two. I love the option of traveling light, but still having the gear I need to get my job done.
Derrick Story is the Photography Evangelist for Lowepro.