In the past 10+ years I have always bought camera equipment as I had the funds for it. Often times, I would sell one lens that I no longer wanted to pay for a different lens. Since most lenses retain a high % of their value, I acted as my own lens rental company, buying and selling as I wanted to try new things. While this may not be practical for everyone, it was for me.
In late July, I went on a trip to Alaska with my mom. Side note: It is wonderful to get to know your parents in new ways once you are an adult with your own kids. For this venture, I knew I’d have the opportunity to photograph wildlife from both the cruise ship and on some special excursions. My longest lens reaches to 200mm. From a lot of research, I learned that it would not be long enough, especially not on a full-frame Canon 5D MKIII.
Enter… lens rental. It was the perfect opportunity to rent camera equipment that I would not necessarily need long-term. Within 2 days, Aperturent sent me a Canon 7D, 100-400, and 1.4 extender for my trip. I used the camera and lens, but never needed the extender. Imagine if I bought it… I captured images of bears, whales, closeups of glaciers, and more. It would have cost me thousands of dollars to buy these items but the rental price was only a few hundred dollars. It was the perfect choice.
After the experience I brainstormed why others may want to consider lens rental.
Here are 5 Reasons Why You Should Consider Renting Your Next Lens (Or Other Camera Equipment):
- Try before you buy – I get questions daily about what lenses or camera I use. Consider renting before your next big purchase.
- Fill a short term need, such as a vacation or uncommon photo shoot – this is great when you will be photographing things at different focal length that you usually do.
- Replace lens or camera that is being repaired – when your equipment is not working properly or is in for cleaning or service, you do not have to be without.
- Extra gear for backup during an important event such as a wedding – you should always have backup during important events where a reshoot is impossible.
- To get out of a rut – sometimes a fun lens, like a macro, tilt-shift, or fish-eye can get you thinking creatively. But you may not want to invest in one long-term.
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