Specifically, Shanghai. The packing challenge is compounded by the fact that a hard case is better protection for your stuff that’s going to be checked in. Not to mention a bit more secure in terms of airport pilferage. The problem is once in China, I’ve a couple of trains to take. From maglevs to intercity fast trains. Packing a backpack in there solves the problem but not the capacity and weight issues. My empty hard case weights 4kg empty. My 65-liter backpack weights 2.5 kg empty.

I also have to pack in my Manfrotto tripod. Clothes for a week at least (I always do laundry on a trip) and enough rain gear considering that certain places are nicer with rain. You also don’t want to stop shooting when the weather turns bad — you’ll miss out the better photos of the trip! Target loaded weight – 18kg. Usually airlines won’t give a hoot if you exceed the weight by a kilo or two but I do have fond memories of three people with 105kg of checked baggage at Beijing Capital International Airport! On our return trip, we have five this time which should give us about a hundred kilos. More than enough unless someone was overzealous in their shopping!

Other problem is that my day pack will primarily consist of camera equipment but I’ll also have my Dell Mini 9, Sandisk card readers, two portable SATA drives, battery chargers, batteries, assorted cables, you know the drill. For longer excursions out of my Shanghai base, 65-liters is good. For overnight sojourns, it is unwieldy. Looks like I’ll have to bring along a little stuff sack so that I can cram a nights’ worth of clothes, etc into the stuff sack along with my day pack loaded with cameras.

ThinkTankPhoto Cable Management 50 – excellent way to organize my cable mess.

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