How to Make Travel Videos: Easy Step-by-Step Guide for Beginners

If you want to learn how to make travel videos to chronicle your adventures, it’s easier than you think.

Especially nowadays, when a high-quality camera is part of your smartphone.

But what exactly is the process?

We’ve put together a step-by-step guide to help you master the task, below.

how to make travel videos - smartphone

CONTENTS — In this article, you will learn how to create amazing travel videos, including:

  • Beginners Guide to Travel Videography
  • Plan for the Video
  • Research the Destination
  • Start Shooting
  • Sequence the Shots
  • Refine the Shoots
  • Work Out the Transitions
  • Edit the Video
  • Narrate the Scenes
  • Final Thoughts
  • Next Steps

DIY: Beginner’s Guide To Create Amazing Travel Videos

Traveling is always a fun experience.

You get to explore new locations, be in awe of natural and manmade wonders, taste exotic cuisines, and take home loads of memories to cherish for a long time.

The thrill of traveling multiplies if you also capture amazing videos through your camera lens with professional finesse.

Want to hone your expertise in creating spectacular movies?

This post offers you actionable insights about how to make travel videos, even if you’re a beginner.

Photo by Angela Compagnone on Unsplash

1. Plan For the Video

The first step when you’re learning how to make travel videos is to get clear on the purpose.

You can breathe life into your videos when the purpose of shooting is clear.

Your video will pivot around:

  • Idyllic views of nature’s untamed beauty
  • Monumental creations of humans
  • Gastronomic delights or gourmet cuisines
  • Swanky items to splurge on
  • The cultural or historical importance of the place
  • Off-beaten routes or exploratory fun in visiting new places
  • Luxurious, cozy hotel or resort rooms
  • Tour journey

When you establish the purpose, it will help guide you to shoot the video in an orderly manner.

This will offer viewers an immersive viewing experience, as well.

So start with a vision of the types of things you want to capture in your travel videos.

2. Learn More About The Place You’ll Visit

Next, look to online resources like YouTube, Instagram, and other platforms where you can get to know any place well.

Go through the videos you for inspiration on where and how you want to shoot your own video.

Doing research before your trip helps ensure you have an idea about the scenes you might want to shoot.

You can also plan:

  • How to be more creative in capturing a shot
  • What else to cover that might be nearby
  • The time of day when your shot will appear more glorious or spellbinding
travel video tiips

3. Start Shooting

Once you have set foot at your destination, aim your video camera or smartphone camera at the views you intend to capture.

Your trip itinerary doesn’t have to follow the script of your video, just be sure you have a list of footage you want to capture along the way.

You need to keep in mind a few things like:

  • Take a single shot and then stop rolling the camera
  • Shoot views that capture your attention only

While you might want to keep shooting to get the best content, you may just be making more work for yourself.

Single and relevant footage makes editing easier and quicker. It will save you from previewing endless footage to clip a few meaningful portions.

4. Sequence The Shots

Random shots will make it difficult for you to narrate a story.

So, you must chalk out the sequence in which you want to share the memories.

Some examples of scenes in well-sequenced footage are:

  • Fleeting views of scenic surroundings while traveling
  • Way to the destination while walking
  • Breath-taking aspects of the site after reaching the destination
  • Shopping for exotic items or enjoying lip-smacking local delicacies
  • Sunrise, sunset, or psychedelic play of lights

You may want to capture footage from different perspectives to depict various moods or aspects.

For example:

  • Fun elements
  • Close-ups of curious faces, briskly moving feet, empty streets before the crowds arrive
  • Wide-angled shots or panoramic views

You can switch between different angles in successive intervals to build and sustain viewers’ interest.

You can also vary segments with close-ups, middle-, and wide-angled shots.

Remember, this is your visual travel story.

Be creative in choosing the footage type and length, and don’t be afraid to take creative license.

5. Refine The Shots

You need to create reference points in shots that will give the brain an idea of the object or landscape’s size.

Here are some tips you can follow to refine your video:

  • Include a major attraction, monument, or large object in wide-angled shots for reference purposes
  • Don’t direct the camera lens down from the top, as it makes things appear smaller
  • Aim for bottom-up footage or position the camera at a height similar to the object being captured
  • Keep moving your camera periodically
  • Make smaller camera moves more captivating and palpable by having an object squarely before the camera
  • Capture motion shots in a forward/backward direction with a wide-angle lens
  • Zoom the lens in for perfect horizontal/ vertical shots
  • Prevent trembling shots with a sensor stabilizer or mount the camera on a gimbal
  • Employ an Optically stabilized lens for slow-motion shots
  • Use slow motions judiciously to accentuate a particular scene

You can use a good movie creator later on to polish the shots and string them together in an aesthetically pleasing manner.

edit travel videos

6. Accomplish Smooth Transitions

You can make one shot segue into another by:

  • Adding a special fade effect between scenes
  • Using transition masks available in the movie creator application
  • Applying transition through drone or time lapsing shots or capturing footage in which preceding and succeeding scenes share common views

Transitions between scenes will also be seamless if you start shooting the next footage from the same thematic object through which you had ended the previous shot.

Gradually roll the camera to focus on a new scene.

While editing your travel video, put yourself in the viewer’s shoes.

Do the shots transition abruptly?

If so, polish these up to more naturally move from scene to scene.

7. Edit the Travel Video

The next step is to put together all the footage.

You’ll need to edit them to give it a professional look.

The objective is to maintain the flow of scenes in a logical manner so that your friends and relatives can’t take their eyes off your reveling moments.

You need to lace scenes together in a visually appealing manner by aligning similar footage.

This alignment might be based on subject, camera movement, shapes, themes, or other way that unites the scenes.

The simplest thing is to put all your footage on the timeline of the video creator.

This will allow you to segregate the videos and also insert voice or music clips at appropriate points.

That brings us to our next step, narration.

8. Narrate The Scenes

If you play the video without any cue about the places, it will lack luster.

The voice-over helps viewers grasp the essence of your footage.

Once you are done editing, go through the complete video.

Mark the strategic positions where you need to guide the viewers about the scenes that shall follow.

Refrain from speaking in the backdrop all along, as this may ruin the video’s charm.

You want to give your viewers some time to absorb the footage and form thoughts and feelings about what they are seeing.

To create the voice-over:

  • Record your voice and spread it over the timeline in patches
  • Complement the audio with suitable clips
  • Avoid using fancy transitions, garish or visually overpowering colors, and other over-the-top elements. Instead, retain the raw feel of an amateurish video shot in professional garb

Finally, you’ve gone through all the steps and have a presentable, semi-professional, yet authentic travel video!

Final Thoughts on How to Make Travel Videos

This DIY (Do It Yourself) guide for beginners helps add sheen and cutting-edge to your travel videos.

Once you become adept in editing and refining videos, you will intuitively become inspired to shoot footage during your travels.

Always factor in the value your video offers for anyone considering vacationing to destinations you have covered.

By practicing your video editing skills, you may even be able to monetize your videos on popular social channels like YouTube.

Don’t lose heart if your first attempts at travel videos aren’t what you envisioned.

Each one will get better, and if you persist, you’ll learn to develop fantastic videos.

Next Steps

If you enjoy capturing videos while you travel, you might also enjoy reading these articles next:


Photo credits: Unsplash

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Jackie Gately

Jackie Gately is a seasoned travel writer, photographer, and marketing consultant who is passionate about travel. She loves casual-luxury experiences, coastal getaways, cultural attractions, and local, wholesome food and wine pairings. A perfect day ends with her toes in the sand or by chasing the sunset with her camera--ideally both.