When you’re traveling, two things matter: size and weight. A good travel tripod is either tiny or easy to lug around. The good news is that one doesn’t have to break the bank to get a high quality tripod that’s either of a small size or shockingly lightweight. These travel tripods range in their proficiency, but they’re all better than standard tripods for moving about the country.
Here are our top five travel tripods in order of highest to lowest price.
1. Manfrotto BeFree Compact Lightweight Tripod
The Manfrotto Befree tripod is a great way to stabilize your camera on the go. It offers durable, brand-name quality and a shockingly low weight. Users love its quick release plate and its ability to fit in most backpacks. The one drawback, as with most tripods in this price class, is that its head isn’t apt for panning during video recording. Otherwise, this tripod offers pro quality at an extremely light weight and reasonable price.
- Supports up to 8.8lb camera
- Small enough to fit under an airplane seat
- Durable, brand-name quality and design
- Quick release plate means taking your camera out happens quickly
- Designed to fit in backpacks
- Legs must be inverted to store inside bag
- Very lightweight meaning it can shift for long exposures
- Uses a ball joint meaning it’s not suitable for for panning during video
2. Dolica Ultra Compact Tripod
Boasting a massive 15 lb weight limit, the Dolica Compact Tripod works with almost any camera and lens set-up. It’s dual center column means it’s rock sturdy, though it can be a tad shaky when fully extended. Users love its nonslip rubber feet and useful, rubberized pan and tilt knobs.
- Max load of 15 pounds makes it great for any camera or camcorder
- Ball head with quick release camera plate and rubberized tilt and pan knobs
- Legs have nonslip rubber feet (good for outdoor photography)
- Compatible with both point-and-shoot and DSLRs
- Dual center column for additional expansion
- Can be a bit shaky when fully extended
- Quick connect is too small for larger DSLRs
- When legs are completely unlocked can slip out of each other
3. Reticam Tabletop Tripod
If one is searching for a travel tripod with many features, the Reticam Tabletop Tripod offers amazing value. Users love its low weight and its surprisingly high quality head. It won’t shake and for a tripod of this price and weight, offers surprisingly smooth pans.
- Carry case included, low weight
- Great build quality
- Loved by users for being easy to carry and durable
- Despite tiny size, it’s not prone to shaking
- Smooth pans for a tripod of its size and weight
- Not capable of holding heavy digital cameras or big, telephoto lenses
- One buyer claimed it was only good stabilizing a camera
- One buyer had an issue with durability
4. Manfrotto Pixi Mini Tripod
Manfrotto is a legendary brand that delivers big and small. This travel tripod doesn’t change heights, but it makes up for it with a superb build quality and great ball head. It sets up lightning fast and can even be used as a hand grip.
Price: $24.88 (11 percent off MSRP)
- Lock system is speedy using push button
- Compatible with smart phones, DSLRs, mirrorless, and other cameras
- Small enough to easily fit in one’s pocket
- Basically instant setup time
- Double as a camera-holder or grip
- Can’t hold heavy cameras and lenses
- One buyer found it broke easily
- One buyer had a problem with a lack of stiffness, leading to wobble
5. KobraTech Mini Tripod Stand
Kobratech’s travel tripod stand is flexible and lets users hold on to things. Plus, it also includes a Bluetooth remote, meaning one can capture their moments from a distance. It works on most surfaces and includes a 90-day warranty, lest one is dissatisfied. For those looking for a travel tripod with a small carrying capacity, the Kobratech is the way to go.
Price: $19.95 (43 percent off MSRP)
- Legs are not fixed and can attach to various surfaces
- Money back guarantee lasting 90 days
- Easy to hold and use as grip
- Remote shutter controller included
- Swivel ball joint caused issues for one user
- Product’s durability found to be low by one buyer
- One buyer’s camera phone was too large for the tripod