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Old 03-21-2015, 11:51 AM   #1
carolina_yankee
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Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: New Jersey
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Default Lens and Camera Rentals

IF you're on the fence of which kind of lens to get or whether or not you really want to invest in a whole new camera system, lens and camera rental companies can be a great place to give your desired purchase a test run to see if you really want to commit.

I see lensrentals.com advertised more frequently, but there are others. The rental prices aren't bad compared to the price of the item and you can rent for nearly any number of days. The general way it works is that the company will FedEx or otherwise overnight you the rented equipment before you need it, you use it, then return it in the provided shipping materials. There are some logistical differences between companies, and some will start the rental from date of send, while others will start the rental from date of receipt.

There are also varying levels of insurance options, with one company offering three tiers - no insurance, damage only, or damage and theft. Another one will offer no insurance or damage insurance, but won't cover lost equipment or theft. Your own homeowners or renters policy might also provide coverage.

I like lenrentals.com because of their reviews and comments. They also assemble some rental packages based on your goals - travel, wedding, etc. They have the best range of manufacturers I've seen.

Another one is lensprotogo.com , which seems to be a bit more geared to the professional, but also has reasonable prices and a great range of equipment from all the majors.

Posters have also recommended LensGiant.com and borrowlenses.com.

Kingdom Camera Rentals is the Orlando based agency. They focus on Canon and Nikon, but they have rental packages as well as individual items, and their pricing is based on a 7 day rental (though you can adjust for your trip). They offer free delivery to Disney resorts. Of the three, they are clearly focusing on the Orlando tourism market. Since you can pick up your gear locally, or have them meet you at the resort, they would be a great option for international travelers and those who don't have easy access (location or schedule) to receiving overnight deliveries.

Kingdom Camera has announced they are closing up shop.

I suppose you could also have the rental mailed to the resort you're staying at, but the companies may have policies requiring that rentals be sent to the address on the credit card to cut down on fraud.

Also, check out your local camera stores. They'll often rent equipment, too, especially the independents if you're lucky enough to have any around!

One final bit of advice: plan to have your rental delivered to you several days before you depart to account for delivery delays (blizzards and hurricanes) as well to give you time to become familiar with your rental equipment before you try to take that once-in-a-lifetime shot at Disney between Mickey and your precious toddler! This is especially crucial if you are rental a camera instead of or in addition to a lens.

So, have you ever rented? How did it go? Would this be a good option for you?

Dirk
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Last edited by carolina_yankee; 08-01-2015 at 10:20 AM.
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