While more and more camera manufacturers seem to be boasting about the ruggedness of their latest models, they're still fragile and complex devices that can stop functioning if treated too harshly, especially in outdoor travel and adventure situations. We can't recommend enough protecting your investment from scratches, dings and other rough-housing that can easily affect the delicate electronics within using some of the following accessories...
1. Underwater Housings: You'd expect underwater housings to be expensive (some of them can be) but protecting a point-and-shoot is actually affordable. Check out the housings from Nineast. They accommodate point-and-shoots as well as DSLRs and only cost between $21 and $96. There are also good ones from Dicapac. If budget is really an issue, or if you're just one prone to go the DIY route, you could always build your own underwater housing.
2. Alpinist Camera Case: As the name implies, these clever cases are actually made for mountain bound adventurers, but that doesn't mean you can't use them when you're taking photos in less extreme walkabouts. This case is available in three different sizes to suit your camera and costs between $60 to $120. The cases are made from aircraft grade aluminum.
3. Quick Release Tripods: Tripods are great for long exposure shots and portraits, but getting a quick release tripod is a sensible precaution (and also produces much sharper photos, free of blur). The Sunpak Carbon fiber tripod keeps things light while still being safe.
4. UV Lens Filter While there are pros and cons to using a UV lens filter when it comes to image quality, there's no doubt that using one will protect your expensive lens from being scratched. If you've lugged around your DSLR a few times, you quickly understand how easy it can be for this to happen; it's better to crack a UV lens filter than the real deal underneath. We use Hoya filters ($15-$80) on all of our lenses and have never looked back.
5. Neoprene Rugged Camera Case: These cases are a dime a dozen (you can find one on Amazon for $8) but they will get the job done when it comes to protection basics for your camera. While not everyone needs a Vanguard Supreme hard case (almost indestructible as shown above, starts at $65), like while out for a drunken night out, it's a good idea to protect yourself from the odd bump and grind.