Can you rent cameras and lenses online: Yes, try before you buy

can you rent cameras lenses online

As a beginner, I wanted to try every lens combination possible for my full-frame Sony mirrorless cameras.

I wanted to mimic styles from all the photographers I studied online so I felt I needed every lens possible to make that happen.

Can you rent photography gear online?

Yes, you rent photography gear such as cameras, lenses and lighting online. Rent from companies like and and more. There are some advantages to renting gear online. You place your order online and then have the equipment shipped right to you. Once the rental period is completed, return all items with your prepaid packaging and you’re done. 

I learned quickly that photography can be an expensive hobby and even more pricey when you’re making it your full-time job.

Little did I know, how expensive some of these lenses were, but I found a simple solution. Renting cameras, lenses and other gear from online rental companies. Online Camera Lens Rental Company Online Camera Lens Rental Company

Why you should rent cameras and lenses online

My favorite photographers were using lenses ranging from the 35mm to the 85mm and up. Some used prime lenses.

Others swore by zoom lenses like the 24-70mm f2.8, and the 70-200mm f2.8 but I knew I couldn’t afford them all.

As a beginner, I thought I needed a large lens collection, but nothing could be further from the truth.

Let’s check out all the great reasons you should consider renting photography gear online.

Save money renting cameras and lenses

Purchasing lenses can be expensive depending on the type, so this is a great affordable way to try them out first before you buy.

Cameras bodies are the same way. It is an investment to get equipment and you want to find the right fit for your style.

Nothing is worse than getting a camera or lens and wanting to return it a few days later because it’s not what you expected. Don’t get stuck with buyer’s remorse.

Yes, it can be expensive to rent gear but you are still saving yourself money by trying out the gear first and finding a good fit.

Some companies will even credit you the rental fees if you decide to keep the lens. That’s an added bonus and depending on the condition of the gear, you could save even more money.

Try different lens combinations when renting online
Renting Lenses online – Try new combinations

Rent different camera and lens combinations

Renting cameras and lenses gives you the opportunity to try many focal lengths and camera combinations before you purchase and make a big investment.

Whether photography is a just a hobby or a full-time commitment, you can try new gear when you are looking to switch up your style.

Maybe you’ll like prime lenses over zooms or vice versa. You never know until you give them a try.

Every photographer is different and renting gives you the flexibility to craft your own unique style without having to purchase and return equipment to retail stores.

Grow past old gear, by renting new gear

Every year, new gear comes out and we can’t wait to try it. Camera brands introduce new technology and it promises to make our photography that much easier to do.

While I kind-of agree with this, you never know if you’re ready for an upgrade until you try the newest cameras. Renting gives you this option without commitment.

When new gear is announced, online retailers normally get them first and within a few weeks, many other rental companies will have the same equipment available for rent.

This is your chance to try out the latest and greatest and decide if upgrading is right for you.

Get flexible in your photography skills

I know many wedding photographers who will rent specialized lenses for big weddings or events.

For example, I have a friend who will rent a macro lens just for wedding ring shots and capturing details of decorations.

The doesn’t need the macro functionality that often so renting is perfect for her. Online Camera Lens Rental Company Online Camera Lens Rental Company

Renting is convenient by shipping to your doorstep

In the world of Amazon, I am used to having my purchased items shipped and delivered right to my door.

This is the same with lens rentals. I order online on my own time and I have the product shipped right to my door.

Once the timeframe is completed, I place the gear back in its box and drop it off at a local UPS store. I can’t think of anything easier.

Online camera and lens rental price comparisons

Check out these price comparisons on popular cameras and lenses from three different online rental companies.

The pricing is pretty close, but keep in mind you have taxes and insurance if you choose to add on more.

Sony a7iii Camera

7 Day Rental

$101.00 + tax

Sony a7iii Camera
7 Day Rental
102.00 + tax

Sony a7iii Camera
7 Day Rental
$92.00 + tax

Sony 24-70mm f2.8

7 Day Rental

$125.00 + tax

Sony 24-70mm f2.8
7 Day Rental
$104.00 + tax

Sony 24-70mm f2.8
7 Day Rental
$140.00 + tax

Sony 70-200 f2.8 GM

4 Day Rental

$107.11 + tax

Sony 70-200 f2.8 GM
4 Day Rental
$86.00 + tax

Sony 70-200 f2.8 GM
3 Day Rental
$96.00 + tax

Sony 16-35 f2.8 GM
4 Day Rental
105.00 + tax

Sony 16-35 f2.8 GM
4 Day Rental
101.00 + tax

Sony 16-35 f2.8 GM
4 Day Rental
$106.00 + tax

Sony 35mm f1.8 FE
4 Day Rental
$33.75 + tax

Sony 35mm f1.8 FE
4 Day Rental
$37.00 + tax

Sony 35mm f1.8 FE
3 Day Rental
$35.00 + tax

Sony 55mm f1.8 Zeiss
4 Day Rental
$51.00 + tax

Sony 55mm f1.8 Zeiss
4 Day Rental
$50 + tax

Sony 55mm f1.8 Zeiss
4 Day Rental
$49 + tax

Sony 85mm f1.4 GM
7 Day Rental
$104.00 + tax

Sony 85mm f1.4 GM
7 Day Rental
$105.00 + tax

Sony 85mm f1.4 GM
7 Day Rental
$102.00 + tax

Rent or don’t rent – At least it’s an option

Whether you choose to rent or not, keep in mind this option is always available to you. If you are unsure about the process, call the rental company and talk with an associate.

Ask any questions up front so you will feel comfortable about getting your next rental. Online Camera Lens Rental Company Online Camera Lens Rental Company

What companies rent photography gear online?

Here are a few options to consider for renting gear online. I use and the most.

Both are great companies and give you the option to keep the gear if you decide to make a purchase.


How do you get started renting gear online

First, consider the timeframe you want to rent your gear. Some places have a minimum of 3 days and this can go to 30 days or more.

Pricing varies so make sure to shop around to see the best prices and options.

Keep in mind you will also be paying a shipping fee that will be included in the rental agreement.

Once you find the gear you want start the order process online and book for the time frame you need.

Once completed, and payment is received, you will get a confirmation and additional instructions.

The process is pretty seamless as I am sure they have done this with thousands of customers online.

Renting Lenses Online
Renting Lenses Online

Should you get rental insurance when renting gear

Yes, just like buying a warranty for a new piece of equipment, online rental companies offer rental insurance for all photography gear.

This helps cover you in the event of damages, lost or stolen gear and much more.

It happens to everyone and you will want to be protected as much as possible so don’t skip this at checkout.

Also, make sure you understand all the types of coverage that the insurance covers. If you have any questions, reach out to the companies for more info.

You can’t ship to P.O. box addresses

If I remember correctly, they do not ship to P.O. Boxes. You must have a full shipping address to have the item sent to you.

Please double check with each online rental store to see if they offer any other types of shipping for your particular needs.

Rent photography gear ahead of time

Remember that online rental companies are based all around the United States, but the gear will still take time to get to you.

I recommend placing your booking order at least 1 week in advance. This accounts for shipping time and makes sure there is time to get the equipment to your door.

What type of gear can you rent online

You can rent a variety of photography equipment including:

  • Cameras
  • Lenses
  • Tripods
  • Camera accessories
  • Flash Units
  • Studio Strobes
  • LED Lighting
  • Batteries
  • Monitors
  • Audio Equipment
  • Video equipment
  • Camera bags
  • Computers
  • And so much more
Rent the Sony 70-200mm f2.8 GM Lens Online
Rent the Sony 70-200mm f2.8 GM Lens Online

What is the downside of renting gear online

This would not be a complete article without having the drawbacks of renting photography gear online.

Shipping is the biggest drawback to rentals. It can take a few days to get your gear so this is not a fast or emergency option.

Popular gear or brand-new gear can be hard to find available to rent. Just like retail stores, some online rental companies will only have a select amount of new equipment for rent.

You will have to be patient for new gear if you don’t place your order in advance.

Some companies also require your signature to verify you received the gear.

If your package is being delivered why you are out at the office then you might miss the delivery and will have to wait another day.

In order to get around this, I have the shipment rerouted to my local Walgreens and I pick up the package after work.

Check your UPS shipping options to see other locations that might be available for you.

Borrowlenses online rental company
Borrowlenses online rental company

My favorite photography gear to rent online

I rent lenses all the time as a beginner photographer. It’s easy and I wanted to try out as many as I could before I starting investing in new gear.

Even renting can get expensive, so I waited for rental specials and signed up for company newsletters.

They usually provided coupons which would help me save some money on renting.

Other than lenses, I’ve also rented camera bodies. The Sony a7iii was a great camera to rent for portrait photography.

I wanted to see if it was worth upgrading from my Sony a7ii. I ended up buying the A7iii a few weeks later.

Photography gear like cameras and lenses are an investment

Renting gives you a unique perspective that you just can’t get from watching YouTube videos or scrolling endlessly through profiles and checking out photography.

Yes, gear can be expensive, but it can also hold its value when it comes time to resale. Many photographers will sell gently used gear and recoup a portion of their initial investments.

What company I use to rent photography gear online is my go-to online photography rental store. They have a large selection of photography gear and they have always made it easy to get what I need and have it shipped to my door.

I’m a creature of habit to I stick with what works, and they have not failed me yet.

(Disclaimer: I’m not paid or affiliated with I just really like renting from them.)

Conclusion to renting photography gear online

Renting photography gear online is a good way to save money and try out new equipment over buying retail. It will save you the hassle of purchasing and then returning your products.

Online rental companies have made it convenient and simple to rent the gear you want and have it shipped right to your door, so don’t rule out renting in your future.

*Affiliate Disclaimer - I am a proud partner of the various affiliate programs including the Affiliate Program. When you click on my links and make a purchase I make a commision which goes to helping me support this blog. Thanks!

You May Also Like