Point-and-shoot digital cameras are great for travels and outdoor trips. They are easier to carry around than DSLR cameras due to their compact and lightweight design, not to mention they are cheaper. They are also suitable for casual photographers and those who simply want to have fun recording their memories and don’t care about advanced camera functions.
While they are no longer very popular due to the presence of smartphones, compact digital cameras still have advantages over smartphones. They offer better zoom capabilities, with many products featuring superior optical zoom for better close-up shots. Having a dedicated gadget for taking pictures and videos also saves your smartphone’s battery, which is important during extended outdoor trips.
There are a lot of point-and-shoot digital cameras out on the market. If you are in the market for a digital camera but don’t want to spend too much, check out budget point-and-shoot cameras under $100. Some of them are from popular brands such as Canon and Sony, while others are Chinese-branded. Compact cameras selling for $100 or less are limited in features compared to professional cameras, but they can get the job done and are very easy to use. They are also recommended if you travel frequently and are not comfortable taking out your expensive smartphone in public. Here are the best digital cameras under $100:
If you have a really tight budget and can’t afford to spend more than $50 on a digital camera, check out the AbergBest ABcam 218. You can get it for just around $40, which makes it one of the cheapest digital cameras on the market. A 21-megapixel camera, the ABcam 218 is not from a well-known brand, but it’s a good budget digital camera, offering features normally seen in products selling for a more expensive price.
One of the most notable aspects of the ABcam 218 is its compact and lightweight design. It’s got a slim profile and weighs less than a pound. You can easily fit it in your pocket, which makes it a lot easier to carry than a DSLR camera. It has a 2.7-inch display and supports SD cards up to 64 GB in size. There is no SD card included in the package, though, but it’s not a big deal since you can easily get one. While the lens doesn’t have any form of cover for protection, the camera comes with a soft pouch.
The ABcam 218, which has 8x digital zoom, has good picture quality for a digital camera selling for less than $50. It offers a decent list of features – including image stabilization or anti-shake, face detection, and self-timer. You can also use it to record videos, but the maximum resolution is limited to 720p. Overall, the ABcam 218 is a good budget product. It’s great for taking pictures during family outings and school field trips. It also makes for a great Christmas gift for kids who are interested in photography.
For more affordable options, check out our guide to the best digital cameras under $300.
Rugged waterproof cameras are usually on the expensive side – or at least the ones from established brands such as Nikon and Canon. You’ll need more than $100 for those products, with some of the best ones selling for over $300. The good news is that there are also budget-friendly waterproof cameras on the market, but they are not from established brands. If you are perfectly fine with that, check out the Veroyi VY-49, a waterproof digital camera selling for around $60.
The VY-49 is a 24-megapixel digital camera with 16x digital zoom, featuring dual screens – a 2.7-inch rear display and a smaller 1.8-inch front display – which is useful for underwater selfies. It offers water protection up to 16.4 feet, which is more than good enough for snorkeling and swimming in regular outdoor pools. It’s easy to use, which makes it a suitable digital camera for kids, with its bright yellow color making it more appealing to kids. (While Veroyi doesn’t offer other color options, there are other differently colored Chinese-branded products that look identical to the VY-49, with similar specifications, but they are a bit more expensive.)
Featuring anti-shake, face detection, and night mode, among other features, the VY-49 has decent picture quality for an underwater digital camera under $100. You can use it to take six consecutive shots using the continuous shooting feature, which is useful when taking pictures of sea creatures while snorkeling. You can also use it to record high-definition videos, but it’s not a recommended camera for video blogging or vlogging for YouTube, better use some of the vlogging cameras from our list for that. There is no SD card included in the package, so make sure to get one before check out (unless you already have one).
The Kodak PIXPRO FZ53 is a point-and-shoot camera with optical zoom, which separates it from the other two products above. While it’s normally up for around $90, the price regularly drops to just around $70, making it only a little more expensive than the Veroyi VY-49. Unlike the Veroyi digital camera, this one comes with color options: black, blue, and red. You can also get a unit bundled with an SD card. If you want to buy the storage separately, you need to make sure it’s a regular SD card no larger than 32 GB.
A pocket-sized digital camera, this Kodak product is easy to carry, weighing just 3.7 ounces and measuring 3.6 inches wide and 2.2 inches tall. It has a lens cover, preventing accidental scratches on the lens when packing the camera in your backpack. The rear display is 2.7 inches in diagonal size while the battery is rechargeable. You can easily switch from photo to video mode by pressing a single button at the top, which is convenient. Video recording is limited to a maximum resolution of 720p, with the frame rate capping at 30 frames per second.
The 16-megapixel PIXPRO FZ53 has a good selection of features – including anti-shake, continuous shooting, and both optical zoom (5x) and digital zoom (6x). You can also enable face, smile, and blink automatic detection. The overall picture quality is good while the user interface is easy to use, with easy switching between different modes. The PIXPRO FZ53 is a good product overall and is a recommended digital camera for casual photography and for those who want a compact and easy-to-use camera for travel.
When it comes to cameras, Nikon is one of the first brands you should check out. The popular Japanese company offers some of the best cameras, from professional cameras to point-and-shoot cameras for amateurs. The Nikon COOLPIX A10 falls in the latter category, and it’s one of the best digital cameras under $100. You can get it for just around $80, with the option to get a more expensive starter bundle that includes a memory card, a USB cable, and a camera case.
The COOLPIX A10 is a compact and lightweight camera that can be easily stored in your shirt pocket, which allows you to quickly bring it out to take photos of amazing moments. It has a user-friendly interface, featuring a 2.7-inch display at the back. The buttons don’t feel cramped and flimsy, while the rear display is bright enough. You can easily switch to video recording with a single button, which is very convenient. The camera runs on two AA batteries, accepting both alkaline and lithium batteries, along with Nikon’s rechargeable batteries.
A 16.1-megapixel camera, the COOLPIX A10 has good picture quality for a point-and-shoot camera selling for less than $100. The 5x optical zoom allows for superior zoom capabilities compared to digital zoom, while the Auto Mode – which automatically selects the best settings for you – is useful for those who don’t want to tinker with the settings too much. The video quality, on the other hand, is decent at best, with the max resolution limited to 720p, which can also be said for most other point-and-shoot cameras in the same price range.
For more top-quality cameras available for a good price, be sure to browse our list of the top mirrorless cameras under $500.
One of the most popular point-and-shoot cameras, the Sony DSC-W800 is another fantastic option if you prefer a product from a well-established brand. It’s a 20.1-megapixel digital camera with both optical zoom (5x) and digital zoom (up to 40x) for superb close-up shots. It’s easy to use and even includes an in-camera guide for the different functions, which is convenient for those not too familiar with camera settings and features.
The DSC-W800 has a compact design, easily fitting in your palm for a more secure grip when taking photos or videos while on the move. There is a 2.7-inch LCD at the back, with the option to adjust the screen brightness. The camera’s battery life is good, with Sony claiming a battery life of around 100 minutes or up to 200 shots when the camera is used strictly for still images. You can easily charge it using a USB cable via a computer or a wall socket.
Featuring multiple shooting and scene modes, this Sony digital camera has decent picture quality overall. It has blink detection, image stabilization, adjustable smile detection, and panorama mode, among other features. With panorama mode, you can capture the full beauty of beach sunsets, sprawling country hills, and seemingly never-ending green plains. The low-light performance is subpar, though, with many modern smartphone cameras offering better pictures in low-light settings. All in all, the DSC-W800 is a great product. You can use it as your go-to compact camera for family outings and travels around the world, with its different scene modes allowing for versatility.
If you are looking for a perfect travel companion, be sure to invest in a reliable compact travel camera from our list.
If you want a digital camera that comes with nostalgic appeal, check out the Polaroid Snap POLSP01, an instant camera that can also digitally save images. It has an integrated Zink printer that produces 2 x 3 prints, and it supports a microSD card for digital storage. With this camera, you get the best of both worlds. There are different color options for this product, including black, red, and white. The package includes a wrist strap and a micro USB cable for charging and interfacing with a computer.
The POLSP01 has a minimalist design. It has a magnetic lens cover and includes a tripod mount at the bottom. There is no LCD at the back for viewing images saved in the memory card and there aren’t many buttons. The camera turns on by pressing the pop-up viewfinder and turns off by pushing it back down. The buttons at the top include the shutter-release button, the self-timer button, and a couple of special effects buttons: one adds a classic white border to the prints while the other is for the three color options.
On the left side, you’ll find the microSD card and micro USB slots, with the former accepting memory cards up to 32 GB in size. The USB interface is just a regular micro USB interface, so you can use any micro USB cable if the included cable becomes problematic. The camera can hold up to 10 Zink sheets, which are loaded into a compartment at the rear. There are also three indicator lights at the rear, one each for the battery, the print paper, and the memory card. The prints come out on the right side of the camera, with the printing taking less than one minute to finish.
A 10-megapixel camera, the POLSP01 has decent picture quality, but the low-light performance is not that great. You can shoot in photo booth mode, with the camera taking up to four shots continuously and printing all of them on the same paper. (The images are individually saved on the memory card, though.) The camera will automatically print and digitally save the image when there is paper loaded, with no option to switch to digital mode only. However, the camera can be used in digital mode when there is no paper loaded.
Overall, the POLSP01 is a recommended digital camera for those who want the perks of instant cameras and are perfectly fine with limited camera settings. It has a good rechargeable battery and prints fast, and it’s easy to use. Keep in mind that there are no Zink sheets included in the package, so you’ll need to buy them separately.
The Sony DSC-W830 is a better option if you like the Sony DSC-W800 but find its optical zoom too limiting. This more expensive Sony digital camera offers 8x optical zoom and up to 64x digital zoom for still images. While it normally sells for over $100, it goes on sale regularly, with the price dropping to around $90-95 for brand-new units.
Available in black and silver, the 20.1-megapixel DSC-W830 has a compact and lightweight design, which makes it a suitable point-and-shoot camera for travel and outdoor excursions. It has a 2.7-inch LCD at the rear, with most of the buttons located next to it. Unlike with the DSC-W800, there is no dedicated video button on this camera; instead, there is a sliding button for switching between photo, panorama, and movie modes. The unit includes a rechargeable battery and an internal memory that’s around 27 MB.
The DSC-W830 has decent overall picture quality – images have decent contrast and don’t look oversaturated. It offers image stabilization, continuous shooting, and face detection (up to eight faces), among other features. With panorama mode, you can fully capture breathtaking landscapes, with the mode allowing up to 360 degrees of coverage. While the resolution is limited to 720p, the video quality is also good, which makes the DSC-W830 a decent starter camera for vloggers. If you want a Sony digital camera with a better optical zoom than the DSC-W800, check out the DSC-W830 instead.
Here are some of the top-rated digital cameras under $200 you may like. Check them out.
The Canon PowerShot ELPH 160 is a compact camera with good battery life, which makes it a suitable point-and-shoot camera for extended outdoor adventures. It has an Eco Mode, easily activated by pressing a dedicated button at the rear. In Eco Mode, the camera can be used to take up to around 310 shots, according to Canon. You can get the silver model of this product for just a hair under $100, with the other variants usually selling for much more.
Measuring 3.8 inches wide, 2.1 inches tall, and 0.9 inches thin, the PowerShot ELPH 160 is a slim camera that will easily fit in your pocket, which makes it easy to carry for travel. It has a user-friendly interface, featuring a 2.7-inch display and well-spaced buttons at the rear. Unlike with some compact cameras in the same price range, there is a dedicated movie button at the back. There is also a Help button if you want to review some of the camera’s functions. The camera comes with a rechargeable battery, an external battery charger, and a wrist strap; there is no SD card included.
Featuring 8x optical zoom, the 20-megapixel PowerShot ELPH 160 is a good digital camera for casual photography. The picture quality is decent while the camera operation is smooth, with a fast focus that allows you to quickly snap pictures of impromptu moments. And with the Auto Mode, you can simply focus on having fun and let the camera do the work regarding the settings. The video quality is also fairly decent, but the max resolution is limited to 720p.
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS30 is a rugged waterproof camera with better overall protection than the cheaper Veroyi VY-49. It’s a 16.1-megapixel camera, featuring 4x optical zoom and optical image stabilization for less blurry pictures. It’s much more expensive than the Veroyi waterproof camera, usually selling for twice the price. But you can get it for less than $100 during a sale, which happens quite regularly. Like most of the best digital cameras under $100, this product does not come with a memory card.
With its quadruple protection, this Panasonic rugged camera is perfect for outdoor adventures and is more versatile than the Veroyi VY-49. It’s waterproof up to 26 feet, shockproof up to 5 feet, freezeproof up to -10 degrees Celsius, and dustproof. It has a 2.7-inch display at the rear, with most of the buttons neatly arranged next to it. The camera has a dedicated video button – located at the top next to the shutter-release button – for quick switching between photo and video modes. Unlike the other cameras on this list, the Lumix DMC-TS30 has a large internal memory. The 220 MB internal memory, which can hold approximately 34 images, is extremely useful during extended outdoor trips.
The Lumix DMC-TS30 is a great point-and-shoot camera for snorkeling, kayaking, and hiking, among other outdoor activities. It has a torchlight out front, which is useful for low-light settings, especially when underwater. And speaking of underwater shots, the camera also compensates for lost red tones in underwater mode, which translates to more natural-looking underwater photos. While limited to 720p, the video mode is also decent, which makes the Lumix DMC-TS30 a good all-around digital camera.