Don’t ask a stranger to take a picture for you – use this trick instead

We’ve all been there at some point during our travels – you’re at a popular spot, or standing on the summit of a mountain, or perched at an epic view from a waterfall. You want to get a picture to remember the moment – but that requires a selfie if you’re traveling alone, or someone from the group standing behind the lens. Or – if there’s someone else nearby, it used to be the norm to ask that person to use your phone to snap a picture real quick.

Things will never be back to how they were before the pandemic occurred – we will move on to a new normal. We’ll see things like the handshake fade away from common use, as we as other unnecessary touch points. Thinking now – asking a stranger who likely traveled from somewhere else as well to hold your phone is a prime way to spread any virus or sickness.

But – luckily, iPhones, which a near majority of people have these days, have a great feature to help get around the issue of ‘would you mind taking a picture for us real quick?’ Airdrop, a bluetooth communication tool installed on all iPhones, allows one iPhone to quickly send pictures to another from up to about 10 feet away – and without the need for a cell signal or WiFi connection. Thats right – on top of a mountain in the middle of the Rockies, when your iPhone says “No Signal,” you can still AirDrop pictures to another iPhone.

So, when you’re traveling in the future, instead of asking someone to take the picture on your phone – look for someone holding an iPhone, and ask if they would mind helping you get a picture real quick. They might not even know about AirDrop – but luckily its quick and easy to explain. I use the feature quite often to send 100+ pictures at a time to my guests after guided hikes – and its so incredibly useful, I’m amazed that I owned an iPhone for years before utilizing the feature.

I’ve actually used this out in the field a few times as well both for some marketing, and just to help out, as I know the difficulty of getting a photo when you’re out there by yourself sometimes. I’ve seen someone on the other side of a ledge or stream working to prop up their phone for a photo – and I’d offer to take a photo for them on my phone and then AirDrop it to them.

How to AirDrop

Luckily, its an easy process, and its included on just about every iPhone made in the last 10 years. Here’s how you can avoid transferring any virus or germs when asking a stranger to take a picture for you:

  1. Determine if said person has an iPhone
  2. Ask if they would mind taking a picture from their phone, and airdropping
  3. Give some direction for the picture
  4. Go to your Iphone Settings and Select ‘General’ then scroll down to ‘AirDrop’. Select ‘Everyone’ on the list that pops up
  5. Have the person select photo from their album and swipe up to select AirDrop
  6. Your phone should show on their phone as an available recipient
  7. Receive the photo!
  8. Offer to do the same for the person, since that’s the cool thing to do.

Or, just get a tripod and a remote. Or a drone.

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