I finally gave in today and bought myself a good digital camera. After delaying and procrastinating for months I came to the conclusion at the weekend that film is just too expensive. I spent 19 euros getting two rolls of film developed and put on CD using 1 hour development because I wanted the photos that evening. Throw in the cost of the film and it was closer to 25 euros. Now I know when I'm in Australia I could easily take two or more rolls of film in a single days shooting, probably more.
I had a couple of conditions,
It had to have a good lens, just one lens, something like a 10x zoom with a reasonable wide angle as well.
Preferable it had to take xD cards so that I could use the same cards in my compact Olympus as well.
It had to allow me to use shop bought batteries not just a propriety rechargeable. I don't want to miss a days photographs because I couldn't recharge the batteries each night. If I can throw several packs of ordinary batteries into my bag as a backup to my rechargeable ones that would be great.
It had to be, relatively, reasonably priced, I didn't want to bring a 1000 euro digital SLR and lenses backpacking in Australia. I will probably buy a digital SLR next year after returning.
In the end I picked the Fujifilm FinePix S9500. It ticks all the boxes, plus it's 9 megapixles. It cost 515 euros including shipping so not cheap, but hopefully worth it and thats basically 40 rolls of film being developed. I ordered it today and DHL tells me it is some where in the East Midlands of England. Fingers crossed I'll have it for the weekend and I'll have some photos to show next week. Then hopefully I'll have some good photos from Australia to justify the price.