Tip 4: Keep the lens shade on! It protects your lens & minimizes flair. If your lens doesn't have one, get one. Almost every lens available now comes with a hard plastic lens hood. This is a much more prefered way of protecting your lens. If you are new to the DSLR world, go ahead and get the protective filter for the lens, but understand things like flair and diffraction(fancy word for unwanted light bouncing around) will cause issues with a number of images. I only use filters when they are absolutely needed, otherwise I keep the lens hood on with no filters. It is the best protection taht your lens will ever have regardless of whether or not you use a protective filter.
Tip 3:Get the right bag 4 u. I have 2, one for days and one that hold everything for longer trips. A good bag is important. With compact cameras it is rather easy as their cases are small and rather inexpensive. However, the DSLRs have very expensive lenses. Get one that fits your gear and then some. Otherwise it is too small. Also make sure it is well padded and flexible enough to keep your gear safe!
I like backpacks. This is one item that I would encourage not buying via the internet. Go to a good Camera Store and try them out. I like backpack style as well as Shoulder Sling types, but you may not. Kind of like shoes mine probably won't fit you!
Tip 2: Get a great tripod! This is not the area to scrimp. Buy the best you can afford. Then USE it! I have a lot to say about Tripods in another post to come; suffice it to say that I consider a tripod as important to a good photograph as a good lens. Spend accordingly!
Tip 1: Have FUN! Its ok to be serious about photography, but enjoy it. you are shooting wonderful places, people and/or things! This is one of those, "well duh" things. But I have seen people get way to serious about this stuff and yet it is a fantastic vocation whether professional or hobbyist... Keep it fun and in perspective and you will be ok!