should i bite on this or hold out for the slightly more expensive 55-300?
Get this one. You won't get much from 55-300mm (except extra reach) compared to this. I have 55-300 and tested a friend's 55-200. Both are almost the same, but 55-200 is light and easy to handle. Read some reviews and many agree 55-200 has great optics and fast auto focus.