One of the most important investments you’ll make during your wedding planning process is a professional photographer. They will be there to document your special day, capturing the memories you’ll treasure for a lifetime.
The cost of a wedding photographer is vastly variable. You can expect to pay anywhere from $1,000 to over $20,000 for the service. However, there are some reputable photographers who will work within your budget. Some may offer a la carte pricing while others will offer packages. If you’re planning a destination wedding, the costs will probably increase as you will need to include airfare.
A good rule of thumb is to budget between one to three hours for coverage. This will vary depending on the size of your event. For example, a smaller ceremony and reception may only need three to four hours of coverage, while a large and elaborate wedding might require eight to ten. Generally, the starting price includes an online gallery of high-resolution digital images.
Another good idea is to get an engagement photo session before the big day. This is a simple but effective way to get to know your photographer and their style. Many photographers will give you a discount on a wedding photography package if you book the engagement session first.
The average cost for a wedding photographer is not cheap, but it can be worth it. When you find a photographer who fits your style, they will help you make your big day one to remember. They can also take care of the small details, like arranging your guest list and making sure the ceremony and reception go off without a hitch.
As you get ready for your big day, be sure to look into all of the options before you settle on the best fit for your needs and your budget. While most couples can afford to spend between a few thousand dollars and several tens of thousands, you can’t go wrong with a small splurge or two.
In addition to an excellent photograph, you’ll want to plan out the other aspects of your big day. To keep your wedding photos organized, you can opt to have a photographer provide an online gallery or even USB drives for your guests.
You may also want to consider having a second photographer. A second photographer can capture a different point of view on your big day, as well as give you a great return on investment.
As you get closer to the date, be sure to take the time to read through the fine print of any contract, and you’ll be rewarded with the most valuable wedding photography experience of your life. Most wedding photographers charge an hourly rate, but you may be able to negotiate a lower rate if you’re willing to do a little legwork.
Wedding photographers will often provide a sample album or raw digital files, but you might want to invest in prints or other products to display your favorite images. These extras can add up to a few hundred dollars, so you’ll need to decide what is the most important to you.