It takes weeks, months or even year to plan your wedding and then your wedding day flies by in an instant. For those who spotted that I did say weeks to plan a wedding. All that planning and the whole day is gone before you know it. All those little moments that just flashed by. Moments that unless captured are quickly forgotten. This is why a wedding photographer is so important. It’s not just the main parts of the wedding or the group photographs that your wedding photographer will capture. Your wedding photographer will constantly be scanning the room for those little moments that are waiting to happen, ready to capture them for you so you don’t miss them.
Wedding photographers don’t come cheap though, at least the ones who have good deal of experience of wedding photography. The cost of a wedding photographer does of course depend on a few factors including their experience, demand and location.
The cost of wedding photography can vary from £100 to £10,000. The average price though for the UK is around £1,500 and has been for the last few years.
The style of your wedding photographer will vary from the traditional wedding photography to more contemporary or reportage. This though does not affect the cost of your wedding photographer. The price also does not dictate how good your wedding photographer is going to be. There are cases where wedding photographer are just starting out and they have based their pricing on the average for the area and not their individual experience in wedding photography.
It is always good to have a look at what is included in your wedding photographer’s pricing. Some will include albums while others will offer this as an optional extra. Remember that if this is included in your wedding photographer’s package the cost also includes their time for creating the album for you.
There could also be prints included. If so, what size are they? Form many the package route is what they are looking for. I have found that it is becoming more popular though to offer an ‘a la carte’ approach to pricing, offering a basic package and then providing optional extras which can be added at a later date. This is particularly popular with couples who are on a budget for their wedding.
Wedding photographers can get booked up very early and are often working a year in advance. At the moment, I have already started taking weddings for next year, and it is only January.
There are some advantages to booking early, for one you will have more choice over your wedding photographer. There are also some advantages to leaving it until closer to your wedding as some photographers will offer discounts for last minute weddings if they have the availability. The disadvantage though is that you will have less choice for a wedding photographer and may even run the risk of not having one at all if it is left too late.
Your wedding photographer is a large investment so how can you be sure before handing over your hard earned money as a deposit?
A referral is always a good way to go. Ask friends or family about their wedding photographer, they will be able to let you know of any good and poor experiences.
If that does not give you any options, then ask to see the work of the photographers that you have shortlisted. Most wedding photographers will have examples of their work on their website. These images from wedding though have been selected by the wedding photographer to showcase their work. Ask them if they have any real-life wedding galleries that they are allowed to share.
It is possible to try to negotiate with your wedding photographer, most though have their pricing set as looking so far ahead there is possibility that they could still book a wedding at the full price. If you are booking your wedding photographer closer to your wedding date you will have a better chance at settling on a price as they is less opportunity for them to take another booking.
Payment schedules will vary between wedding photographers. Most will have a two payment plan. The first payment or deposit will be payable when you book with the balance due just before the date of your wedding. In some cases, the first payment will be as much as 50% of the total amount. Others though like myself will only ask for a fraction of that in advance. My deposit, or booking fee, is currently set at 15%.
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