He proposed. You accepted. Or the other way around. Either way, your big day is finally on the calendar! A wise first step is to start with the budget. No matter how much money you are planning on investing in the most magical day of your life, setting and sticking to a budget is a smart thing to do. But how do you set a realistic budget? We’re helping you out with a few things to consider when budgeting for a professional wedding photographer.
Hours to cover
Professional photographers take into account the hours they will need to be available to cover your special day. Even if they offer a package deal, time will always be a factor. The typical wedding will span an entire day and a photographer’s work starts way before the guests arrive. If your photographer needs to cover you both getting ready, the ceremony, reception and a couples shoot, he or she will need to translate those hours into currency. If you’re on a really tight budget, consider whether you really need the entire day covered or whether you will be happy with snapshots of certain parts of the day taken by your bridal party or a family member.
Location, location, location
The more locations you incorporate into your big day; the more prep work the photographer needs to do. In other words, it will probably cost you more. After all, the photographer would need to scope out multiple locations, if called for, he or she needs to bring additional equipment to capture your day to your specifications and the job will require more planning to make sure he or she is in the right place at the right time to capture every moment.
Number of guests
The number of guests that will be sharing your special day with you will not only influence the catering bill and the venue. Capturing a small group of twenty guests is much easier than capturing a group of two hundred guests. In the latter case, your photographer may need to hire additional staff to be able to pull it all off.
Skills + experience + equipment= MONEY
No professional photographer is created equal. Some professional photographers are great all-rounders, while others are specialized in one specific type of photography. An experienced professional can take stunning photographs with basic professional equipment, but perhaps your specific situation may require specialized equipment. No matter how you look at it, skills combined with experience and equipment equals a higher price.
Required prep work + editing
In general, the more prep work and editing your wedding requires the heftier the price. And prep and editing work is, as the term suggests, work. Your photographer deserves a fair compensation for all the work he or she does to be able to present to you those stunning pictures you’ve been dreaming of at the end of it all.
No need to panic though. Once you’ve determined what your day will look like and what you would need from your photographer, arrange a meeting to discuss the options with your preferred photographer. Mention your needs and your budget and ask him or her what is feasible. He or she is a professional, which means that he or she will try to work something out that will suit your needs and is a fair compensation for his or her work. And remember, budget constraints are never a good excuse for not hiring a professional. In the end, it’s an investment.
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