How much does wedding photography cost?

Many potential clients will ask this question before deciding to go with one professional or another. You should be prepared to answer the inquiry. For the purpose, you need some idea about pricing trends in 2020.

Obviously, there isn’t a single answer to the question how much does wedding photography cost in 2020. You will have to take in consideration several factors. As a professional, you will also have to develop multiple packages that will cater to the needs of different clients.


How Much Does Wedding Photography Cost in 2020


Before going into the factors that affect the cost of wedding photography, let’s examine industry averages.

The average that photographers charge depends on several things. The location is one of the most important determining factors.

In the US, the average cost of a wedding photography package falls in the 3,000 to 3,500-dollar range. The second most common price category in the country for 2020 is 1,500 to 2,000 dollars.

UK photographers charge similar amounts. The average for a UK photography package is 1,500 to 2,000 pounds. Packages in the 1,000 to 1,500-pound range are also pretty common and popular among wedding photography clients in the UK.

Currently, the US leads the way as the country where wedding photography costs the most. While it’s difficult to come across extensive studies about European countries, the averages tend to be way below the charges in America.


Factors That Will Affect the Cost of Wedding Photography in 2020


wedding bouquet

When trying to answer the question how much does wedding photography cost, we have to examine a couple of important factors that push the price up or down.

As per studies, one of the most important factors impacting the price of a package is the experience of a photographer.

Younger wedding photographers tend to charge less than their more experienced counterparts. A semi-professional in the field will charge anywhere between 1,000 and 2,500 dollars (as per US statistics). Someone who has decades of experience in the field and who has established their professional reputation will charge at least 6,000 dollars for the same task.

Other crucial factors that impact pricing policies include:

  • Shooting time (will the photographer spend the entire day with the couple or just a few hours)?
  • Number of photographers who will be attending the wedding
  • Final output (digital, prints, negatives)
  • Whether the photographer will be doing professional retouching and editing
  • Travel expenses in the event of a destination wedding
  • Albums, additional prints and extra services available in the specific package
  • Whether the photographer will be attending other events like the engagement party and the wedding rehearsal

As a professional, you need to have a very good idea about the cost of each project that you work on. Having some experience and understanding of the process will help you put together adequate packages that will appeal to a wide range of potential clients.


The Wedding Day Work Isn’t the Only One to Factor


bride and groom

Some people think that wedding photography is way too overpriced. After all, earning 2,000 pounds for a single day of work sounds pretty appealing. The truth of the matter is, however, that the work done on the wedding day isn’t the only one that the photographer will have to account for.

According to research, the average amount of work time spent on a single wedding ranges between 39 and 56 hours.

The bulk of that time is dedicated to the wedding day photography itself (an average of eight to 12 hours of work). Post-production typically lasts 15 to 18 hours. Some of the other work elements that photographers have to handle include:

  • Preliminary consultations with the couple (there will need to be at least a few of those to ensure a satisfactory outcome)
  • Engagement photography session
  • Preview session with the married couple after the editing and retouching work is done
  • Album design
  • Photo printing
  • The provision of digital copies/online albums (in the event of clients asking for such a service)

And there could be additional types of work involved depending on the specifics of the photography package.

Thus, a wedding photographer will have to account for a lot more than the photoshoot itself.

As a general rule of thumb, couples spend approximately 10 to 15 per cent of their budget on wedding photography.

Payment isn’t being made just for the photoshoot. The client is also paying for the experience, the artistic vision and the reliability of a professional. After all, ensuring that every single important moment is captured happens to be a massive responsibility. The right professional will understand the fact and calculate risks into the equation.


Ways to Save Money on Wedding Photography in 2020


bride and groom on lake

Now that we’ve answered the question how much does wedding photography cost in 2020, it’s time to take a look at strategies for expenditure reduction.

There are things that photographers and couples can agree upon in order to make packages a bit more affordable.

As a photographer, you should decide if such concessions are something you’re willing to make. The discussions should take place on a case by case basis. You should still be capable of making a profit out of the interaction so handle client suggestions with a bit of caution.

Reducing the amount of time that a photographer spends on the job is one of the easiest ways to produce a more affordable package. The photographer and clients will have to agree on the shots that need to be made. Having a plan about what to shoot and what to skip will reduce the amount of work and the engagement of the photographer in the event.

Limited or no editing / post-production can also result in more attainable packages.

Some clients will want to get the pictures as they are. These couples will later on decide if they want to get the pictures professionally retouched or keep them this way. Getting rid of post-production eliminates a large chunk of work hours, which can lead to affordability.

In some instances, couples will have the wedding photographer present during the ceremony. They will task friends and relatives with the creation of wedding party pictures. This approach gives the couple both the professional work (for the most important moments) and the emotions that loved ones put in capturing the fun and excitement.


Bringing Down the Cost Even Further


Other possibilities for bringing down the cost of wedding photography in 2020 include:

  • Having an off-season wedding (yes, photo shoots during the summer tend to cost more than those taking place in the autumn or winter)
  • Booking a photographer as early as possible (last minute arrangements are the most expensive ones)
  • Opting for digital photographs rather than prints or the creation of an album – when the digital files are available, prints can be ordered easily in the future
  • Benefiting from referral discounts and special programs offered by some wedding photographers
  • Booking photography and videography with the same service provider (these packages tend to be much more cost-efficient than hiring two separate teams for the job)


Always Get Multiple Quotes!


wedding toast

To benefit from the best terms and conditions, it’s essential to get multiple quotes and compare them side by side.

This is why most clients tend to speak to at least two or three wedding photographers before making up their mind.

Written quotes aren’t just important for financial clarity. They also give clients an idea about what they’ll be getting and if the price corresponds to the specifics of the service being described.

Some wedding photographers have fixed prices for the entire project. Some will charge by the hour. The outcome that the client wants will determine whether one of the pricing policies or the other will make more sense for the specific event.

A client should also be confident enough to ask for a discount.

It’s up to the photographer to decide whether they’re going to honour the request. Still, most wedding photographers are willing to do whatever it takes to ensure client satisfaction. Thus, the negotiations will result in a price reduction that will be acceptable for everyone involved.

When asking for quotes, it’s a good idea to request a price breakdown for each of the package elements. Upon necessity, some of the non-essentials can be eliminated to bring overall expenses down.

The cost of wedding photography in 2020 will be pretty similar to what professionals have been charging over the previous few years. There will be numerous packages for clients to choose among, giving them flexibility and budget-friendly options.

A wedding photographer should recognise the important factors affecting the cost of project execution. When these are accounted for, the project can be completed effectively and without unnecessary expenditure.


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Professional Videographer. I am in love with romantic fairytales and wedding video storytelling.

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