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Every minute of your wedding day is full of special memories. To capture them all, you want to hire a professional photographer who knows all the right shots and angles to make the magic last forever. However, you also want to stick to your budget — regardless of who’s paying. Learn more about what determines the average cost of a wedding photographer so you can find the right fit for your big day.
Average Wedding Photographer Costs
While the national average cost of a wedding photographer is typically around $2,000, this price fluctuates based on several factors.
If you hire an amateur or student photographer, you might pay as little as a few hundred dollars. On the other end of the scale, professional and master photographers can cost upwards of $10,000.
What Determines Wedding Photography Costs?
You have a lot to consider when searching for the right photographer. Check out these factors that can determine how much your wedding photography package will cost.
Where your wedding takes place is one of the biggest factors in how much you’ll pay for a photographer. For example, professional photographers in a big city will likely have higher rates than those in small towns or rural areas.
If you’re planning a wedding in New York City or on the West Coast, you can expect to pay more than if you had it in the Midwest.
A photographer’s level of experience often has the biggest impact on their rates. Photography is a challenging skill that takes years to develop and requires expensive equipment. If you want a wedding photographer with years of experience, you’ll need to set aside a larger portion of your budget.
Some wedding photographers are well known for their style and quality, which means booking them is a fierce competition. High demand also drives up their rates. If you have your eye on a particular photographer, you should get in touch as soon as possible. It may be easier to get a place in their busy schedule without breaking the bank if you don’t wait until the last minute.
Ask yourself what you want from your wedding photos. Do you want a physical photo album with prints or access to an online gallery? Does the photographer you’re interested in offer engagement or rehearsal dinner photos?
The more services a photographer offers, the higher their costs. Packages often come with additional options, like albums and extra shoots. However, these add-ons can quickly add up, so carefully weigh the features you want before making a decision.
While photography style doesn’t necessarily have a huge impact on price, it can influence overall rates and how many hours your photographer works. For example, staged portraits might fit within a certain time frame, while a more candid documentary-style photographer will be working all day.
Find the Right Photographer for Your Wedding
When you look back on your wedding day, you want photographs that capture all the joy and love of that special time. Investing in a quality photographer will help ensure you get all the snapshots you want of one of the most important days of your life.
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