COST OF WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY: UK PHOTOGRAPHER PRICES
How much do wedding photographers cost and what is the average price for wedding photography in the UK.
Wedding planning can be stressful and when the day comes you will want a wedding photographer who can capture all of your special memories. The problem is don’t know where to start when trying to find the perfect wedding photographer and it’s easy to get overwhelmed with all the options, styles, packages and prices.
I believe you deserve wedding photography that captures you at your best and the moments that matter so that you have meaningful pictures and a wedding you love.
When planning a wedding and looking at your budget, one of the biggest questions you will want to know is “What is the average price of hiring a professional wedding photographer and how much should I pay?”
Below is an open and honest guide to the average cost of wedding photography in the UK in 2020 and 2021 and what you can expect to pay for a wedding photographer and wedding albums in England.
THE REAL COST OF WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY
The cost of wedding photography is subjective and in many ways, it comes down to priority and preserved value. Weddings are a luxury. Wedding Photography is a luxury! but so are all of the material things that contribute to the modern-day ‘dream wedding.’
As nice as the material things are, once the flowers have died, the dress has been worn and long after the honeymoon tan has faded, the only thing you have left from your wedding day are your rings and your wedding photos.
Hiring a wedding photographer that you trust and style you like should be exciting and one of the most important parts of planning your wedding. Family and friends have invested their time to watch you tie the knot and you will want to relive the excitement of your wedding day through your photos for years to come…
HOW MUCH DOES WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY COST
How do you find the best wedding photographer for your special day and budget? There is no simple answer, the cost of wedding photography in the UK varies and it comes down to how much you are willing to pay and what style of photography you are attracted to. However, this guide will provide you with the information you need to make an informed decision.
With basic research and some advertising on social media, you could find a student, armature or keen enthusiast who would be willing to photograph your wedding for experience, expenses or just a few hundred pounds in order to build up their portfolio.
On the other end of the scale, you will find the cost of wedding photography from specialists, in-demand and celebrity wedding photographers increasing, with high-end photographers charging up to 10K for a wedding. If you want additional products like an album, an engagement shoot and extra photographers, you could expect the cost to be even higher.
WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY BUDGET
When planning a wedding the budget will always play an important factor. How much you should or will want to pay when hiring a wedding photographer is subjective and priority and perceived value is key.
It’s only human to want to cut corners here and there just as it is to indulge in luxuries. The emotional value you place on your wedding photography is key. Whether it’s a limited budget or an extravagant wedding, the priority is the same. It’s down to perceived value, importance and desire.
HOW MUCH SHOULD I PAY FOR WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY IN THE UK?
The general rule of thumb is between 10-20% of your overall wedding budget but this depends on how much you value having the absolute best wedding photos from your special day.
I have seen couples spend a lot of money on a designer wedding dress and then book a budget-wedding photographer only to be left disappointed, with the only option of posting on social media overexposed, unflattering images that don’t even show any of the details of what should be a beautiful dress.
“Remember, a budget photographer can make a couture dress look average. A professional photographer can make a budget gown look amazing!”
WHAT TO LOOK FOR WHEN HIRING A WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER
Hiring the right wedding photographer and the cost of wedding photography can be confusing and challenging. There are lots of specialist wedding blog sites such as GoHen and magazines providing endless lists of ‘must-haves’ and wedding photographers themselves using technical jargon.
There is also a variety of names used to describe a wedding photographers style, these range from documentary, reportage, natural, creative, fashion, alternative and glamorous to name a few.
The challenge is, finding a photographer whose style you love, someone you trust and you would want/feel comfortable with attending your wedding. A photographer who can document your wedding in a way that suits you and can present you with a collection of images that represent your vision and the day you had… all within your budget.
AVERAGE COST OF WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY IN THE UK 2020
According to recent surveys, the average cost of wedding photography in the UK varies depending on the region with the north-east being one of the cheapest and the south-east the most expensive.
£700 – £1000
Is the minimum you should expect to pay for a wedding photographer in the UK and you should only expect to get digital copies and limited coverage at the price. The cost of wedding photography at this price point or below would usually indicate that the photographer is relatively new to the industry, has limited experience, or they might be providing wedding photography at weekends around a full-time job to supplement their income.
At this entry price point, you would need to check if they have the equipment needed to do the job together with back-up equipment, transportation, insurance, portfolio/evidence of work and how the final images will be presented. If the photographer is a high volume low-cost wedding photographer you should check how many images you can expect receive, if the images will be edited and how long you can expect to wait for the final photographs after the wedding.
£1,500 – £2000
This is seen as the average cost of wedding photography in the UK in 2020/21. You can expect dedicated and knowledgable wedding photographers at this price point that will have proven experience and a portfolio of work that showcases different venues, seasons and demonstrates practical knowledge of challenging situations. They should know how to cope under pressure and in any situation such as a sudden downpouring of rain during a summer wedding.
You can expect all of the above plus a bespoke wedding album. The photographer will have a more refined style and a greater portfolio of work. Often shooting luxury and destination weddings.
HOW MANY PHOTOGRAPHERS DO I NEED FOR MY WEDDING
This will be somewhat of a controversial answer, especially in the wedding photography community. However, honesty and integrity should be transparent. My belief is if a ‘professional wedding photographer’ is offering a TWO wedding photographers package for let’s say £1000 you are not getting two £1000 photographers. You are either getting two £500 photographers or ONE £1000 photographer and an assistant (wife or girlfriend).
If they are both professional photographers you can ask for a break down of each individual photographers cost, ideally, one of them should be the main photographer (this is who you are booking and whose style you can expect), the other photographer is commonly known as a 2nd shooter. You can then decide if the cost of the second photographer and the service provided is needed.
WHY IS PROFESSIONAL WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY SO EXPENSIVE?
In regards to the true cost of wedding photography, the short answer is you are paying for time and quality and there are many factors to take into consideration. For example:
5 KEY POINTS TO CONSIDER WITH THE COST OF WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY
- Experience, you would expect a seasoned pro with XXX years experience to be more knowledgeable, confident and professional than someone just starting out.
- A recognisable style. A professional wedding photographer like myself will have developed a recognisable style. This not only provides consistency but added security in the style of wedding photography you see on the website is the type of photography you will receive.
- Demand! successful wedding photographers can be booked quite far in advance. As one of the most sought after wedding photographers in the North West of England, here at Wes Simpson Weddings I regularly get booked 18 months in advance, sometimes longer depending on the destination and exclusivity of the wedding.
- A professional photographer would be regularly investing in education and researching the latest trends and products which they can offer you.
- Turn around time. A professional wedding photographer should be able to get your photos back to you within a guaranteed time frame. At Wes Simpson Weddings we provide a honeymoon preview and an online gallery so the images can be viewed, shared and printed with ease.
WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER PRICES IN THE UK 2020
The cost of wedding photography and running a successful business in the UK isn’t cheap. It’s not about just turning up on the day for a few hours. The best wedding photographers will be using the latest and most expensive equipment and back up equipment. They will have reliable transport together with a variety of standard equipment needed to run the photography business, all of which contribute to the overall cost of wedding photography, these include things such as:
- A fast and reliable computer.
- A website.
- A phone and access to emails etc.
- Back up hard drives, lots of extra storage.
- The cost of marketing materials, advertising campaigns and investment in new samples and products.
ADVICE AND A PROMISE
- Find a photographer who’s photography and editing style you love.
- Make sure they are consistent in their style and approach to photographing weddings.
- Have a meeting or a video call. At Wes Simpson Weddings I have either an in-person meeting or FaceTime with all my clients. This provides an opportunity to ask any question or address any concerns you might have when hiring a wedding photographer. Also, my beautiful storybook wedding albums really need to be seen to be appreciated.
HIRING ME AS YOUR WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER
When I photograph your wedding I do so wholeheartedly. I photograph everything – the details, hugs, smiles and tears. I will show you things that happened that you never knew about.