Skimping on your wedding photography may sound like a terrible idea, but having to save on wedding photographer costs doesn’t mean you have to have horrendous wedding photos that make you cringe. There’s no doubt that your wedding photos are very important, but on average, couples can spend more than $3,000 on wedding photos alone. If you can’t squeeze that into your budget, here are some tips to help you save while preserving the wonder of your wedding photos.
Figure the Budget on wedding photographer costs
Knowing how much you can afford to spend on your wedding photography is a great place to start if you need to save on wedding photographer costs. If it’s in your budget to pay $500 for wedding photos, don’t start out talking to photographers that charge thousands for their services. Instead, begin by talking to those who are just a little outside your price range and see if you can negotiate down to fit in your budget. Some great options include photographers who are just starting out, as well as photography students. However, if you’re using a less-than-professional photographer, make sure you look at their work and that they can provide the service you need.
Book it Early
Some wedding vendors, including wedding photographers, will give you a discount if you book their services far in advance of your big day. If you need to save on wedding photographer costs, check around and see who can give you a discount and how far in advance you need to book their services to get the best possible price. Booking early allows you to avoid price increases for photographers who are growing in popularity.
Instead of having your wedding photographer print and arrange your photos for albums or wedding videos, talk to them about a digital package that will allow you to have a digital copy of your photos, without the costs of printing and album making. Having digital files of your wedding photos can be very convenient. You could save hundreds on wedding photographer costs by choosing a digital-only package.
Plan Ahead and Reduce Time
If you are not paying a photographer for your entire wedding, the rate is probably going to be much lower than booking for the whole ceremony. Have your formal wedding photos taken and rely on friends and family for candid shots before, during and after the wedding. Less time shooting photos of your big day means less cash out of your budget for wedding photos.
Refer a Friend
If you need to save on wedding photographer costs and you know someone else getting married or needing a photographer, ask if you’ll get a discount for referring them. Many photographers will give you a price break if you can help them secure other jobs.