omg ya'll. why is wedding photography so expensiveee

posted 3 years ago in Photos/Videos
Post # 4
7281 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2011 - Bed & Breakfast

Photographers are worth however much clients are willing to spend. They put many, many hours in behind the scenes with culling through thousands of shots, processing the good ones to make them look their best, interacting with clients both before and after shooting days, etc. It’s much more work than the 8 hours (or whatever) that they spend with the client on the actual wedding day. That said, there are photogs out there for every budget, depending on the level of qualityand professionalism the client is expecting.  

Post # 5
7997 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2013

They’re so expensive because this is how people earn their living.

You’ll find a variety of price points. You get what you pay for.

I don’t want to pay for a pro photographer, so I will be happy with my guest photos. It’s a choice you can make. Not many people go through their wedding albums or actually look at wedding photos very often, anyway.


Post # 6
1719 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

Sadly because anything that has the word wedding in front of it automatically makes it cost double or triple.

Post # 7
11772 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: May 2013

Photography in general is super expensive! It’s crazy!

Post # 9
851 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

Photography is one area of the wedding where I was comfortable spending a good chunk of money.

Here is why

  • Weddings are a blur….. so the photos provided me a great opportunity to see what happened at my wedding (who showed up, who danced, who looked like they were having a good time, who was having a bad time, who left early, etc)
  • professional photos are just that…. professional cameras, professional flashes, professional poses of bride/groom, family photos, ability to deal with adverse conditions (weather, lighting) etc
  • professionally done enhancements to photos
  • professionally done wedding albums (if included in the page)
  • while guests can take some great shots…. professionals really know how to capture a moment……


Post # 10
292 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: November 2014

I would do your research and compare prices to packages. 


Look on Craigslist services. Lots of talented local people will post adds. Look up there work on Facebook and look at recent wedding photos.

I would also browse Reddit and see if there is a forum for your City. 


I have done this and have been able to find lots of photographers who are a little more reasonable about priceing for example : 7 hours for $1250 or 6 hours for $995 or $200 an hour with no extra fees.


Do research before signing a contract.

Post # 11
2878 posts
Sugar bee

I would expect a few hundreds for private sessions (like the Christmas shoot). My boudoir shoot was 600$ and I only got 6 pictures, AND I had a promotion 1 picture was free …

But I find it hard to see prices way over 2000$. I am hoping to stay under 1500$ but that’s a huge stretch on our budget. Like, we’d probably have to take it on credit for a few months to get it. I would still consider it’s worth it, though.

What I hate however, is how vendors (DJs, videographer, photographer) come to message boards or Facebook bridal groups and post horror stories of mediocre DJs and horrible pictures and they say : here is why you need to pay more for your DJ/photographer/etc. I saw that on my Facebook group this morning and it enraged me.

Some people simple CAN’T afford the prices you ask for. But they do not want to skip the music, or the pictures, just because they don’t have 5K to spend on both. Those couple do what they can, sometimes it turns good, sometimes it turns ugly. Price has NOTHING to do with quality, and saying that you’ll probably have a shitty experience just because you do not want (or simply CAN’T) afford this huge price, is extremely condescending toward budget couples, and couples who otherwise would have to get into debts. Or, saying I don’t value photography if I’m not ready to pay that money. Does that mean I don’t value paintings if I like to visit museums, but would not spend 10K on an original, local artist painting ? I’m sorry, but my budget and realistic expectations about how much I can afford without breaking the bank have nothing to do with my appreciation of one’s art. 

Post # 12
2878 posts
Sugar bee

@californiabride2013:  I agree for most part. Except I consider albums a hidden fee that is not necessary (quite often you can print an album yourself once you get the pictures). I have to say though, in my particular situation my FI is an infographist and his family is into the printing business, so to me there is no way I would pay extra money in the package to have an album.

About the pic touch ups … that’s a huge problem I had with a profesional photographer (boudoir pic). He blurred the picture so much, it looks awful. He’s been in the business for 20 years and that shows in his pictures, they are blurred 80’s style and I considered the 600$ boudoir session were wasted down the drain. FI could have done a much nicer job with the pics. I cried when I saw them, they were ruined.

So yeah … I’d say it is very important to negociate the packages to meet what you really need, and to take time to watch the portfolios, because even when the prices are high for a professional, sometimes they can be very bad at enhancements.


Post # 13
429 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

Although I am only a semi-professional photographer, I can say that having shot a wedding before it is a LOT of work.  After spending 6-8+ hours at the wedding, then an hour or so of travel time, etc, that is your entire day!! THEN it takes weeks to go through the countless pictures, wean out the bad ones, and edit the good pictures.  Editing one single picture can take anywhere from 10 mins to an hour depending on just how perfect you want to make it.  Trust me, after you add up all the time editing, being at the wedding, drive time, etc.  It works out to be not much more than minimum wage.  


Plus you have to factor in the photographers costs too, gas for driving, the thousands of dollars of photography gear they use to make your pictures look professional, and the editing programs.

Spend a day in a wedding photographers shoes, then you will understand, trust me! 




Post # 14
11604 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Photography is expensive because it is a business – usually one they run alone.  They have to pay for marketing, website upkeep, their time in editing, and somehow make a profit.  There are a ton of added costs (insurance for a registered business, eqipment) that have to get spread into their pricing.

I’ve met many photographers, and not many of them are really rolling in the dough based on their photography business alone.  Most of them are barely breaking even and doing it because of their love and passion. 

Post # 15
845 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2015

@theEguarantee:  It’s their job, they aren’t taking advantage of you. Crappier/less experienced photographers are usually cheaper, good ones are more expensive. It’s kind of how everything in life works lol.

Leave a comment

Sent weekly. You may unsubscribe at any time.

Find Amazing Vendors