(Closed) Bartering Wedding Services – Want to trade?

posted 7 years ago in Rhode Island
Post # 3
6587 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

I too am a wedding photographer, who is getting married this year.

In my area, us wedding vendors network a lot, and we all have a pretty good relationship & are friendly with each other. Many of the vendors I’m using for my own weddings are vendors I’ve worked with on my client weddings several times. When I started contacting the vendors I wanted to use, pretty much every single one of them has given me some form of a discount (out of their own generosity) for being a fellow vendor/friend. I never asked, and never would ask, but it was so generous of them to do that for me.

As for trading, I would just let it be known to some of the vendors that you are totally up for trading if it’s something they would be interested in. My cake lady actually approached ME and mentioned doing a trade. Her son is getting married, and she was interested in having me photograph the wedding. I’m having a large wedding, and my cake would normally cost around $900+. We’re trading retail for retail, so whatever my cake would cost they’ll have that much to apply to my services. I get a free cake, they get a DEEP discount on wedding photography. 

Likewise, my hair lady normally charges a $300 travel fee on top of the cost of hair. I’m doing a family session for her, and she’s waiving the travel fee. She also suggested that arrangement. 

Post # 5
739 posts
Busy bee

I’m a wedding photog in NE as well, I was able to barter about 75% of my wedding back in 2010. It took a lot of work but it’s totally doable. The only downfall I had was the rental company I worked with. They agreed to barter but didn’t want to do a barter contract until they figured out what they wanted. After I signed their contract and was only months out from the wedding they pulled a fast one and decided they didn’t need my services and wanted me to pay. I was in the middle of wedding season myself and didn’t have the time or energy to to start the process again, but let me tell you they wont be getting any referrals from me. 

Just make sure to have a barter contract at the beginning that outlines everything. If you PM me I can send you the one I used. As for finding vendors I used a few I had worked with before that needed my services and the others I just searched and searched until I found ones willing to work with me. One even ended up hiring me after to do a bunch of work that offset the cost of the rental company so it all worked out in the end. 

Don’t be afraid to ask, the worst they can say is no. Just tell them you don’t expect anything for free and you are willing to go above and beyond on your end. Also, I tried to get as much of the work done before the wedding so they knew I was going above and beyond for them and it showed on my wedding day when they all rocked it. If you don’t want to use the ones you network with. Come up with a standard email that you just send to as many qualified vendors as possible. It’s really a numbers game for every 20 ‘no thank you’ some is going to say yes. 

Post # 6
246 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

I am located in Denton, TX and would love to trade services and or Decor! I have a ton of CUSTOM made stuff for sale/rent/or TRADE! HELP ME WITH MY TIGHT BUDGET AND I WILL RETURN FAVOR! Getting Married in APRIL 2013!!

Post # 7
376 posts
Helper bee

I am starting out as a Makeup Artist in the South Shore MA/Rhode Island Area.

I would love to speak with you about a trade for pictures or even logo work in order to get my website up and running.

Feel free to PM me and we can chat 🙂

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