Sarah
Newbie August 2020 Alberta

How many hours to hire a photographer?

Sarah, on August 13, 2019 at 14:19 Posted in Plan a wedding

Hi all,

We are starting to shop around for photographers and many offer different prices based on the hours they are booked (6, 8, or 10 hours). I was wondering what would be the best time allocation to ensure some of the prep is captured (bridal party candids, mom helping me get dressed, dad's first look), ceremony, bridal party photos and family portraits, first dance, and maybe a few of the speeches/dance?

Thanks!

Sarah

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23 Comments

  • Ashley
    Featured August 2020 Ontario
    Ashley ·
    • Dispute

    We did 14 hours. but its cuz we want photos for getting ready in the morning up until the dancing starts. make a timeline for your day of and then see what photos you want and count how many hours they should come for

    • Reply
  • Sondra
    Frequent user August 2021 Ontario
    Sondra ·
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    View quoted message

    This is so helpful! Thanks!

    • Reply
  • Rayanne
    Featured February 2021 Ontario
    Rayanne ·
    • Dispute
    I was thinking I would just have someone 4-6 hours as my first look and the ceremony are the only moments I'm really concerned about but I have found a photographer who is fairly new and a friend that is the same price for the whole day (10 hours) as some who would only do 4 hours and charge me more.
    • Reply
  • Vivian
    Newbie June 2020 Ontario
    Vivian ·
    • Dispute
    I hired my photographer for 6 hours only but she brings a second photographer with her. My ceremony doesn’t start until 5:30pm. And I don’t care for pictures of me doing makeup or hair. So I have her come around 2:30/3pm when the makeup is almost done. I also don’t have a wedding party so plenty of time to capture first look, couple portraits, family formals before ceremony starts. We also have time to do a few sunset pictures within these 6 hours. Have a list of what you want or don’t care for, and speak to the photographer, they typically can put together a timeline for you and gauge hours needed.
    • Reply
  • Kelly
    Devoted May 2020 Ontario
    Kelly ·
    • Dispute
    I booked for 10hours 12pm - 10pm; this privdes time for pictures while getting ready as well as through the events of the day including our dance
    • Reply
  • Sarah
    Alberta
    Sarah ·
    • Dispute

    I'd encourage you to write out a list of priorities!

    Then work backwards from the "last time" you'd need a photographer there.

    Generally 6-7 hours Covers First Look to Dance Floor

    8-9 Hours Covers Getting Ready to Dance Floor

    11-1 Hours is for those weddings with longer ceremonies, traditional elements like a Tea Ceremony, receptions with a 3-5 course meal, or long travel time between photo locations/ceremony and reception!

    Ways to make the most of your time

    1 - Bridal Prep - Having them arrive in the last moments, not AS you are getting ready. Timing your hair and make up to end 30-45 minutes BEFORE you put on your dress will leave time for detail photos, robe photos all done up, putting jewelry on, opening gifts and getting in your dress!

    2. Prep Close To One Another - If you can, having the groom and the bride prep in the same place (hotel/neighborhood) etc is super helpful!

    3. First Dance - Try a first dance at the Entrance to your reception! Everyone will be seated and all eyes will be on you already! Smiley smile


    Hope that helps.

    • Reply
  • Meghan
    Curious August 2020 Ontario
    Meghan ·
    • Dispute

    We have booked two photographers for 10hrs but then have the option to extend time if needed for an extra cost per hr. Our ceremony starts at 3:30pm.

    • Reply
  • Lindsay
    Beginner April 2020 Ontario
    Lindsay ·
    • Dispute
    View quoted message
    We were also originally going to do two photographers but the photographer we hired places a camera at the back and he has a remote control he holds in his hand so we can capture both the front and back views while I walked down the aisle.

    Doing it it this way saved us money and it’s equally as effective as hiring two.
    • Reply
  • Lindsay
    Beginner April 2020 Ontario
    Lindsay ·
    • Dispute
    Hi There,

    We hired our photographer for 10 hours of coverage.

    Our ceremony is starting at 3, so we are having him start around 12 so we can capture ya getting ready, and then we will send him home at 10. This way he can capture the getting ready, ceremony, cocktail reception and the reception itself. We might cut him at 8 hours, however right now we have him for 10 hours
    • Reply
  • Katelyn
    Super October 2019 Ontario
    Katelyn ·
    • Dispute
    I've hired my photographer for the entire day from getting ready to the sparkler send off at 9. It all depends on what is most important to you.
    • Reply
  • Koryn
    Beginner May 2020 British Columbia
    Koryn ·
    • Dispute
    My photographer is doing 4 hours of coverage but he takes so many extra photos it gives us an option 😊
    • Reply
  • Vanessa
    Frequent user September 2019 Ontario
    Vanessa ·
    • Dispute

    I have 2 photographers and 12 hour coverage for the day but to save a bit of money, my lead photographer is leaving after 8 hours and my 2nd photographer is staying the extra time (because the lead photographer's rate is more). It was important to me to have both photographers there for getting ready photos, and for the ceremony (we are not doing a first look so I want to capture the walking down the aisle moment from both viewpoints). For the reception, I want photos of my room before anyone enters, and I also want family photos taken before the reception begins. After that, I felt like I only needed 1 photographer to capture the rest and I don't really feel like I need PROFESSIONAL photos of the dancing/everyone getting drunk lol

    • Reply
  • BunnyBride
    Featured August 2020 Nova Scotia
    BunnyBride ·
    • Dispute

    We booked two photographers for 10 hours and hoping to cover getting ready to part of the reception. The package includes a photobooth which they'll do after all the major stuff is done, so that was part of the reason for the extra time too. Otherwise, 8 hours probably would have been fine.

    • Reply
  • Cassie
    Newbie July 2019 Ontario
    Cassie ·
    • Dispute
    I did 5 hours and it captured: groomsmen photos, venue, ceremony, bridal party and family photos after ceremony, speeches, cake cut. I would definitely tack on 3-5 hours more if you want getting ready pics too and dancing.

    My ceremony was at 4pm and he started at 3-8pm.
    • Reply
  • Chelsea
    Featured June 2020 Alberta
    Chelsea ·
    • Dispute
    We’ve hired two photographers for the full day! this will allow us to cover everything you’ve mentioned, from getting ready to our first dance and speeches
    • Reply
  • Casey
    Featured October 2019 Ontario
    Casey ·
    • Dispute
    Like the other ladies it really depends on your ceremony time and what you want your timeline to be.
    We have an 8 hour package but are adding an additional hour to make sure we aren’t rushed.

    • Reply

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