Any city as vibrant and exciting as Las Vegas offers endless options for personalizing your wedding day. Vegas is packed with unique wedding vendors that know the ins and outs of this destination wedding spot. When you look for wedding photographers in Sin City, you have the chance to work with a tight-knit community of versatile artists.
You’re probably wondering how to afford amazing wedding photos and videos in Las Vegas. Wedding budgets are always a main concern, especially when it comes to big-ticket items like photography and videography. Unlike some details, it’s best to avoid the DIY approach with wedding photos. These images will act as your main connection to this unforgettable day for the rest of your lives. Though it is possible to snap a few images of your big day, a professional can transform your wedding day details into stunning reminders of this milestone.
Photographers and videographers also play a role in managing the schedule of the wedding day. They held move crowds of guests from one place to the next, provide pointers for capturing the best images around town and can even help structure the celebration. In short, you don’t want to skip out on a photographer. We’ll explore seven ways to afford amazing images and film of your stunning day, whether you’re eloping or throwing a 200-person bash.
1. Know Your Budget
Just like any purchase, determine your budget before you go on the hunt for wedding photographers. Photographers and videographers set their rates quite specifically. Though some may offer a bit of wiggle room depending on special packages, they are unlikely to significantly drop their rate to meet your budget. If you’re honest going into the meeting, you can save a lot of time finding the right fit.
If your budget comes just below their rates, reach out to ask about shooting for a shorter part of the day – just for the wedding ceremony, for example. Though they may decline, it is worth asking politely.
Having confidence in your budget also helps you narrow down your potential photographers and keep you from overspending after finding someone outside your range. High-quality photographers exist in all budget ranges, stay true to your plan and stay on track.
2. Consider the Cost
Known for its budget-friendly offerings, Las Vegas wedding photographers are 8% lower than those in other cities. On average, prices range anywhere from $1000-$3000. It is possible to find elopement photographers that offer one or two-hour sessions for under a thousand as well. Remember that the cost of a wedding photographer and videographer goes far beyond the hours spent taking pictures of the wedding. Other costs to consider include:
Travel: If your photographer has to travel to your wedding, they may include a travel and lodging fee in your contract.
Editing: The largest amount of time is commonly spend editing your photos and videos. Both artists capture far more material than necessary in order to curate the best collection of your big day.
Consulting time: Photographers often work with couples in person or via email to coordinate the schedule and vision of their day.
Vendor meal: It is customary to offer a vendor dinner to your hired artists. Venues typically supply this meal at the lower cost since it does not include open bar.
Tips: It is customary to tip between $50 and $200 to your wedding photographer. Be sure to tip everyone on the team or provide enough for splitting the amount.
Outside of gratuity, photographers and videographers commonly charge a flat fee to cover each of these costs. It can be helpful, however, to double-check if you should expect extra fees for prints or additional editing.
3. Look for Packages
Many photographers offer budget-friendly packages to keep their services easy on the wallet, especially in a town like Las Vegas. Consider finding a vendor that offers both photos and video instead of hiring two separate artists.
Other photographers may offer package deals for things like prints, wedding albums and specialized editing. Consider how much you plan on spending separately on these items to see if it makes sense in your long-term wedding budget.
Would free engagement photos save you money on save-the-date design? Would a wedding album be more expensive online? Answers differ for everyone; the most important thing is to figure out what makes sense for you.
If you long to have a video of your wedding day, you can typically choose from a wider selection of videography packages. The price of the packages often depends on the length of the finished film, the number of hours of coverage and the number of cameras and microphones available on the day. Extra add-ons may include teasers before the editing is complete to send to your friends and family.
You can also pay extra to take more a documentary-style approach to your ceremony, as opposed to the traditional highlight reel from the day. This allows you to capture every moment of the ceremony without interruptions.
4. Speak to Your Venue about Preferred Vendors
Trusted vendors like photographers, florists and DJs often join forces with wedding vendors they’ve worked with before. Once you find a wedding venue, speak with your event coordinator about their preferred vendor list. Not only are these photographers more familiar with the space, they may offer discounts since you’re working with the venue. You can even speak with your coordinator about your desired budget during your initial meeting to see if they have additional recommendations in your price range.
Saving money on photographers and videographers also comes down to photo quality itself. You want to be able to use these images in gifts, thank you cards and photobooks. Hiring a trusted vendor decreases any risk that you work with someone less than professional.
5. Keep it Simple
Planning to elope in Vegas? Wedding photographers and videographers in the city understand your needs. Find an artist that specializes in homing in on the small details of an intimate ceremony, even if you’re tying the knot in a small chapel on the strip. Many elopement planning companies include a photographer included in their package. This cuts down on as much planning as possible, a perfect option for couples looking to keep things simple and focused on their special day.
6. Cut Corners Elsewhere
If you want to make photography the center of your wedding budget, consider easy ways to trim your budget in other categories. The top way to lower your costs is to keep your guests list small. Invite extended family to join you in town after the smaller ceremony and reception is over.
There are plenty of smaller ways to cut corners as well. Consider the DIY approach to flowers, lighting and décor. Some couples even find joy in DJing their own wedding and renting sound equipment.
7. How to Find a Last Vegas Wedding Photographer
As we mentioned above, always start by speaking with your venue. They work with vendors that know their space and have enough trusted customers that the venue is willing to vouch for their services.
If you’d like to branch, peruse some of the top wedding vendor databases to find an artist that matches your style and personality:
Smaller, early-career photographers may also list their services on Craigslist, but only contact artists that can show you a portfolio and provide a contract.
A Note on DIY Photography
Last-minute weddings, especially in spontaneous cities like Las Vegas, encourage couples to DIY certain expensive aspects of their big day. You may be tempted to ask a friend – or friends – to snap photos of your wedding for free or a small fee.
Keep in mind that wedding photography is a full-time job on the big day. Photographers have an eye for standing outside the crowd and capturing each unique moment. This can be difficult for guests to burden, especially if they are not as experienced in covering a large event.
Meeting with your photographer
When you narrow down your search, meeting with several Las Vegas wedding photographers and videographers to get a sense of their style. Here are a few tips for choosing an artist that reflects your vision:
Know the Styles
Photographers and videographers typically fall into several main categories: editorial, classic, dramatic or artistic. Editorial photographers capture the natural emotion of your wedding day without as many posed images. Dramatic artists utilize light and angles in a sense that shows off the grandeur of your wedding design. Classic photography is the best for traditional wedding photos with balance light, color and a timeless quality. And finally, artistic photographers take their own spin on their images, often playing with light, color and movement from a unique perspective.
Peruse Their Portfolio
Begin with a wedding photographer and videographer’s online portfolio. Keep in mind that they will put their best images at the forefront of the page. This gives you an initial sense of their style and use of light. When you meet in person, ask to see a larger portfolio to see a wider range of images not included in their site. Many will have recent photos from weddings around Las Vegas to show as well.
Get to Know Their Collaborative Style
Photographers and videographers bring their personalities into the energy of a wedding day. While some couples prefer a photographer with high energy to shepherd guests and move the day along, others prefer a more hands-off photographer to follow along with the day more naturally.
Ask the Right Questions
Getting married in Vegas probably means that you have a very specific vision for your wedding day When meeting with your potential artists, ask the following questions:
- Where do you take photos throughout the city?
- Do you offer engagement shoots as well?
- What is your ceremony photography style?
- Have you worked with my venue in the past?
- What is included with your wedding photography and videography package?
- When can I expect my edited photos?
- How do you deliver the photos?
- Can I expect additional costs from your flat fee?
Many photographers will offer most of this information upfront. They had vast experience working with engaged couples and will fill in the gaps with anything you may have missed.
Affording the perfect Las Vegas wedding doesn’t have to be a mystery. At The Pavilion, each couple works directly with our experienced Event Coordinator to organize each moment of their big day. Choose for customized packages for everything from your menu to your ceremony space. Our wedding packages aim to take all the guesswork off your hands so you can focus on what’s truly important: each other.
Finding an amazing wedding photographer and videographer in Vegas is never a challenge with the right help. Speak to us about our list of preferred and trusted vendors to find an affordable photographer to capture every moment of your stunning day.