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Natural light fan, blush lover, never not dreaming of Mexican food, join me as I share my favorite moments and details from the engagements and weddings I capture in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and beyond. P.S: Exploring blogs is better with a margarita!

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When To Book Your Wedding Photographer

Oct 13, 2022

Maybe you can feel it in your bones. Your partner is about to pop the question any day now and you couldn’t be more excited. Perhaps they already have and you are riding the highs of that newly engaged life. First of all, congratulations! All the fun things like telling your friends and family, parties, and wedding planning are in your near future. When it comes time for wedding planning, one thing is for sure. That is to make sure you book your wedding vendors in advance. More specifically what we are talking about is your wedding photographer. If your wedding photos are very important to you we highly recommend knowing when to book your wedding photographer.

The Basics // What You Need To Know Before Booking Your Wedding Photographer

First things first, it’s important to know the basics before you book your wedding photographer. You may want to jump the gun and start booking all of your vendors. However, knowing a few key points will ensure that everything works in your favor.

Work Out The Numbers & Figure Out A Budget

Having an idea of your budget for your wedding will help you a ton when looking to book a wedding photographer. Every photographer charges differently for their services. Those who are more experienced may charge more than others who are newer to the industry. However, that is not always the case. Hear more about why wedding photographers charge what they charge.

Knowing what your budget is, especially breaking down your budget, will be key. Setting aside money for how much you will spend on vendors such as your venue, planner, and photographer will set you up for success.

Have Your Venue & Date Secured

Ashford Estate Wedding Venue / When To Book Your Wedding Photographer

Probably the most important detail you’re going to need to know is where your wedding is taking place and when. Making sure that you have your wedding venue and date secured are an important first step before you begin reaching out to any wedding photographers. Many wedding photographers are in high demand and oftentimes can’t can’t provide accurate pricing or availability while you are still “browsing” venues and dates. There are other couples who may inquire who have already taken this extra step that may take priority. So what I would recommend is before filling out an inquiry form with a wedding photographer, having your wedding venue and wedding date secured.

If you’re searching for your perfect wedding venue, check out a few of these tips to help you out!

When To Book Your Wedding Photographer

So you’ve chosen your wedding venue and your wedding date is secured, now what? Now is the time to start honing in on your wedding vendors! The die-hard question that everyone has been dying to know is when to book your wedding photographer. Typically, we suggest booking your wedding photographer at least 9 months up to 18 months before your wedding day. Now, this may come as a shock to some of you, and to others maybe not. While you may be thinking “this is absurd”, trust us when we say there is a method to our madness.

Below are just some of the many reasons why we recommend you book your wedding photographer 9 – 18 months before your wedding day.

If You Want A Wedding During A Busy Season

In the wedding world, the most popular months to get married are from May – October. If you are a lucky couple looking to get married in one of those months, it is highly recommended that you start looking for your wedding photographer ASAP.

A notable mention as well is that along with busy months, there are certain dates throughout the year that are in higher demand than others. Most wedding photographers will work on a first-come-first-served basis. So whoever snags the date first, gets it. If you have been wanting to work with a wedding photographer for a while and are afraid of missing out, inquire sooner rather than later.

You Are Going To Have A Destination Wedding

Bride and groom portraits at Ashford Estate / When To Book Your Wedding Photographer

Travel is one of the many perks of this job. Love is a universal language and is found everywhere, which makes this such an amazing career. However, if you are planning a destination wedding or a larger wedding, we highly recommend booking your wedding photographer well in advance.

A destination wedding, especially in a different state or country, takes immense planning. Not just on your end, but for the wedding photographer, you hire as well! Having to make travel accommodations and plans oftentimes leaves us having to block off entire weekends dedicated to your special day. Don’t get us wrong, we are more than happy to join in on the fun of documenting your love. With that being said, if you have your sights set on someone in particular make sure you snag them right up before it’s too late.

You Want To Use Photos For Your Save-The-Dates

bride and groom wedding portraits at The Ashford Estate

A lot of wedding photographers will offer engagement sessions. Either as a part of their wedding packages or as a separate add-on to their services. If you are wanting some professional engagement photos taken for you to use on your save-the-dates, booking your wedding photographer in advance is the way to go. That way you are able to schedule your engagement session well in advance and have a proper turnaround for your wedding photographer to edit your photos and deliver them back to you.

When To Book Your Wedding Photographer

Hopefully knowing a few of these tips on when to book your wedding photographer will help! Especially if you’ve been looking to work with someone in particular and/or you know that the demand to work with them is high, inquire in advance. So many of us will use the excuse “I’ll get to it soon” and before you know it, it’s too late. Sooner rather than later is our motto and 99.9% of the time, it always works out for the best.


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Mexican food connoisseur. Most likely to quote F.R.I.E.N.D.S. Philadelphia wedding and engagement photographer.
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