How much is a wedding photographer to hire and why? Prices and packages explained.

In your quest to find the right wedding photographer, prices are a pivotal point to consider.

How much should you budget for? In the UK, the average wedding photographer prices hover around £1,464, but this figure can widely vary.

Factors like the location, photographer’s experience, and package specifics play a role. This article demystifies these costs and guides you through planning your photography budget.

Key Takeaways

  • The average cost of a wedding photographer in the UK in 2023 is approximately £1,464, but prices vary by region. London is the most expensive, on average. The length of service required can also affect the cost.
  • Factors such as a photographer’s experience, location, style, and package details cause variability in wedding photography prices, with experienced photographers charging premium rates for their expertise and additional services.
  • While hiring a photographer by the hour could be a cost-saving option for smaller weddings, most photographers require a minimum booking time, and additional services like editing and albums are generally extra costs.

1. What is the average cost of hiring a wedding photographer in the UK?

Cost of a Wedding Photographer.

So, how much can you expect to pay for a wedding photographer in the UK? Well, in 2023, the average cost was reported to be around £1,464. However, these costs could vary depending on several factors, such as the location and the length of service.

See my Wedding Photography Rates for all-day, half-day and bespoke packages.

Wedding Photographer prices, based on regions in the United Kingdom:

  • £1,193 in Wales
  • £1,567 in Scotland
  • £1,789 in Northern Ireland
  • £2,026 in London

This disparity in wedding photography prices may be attributed to factors such as the cost of living and the demand for photographers in these areas.

Looking for your perfect wedding photographer? Read my related article about Professional Wedding Photographer.

The length of service also significantly influences wedding photography costs. On average, coverage for half a day costs approximately £950, while a full day could set you back £1,566. So, as you plan your wedding day timeline, remember that more hours with your photographer will likely mean a higher cost.

In London, where the demand and cost of living are higher, the average cost of a wedding photographer was pegged at £1,890. If you’re planning a luxury wedding, you could find prices starting between £1,500 to £2,000 and potentially exceeding £5,000, which would impact the overall cost of a wedding.

To help you plan your budget, we’ve compiled a pricing table below that gives a snapshot of average wedding photography prices in different regions in the UK based on the length of service and type of wedding (standard or luxury).

2. Why do wedding photographer prices vary?

Several elements contribute to this variance. These include:

  • The photographer’s experience
  • Location (See my Wedding photographer Oxfordshire information page)
  • Style
  • The specific services and products included in their wedding photography packages

Experience plays a critical role in determining wedding photography costs. Experienced wedding photographers have honed their skills over many weddings and can confidently navigate the intricacies of the wedding day. They are adept at capturing candid moments and group shots, ensuring no special moment is missed. This expertise often comes at a premium.

The location of the wedding also significantly impacts the cost. Wedding photographer london prices are typically higher than in other regions due to the high cost of living and operating a photography business in the capital. Similarly, if you’re planning a destination wedding, you might need to cover travel and accommodation costs for your photographer.

The factors that can influence the price of wedding photography include:

  • The style of photography (e.g. documentary, traditional)
  • The skill set required for the chosen style
  • The amount of time required for the photography
  • The specific services and products included in the package (e.g. pre-wedding shoot, wedding album, second photographer)

All of these factors can affect the final price of wedding photography.

In conclusion, while most photographers offer standard packages, many are flexible and can tailor their wedding photography package to suit your wedding day needs and budget. So, it’s worth discussing your requirements and negotiating with your chosen photographer to get the best value for your money.

3. Can I hire a wedding photographer by the hour?

If you’re planning a micro wedding or a shorter event, you might consider hiring a wedding photographer by the hour. This can be cost-effective, especially if you only need coverage for specific parts of the day, such as the ceremony and group shots.

So, how much does it cost to hire a wedding photographer by the hour? Well, typical rates range from £150 to £250 per hour. This price can vary depending on the photographer’s experience and location, similar to full-day rates.

However, it’s worth noting that most wedding photographers charge minimum hours for their services. Even for a short event, they must set aside the entire day to accommodate your booking, as they can’t commit to photographing another wedding on the same day.

Another point is that hourly rates often only cover the photographer’s time on your wedding day. Extra services, such as editing the photos and providing an online gallery or wedding album, are typically not included and will cost extra.

In conclusion, while hiring a wedding photographer by the hour can be a budget-friendly option for some couples, it’s essential to discuss your expectations and understand what is included in the rate to avoid surprises.

4. Why are wedding photographers expensive?

It’s a common question: why are wedding photographers so expensive? The cost of wedding photography can be a significant chunk of your budget, but there are valid reasons behind these prices.

Professional wedding photographers invest in:

  • High-quality cameras and lenses
  • Lighting equipment
  • Backup gear
  • Editing software

They must also maintain and upgrade this equipment regularly, which adds to their operating costs.

Secondly, wedding photography is not just about the hours spent photographing weddings. There’s a considerable amount of time spent on tasks such as:

  • communicating with clients
  • planning the shoot
  • editing the photos
  • preparing the final products like a wedding album or online gallery

These hours all add up, contributing to the overall wedding photographer cost.

Additionally, the high cost can be attributed to:

  • The skill and expertise of professional wedding photographers
  • Their knowledge and experience in capturing the right moments, in the right light, and from the best angles
  • Their ability to navigate the chaos of the wedding day and still deliver beautiful photos that tell your love story

Finally, running a photography business involves other expenses, such as:

  • insurance
  • marketing
  • website maintenance
  • taxes

All these factors contribute to the overall cost of wedding photography. So, while it may seem like a hefty investment, remember that you’re paying for a professional service that ensures you’ll have beautiful memories of your special day to look back on.

5. Does my wedding venue affect the wedding photographer’s prices?

Prices of Wedding Photographers

The location of your wedding venue can affect the cost of your wedding photographer. But how exactly does it do so?

Firstly, if your wedding venue is far from the photographer’s base, they might charge extra for travel expenses. Some photographers include travel within a certain radius in their package prices, but anything beyond that could incur additional costs. This is especially important to consider if you’re planning a destination wedding or if your chosen photographer is based in a different city or country.

Secondly, your venue’s specific requirements could also impact the cost. For instance, if the venue is dimly lit, the photographer may need to bring additional lighting equipment. Similarly, if your venue is vast or spread out, the photographer might recommend hiring a second photographer to ensure comprehensive coverage. These factors could add to your wedding photography costs.

Read more details about Wedding Venue Ideas on a Budget.

6. Does wedding style impact how much it costs to hire a wedding photographer?

The styles of wedding photography can also influence the cost of hiring a wedding photographer. Photography styles require different skills, time commitments, and, sometimes, equipment.

For instance, documentary-style photography, which focuses on capturing candid moments and genuine emotions, requires high skill and experience. The photographer needs to be adept at:

  • anticipating and capturing fleeting moments
  • working in different lighting conditions
  • framing shots creatively
  • telling a story through images

This style of photography can be more challenging and time-consuming than directing posed shots, but it can result in stunning and authentic images.

On the other hand, traditional photography often involves:

  • posed shots
  • less time as the photographer has more control over the situation
  • the ability to direct groups
  • the ability to create visually pleasing compositions

In conclusion, when discussing your wedding style with potential photographers, it’s essential to understand their expertise in that style and how it could impact the cost.

7. Is it worth paying more for an experienced wedding photographer?

When planning your wedding budget, you might be tempted to cut costs by hiring a less experienced photographer. But is it worth paying more for an experienced wedding photographer?

In short, yes. While an inexperienced photographer might offer lower prices, an experienced wedding photographer brings valuable expertise and peace of mind. They have the skills to capture stunning photos, handle the wedding day chaos, and deliver a high-quality final product.

An experienced photographer knows how to:

  • Anticipate and capture the crucial moments of your wedding day and engagement shoot
  • Work with different lighting conditions
  • Pose individuals and groups
  • Seamlessly blend into the background to capture candid shots

See this article for what makes a good wedding photographer.

Moreover, experienced wedding photographers are likelier to have a reliable backup plan in case of unforeseen circumstances, such as equipment failure or illness. They’re also likely to be more efficient in post-production, ensuring you receive your wedding photos on time.

So, while the price tag might be higher, investing in an experienced destination wedding photographer can ensure you get stunning photos you’ll cherish for a lifetime.

8. How important is wedding photography when planning my wedding budget?

Packages for a Wedding Photographer.
Wedding photography is often a significant portion of a wedding budget. But how important is it when planning your budget?

Wedding photos are more than just pictures – they are lasting memories of your special day. They capture the emotion, the details, and the people that make your day unique. Years later, when memories fade, these photos will be your window back to those special moments.

Moreover, professional photography is not just about clicking a button. It involves a combination of creativity, technical skills, and the ability to work with people. A professional wedding photographer can capture the best shots under challenging conditions.

Considering these factors, allocating a significant portion of your wedding budget to photography is advisable. While you might be able to save money in other areas, such as decor or favours, your wedding photos are one area where you don’t want to compromise.

In conclusion, while wedding photography can be a considerable investment, it’s worthwhile. These photos will be the lifelong mementoes of your special day, so choosing a professional photographer who can capture them beautifully is essential.

Read about Wedding Venue Ideas on a Budget.


In conclusion, wedding photography is an integral part of your special day and should be a priority in your wedding budget. While the cost of hiring a wedding photographer in the UK can vary based on location, experience, and style, it’s a worthwhile investment that ensures you have stunning, high-quality photos to look back on. Remember, these photos are more than just images – they are lifelong memories of one of the most important days of your life.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does it cost to hire a wedding photographer in the UK?

Hiring a wedding photographer in the UK can cost around £1,464 on average, but prices may vary depending on location and service duration.


What is the cost of photography in the Cotswolds?

Wedding Photography Cotswolds vary and depend on the wedding venue and the type of photographer you want. Contact me to get a fixed quote for your big day.


Can I hire a wedding photographer by the hour?

Yes, you can hire a wedding photographer by the hour, but most photographers have a minimum number of hours for their services.


Why are wedding photographers so expensive?

Wedding photographers are expensive because they invest in high-quality equipment, spend a lot of time planning and editing, and have the expertise to capture beautiful photos for your special day. All of these factors contribute to the overall cost.


Does my wedding venue affect the cost of the photographer?

Yes, the location of your wedding venue can affect the photographer’s cost, as they may charge extra for travel expenses or specific venue requirements. Keep this in mind when choosing a venue.


Is it worth paying more for an experienced wedding photographer?

Yes, paying more for an experienced wedding photographer is worth paying because they bring valuable expertise and peace of mind, ensuring stunning photos and a high-quality final product.

Related article > Wedding Photographer Meeting Checklist.