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How To Choose A Destination Wedding Photographer

Are you planning a destination wedding or elopement and trying to figure out how to choose your destination wedding photographer? It’s overwhelming trying to find a normal photographer, much less a destination photographer. As a destination wedding photographer myself, I’m going to drop some tips about how to find the right destination wedding photographer for you.

Start with your research.

The first step in finding a destination wedding photographer (or any photographer!) is to do some research online. I recommend starting with Google, Instagram, or Pinterest, and searching “destination wedding photographer” or “-your wedding location- wedding photographer.” Figure out the photography style you love and go from there. Don’t forget to read reviews and testimonials! It’s always a good idea to read reviews and testimonials from previous clients before hiring a destination wedding photographer. This will give you an idea of their level of professionalism and the quality of their work. Do they have good reviews? Do you love their vibes and their work?

What is important VS what is not important

something I’ve learned from being in the industry for nine years now: a lot of photographers really like the IDEA of working destination weddings. However, they haven’t traveled often or internationally before and have no real clue what it’s like. They think it’s going to be a paid vacation. In reality, being a destination wedding photographer is a lot of effort! You have to think about traveling with your gear, figuring out working visas, booking travel, and being away from home for (at the very least) three days. So here is what is not important: if they have worked at your exact venue/location before or not. If you’re hiring a professional and you love their work, they will create absolute magic even if they have never worked at your venue before. and they’ll do whatever research they need to do to be prepared! what is important is that they know how to travel for work and they have done it before.

What is their pricing structure like?

Destination wedding photographers typically have two pricing models: either they add travel costs on top as a flat fee/included in the package, or they will invoice you separately for travel costs. Although it may not seem like it, being invoiced for their travel costs separately often ends up being a better deal for you! If the photographer is including travel costs in the package, they are probably slightly overestimating what they will need so they don’t have to pay for anything out of pocket. Be highly wary of anyone who says they won’t charge you any travel fees at all, because I’ve seen inexperienced photographers book a destination wedding without charging any fees, realize how expensive travel is, and then back out- leaving the couple back at the drawing board. The exception to this rule is if the photographer will already be in your location.

How to choose a destination wedding photographer

You’ve done your research and made sure your photographer is an experienced traveler. Next up: schedule a consultation. It’s so important to vibe with your photographer and see them as someone you could be friends with. Zoom or in person consultations will help you get an even better feel for their personality! Along with giving you the option to learn more about their approach and ask any questions you may have.

Finding your soulmate destination wedding photographer requires some research and careful consideration. Your wedding photos will be treasured for years to come, so it’s worth investing in a photographer who can deliver quality work that you will love for a lifetime. If you’d like to talk about having me photograph your destination wedding or elopement, reach out here! I’m also going to link one of my favorite destination wedding planners- Honey + Thyme Events- if you still need your planner!

Couple in wedding clothes in London, UK by Big Ben. photographed by destination wedding photographer The Hazel Club photography
London Elopement at Big Ben
  1. […] I mean, it’s totally up to you….but spending a few days in an incredible place with your favorite people sounds like the best thing ever. If you decide to move forward with planning a destination wedding, here’s another blog I wrote about how to choose your destination wedding photographer! […]

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