For couples who want to tie the knot, it’s a must to place importance in your wedding photographer. After all, he’s the one who can capture (and subsequently, give you treasured memories) all the special moments that transpired during your big day.
Finding the right wedding photographer that fits your budget can be quite tricky though. Still, there are photography packages that can cut your expenses in half. To give you an idea, here’s your essential guide to wedding photography costs in the Philippines.
A Breakdown of Wedding Photography Cost in the Philippines
Hiring a wedding photographer for your big day may cost you anywhere between ₱20,000 up to ₱280,000.
Now you’re probably thinking this is a particularly large amount that you would prefer picking a friend to do the work. However, that’s not always a good choice especially if you will compare the quality of images that you’d get from a professional wedding photographer. Overall, experience and professional skills along with the best equipment contribute to the total cost of wedding photography packages.
PROFESSIONAL GEAR: THE PRICE YOU ACTUALLY PAY FOR TO ACHIEVE BEAUTIFUL WEDDING PHOTOS
1 . Camera
A wedding photographer may use a DSLR, a mirrorless camera, or even a phone to capture your special moments. These are priced at about ₱15,000 to ₱100,000 for just the camera body—some can even cost up to ₱150,000 with the lens already included.
However, it’s important to know that when hiring a professional studio, you typically get 2-3 wedding photographers each with their own respective cameras. In short, the cost of the camera alone is very expensive.
Unfortunately, a kit lens wouldn’t cut it when it comes to capturing every little detail found on your special day. Most wedding photographers spend approximately ₱10,000 to ₱60,000 for high-quality lenses that can bring your wedding images from good to great.
Here are the following camera lenses your wedding photographer might need:
Prime Lens – This lens has a fixed focal length which allows him to shoot in a dark-lit environment while still giving your photos that desirable shallow depth of field. It is commonly used in bridal portraits.
Medium Zoom Lens – This is the most flexible type of lens. It gives the photographer the freedom to capture images from both wide and tight perspectives.
Telephoto Lens – This type of lens is useful when capturing special moments at a distance, such as the church ceremony or the first dance.
Wide-Angle Lens – While not as often used in weddings, it can give you beautifully crisp shots of architectural details and large groups.
A wedding is one of the few events where it’s entirely possible to shoot handheld as it requires you to be constantly on-the-move. However, your wedding photographer might still require a tripod, especially when he is equipped with a larger and heavier camera.
A tripod is also helpful when taking group shots as your photographer needs to properly direct your guest’s poses. It also allows him to shoot at slower shutter speeds without having to worry about any camera shakes, especially at low-light conditions.
A lightweight camera tripod starts at ₱1,000.
4. External Flash
Your wedding photographer needs to have a Speedlight in order to capture photos in dimly-lit environments such as the church or the reception area at night. He may also utilize it to fill in light and get even exposures.
An external flash costs about ₱2,000 to ₱25,000.
A reflector is always a handy tool used by your wedding photographer. It can easily yet dramatically improve the quality of your images by bouncing, softening, and blocking the light source depending on your preference. It’s priced at an amount of ₱500 to ₱4,000.
6. Softbox Light
For highly stylized prenup and wedding portraits, a photographer has to be equipped with softboxes.
This equipment can help him capture beautifully detailed shots with impeccable lighting. It also allows him to control the spread of light which ultimately gives him the freedom to capture one-of-a-kind wedding images befitting for your grand romance tale.
Softbox lighting equipment comes at a cost of ₱2,500 to ₱8,000.
7. Memory Cards
Without a memory card, you can’t properly store photos on your phone. Likewise, a professional wedding photographer needs to have high-speed and high-capacity memory cards to secure all his captured work. This comes in different types:
Secure Digital – This is the basic format of the SD card. It can perform well but not as fast as other SD cards and it’s limited to 4GB of data.
Secure Digital High-Capacity – Also known as SDHC, this memory card can store anywhere between 4GB to 64GB of data.
Secure Digital Extended Capacity – SDXC cards have a memory capacity that starts at 64GB up to 2TB.
Micro Secure Digital– These memory cards are micro versions of SD cards and they also come in Micro SDHC and SDXC versions. They are commonly used on camera phones. CompactFlash – Commonly known as CF cards, these are less commonly used because of their physically larger size. However, they have big capacities and run at very high speeds.
Depending on the type of memory card required by your photographer’s camera, its price range is anywhere between ₱200 to ₱7,000.
8. External Hard Drive
However, a photographer cannot keep all wedding images on memory cards alone. He also needs an external drive or two for bigger and proper storage. Its price starts at ₱2,000.
9. Gear Bag
By now, you’re probably wondering how your wedding photographer can move with all these pieces of equipment. He packs them in a large gear bag—with numerous little cases inside—of course!
Each equipment bag comes at a price of ₱500 to ₱10,000, depending on the brand, size, and durability.
10. Photo Editing Software
Last but not the least, your photographer needs to pay for professional editing software to further enhance the images he had taken. This ultimately results in sharper, crisp and overall better-looking photos of your wedding day.
Here are the most popular photo editing software used by wedding photographers:
Adobe Photoshop – It is arguably the most used by photographers all over the world because of its easy-to-navigate interface, robust editing tools, and other tons of features that can help you achieve greater images. A monthly subscription of the latest version cost $20.99 or ₱1,085.
Adobe Lightroom – It is considered to be a subset of Photoshop which is mainly created for the purpose of managing and organizing a large number of images. However, it also has specific tools which allows the photographer to edit and manipulate photos easily. A monthly subscription is priced at $9.99 or ₱516.
Did You Know? Instead of buying expensive monthly subscriptions, photographers prefer to purchase Adobe’s photography plans which already includes Photoshop and Lightroom plus ample cloud storage.
Corel PaintShop Pro – While not as popular as Adobe software, this photo editing software has a powerful program that’s relatively easy to use for beginners. It can edit 360-degree photos and has a touch-screen feature. A photographer can get this software for life at $99.99 or ₱5,169.
Affinity Photo – This cheap editing software (₱2,490) comes with many powerful editing tools (resolution-independent, RAW processing, etc.) that most photographers want and need. In fact, it has enough power to compete with Photoshop head-on.
In total, your wedding photographer spends an average of ₱35,000 to ₱280,000 on equipment alone minus the expensive classes and workshops which cost anywhere between ₱2,000 to ₱70,000.
That’s why to cut the costs that their clients (like you) would be paying, wedding photographers usually offer photoshoot packages for the grooms and brides-to-be. Take a look at this basic price guide on wedding photography costs.
WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY PACKAGES: YOUR COST-EFFICIENT OPTIONS
1. Prenup Photography Packages
Like most couples, you probably also want to consider a prenup photoshoot in order to tell your love story in a unique way. It’s also the perfect time for you to get comfortable around your photographer and the camera in general before your big day.
Most wedding photographers offer these basic packages:
Full Photo Coverage – This usually includes a 2-4 hour prenup photo session where your wedding photographer direct romantic poses and snap away at your candid sweet moments. Flat rates start at an average of ₱10,000 to ₱40,000.
Full Photo Coverage with Album – A package which includes an album that allows you to treasure keepsakes of a fun and spontaneous photoshoot. Prices range from ₱12,000 to ₱45,000 depending on the quality of the particular photo album.
Tip: You can use your prenup photos for wedding invitations, save-the-dates, program, and even your giveaways!
Full Photo Coverage with Styling – For brides-to-be, this package—which offers a prenup shoot together with styling—makes the process so much easier. The wedding photographer teams up with a makeup artist (MUA) and hairstylist to capture stunning images of you looking your best. It costs anywhere between ₱16,000 to ₱52,000.
2. Wedding Day Photography Packages
If you feel like prenup photos are an unnecessary waste of time and money, you can find photography packages which only includes actual wedding day photo ops.
Full Photo Coverage – This package includes a full coverage photoshoot of your wedding day for 8 hours. Prices would really depend on your photographer but generally, it can cost ₱30,000 to ₱100,000.
Full Photo Coverage with SDE – Same inclusions as the package above but the photographer work with an editor to play your images on the wedding reception later that day. Due to these services, expect to pay a hefty price of ₱40,000 up to ₱120,000.
Did You Know? Some wedding photographers also offer on-the-day photo turnovers for instant sharing with your family and friends.
Full Photo Coverage with SDE and Album – If you like having a hardbound album to give you priceless memories of your wedding day, prepare to fork out at least ₱50,000 to ₱150,000.
3. Combination of Prenup and Wedding Day Packages
There are also packages which include both prenup and actual wedding photoshoot which are. perfect for frugal couples. These ultimately allow you to capture all the moments leading to your big day at a special bundled price.
Full Photo Coverage – A 2-4 hour prenup shoot together with a whole day wedding photoshoot are priced at ₱55,000 to ₱120,000.
Full Photo Coverage with SDE – Most couples want to share their wedding images as soon as possible with their guests. Owing to same-day edits, you can actually play them back during the reception. Be prepared to pay at least ₱70,000 to ₱190,000.
Full Photo Coverage with SDE and Album – This package that comes with same-day edit and a high-quality album are considered to be a luxury for the ordinary couple as these cost ₱85,000 to ₱230,000.
Full Photo Coverage with SDE, Prenup Styling, and Album – This all-in-one package includes all the photography services most couples dream of. Unfortunately, it comes at a cost of ₱105,000 to ₱280,000.
However, the wedding photography cost does not end with your photographer. There are a lot of other expenses you need to consider as well. Be aware of these miscellaneous—and often hidden—charges you need to pay for during your photo sessions.
MISCELLANEOUS WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY COSTS
Couples usually look for locations with picturesque views and the prices usually vary. For instance, you can shoot on public parks by paying a relatively small amount of entrance fee (₱10 to ₱150). However, you have to file and secure permits (around ₱2000) on locations such as Intramuros and Bonifacio Global City.
You also have to consider how to get from your home to the prenup/wedding location during your photoshoot. Prepare to spend least ₱500 on gas alone but this can still go up, depending on where you plan to shoot. Of course, the cost of hiring vans for out-of-town and destination wedding photoshoots is significantly larger.
Have room in your budget for snacks (₱50 to ₱500) during your prenup photoshoot and three-course meals (₱200 to ₱900) on the wedding day itself. Your wedding photographers will have a hard time focusing on capturing your desired images if they work on an empty stomach.
4. Hair and Makeup
Your hair and makeup is one of the most important elements of your wedding photoshoot. A MUA and hairstylist will transform both you and your partner’s look from good to great which translates well on the camera. Hiring one doesn’t come at a cheap price though—prepare to fork out ₱2,000 to ₱5,000.
Like your hair and makeup, your wardrobe is also essential to achieve great wedding images. For prenup shoots, you can opt to wear already-owned clothing. The actual wedding day is different though. Suits and tuxedos for the groom are priced at ₱3,000 to ₱25,000 while bridal gowns are ₱15,000 to ₱100,000. Of course, some couples, especially celebrities, tend to spend a lot more than these prices.
Did You Know? GMA Network artist Marian Rivera wore a Michael Cinco gown priced at about ₱2 million when she married fellow actor Dingdong Dantes.
You should also think about your props, especially for engagement shoots. This would all rely on your outfit, location, and even wedding theme. They can be as cheap as ₱20 or expensive at ₱800 for more elaborate details. Luckily, you can find prenup photographers who already offer free use of their props once you avail their services.
7. Contingency Fees
Always have extra money on hand just in case things don’t go smoothly according to your plan.
For prenup photoshoots, you should also take note that even though you hired your photographer for just a few hours, it’s a must to pay more than half of their day rate. This ultimately recompense for lost money and time if they can’t find another gig for the day.
This price guide presents only the average costs of a wedding photographer in the Philippines. And no matter how much money you spend for one’s services, always remember that the most important thing is to enjoy your big day as this only happens once-in-a-lifetime.
Still on the lookout for the right wedding photographer? Consider I am Abi, a fine art photography studio in the Philippines. Skilled in wedding photography, we believe that every love story is unique and deserves to be told in such a way. Let us help you create priceless moments on your big day! Contact us today for a free quotation.
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