How Many Hours of Photography Coverage Do You Need?

How many hours of photography coverage do you need for your wedding? | Bespoken

Most Bespoken Brides choose to splurge on their photographer, and I don't blame them. I actually encourage them to do so. Why? Because out of all of the things you purchase for your wedding, the photos are one of few things that will last.

Photographers have to work a certain number of hours of coverage into their contracts because if they didn't, they would be working all day and all night. Most photography packages will offer 6, 8, 10, or 12 hours of coverage. So how do you know how much you need?

6 HOURS

This is going to be the least expensive package your photographer is going to offer.

This package is right for you if:

  • you're on a budget.
  • you're having a small wedding.
  • you're eloping.

What to keep in mind:

  • 6 hours isn't very much time, so you probably won't receive all of the detail shots of the invitations, shoes, rings, etc.
  • In order to get pre-ceremony photos, ceremony photos, pre-reception photos, and a few reception photos, the photographer is probably not going to stick around for much of the reception, so you likely will not receive many dancing photos.

You will get plenty of photos of the important moments, though!

8 HOURS

This package is fairly common.

This package is right for you if:

  • you're having an average wedding of 100-150 guests.
  • you want a few more shots (detail, getting ready, some dancing, etc.).
  • your Ceremony and Reception both taking place at the same venue.

What to keep in mind:

  • If you want a First Look (I highly suggest it!), then you definitely want to book the 8 hour package.
  • If your wedding is taking place at two separate venues, then you may want to consider booking the photographer for more hours of coverage. If you don't, some of your 8 hour coverage will be eaten up by packing up of photography equipment and traveling time.

10 HOURS

This package is right for you if:

  • you don't want to feel rushed through the day.
  • you want the photographer to capture all of the getting-ready and detail shots.
  • your Ceremony and Reception are taking place at two separate venues.

What to keep in mind:

  • If you want a First Look, you want at least 8-10 hours of coverage.
  • If you are planning on doing a Grand Exit, 10 hours of coverage may not be enough time for the photographer to stay until the very end. The only way this would happen is if the photographer doesn't get any photos of you getting ready.

12 HOURS

Obviously this will be your most expensive package.

This package is right for you if:

  • you have a very large Bridal Party (12 or more Bridesmaids/Flower Girls).
  • you don't want to feel rushed.
  • you want the photographer to capture ALL of the details, several getting-ready moments, First Look, family photos, and all the way until you do a Grand Exit.

What to keep in mind:

  • If you have a huge Wedding Party AND a huge family, you definitely want to book 12 hours of coverage. This will allow the photographer to capture all of those friends and loved ones in a skilled way without anyone feeling rushed.
  • If you have a lot of custom details and decor (signage, paper products, floral arrangements, signature cocktails, etc.), then you likely spent a lot of time planning your wedding. And you definitely want to make sure every aspect is captured by the photographers.