How much does a wedding photographer cost in Spain? Updated 2023
In this article you will find the answer. Not only how much a wedding photographer can cost you, but I will also explain what the prices depend on and how you can save by hiring a photographer for your wedding.
The question How much does a wedding photographer cost? It's a bit like how much does it cost to eat in a restaurant?
Just as you can eat fast food in a franchise for 15 €, you can go to a Michelin-star restaurant and pay 200 €.
It all depends on what you expect from the photographer. To make it easier to understand, I have divided it into 3 categories:
- Budget photographers
- Good photographers
- Premium photographers
Let's analyze the pros and cons of each of them, to be more precise I will analyze the base prices, without extras such as a pre-wedding session or an album.
How much do budget wedding photographers cost?
First, I would not recommend hiring a photographer who charges less than €1000 for his services. If someone values his work below this price, it means that he has difficulty finding couples to recommend him and has to set lower prices to attract any couple. It may be that he does not have any experience in the sector or that his work is of a lower level, in these cases what may happen is that the couples themselves prefer not to recommend his services. In these situations, the only alternative is to lower prices below profitability (the issue of profitability is explained below).
During all the years I have been working in the industry, I have not met anyone who charges below 1000 € and whose work is of quality.
Having said that, cheap photographers in Spain cost from 1000 € to 1400 €.
Having said that, cheap photographers in Spain cost from 1000 € to 1400 €. I know it is very tempting because of the price, but there is a very important factor to take into account: your wedding is probably going to be one of the most important days in your life and after organizing this moment with so much illusion during so much time, you will only have two things left: your memories and your photographs.
Would you take the risk of not being happy with the outcome? Would you risk noticing that the photographer is not up to the task?
These questions are very important.
Now talking about these types of photographers. The most common are the following:
1. Photographers who are just starting out
People who are not known in the industry and are not yet recommended by many people. Yet. His lack of experience is compensated with the motivation. A good option for weddings with a small budget and for certain couples who do not mind that a moment is not captured as a result of the photographer's inexperience.
It is important to know that the lack of experience may mean that the photographer misses an important moment (since they have not been to many weddings yet and do not know the dynamics well) or maybe they do not take into account the guests (it is a very common mistake among beginner photographers that due to stress they focus only on the couple forgetting to take good pictures of the guests). Everyone has to start. If you don't mind taking a little risk and you don't have much budget, it is a good option if you are going to take into account these risks.
2. Wedding Photography Agencies
Companies that hire several photographers, so they can lower prices and cover a lot of weddings every weekend. However, contrary to the above, they may be photographers who have done many weddings, know how they work and won't get lost in the chaos of the moment. Sounds good? Well, there are several things to keep in mind here as well.
First and foremost: you're probably not even going to meet the photographer before your wedding. You are going to talk to the management who will show you the best photos of all the weddings they did and sell their services very well.
And why is this so important?
Because the photographer is the only vendor you should like on a personal level. The rest of your wedding vendors just have to do their job well. The florist can be a bit obnoxious and yet he makes the most beautiful floral compositions you've ever seen. Same with the cook. In the case of the photographer (and videographer), it's a little different. Why?
I've heard many stories where the photographer was unkind to the couple and soured them on the most important day of their lives. How? Well, there are a thousand ways. Here's an example:
Imagine a very emotional moment in the preparations with your parents. Your father is about to burst into tears when he sees you in your wedding dress for the first time and the photographer interrupts the moment because he has bad light. Everything stops.
One of the moments you will remember all your life in the end doesn't happen because of the photographer's lack of tact. It's a true story and unfortunately, one of many I've heard.
A photographer hired by a company will charge between 200-400 € for your wedding. A wedding is at least 10 hours of work, very demanding mentally and physically. Not to mention that it's a weekend. Many subcontracted people simply don't have the same motivation as the photographers who put their name on the photos and have met you in the process of hiring you, so they want to give you the best service possible.
3. Cheap photographers with experience
As everything in this world has a reason, so does this case. Although it must be said that you can get very lucky and find someone good for a lower price. Especially if you are getting married out of season (the busiest wedding seasons are late spring and early fall).
However, good photographers with several years of experience usually have their schedules covered enough that it is not worth it for them to drop their rates into this price range.
How much do good wedding photographers cost?
Good photographers in Spain charge between 1400 € and 2500 €.
In this price range, you will find the best balance of quality/price. As a general rule, from 1400 € you can already find photographers who have enough experience so that you will not be worried about any detail.
But why is an experience so important in the wedding industry? Why is it that any photographer who takes good photos can't be up to the task of wedding photography?
Because weddings have their tricks that you learn only with experience. The most important of all is to know the peculiarities of each wedding. Knowing at what moments you have to be more attentive. It is something that has nothing to do with the wedding protocol, but with intuition. There is no protocol or plan that includes the bride's hug to her grandfather, nor the exact moment when the groom's friends do something funny that will bring out that natural smile, and so on with a thousand other situations. What would you like to be able to see that moment again?
To have the experience is to have the sixth sense to know where and when to be attentive to capture these unique moments. It is one of the big differences between experienced and inexperienced photographers.
Another very important thing that photographers learn over the years is to know how to give the couple space. Good photographers not only know how to handle the camera and light, they know how to make the bride and groom feel comfortable.
How to take the perfect pictures without it feeling forced. How to give not only the pictures but also the experience of a unique wedding.
Good photographers know how to reassure the bride and groom in stressful moments and how to create a comfortable atmosphere, which will help to take more natural photos where the couple completely forgets that the photographer is there and begins to live the wedding on another level of intimacy. A level that may not be possible with an inexperienced and self-confident photographer, who does not give the couple space by taking pictures non-stop to make sure that they will at least go home with the minimum number of pictures agreed upon in the contract.
Good photographers are a figure between the photographer, Wedding Planner, and guest. Why did I say Wedding Planner and guest?
Because there are times when the only person close to the bride and groom is the photographer. He is the one who often corrects you a detail of dress or a lock of hair when it is windy because he is the only one who notices these details with such precision. In the end, this is also what the photos depend on.
Why do good photographers charge so much?
Let's take a very quick look at how much wedding photographers actually charge.
Let's take the average price of good photographers in Spain, which would be about 1800 € for the reportage.
If you pay 1800 € in total, 378 € will be the VAT so the photographer actually charges 1422 € of which he will have to pay the income tax (IRPF) 30% (for simplicity we will assume the average bracket) which will be 426,60 €. This leaves the photographer with €995.40. Of the €1800, more than €800 is spent on basic taxes alone. In addition, your photographer has to pay the autonomous fee each month of 291 €. If it is his only wedding this month he is already left with 704 € (let's hope he has more that month).
Then there is the equipment. A professional photographer carries with him equipment worth about 10.000 € - 16.000 €.
Why so much?
- Professional camera: 2000 €-4000 € (most good photographers carry 2 cameras so they don't have to keep changing lenses during the wedding).
- Lenses: 1000-3000 € for a good lens (we take about 2-5 lenses to the wedding, depending on the preferences and style of each photographer).
- Drone: 1000-3000 €.
- Flash: 200-1000 €.
- + Modifiers and other accessories (although this part is not so expensive and not all photographers carry it, so I don't include it in the calculation).
Good photographers, with several years of experience, always fill their schedule, so they will never charge you below a certain price.
Then come in all the marketing expenses he had to use to get you to find him, expenses for the tools he uses in his work, computers, editing software, and servers so you have the backup in the worst case you lose the photos. All these costs.
That said, you realize that paying 1800 € to the photographer doesn't make him very rich either. A good photographer, in order to have a normal salary, has to have at least half of all the weekends in a year booked.
What does this mean?
That no good professional who knows how to do his job is going to go below a certain price range , it is not profitable for us.
How much do premium wedding photographers cost?
The most demanded photographers in Spain charge from 2500 € to 5000 €. But is it worth paying a premium for a photographer?
What is really the difference between photographers who charge 1500 € and 4000 €? When you pay premium, obviously as in any other sector, you also pay for the brand. The best photographers in Spain are usually hired by famous people. It is the same as going to a famous restaurant. You pay a premium price not only for the food but for all the extras.
And what extras are they?
Mostly their knowledge of the industry. You know you're hiring someone who will do the job flawlessly. At this level, there is no room for mistakes. In addition, you can count on someone who will know how to advise you on everything and will do it without you asking. We are talking about the details of clothing, the place of the preparations, and the best suppliers in your area. And last but not least: the know-how in luxury events.
Another very important aspect of premium photographers is how they treat you. The best photographers know how to create a unique atmosphere. They don't just let things happen, but take the initiative when it's important and take the situation to the deepest and most emotional level. They will know how to guide you when you are lost and leave you alone when things are flowing.
You are paying for luxury. You are paying a photographer who is in high demand because of the fame he has, so he can raise prices to these levels.
Every person is different and every wedding is different. If you don't have a big budget for your wedding or you don't care about the pictures, you can choose someone cheap and forget about it. Not everyone can afford to spend $2000 on a photographer and that's okay.
But if you value quality and give importance to the important details, do not look for the cheapest option, cheap is expensive. If you are on a tight budget, maybe save money on an extra that is not so noticeable.
Every decision has its pros and cons. However, this decision may be one of the most important when planning your wedding, since we are talking about the only memories your children and grandchildren will see for decades to come. Do you want good photos that will ultimately be family keepsakes for generations to come? And most importantly: do you want peace of mind knowing that you are in the good hands of a professional you can count on in any situation?
It's a decision you can't change once you receive your wedding photos. It's a day that will never be repeated.