Overseas Weddings - how it all works...
Around 25% of the weddings I do every year are in a country other than the UK. More information about this is here. I love it. There is something undeniably special about witnessing family and friends fly around the world to celebrate someone’s wedding day. Sometimes these weddings are intimate; other times they’re full to the brim of people incorporating it into a holiday. Either way, there is something so very lovely about seeing different traditions and approaches with weddings around the world. So, how does it all work?
Firstly, you drop me an email – tell me where and when you’re getting married. Often hotels in particular will try to preach the benefits of having a ‘package’ photographer included and, you know what, that’s absolutely fine if that’s what you want. I get it – it is convenient and often cheaper. However, there are a few things to bear in mind with this. Firstly, you would rarely get to meet the photographer until the day before. When you consider that after the cake has been eaten, the flowers have died, and the chair covers have been ironed for their next wedding outing, the only thing left is what has been captured by your photographer and/or videographer. For that reason, I think it’s pretty important to at the very least be able to have a chat with whoever is creating those memories of your day to make sure a) you like them and are happy to spend the best part of 12 hours with them, and b) you get exactly what you want – is there a guest there who you’d particularly like a photograph with, for example. Or is there something rather special happening during the day that you’d really like documented? Aside from actually getting married, obviously!
Secondly, there is the issue of language barrier. This is a tricky one for me as I don’t feel wholly comfortable bleating on about the good ol’ English language, but I also think it’s a pretty big deal. Sometimes, photographers local to where you’re getting married will have limited English skills save for blunt direction. I believe it’s so important to have a rapport not only with the couple but also your guests that being able to communicate effectively, confidently and sympathetically is absolutely imperative. If you think so too, then that’s another tick for the ‘taking a photographer with you’ box.
Once you’ve established that I am free and are aware of my prices/packages, then you simply pay your deposit and you’re good to go. The way I work it is that I take a non-refundable booking fee (£500) out of a set price (£1,795 for Europe; £1,995 for Rest of the World). The deposit allows me to book my travel and accommodation well in advance and take care of all of the logistical side of things. You do not have to worry about Googling travel or finding me an Air BNB or anything like that. I make sure that I book a flight out at least a day before your wedding and I always book accommodation within a reasonable travel distance of your wedding. I also incorporate the costs of travel to/from the UK airport (parking, fuel, etc.) in that price so you simply don’t pay any additional extras.
In the meantime, we meet on UK soil to do a pre-wedding shoot at a location of your choice (free within 100 miles of SA2, 45p a mile return journey extra for anything beyond this.) You don’t have to have the pre-wedding shoot, of course, it’s entirely up to you. We can Skype, FaceTime, meet, etc. as many times as you like in the lead up to your wedding.
30 days before the wedding – as is the case with UK weddings – you pay the remaining balance.
I turn up and photograph your wedding as I would any wedding in the UK with the added bonus of also covering any event the day before your wedding too (e.g. pre-wedding party/dinner, which is also a good opportunity for me to meet any of your guests beforehand too.
So, some other benefits that don’t quite fit as well into a paragraph are:
I head to the most convenient UK airport with all of the equipment I’d use at a UK wedding (apart from fewer snacks, I suppose)
I arrange all of the travel, parking, and all that shizz. I’m pretty au fait with airport security by now so know exactly what to bring and how best to pack it. When I get to your wedding country, nine out of ten times I will hire a car. I have driven in so many countries throughout the world that it’s pretty second nature for me. Often, you’ll read that some photographers will want transport/taxis sorted – they’re not for me. I far prefer the convenience and ease of driving myself from A to B (and C and D and everywhere in between) – that’s also something I arrange and cover in the overall cost
Similar to the above, I too arrange all of the accommodation (normally around 3 nights for European destinations; longer for further afield.) I use my common sense and book one that's pretty close to where I need to be on the morning of the wedding. You don't have to worry about anything.
So, while this isn't the most exciting piece of writing I've ever done, I hope it helps highlight the logistics of overseas weddings and the benefits of taking a UK-based (hopefully me!) photographer with you.
Now to break it up, here are some of my recent overseas wedding photographs. Enjoy!
So, as ever, drop me an email if you're interested in chatting further [email protected]