How much coverage

time do I need?

When you look at your wedding day start to finish, it might not be so easy to tell how many hours of wedding day coverage you’ll need to adequately cover your wedding day. Most likely, the day for you is going start well before the photographer arrives. So what’s the best way to determine how much time you need from your photographer? 

First things first...

Well the first thing you’ll want to do is make sure you’re on the same page as your photographer regarding what’s important to cover and how much time is adequate for each section of the day. For example, if you and your photographer agree to capture candid photos during the getting ready and maybe some photos of you getting your hair and makeup done, your photographer’s start time might be two hours before you're scheduled leave. If you only want detail photos and a few portraits, you might be ok with just one hour.  

Another example is deciding what time you’re photographer will end coverage. You might be ok with the photographer ending coverage after the cake cutting, or you might want your photographer there until the very last song of your reception. Either way, make sure to talk to your photographer about what’s important to you to make sure you’ve allowed enough time to capture those things without rushing through your wedding day.

The second thing you’ll want to do is add up the amount of time it will take to cover all of the sections of the day, and then add any travel time between locations. For example let’s say your ceremony and reception are not in the same location. If you’re ceremony is 30 minutes long and 30 minutes away from your reception venue make sure those two events reflect an hour of time on your timeline . And, if you think there might be a chance of traffic or any other delays between locations, add a bit of buffer time to make sure you can arrive to each part of the day with enough time to keep things on schedule.  

Here are some rough estimates of how much time I usually recommend for the different parts of the day

  • Bridal Party - 15-20 Minutes (Depending on size of bridal party)
  • Family - 15-30 minutes (Depending on sizes of family or number of groups that will be included)
  • Travel Time: Add 15 Minutes to each travel segment for loading/unloading

Adding up the time needed for all of the wedding day events as well as any travel time will give you a great starting point for determining exactly how much time is perfect for your wedding day coverage. 

Additional Tips

Here are a few additional tips to help you keep the right perspective with figuring out how much time you actually need.

  • Do what’s right for you. Keep in mind that every wedding is unique and what might have worked for a friend might not be exactly what you’re looking for. Instead of focusing on the number of hours, start by making sure your timeline includes everything that’s important and that we're allocating time for you to enjoy every part the day and also get all the images you'd like.
  • Give yourself time to enjoy each moment. When I think about my wedding day, I can’t believe how quickly it flew by. One minute I was taking my tux out of the bag, and 5 minutes later I was coming back from my honeymoon. It all went so quickly. But I can still remember what I felt during most parts of that day because none of it was rushed. Keep in mind that you want your wedding images to show how you felt at different moments of the day. Talk to your photographer to make sure you’re not rushing through your wedding day and that you’ll have time to get all the images you want while still taking some time to feel everything happening around you. 

I hope this helps, and if you have any more questions regarding the amount of coverage time you need for your wedding day, feel free to reach out to me!