Tipping a Wedding Photographer?

Discussion in 'Wedding and Event' started by amol, Jan 7, 2004.

  1. Hi guys,

    I am getting married soon, had a quick question:

    I was just wondering whether it is common practice to "tip" the
    wedding photographer?

    Should I tip after I get my complete pictures (album), or after a see
    the proofs?

    Wedding photography is such a large chunk of my wedding fund, but I
    still want to be give a tip, IF that is the usual practice.

    What are your thoughts about this?

  2. It's not usual, but I've receive one tip so far. Since photographers charge up front for their time and efforts, you should only provide one if you think you got above average service or results. Even a small, essentially symbolic, tip can really motivate someone to provide even better service, so I'd give it after seeing the proofs.
  3. I'd say that it depends - if the photographer is a staffer/freelancer who is working for a studio, then yes, I would tip (assuming a tip is deserved, of course). On the other hand, I don't think it's necessary to tip a photographer who is in business for her/himself.
  4. I agree. It's not really necessary (or correct) to tip the owner of a business. However, if the photographer is a employee of a studio rather than the owner, then a tip is optional but usually much appreciated.

    The amount would be commensurate with the overall expenditure on the entire wedding. If you're having a small wedding, then a modest tip is OK. I've received as little as $20, which was from a young couple who didn't spend too much on their wedding. If they had spent $30,000 on the reception, then 20 bucks would have been tantamount to an insult. In that case, NO tip would be better. I'd say $50 or $100 is much more common, hand delivered to the photographer near the end of the reception. But it is by no means mandatory or "expected".
  5. Don't eat yellow snow
    Get a hair cut
    Look both ways before crossing the street.
  6. This is an often unspoken topic.I have shot approximately 400 weddings and have recieved about 10 tips!This ranges from $20-$50,this is almost always pressed into my sweaty palm at days end,after I've gone above & beyond the call of duty.Is this appreciated?What do you think?As a rule I will give "tippers" a mounted print or a stack of wallet size prints gratis.Any person that is in any service industry is gratefull for tips!It is always the less affluent that seem to tip too!Probably because they are more used to getting bad service than the rich!The rich feel they have paid your fee,so they own you for the day.
  7. How about a gift instead of cold hard cash?

  8. I agree that you don't need to tip owners...but a gift or tip to a studio employee is a nice gesture... It isn't, however, expected. I have received gifts (and I'm an owner) that were very much appreciated and once I did get a $600 tip on a wedding! I was floored! I think it was because she was from New York and at the time I was in Vermont and she realized she was getting a great deal compared to the prices in NY as well as when I work a wedding, I give it 200%.
  9. Why wouldnt you tip a business owner if they far exceeded your expectations??Tipping,is a reward for excellant service!If you dont get excellant service,dont tip.I have tried to do my best & I hustle at every wedding.Im not doing this hoping for tips though,its just the way the job should be done.
  10. Generally, no. I've been given 'meal money' once for the time spent waiting after the reception to take some family reunion shots on the beach near sunset. The wedding reception was finished around 3 p.m., and the family (same gang as the wedding) photos went around 6:30 p.m.
  11. I've never seen the photographers I work for, or myself as an assistant be tipped at the end of a wedding. Although at the last wedding I shot myself, the mother of the bride gave me a 100.00 tip before I left to pack up my gear. It was absolutely unexpected and greatly appreciated. I don't feel that it is required to tip the photographer. If you are impressed with the way they work and present themselves, then a tip would certainly be appreciated.
  12. Tipping a wedding photographer is not customery. More flattering is to be asked to
    visit in regards to a new friendship with them, the clients. Photographers often are
    regarded as personable; tipping is impersonal. I think that a nicer gift to the
    photographer is to invite him to dinner on the day he delivers the proofs or the final
    book. At the same time, he can explain which photos are the best, and for what
    artistic reasons. This keeps the gears oiled and if there are any hurt feelings about
    anything, this can be explained.
  13. m_.


    I seem to always get a gift (wine, chocolates in a basket or something of that sort) after the shooting session. Of course I don't have enough experience to speak for all.
  14. If the photographer is an employee and stays longer than the time they were hired for
    then a tip is appropriate. If they are an owner and do a good job give them
    something more valuble to them than a tip. Show people the pictures and when they
    ask who took them, don't forget who they were. Referrals are better than tips.
  15. Right after the reception, when they're fatigued and carrying heavy equipment. They go over really easy.

    Seriously, I've only been tipped once, it made my day. Go for it.
  16. Don't fry bacon with your shirt off!
  17. i'm a videographer & photographer in the NYC area. I've gotton about 75-100
    tips over 500 different events (weddings, bar mitzvahs, etc).
    The smartest thing I've ever seen a bride do is tip me (and everyone else) at
    the beginning of the reception- it was very motivating. I always do my best-
    but it puts you in a good mood.
    I've gotton tips from $20-250. I've also had people give me flowers,
    centerpieces, extra desserts, etc. after the event.

    One wedding i did (video) I had extra time at the house and asked the parents
    if they wanted me to take some group photos with their 35mm camera.
    they loved it and gave me a 100 dollar tip at the end of the night (and didn't tip
    the 1st camera guy)

    It doesn't bother me too much when people don't tip the photo/video people,
    but when they tip EVERYONE else (dj, limo, guitar player, etc) right infront of
    you- you have to swallow your pride alittle. It makes getting a tip that much
    more special.

    Christine in NY

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