Updated: Feb 8, 2021
Guest Blogger - Luke Batchelor Productions Edited by Poppy - Your Best Day Ever
What is the average spend for wedding videography?
The average cost of wedding videography in the UK is wide ranging, with beginners or ‘start up’ shooters offering to film for free or for a very minimal amount of money so that they can gain a portfolio to book more clients, right up to seasoned filmmakers with a wealth of experience who will charge in excess of £3,000 per wedding.
For me & my business I offer packages that start at £1,200 & go up to £1,500, with options to ‘add on’ extras that then increase those prices, depending on what that particular couple would like from their wedding film & from me. I would say I am in the mid-to-high end price bracket for videographers in the UK- my prices give me a great balance between booking the right amount of weddings each year & maintaining the value in my work.
What can affect wedding videography prices?
A number of factors can affect the pricing of wedding videography & much like photographers, each individual has their own way of working things & has different elements they will charge (or not charge) for. Here are some common factors that can affect the price of your wedding videographer:
· Location: This can affect the price if you enquire with a videographer who ‘quotes per enquiry’, or that is to say they don’t display any prices & you have to send them an enquiry so that they can come back to you with a quote. For instance, a couple getting married at a large country estate or castle could be charged more than a couple getting married at a small barn, simply due to the stature of those venues. I personally don’t like that pricing model & prefer to treat every wedding equally in value.
· Wedding Date: It’s no secret that some dates are simply more popular (& therefore more valuable) than other dates. If you want to get married on a Bank Holiday in August, then expect to pay a bit more than you would on a weekend in January. With multiple clients wanting the same dates at certain times of the year the prices will normally increase. Some videographers will charge an ‘on season’ (typically April-September) & an ‘off season’ (October-March) price, whereas some, like me, charge the same rate all year round.
· Timings: Do you want all day coverage, part day coverage, or do you want to pay hourly? There’s a mixture of different models out there but how long you want your videographer with you on the day will affect how much they charge you. I offer the same coverage in all my packages, which is 10:30am (for bridal prep) until 8pm (for the first dance). Any hours outside of those I will charge my couples extra for & I will always advise them if I think they need the hours or not (more often than not it isn’t necessary).
· Hidden Costs: Generally speaking, there shouldn’t be many hidden costs with a reputable videographer. You’ll sign contracts when you book & so you’ll know what you’ve paid for & what the expectation is for the final product. If you wanted the ‘RAW’ or unedited footage from your wedding day this would almost certainly be charged for & wouldn’t be included in your package cost, however it’s not something most couples need or want. As I say to my clients, you wouldn’t walk into a bakers & ask for the individual ingredients to a cake, you just want to buy the finished cake- it’s exactly the same principle.
· Experience: I alluded to it earlier, but experience is probably the biggest differentiator on pricing in the videography world. You wouldn’t pay thousands of pounds to a new videographer who couldn’t show you a wedding they had filmed before or expect to have your big day filmed for free by a world-renowned filmmaker. The old saying of ‘you can’t teach experience’ rings true in this part of the wedding industry & the more experienced your videographer is, the more valuable their work becomes & the more they will charge.
· Style: Style is a huge factor when it comes to price, due to the type of work involved in not only filming your special day but how the film is edited & constructed. You have ‘documentary’ videographers, where your film is a timeline of your day as it happened, normally with a neutral colour grade & very limited effects (such as slow motion, moving camera movements etc). Or there’s videographers like me, who have a cinematic style to their films, using slow motion, high quality audio recordings & different colour grades to turn your wedding footage into more of a ‘film’ than a ‘video’. There’s lots of work that goes with that though & this is incorporated into the prices I charge.
What can you get for your budget?
Beginner videographers will often advertise their services for free or for a fee normally under £200 so that they can build their portfolio- this obviously carries some risk as they aren’t ‘tried & tested’ but by no means does it mean they are a bad videographer- we all had to start somewhere. For this budget expect to get a short highlight film with very minimal audio (i.e. of you actually speaking).
For a budget up to £1,000 you can expect good all day coverage & at least 2 separate films, a shorter ‘highlight’ film for social media & a longer ‘feature film’ that shows off your entire wedding day. In the upper regions of this budget (£700+) you should start seeing better audio quality & a more ‘polished’ look to the videographers films.
For budgets over £1,000 you would expect to see 3-4 very well made, high quality films- a highlight film, a feature film, wedding ceremony & wedding speeches. Some videographers also offer a ‘teaser’ film as well which they release to you very quickly after the wedding so you have something to look at straight away. You should be able to hear everything clearly & you should expect to be ‘buying into’ the established style of the videographer you decide to book with.
Why are wedding videographers so expensive?
It’s a great question & one I get asked regularly.
Firstly, filmmaking is a skill that takes years to learn & master- if it was easy everyone would do it & I would be out of a job! Camera equipment is extremely expensive- I would say the average videographer will be filming weddings with in excess of £10-12k worth of equipment & that is a huge expense not only to buy but to fix, maintain & insure. That figure doesn’t include their computers, hard drives & editing software which are essential to making the films.
Then you have the time it takes to craft a wedding film. Filming on the wedding day is only part of the story- editing is the main bulk of the work & its something you won’t probably see. For me, I edit with a loose rule that for every 1 minute of film I produce it takes me 1 hour to edit that minute. So for a 20 minute feature film it takes me roughly 20 hours worth of work- not including the time it takes to cut all the footage up, organise it, find the right music, work with the audio to make it sound crisp & make sure the colours match in every shot. I always like to point out to my couples that you aren’t just booking me for a single day, you’re booking me for several days worth of work.
Although on the outset it may appear that some of the prices charged are a little on the high side, when you break down the hourly costs & business expenses from the time an enquiry comes in to the films being delivered, it really isn’t that unreasonable- especially when at the end of it you get stunning memories of your big day that you can look back at whenever you want with just a click of a button.
A little bit about me…
For me, every wedding film I make is personal & I truly believe its one of, if not THE best investment you can make into your wedding day. Whether you have a small, intimate wedding or you have the biggest wedding of the year, having it filmed is the best way to capture everything & document it forever. So much planning goes into these special days & no matter what you are planning for yours a wedding film adds value to every single supplier you book.
I don’t believe in a ‘one size fits all’ approach & each of my films is tailored to that particular couple- you aren’t the same as another couple so why should your wedding film be like someone else's? I put a real emphasis on being fun to be around, not making my couples feel awkward or uneasy & at the end of the day I want everyone who works with me to walk away feeling positive. It’s something I’ve worked hard on to achieve & its how I managed to win The Wedding Industry Awards 2021 South East Wedding Videographer of the Year this year- as the biggest awarding body in the UK wedding industry it not only holds a lot of value but its also the only awards body that is affected by votes from real couples who have worked with a supplier. So to win shows that the couples I have worked with must have really valued my work & their experience with me as their votes directly corresponded to me winning this award.
Whatever you have planned I sincerely hope you seriously consider having your wedding filmed, you really wont regret it. No matter your budget, date, or any other factor, find someone who you truly connect with & get them there on your wedding day to document it for you. I would love to be a part of it & so if you have enjoyed reading this blog & would like to know more about me & what I can offer your wedding day then you can find my contact links below.
You’re going to have the most amazing wedding day & I hope this article has been helpful for you.
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