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Average Cost of Wedding Photography in Toronto

AVERAGE COST OF WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY IN TORONTO

What is the average cost of wedding photography in Toronto? How much do wedding photographers charge on average? Find the answer to these questions and more in this article.

If you want to see how we compare to the market average, visit our Toronto wedding photography prices page.

Article structure:

Section 1: Calculating the average cost of wedding photography in Canada and Toronto

Section 2: Distribution of wedding photography prices in the GTA

Section 3: Toronto wedding photography pricing ranges

Section 4: Factors impacting wedding photographers' pricing

Conclusion

SECTION 1: CALCULATING THE AVERAGE COST OF WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY IN CANADA AND TORONTO

As of 2017, according to WeddingBells, the average wedding in Canada costs $26,000. According to this Financial Post article, in Toronto, it is common for couples to spend, on average, over $40,000 on their wedding. Interestingly, most couples surveyed by BMO, underestimated their wedding budget by 50%.

The recommended average cost of wedding photography is about 10% of the wedding budget. It follows that in Toronto, a couple will spend on average $4,000 on photography. That is consistent with our survey of Toronto Wedding Photography Prices. In Canada, the average cost of a wedding photography is between $2,500 and $3500.

Generally, packages include a photo album, two wedding photographers and 8-10 hours of photography. Some brides may spend a higher amount on their wedding photos if photography is a big deal for them and are looking for famous wedding photographers. Couples who want to spend less on photography will choose more budget friendly packages that include less time or no albums. Finally, brides on a budget might ask guests to snap some wedding pictures and post them on social media.


SECTION 2: DISTRIBUTION OF WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY PRICES IN THE GTA

There is more to the picture than the average cost of wedding photography. The distribution of wedding photography prices give you a clearer picture of the amount you can expect to pay.

We will examine Top 30 Toronto wedding photography studios to determine the average cost of wedding photography and their distribution.

Chart 1 below clearly shows that 33% of the studios researched in Toronto charge around $4,000. 

Chart 1: Wedding Photography Prices in the GTA

Average Wedding Photography Cost

As per Table 1 below, in Toronto, 66% of studios researched charge between $3,000 and $4,000 for a package that includes 10 hours of photography and a photo album. That is consistent with the average cost calculated as a 10% of the average wedding budget.

Table 1. Average Wedding Photography Cost for a 10 hour package including two photographers and one album.

Cost Number of Studios

Examined

% of Studios Researched
$2,000 1 3%
$2,500 2 7%
$3,000 4 13%
$3,500 6 20%
$4,000 10 33%
$5,000 1 7%
$5,500 1 7%
$6,000 1 3%
$8,000 1 3%


SECTION 3: TORONTO WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY PRICE RANGES

The price intervals are calculated considering a 10h coverage, 2 photographers and 1 album.

Upscale photographers (top 3% of the market): Do you have the money to hire an famous photographer who charges $8,000+? For a high budget wedding, that is a reasonable target. Still, you need to make sure you are getting a good return on investment (ROI) and it is not just the marketing hype increasing the average cost. You must love your photographer's wedding pictures and personality or you might not be getting the best deal.

Premium photographers are talented and experienced, yet not famous artists who charge anywhere between $4,000s and $8,000s.

Affordable wedding photographers in Toronto charge between $3000s-$4,000s for their packages. This is what 66% of GTA photographers charge.

Budget friendly photographers charge $2000-$3000 and represent 10% of the market.

Last, you have the cheap photographers whose services you can buy for a song. Their fees are less than $2000 and that sounds like a great deal! Unless it is a friend-of-the-family rate, in this price range, you are taking risks and need to do your homework. If you intend to spend under $2,000 you are gambling your wedding photos.

SECTION 4: CALCULATING THE BEST RETURN ON INVESTMENT (ROI)

Find three photographers whose wedding photos you really like and whose pricing and packages fit your budget. Assess the value of their packages including extra fees such as cost of photo albums, travel fees and cost of digital files.

In Table 2 below, Package 3 ($2,500) has the lowest price, but it is not the best investment because you will need to pay extra for extra time, second shooter, digital images and a photo album.

Table 2. Wedding Photography Packages from 3 photographers

Cost Item Package 1 Package 2 Package 3
Hours 10 10 8
Photo Album included not included not included
Second Shooter included not included not included
Digital Images included included not included
Cost $3,500 $3,000 $2,500

Table 3. Additional Fees charged by the three photographers. Photographer 1 offers best Return on Investment

Additional Fees Package 1 Package 2 Package 3
Time Charges $0 $0 $500
Travel Charges $0 $500 $500
Album Cost included $500 $500
Digital Images included $900 included
Total Cost = Package + Fees $3,500 $4,900 $4,000

Comparing the prices and packages above, Package 3 has the lowest price (Table 2). Still, when calculating the total cost including the additional fees (please see Table 3 above), Package 1 gives you the highest return on investment, despite the highest price.

SECTION 4: FACTORS IMPACTING WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHERS' PRICING

If you analyze pricing quotes from different photographers, you will notice huge pricing differences. From photographers that cost next to nothing, to the ones charging an arm and a leg. Why such a wide range of price points? What variables impact the average cost of wedding photography?

First, the fees depend on experience and talent. Good photographers are not cheap and they are in high demand.

Time Costs Money

On average, packages include 8-10 hours of photography. Do you want a lot of reception photos? You might have to buy extra hours and that doesn't come cheap. Alternatively, you can schedule the main events (cake cutting, bouquet and garter toss) immediately after dinner and let your photographers go one hour into the dances. Most dancing shots are repetitive.

Second Shooter

A second photographer will cost you another $500 but gives you a good ROI and in my opinion is worth the money.

Geography

Your wedding's geographical location will affect the cash amount you will spend. Getting married in a remote town? You can find an affordable local photographer who will give you a great deal. Tying the knot in downtown Toronto? You will spend more on photography. For money saving tips, check our Best Wedding Budget Tips.

Additional photo albums and engagement sessions will increase the amount spent on photography. An album sells for over $500-$1000 and represents a large percentage of your average cost of wedding photography. An engagement session will set you back over $500-$1,000.

Do you want large prints? Professional photo labs are quite pricy. If your wedding pictures are a big deal for you, pay for professional prints. Couples on a budget can try inexpensive labs like Shutterfly.

Is editing and retouching of wedding pics included or you have to pay extra? How much more

Most photographers process wedding pictures themselves while others outsource to cheap shops abroad. The cost of processing drives the average cost of wedding photography.

Another variable driving photographers costs is the equipment used. Some photographers use very expensive equipment and charge for it.

Photographers' locations. You can find more affordable photographers outside of Toronto downtown core where rents are prohibitive. A photographer operating from home incurs lower costs so you will save money and get a better deal.

Advertising costs. Do you see their ads in luxury wedding magazines or met them at premium wedding shows? Their packages are overpriced.

CONCLUSION

In conclusion, wedding photography prices vary drastically and you need to find the right photographer for you. You might go slightly over your original budget, but it is worth the investment to you receive the amazing wedding photos you deserve.

SUMMARY

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