How much will it cost to get Ryan Richardson Photography to my wedding?
This question, or something like it, is usually tacked on to every inquiry that passes through my inbox. It's probably second only to people asking how I got so talented and charming (and would I like to shoot their cute DIY backyard wedding for free). Although I left this question off my article "5 Questions For Your Wedding Photographer"), it's a great question to put in front of any wedding photographer.
For 2014, we're going to be eliminating most of our travel fees to make it much easier to truly be a New England Wedding Photographer (rather than merely a Boston wedding photographer, Cape Cod wedding photographer or Rhode Island wedding photographer). So whether you're tying the knot in Nashua or getting married in Newport, there won't be any surprise fees for mileage (mostly).
Why ditch travel fees?
Because they are bullshit. Planning a wedding is frustrating enough (and so is making a sales pitch) that it's not just ridiculous to ask for an extra $20 for gas, it's kind of insulting. In reality, 90 percent of the time I ended up quoting the client a mileage rate, I would almost immediately tell them to forget about it.
Here's where I walk back my sweeping generalizations. While I'm happy to be a New England Wedding Photographer (shooting in Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont), some parts of New England are very far away and others are hard to get to.
1. Unusual Travel - If there's a plane or boat involved, there's going to be a fee for the ticket and for parking (and for any car rentals on the other end).
2. Overnight Stays - This depends on two factors: the location of the event and the schedule of the event. For example, if you want to get some beautiful bridals at sunrise on a mountain in New Hampshire, then that's going to be an overnight stay. If your wedding ends at midnight with a brilliant fireworks show then that's probably going to be an overnight stay. If your wedding on Nantucket ends at slightly past 8 PM when the last ferry has left, that's an overnight stay.
Usually to compensate for big expenses, we'll offer a little extra coverage on either side of the event (rehearsals, bridals, boudoir).
Exceptions to the Exceptions
For destination weddings and multiple-day events there are usually some extra logistics that need to be worked out. These will typically be reflected in the package rate.
1. Padding - Often when a flight is involved, I'll aim to arrive a day early at the destination. This allows time for scouting the location and a little padding for late or cancelled flights. The client will not pay for that extra night.
2. Destination Engagements - It seems counter-intuitive, but we're going to be offering destination engagement and portrait photography sessions for adventurous couples. For these sessions, clients will not be responsible for any travel fees or arrangements necessary for the shoot.
I hope that these changes will help to make booking with Ryan Richardson Photography an even easier decision for anyone looking for a wedding photographer throughout New England.