Should we feed our wedding photographer?

It’s one of life’s eternal questions… are we obliged to feed our photographer? If we’re not, should we do it anyway?

What are the pros and cons?

Most people expect “taking a few pictures” to be a fairly simple and non-demanding process, but the truth couldn’t be further from that view.

Wedding photography is a tough, stressful and physical job, with plenty of running around, bending or kneeling down and time management to ensure that everything is completed on time and to the quality expected by the client.

In addition, to deal with all of the elements of lighting, composition, movement and pressing the shutter at just the right moment requires a surprising level of constant concentration. That’s to say nothing of keeping the camera as still as possible throughout too.

Hungry photographers make bad workers!

If your wedding photographer is attending your wedding for more than 4-5 hours, the chances are that they will be hungry and tired. Different individuals react differently to hunger.

Some will notice a sudden drop in their mood and ability to concentrate. Some will gradually decline. Some will start to shake. Everyone has a reaction of some kind to hunger, and it’s generally not a positive one.

So, hungry photographers are bad.

Whose responsibility is it then?

Everyone can easily agree that a hungry photographer isn’t a good thing. However, no one has clear responsibility for the issue.

Etiquette and politeness might suggest that the wedding party provide some kind of meal for the photographer, but nothing more than that is available to make a decision from. So, it’s basically down to your own personality and conscience. Do you want to provide for them, or not?

Photographers are very used to not having meals provided for them though – it’s by no means a certainty that the photographer will be fed on your wedding day.

There is another way!

Before making a final decision though, consider whether the photographer must have the same expensive meal as your guests. They may be very happy with a simple pasta meal, or some sandwiches. This could provide you with an option to keep (spiraling!) costs down.

Another option is to ask the venue if they can provide a meal cheaper, or even free, to the photographer, since they are staff for the day. Different catering companies deal with this differently and you might just be surprised.

So what’s the most important thing to do?

Most important is that you discuss it with your chosen photographer. Some require a meal to be provided.

If that’s the case, you need to know.

If you decide you are or are not providing food for them, they need to know in order to provide for themselves if necessary.

Should I sit my photographer with the guests?

Generally speaking, no, it would be better if the photographer could sit apart from your guests. Your key responsibility is to ensure your guests enjoy your day with you.


It would be lovely to hear about how you’re planning to celebrate your marriage, so please get in touch.