hey ya'll!

I'm Niesha! The socially awkward, yet vibrant storyteller from the Dirty South.

Welcome to my blog! I'm so glad you've decided to stop by and take a look around. As a traveling Houston-based wedding and portrait photographer, I hope that you find the posts and stories here valuable. Let me know if you have any questions, and if you have time feel free to leave me a comment. As always, I'm here to help you!

Peace, love, and crawfish boils 🦞🧡

Niesha

Categories

How many hours of wedding coverage do I need?

Choosing the right number of hours for your wedding day can sometimes feel like an episode of “Deal or No Deal”.

In fact, “How many hours of coverage do I need?” has got to be one of the top questions we get asked from our couples. And for good reason too. Too many hours of coverage and may feel like you’ve wasted your time or money. Too few hours of wedding coverage and your wedding story could be missing details.

So, how many hours of coverage do you need?

Obviously the answer to this frequently asked questions depends on a number of factors. While every wedding is unique in its own way, the first question you should ask yourself is “How many hours of coverage do we need to tell our love story?”. You and only you, truly know your love story.Think of what you and your partner want to remember most on your special day. Then move on from there.

Now that you know how you want your wedding or love story to be told. You’ll need to take into account the type of wedding you are having. For example, an elopement, ceremony only, full wedding day…etc. Regardless of the type of wedding you are having, we recommend you always consider

How to determine how many hours of coverage you need?

Who’s coming?

Will it only be you two and the officiant? Or are you inviting all of your friends and family? In any case, you’ll definitely want to consider how many guests you plan to be there to celebrate with you on your wedding day.

The type of wedding. From intimate affairs to lavish receptions.

If you’re only having a small, intimate ceremony with less than 50 guests, you’re going to need a lot less coverage than a 150 guest wedding. On the other hand, if you’re eloping you’ll need even fewer hours.

I’ve tried my best to include what you’ll want to have captured at minimum in order to tell the story of your wedding day as best as possible. I will note, however, that every wedding is different and that this should be viewed as a guideline and not a rule. First, I’ll break down the number of hours based on your size, and what you’d possibly want captured. After that you can better decide the wedding day coverage you’ll want or need.

 

Elopements or Personal Ceremonies

“It’s just the two of us. We can make it if we try…just the two of us”. Gosh, I love that song.

You may choose to make you’re elopement a journey. Who says you have to get married and go straight home or to the honeymoon anyway? One way to make your elopement unique and personal is by going to the place you first met or kissed. Do you love tacos? We can head to the taco truck and capture your love for barbacoa…hmmmm. Ta-co ‘bout a moment to remember.

What you’ll want captured:

  • formals
  • ceremony
  • something personal or special
  • details
    • wardrobe, including shoes
    • ring
    • venue
    • possible bouquet

Recommended number of hours: Between 1-2 hours

Intimate Ceremony

Your ceremony can be as small as you and your spouse or your immediate family, or can include extended family and closest friends. Intimate ceremonies normally include family and close friends with no more than 50 to 75 guests in attendance.

Besides the basics of every wedding including a ceremony, will your wedding day include special cultural traditions? Could those traditions possibly extend the number of hours on your wedding day?

What you’ll want captured:

  • getting ready. “Getting ready” images aren’t just for larger weddings.
  • details
    • wardrobe, including shoes
    • venue
    • ring
    • bottle of fragrance
    • bouquet
    • other details
  • ceremony
  • formals

Adding a reception?

Although your coverage is continuous, while you’re eating, we’ll be eating as well. So if you’ll be having a reception, you’ll need to account for the time to serve and eat dinner, dances, toasts and speeches, bouquet and garter tosses, the grand exit and more. As a result, this is likely to add on a minimum of an additional 2 hours of coverage.

Recommended number of hours:
Ceremony only, between 2-4 hours.
At least 4-6 hours with a reception.

 Ceremony and Reception

Now here’s where things seem to get a little tricky. If you plan to have both a ceremony and reception wedding, with more than 75 guests, you’ll most likely want to have at least 6 hours of wedding coverage. The reason being is that you’ll have nearly all, if not more, of the activities at an intimate ceremony.

Most ceremony and reception weddings of 150 or more guests typically average about 8 hours of wedding coverage, especially if the wedding will be held at multiple locations. Furthermore you’ll want all of the same shots captured such as:

What you’ll want covered:

  • detail
  • ceremony
  • formals
  • reception +
    • guests
    • cake cutting
    • grand exit

Planner or Day of Coordinator?

Will you have a wedding planner or day-of-coordinator? If not, you may want to consider adding one. A day-of-coordinator could help you better manage your time, avert major wedding crises, and ensure all of the vendors and guests are acting according to your wishes. Not having a wedding coordinator, could make the difference between needing only 6 hours or full wedding day coverage.

Recommended number of hours:
6 hours with a planner or day-of-coordinator
8+ hours without a planner or day-of-coordinator

The Full Story

Any more than 150 guests and you’ll certainly want to consider the full wedding day collection. This ensures that you have enough time to capture all of the meaningful details and moments that help tell your love story. In addition, you won’t have to worry about not having enough hours of wedding coverage or deciding to purchase more. In contrast, you don’t want to book a full wedding day collection of at least 8 hours if you’ll only have a short ceremony.

As stated previously, we highly recommend a day-of-coordinator or wedding planner for weddings with more than 150 guests or just to guarantee everything is running smoothly.

What you’ll want covered:

  • detail
  • ceremony
  • formals
  • reception +
    • guests
    • cake cutting
    • grand exit

Recommended number of hours: 8-12 hours or the Full Wedding Day collection.

Do you know how many hours of wedding coverage you need now?

In brief, to get the most accurate estimate of wedding coverage, you’ll want to think about are

  • the type of wedding,
  • number of guests,
  • if you’ll have a wedding planner of day-of-coordinator, and
  • activities you’ll want captured on your wedding day.

Finally, I’d like to thank you for taking the time to read “How many hours of wedding coverage do I need?”. I hope you found it helpful and applicable to you. Like always, if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to reach out. Feel free to share this post with friends or loved ones you know who will be getting married.

As a traveling Houston-based and destination wedding photographer, I’d be more than happy to chat with you directly and answer any questions you may have. Please feel free to contact me to get started.

I do hope you found “How many hours of coverage do I need?” helpful. Leave a comment below letting me know you stopped by.

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