bride and groom with dogs at wedding

Our friends at NST Pictures gave us the low down on creating your wedding videography budget and here are five of their best tips to get you started.  

Step 1: Get the Right Mindset about Cost vs. Use

Before you start thinking about your wedding videography budget, consider two things: How long will you have you wedding video? How often will you watch it? You will keep your wedding video forever. As the years pass, it will become more and more important to you. You can travel back in time to see young love, all of your friends gathered in one place and your family, healthy and full of excitement for your new commitment. Eventually, it will become an heirloom that is cherished by your children and grandchildren as part of your family's history. Over the next 50 years, it will be watched hundreds of times by you and your loved ones. Plus, you've spent almost a year planning every detail for an awesome, one-day celebration. When the flowers have wilted, the invites are in the trash and you can'tremember the tear-jerking speech from your dad, you can relive it all with one click.  

Step 2: Consider the Cost of your Photography Package

Couples often make the mistake of placing a higher budget for photography than videography. However, the services and final products are very similar and so are the average costs. For instance, both services contain a number of coverage hours and number of cameramen. After the wedding, both products will need to be edited. Don't forget,you're also paying for years of expertise, top of the line equipment, customer service and credibility within the industry for both vendors.  

Step 3: Determine the Style You Like and Research the Going Rate in Your Area

From traditional to vintage to modern cinematic, each wedding videographer has his or her own style. Look around wedding planning websites and determine which one you like the most. Once you've picked a style, reach out to three - five wedding videographers with similar styles in your area for pricing. The key to accurately analyzing costs is to always compare apples to apples. Styles should be similar, service locations should be the same and the items included in each package should match up. If all of these things are aligned, you'll be able to see the true differences in costs and find the average price you can expect to pay.

Step 4: Determine your Top Priorities

Now that you have an idea of the general cost in your area for the style you like and have compared that to your photography package, you need to decide what is most important to you. Is it capturing getting ready in the morning when all of your best friends are relaxed and in one place? Is it reliving the magical moment when the wish lanterns float away into the night sky? Is it getting every single second of the day because of the significance it has in your life? Is it obeying your budget because you already overspent elsewhere? This should help you determine the number of hours you need to capture and/or the ballpark amount you want to spend.  

Step 5: Compromise

By now, you know that wedding planning is full of compromises (cue Mick Jagger singing "You can't always get what you want"). Well, here's another one. Take a look at all the factors you've determined in each of the steps and find the"average." If your wedding timeline shows you need 10 hours but the average cost in your area is too high, shift the start time of an 8-hour package to cover the part of your wedding you care about the most.However, if you do decide to say "screw it" and blow your budget, refer back to Step 1. Remember, your video will be around even longer than "as long as you both shall live"... so isn't it worth it?

P.S. Not sure you're ready to commit to a wedding videographer? Check out this gorgeous video for a sneak peek into just how incredible your wedding video can be.

Photo credit: Sarah Jayne Photography