Do Photographers Eat at Weddings?


You may be wondering about the etiquette for feeding vendors at your wedding, especially the photographer. More specific, you probably want to know whether you should pay for the meal they eat or not. If you have the same confusion, just keep reading.

Do Photographers Eat at Weddings?

In a word, YES.

Would you work a twelve hour day without taking a lunch break? No, so neither should your photographer. Any vendor who will be attending the reception should be fed. This includes the DJ or band, the wedding planner, and anyone else who might be working at your wedding. While, you don’t have to feed people that are just setting things up, like the florist, but if they will be there for the entirety of the wedding reception, they should have a meal.

Which Meals Should Be Covered?

You will need to factor in how long the photographer will be shooting to determine what meals will need to be covered. Typically, wedding photographers start around lunch time and shoot for nine hours or so, which is well after dinner. Unless you photographer prefers otherwise, give them a meal from the same menu as your guests. The easiest way to bring up the subject is to put it in the contract you both agree on. If your photographer doesn’t bring it up in their contract, it’s still a good idea to ask them whether they plan on providing their own meal or whether you should pay for them.

Once you have settled on the arrangement, you need to let the caterer know how many meals you will need. Some caterers will charge you the same price for vendor meals as for guests, while others will charge half or even nothing at all for their meals. It really depends on the caterer.

Repeat it again: You want to make sure that all of your vendors get meals, so you don't have a DJ passing out on you or a photographer missing important shots because they’re hungry.

What to Feed the Photographers

After getting a sure answer to "do photographers eat at weddings", you may begin to consider what to provide for them. Usually, you have a choice between providing a hot meal like that being served to the guests or offering a vendor meal. The latter is often less expensive and ranges from a boxed meal with a sandwich, apple, and chips to something warm but more basic. That choice is up to you and most importantly, to your budget. Keep in mind that the photographer will have been working for six hours or more without eating before they get a chance to eat. They will be thankful for anything to eat but a hot meal is especially nice.

Special Notes

  • After figuring out "Do photographers eat at weddings", keep in mind how many photographers will be at your wedding. This number can vary but you should have a meal for everyone.

  • Give them their meal at the beginning of the meal in a location nearby the reception room so that they can keep shooting the event.

  • Be aware of any food allergies or sensitivities that they may suffer.