10 Questions You HAVE To Ask Wedding Videographers
Your wedding video is a timeless heirloom. It’s something you’ll watch for decades after you get married, something your kids and even grandkids will watch. So you know you want a videographer who will capture your special day in a way that truly represents you as a couple. But more than that, it needs to be someone you’re comfortable with and who you can trust to handle the day. That’s why when choosing a videographer, there’s no such thing as asking too many questions.
Over the years I’ve spent filming weddings, I’ve been asked a lot of the same questions over many meetings with couples. But, there’s also questions that hardly anyone asks and I wish more people did. So here’s my list of questions you should ask before you book your wedding videographer.
1.) “Are you available for our wedding date?”
This should definitely be the first question you ask any videographer that you’re considering booking. Videographers get booked sometimes as far as 2 years in advance! So first find out if they’re available for your date before asking them for more information. If you don’t already have a date chosen, it would be ideal to figure that out before looking for a videographer. Unless you find a videographer that you LOVE so much that you’d be willing to choose a date based on their availability.
2.) “How long have you been a wedding videographer?” Or “How many weddings have you filmed?”
Both of these questions will help you understand the amount of experience a videographer has. There is more to filming weddings than just having a website filled with pretty videos. Handling the demands of a wedding day is something that is learned with time, practice and most importantly experience. This doesn’t mean that new shooters can’t do it, but you want someone who you know without a doubt that they can handle anything your wedding day has to throw at them. A good rule of thumb is to see if they have at least a dozen weddings under their belt.
3.) “Do you shoot alone or with a 2nd shooter?”
Many wedding videographers will bring a second shooter to help them cover the day. This gives you an additional set of eyes to look for the moments that need to be captured. In some sense, this allows the videographer to be in two places at once, as not everything on a wedding day is happening in a linear fashion. Not only does this allow more footage to be captured, but it also helps ensure everything is captured correctly. This is one of those “must have” things in my book!
4.) “Can we see an example of a full length wedding film?”
You should make sure you see a full length wedding film, and not just a trailer, so you know exactly what you’re getting if you book them. Many trailers or highlight reels will give you a good idea of their style but at the end of the day it’s not quite the same. I always make sure to get permission from my couples to show their full length wedding films to others upon request.
5.) “How will we receive the wedding film?”
This one’s a very important question to ask. You’ll want to know if you’re going to get digital files through something such as Google Drive or Dropbox, or if you’re getting something physical such as a hard drive or flash drive (Some even offer both).
Another important thing to consider is how you’re going to share it with your friends and family. Something we do personally is actually posting your wedding film to our youtube channel for you so all you have to do is post or send the link!
6.) “What is your turnaround time?”
You may have heard the horror stories of couples waiting 6 months , maybe even a year to get their wedding video back. Make sure you ask what their expected turnaround time is and also make sure it’s stated in the contract.
7.) “Can we get all the raw footage?”
Oftentimes, with highlight films being exactly as stated, the “highlights” will be the main focus of the video. Since your entire day is being captured, there are lots of little moments that won’t quite make it into the final product. You’ll want to ask if the raw footage is included with the package you book.
8.) “Do you require a contract?”
Very simply put, if the answer to this question is “No” then this is a huge red flag. Don’t ever book with any kind of vendor that doesn’t require you to sign a contract.
9.) “What if you get sick on our wedding day?”
Very important to ask! Make sure that wedding videographers contract specifically states a plan in case he/she is unable to make it to your wedding due to any kind of emergency. They need to have a clear plan B that doesn’t leave you scrambling to find someone else to fill their place the day before your wedding. This is another great reason to book a videographer with a 2nd shooter and even extra shooters.
10.) “What are your package/pricing options?”
This should be one of your final questions. Don’t waste your time with a videographer whose style you don’t like. Find out if you KNOW you want to work with them first and then ask what you will need to budget for them. Your wedding only happens once, make sure you’re certain they’re the right fit for you.
If they are a bit out of your original budget but you're really interested in working with them, see if they offer any kind of payment plans.
2 Bonus Questions
“Can we give you a shot list?”
This is a valid question to ask. Just be careful that your shot list isn’t spontaneous moments that can’t exactly be planned (such as scheduling a tear in the grooms eye). Yes, it’s happened. Basically, you should make a list of the things that will happen that the videographer may not know otherwise. Like a special surprise dance at the reception or anything else that wouldn’t be listed on the regular schedule.
“Do you have a travel fee?”
If you’re having a wedding far from where the videographers centrally located, be sure to ask if they require additional payments to cover travel expenses.
Take this list and use it to your advantage! Here’s another tip: when you’re talking with videographer, it really helps a lot to meet with them in person or over a video chat. Email is a great way to start the conversation and introduce yourself but you’ll get to know the videographer much better if you can see and hear them answering these questions for you.
Of course, if you want to ask me any of these questions, let’s make it happen! I’d love to talk with you, request an appointment here.