Bringing Your Photographer to a Destination Engagement Session

If you’ve opted to host a destination engagement, congratulations! Hosting a destination engagement or wedding comes with a lot of fun elements. However, no matter where you pop the question, it’s important to have a professional wedding photographer with you. But, hiring someone overseas can be a bit of a struggle. While many wedding venues and resorts may have on-site photographers, they may not match your ideal photography style.

This is where hiring locally to you and bringing them with you comes into play. If you’re searching for a destination photographer who’s willing to travel, make sure they actually like to travel and do it a lot! If they have experience traveling, they’ll be able to think on the fly and find solutions for you when things go wrong—because when travel is involved, things inevitably go wrong. I’ve put together 5 tips for bringing a photographer along with you to your destination!

Check international travel restrictions/regulations and hotel/resort photography rules

First and foremost, it’s important to understand the rules and regulations within that country, especially now post-pandemic. Many countries are now considering proof of vaccination before arrival, so that is a conversation you will have to have with the photographer of your choice! Of course, rules do vary—and that’s something you should clarify before signing a contract.

Plan a day to destination location scout before the shoot date

Yes, arriving at your destination is super exciting, but don’t forget you’ve got a job to do! It’s important to get the lay of the land and decide where the engagement or wedding photography should take place. If you’re staying at a resort, I also recommend grabbing a schedule from the front desk for any activities they host. There’s nothing worst than choosing a beautiful area of the grounds and arriving with your couple to see that’s where they host morning yoga sessions!

Pack at least 3 outfits each so we can pair down to 2 looks 

After we’ve chosen some great locations to photograph, it’s time to talk about your clothing choices. As with a local photoshoot, I recommend choosing 3 outfits for your destination engagement session. This way, we can decide together on 2 looks that really compliment the surrounding area and dress for the weather. I also love when my couples choose outfits that will match well together in color and texture! Plus, choosing something fun and casual and something a little more formal makes for a beautiful and diverse album. 

Plan a backup date for bad weather

Before you hop on a plane to a new destination, here’s a gentle reminder to check the weather forecast. Although we’d all love to have perfect weather for the duration of a trip, that’s not always plausible. Like any other photoshoot, it’s imperative to have a backup day planned in case you get caught in a storm. If you’re traveling somewhere tropical, find out if you’re going to be arriving during the rainy season.

Pro-tip: Purchase and pack some fun clear umbrellas just in case. I had one when I got married, and it made for some of my favorite photos!

Plan the shoot earlier on during your trip so you can relax afterward

The first few days of your travels are often the most exciting! I always recommend planning your destination photoshoot within that excitement window. You’ll be happy to have the chance to relax for the rest of your trip, and it gives you a chance to get them out of the way before you’re potentially sunburnt! 

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