Hotel Photography Pricing
Running a hotel is expensive…High Quality Hotel Photography doesn’t have to be!
Affordable Hotel Photography Rates
How Much Does Hotel Photography Cost?
The first question you will probably ask is “How much will you charge to photograph my hotel?”. While that is an important question, there are many questions that are more important than “How Much”?
That questions is like asking a hotel owner, how much does a hotel room cost? The answer is it depends on what kind of hotel, where the hotel is located and who you are buying the room from. Hotel rooms can rent for $20 or $2,000 and the difference in price has a lot to do with the quality of room you will receive.
In the same way, hotel photography prices can range from a couple of hundred dollars to tens of thousands of dollars or more. Price is important but price isn’t everything. We frequently reshoot hotels after the owners chose the cheaper quote and then call us back when their photos don’t turn out well or are rejected by the brand. We have also gotten calls to reshoot hotels where the photographer provided beautiful, artistic photos that were not approved by the brand. Brands expect consistency from hotels and want all the photos to be similar across the brand’s website.
Of course your budget is important. Usually people call us when they have recently completed a renovation or finished construction on a brand new hotel. If ever there was a time you want to save money, it’s at the end of a renovation or new build. We understand your budget concerns because we are small business owners ourselves.
We have photographed more than 800 hotels for more than 40 different national brands with 100% approval. We have learned that good preparation and communication in advance makes all the difference when it comes to success on the day of the shoot.
We are good at what we do. We love what we do. We are a husband and wife team who have built our business working with small business owners just like us. We have both also worked in hotels ourselves and we understand the challenges that hotel owners face. That’s why we chose to make our hotel photography pricing straight forward and up front.
Because we charge by the job and not by the photograph, we can typically provide a no obligation quote from us within hours of our initial phone call or email. The price you receive will be based on the information that we have discussed on the phone. Our contract makes it clear that you own full rights to the photos we take and that we guarantee that we will deliver your photos within 14 days of our shoot date. Our requirements are simple and straight forward.
It doesn’t matter how good your photos are or how much money you saved if your photos are not approved by your brand. We understand the nuances and small details that make the difference when it comes to brand approval. We will send you a detailed document that gives you tips and guidelines that walk you through how to prepare for your photo shoot.
A couple of weeks before the shoot, we will schedule a call with your general manager and head of housekeeping as well as anyone else that may be involved with preparing for the shoot. We want to make sure that when we arrive at your property, everyone is excited about working together to get the job done.
Frequently Asked Questions About Our Hotel Photography Pricing
Are you an approved photographer for my brand?
Most IHG, Hilton and Marriott brands do not require that you use their preferred photographer as long as the photos meet the photography standards for the brand. We will tell you up front if we know that your brand will not allow an outside vendor.
Why are you not an approved photographer for my brand?
Approved vendors pay A LOT of money for the privilege of being recommended to the hotels. Because we do not “pay – to – play”, we are able to keep our prices lower and deal directly with the owners and managers who hire us.
How do I know if the Standard package is right for me?
Our standard package is for a typical off the highway Holiday Inn Express or Hampton Inn type hotel. We can usually cover all room and bathroom types, up to 3 meeting rooms and the normal common areas and amenities.
What types of properties require the Deluxe or Custom Package?
All suites hotel, downtown properties, full service properties, and boutique hotels are the types of projects that require more in depth photo shoots. Some brands have more detailed post production requirements and take more time onsite.
How much are your travel fees in addition to the shoot fee?
Our travel fees depend on the location of the hotel and what other jobs we have in your area.
When and how do I get my pictures after you are done?
Edited photos are delivered within 10 – 14 days of the shoot. We will deliver the photos to you via Dropbox.
Who owns the photos and are there ongoing usage fees?
You have full rights to the photos with no ongoing usage or royalty fees. The pictures can be used for your online presence as well as in other marketing as you wish.
How to choose the hotel photographer that is right for you
Know what kind of photographer you need
We specialize in mid-scale limited service hotels but we have experience photographing hotels from the smallest mom and pop independents to large iconic landmark hotels. We do most what we do best and have created a business that focuses on the needs of the mid-scale, limited service market.
The greatest compliment we receive is that we are so easy to work with. It’s the reason that our clients call us back over and over again as they build new properties, renovate their old ones or are just ready for new photos to show off minor changes.
We will be totally honest when we say that we don’t like working with luxury resorts and high end hotels. We are down to earth people who love what we do. We know what we do well. And we have done it hundreds of times.
Types of Hotel Photography
A Google search for hotel photography will turn up more than 150,000,000 results. So how do you choose which hotel photographer is right for you, your hotel and your budget?
Just looking at the headline or the description from the Google search, you will see words like Luxury, Expert, Premier. When you see those words, you should probably think of words like Expensive, Expensive and Expensive. We recently photographed an iconic hotel on the Las Vegas strip and they told us their last photo shoot budget was over half a million dollars!! That price included models in bathing suits swimming in the pool in the middle of February. Our photo shoot was focused on showing off the hotel rooms, not selling the lifestyle of the resort.
If you don’t have a luxury hotel, then you probably don’t need to pay the price for someone who specializes in luxury hotels.
Approved or Preferred
Before you choose to call a hotel photographer for a quote, you should first find out if your brand allows you to choose your own photographer or if they require you to use their approved vendor. There is a big difference between an approved vendor and a preferred vendor. Not understanding the difference can cost you thousands of dollars!
- If your brand requires you to use an approved vendor, that usually means that you cannot hire a hotel photography company that is not on their list. It does not matter how great the hotel photos turn out. If the photographer is not approved, the photos will not be approved and you will have wasted your money.
Understand the difference between preferred and approved. If your brand has a preferred vendor, that typically means that they have a negotiated contract with one or more hotel photography companies but does not necessarily mean that they require you to use those companies. The preferred vendors pay a steep price whether it’s a direct payment or by helping pay for the brand’s convention, etc.
We don’t want you to spend money unnecessarily and we will be totally up front and transparent with you about our experience with your brand. There are some brands that allow you to get an exemption for outside vendors and some that will not. We can help you ask the right questions to make sure your photos are approved.
The Most IMPORTANT question you should ask when getting a quote for hotel photography…
The first question to ask a hotel photography company when asking for a quote is “Do you have RECENT experience with my brand?”.
For example, we have photographed literally hundreds of Choice Hotels and Wyndham Hotels but they no longer allow outside vendors. Our main hotel photography is for IHG, Hilton and Marriott branded hotels as well as many independent and specialty hotels. While IHG, Hilton and Marriott all have preferred vendors, they do allow you to use a photographer of your choice as long as the photos are approved.
That does not mean that “good photos” are the only requirement. For example, one brand requires a pen and pad to be on the bedside table beside the phone or the photo will not be approved. Another brand requires the phone and any other items be removed from the bedside table or the photos will not be approved. These tiny differences in hotel photography requirements vary by brand and can mean the difference in approval or disapproval of your photos.
Find out who will actually take the photographs
Many hotel photography companies subcontract their hotel photography to local real estate photographers who may have little or no experience with hotel photography. While they “guarantee” the photos will be approved, they don’t tell you that means that if the photos are NOT approved, that you will have to completely redo the photo shoot at a later date. This means that all the revenue you lost from blocking out your rooms, the overtime you paid for the housekeepers to prepare the rooms, the expense of setting up breakfast, and all of the other investment you made for the shoot will have to be repeated. While they will pay another photographer to come try again, they don’t cover any of those additional expenses that you lost because someone showed up who didn’t get it right the first time.
We understand your business. We understand your brand. We understand your budget. Understanding these things means that we can tell you up front whether we are a good choice for your hotel photography. And because we have built our business relationship on referrals and repeat business, we have no problem telling you the truth!