The Destination WeddinG Guide


DC Wedding Photographer

Major congrats on your engagement! I’m so honored that you’re considering having me spend your wedding day along side of you!

Wedding photography is a lot of things, but most of all it’s an investment in someone to capture and document your wedding day! When the wonderful day is done, the cake has been eaten, the outfits hung up, you are left as newlyweds with your wedding photographs. These images will be your first family portraits.

Spend some time reviewing this guide. If after reading this, you feel like we’d be a great match for each other, let’s chat to discuss your needs and vision for your wedding!

About Me

Most days you can find me jamming out to new tunes in my home office, dancing in my chair, and sitting cross legged with my shoes kicked off. I am a woman who always has her bags packed, a storyteller, a lover of fashion, a wannabee singer, a fruity drink fanatic, and a fan of being bare-foot. We only have one life, I believe in making it count, being true to myself, staying level headed in moments of panic, and always being ready to kick back in the sand. I love dogs, sea turtles, and elephants, eating avocados and mac n cheese, and watching ice hockey and Clemson football.

My photography style is light-filled, joyful, and authentic. I will do anything to make you laugh and I promise to make you feel comfortable. I make it simple for you, keep it light, and focus on the adorable candid moments that naturally occur between two people who are madly in love. Years down the road, I want you to look back at your wedding photographs and have all those memories come flooding back! The joy, bliss, happiness, love, laughter and warmth from the day you wed is what I will focus on capturing so you have amazing photographs.

Arlington VA Wedding Photographer, Nikki Schell Photography

Destination Wedding Details

Start Here

$3,200 + Travel fees

8 hours of wedding day coverage
1 photographer (Nikki)
Online gallery of digital images for Wedding Day
Full Print Release

Then Add On

Additional Coverage – $400/Hour (Nikki) | $80/Hour (2nd Photographer)
DC Area Engagement or Destination Portrait Session – $600 
Wedding Albums begin at – $855

Travel fees will be added on to your custom collection. These fees include flights/gas, accommodations, possible car rental, and a base travel fee to cover items like checking equipment, parking at the airport, etc. See FAQ below for more details.

Online gallery is open for two years and stored on our online server for 3 years. 
Album prices vary depending on size and amount of pages.

Destination Wedding Photography Details

How does long distance travel work and what is the travel fee?

Since this is one of the more complicated parts of booking a non-local wedding photographer, I want to break down how the process works and how travel fees are calculated!

How it typically works:

You book me! I require that I arrive at least 36 hours before your wedding due to potential flight delays or mishaps.

My second shooter (if booked) and I fly to the airport nearest to your wedding location – typically the nearest major city rather than a small regional airport unless the price is reasonable. I book the flight.

After we arrive, we get in a rental car or Uber/Lyft/Taxi and head to the hotel, resort, or AirBnB.

On the day of your wedding, we capture your celebration for up to 10 hours! Typically, the next day we depart for DC.

How travel fees are calculated:

Travel expenses that you need to cover include airfare, baggage, transportation – either Uber/Lyft/Taxi’s or a rental car for longer drives, lodging, airport parking, and a $200 standard travel fee (this helps cover things like gas for the rental car, meals for the weekend, and more).

The cost of this can vary quite a lot depending on the destination. Before booking, we will chat to try to get an appropriate estimate of this cost.

How you are charged:

We will work together to make sure the travel fee doesn't go crazy above the estimated cost (and hopefully it's lower than the estimated cost)!

After the wedding, you’ll receive an itemized invoice for the travel – you’ll have a pretty good idea of the total cost pre-wedding since we work together during the reservation process, but I do it after the wedding to account for any taxi costs. Since all other payments are made before the wedding day, my assurance that you’ll reimburse me for travel is that I do not release photos until the travel invoice has been paid.

Things to Note:

Your wedding is your own unique day. It might not fit into my standard destination collection. We can work together on figuring out something that works for your needs, especially since traveling is a factor. For example, if you’re having a smaller wedding and need less coverage, I can offer smaller packages – but most people who book me for destination weddings figure that if you’ve spent the money to get me there, might as well utilize my time as much as you can!

Since you’re arriving early, can you capture additional events?

If I arrive early, I am happy to capture additional activities. However, I will not guarantee coverage of particular events in the case that my flight has a delay or I arrive later than anticipated.

Since we’re paying for you to have a vacation, can you cut us a deal on the wedding collection price?

No. Traveling for work is not a vacation.

What’s an engagement sessions or destination portrait sessions?

I'm so glad you asked.

If you're local to the DC area, you may consider doing an engagement session! These are great for you to get comfortable in front of the camera and gives you great, beautiful portraits!

If you are not local to the DC area, we can do a portrait session the day before or day after your wedding. This will be a bit different than your wedding photography as we'll explore the city/town/area and you can get some beautiful, creative portraits of your time there.

General Wedding Photography FAQs

When are images delivered? How many images will we get? How are images delivered?

It will take on average 6 weeks to receive your images! Expect to receive ~75 images per hour of coverage - I don't limit how many images I deliver but I also do not deliver all of the images I shoot; I eliminate duplicate images, test-shots, out-of-focus shots, shots with unflattering expressions, and other images that may dilute the overall product quality.

Your images will be sent as downloadable digital files in an online gallery. This gallery will allow you to print, save, and share the images from your wedding very easily! The images can be downloaded as web-sized images or print-sized images.

The images will not have a watermark or logo on them, however, when posting on social media, I always appreciate receiving credit!

Every image you receive will be edited in my unique style. This includes color-correction, exposure adjustment, selective black and white processing, clarity adjustments, tone mapping, and other corrections such as removing a pimple or stray hair. Be sure to check out my galleries to get a feel for my editing style.

We have downtime between events on our wedding day. Will we be charged for that downtime?

For a variety of reasons, I have to charge for the time in between events. In many cases, I use that “downtime” to take you and your significant other out for a photo session or snap more family portraits.

What’s a print release? Do your collections include prints or albums?

Your images come as digital files, so I include a print release in all wedding collections. A print release means the named clients have rights to download and print the images for personal use through their printing service of choice. A print release does not give clients rights to alter/edit the images (#nofilter) or use the images for a profit. I do not sell the copyright for my images.

Some collections include an album, and other physical products are available as add ons. You may add them on at any time. Many clients choose to order prints through the online gallery due to the ease of using the system and high quality coming from my professional print lab.

I do strongly advise my clients to order products (prints, canvases, and albums) through my professional lab. This ensures top-notch product quality that mainstream printing vendors cannot create.

Album design is a specialty of mine! Growing up, and to this day, my parent's wedding album has sat proudly and timelessly on their coffee table. I design my clients' wedding albums to tell the story of their wedding day, preserving all the special moments, in what will be an heirloom for many years to come.

How long have you been shooting weddings?

I started photographing weddings in 2014. Since then, I have captured over 130 weddings and plenty more couples for their engagements, anniversaries, and elopements!

After having a few wedding seasons with 25+ weddings, I now limit myself to 10-15 weddings a year.

Are you insured?

Yep. My business is fully insured and if needed, I can provide your wedding venue with any documentation they require.

How do we reserve you for our wedding date?

Once we've decided that we’re the perfect photographer/couple match, you’ll send me a note saying you’d love to reserve me for your wedding date! I’ll need your first and last names, phone numbers, email addresses, and a home address to write up the contract. The contract will be sent through my online system, along with an invoice outlining the payment schedule, and from there you’ll be able to digitally sign and pay the retainer fee. Once I sign the contract and have received the payment, you’ve reserved me!

How do we pay?

Payment will be made through my online system called Honeybook. You’ll receive an invoice outlining the payment schedule, and can pay online! If you need a payment plan or to pay by check, let me know!

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