Photo booths were once quite popular at weddings and led to many remarkable and crazy photographs. It allowed people to loosen up to create some precious memories immortalized in photos. However, somewhere along the way, they fizzled out as new trends emerged and took over. Before you book one for your big day, understand the pros and cons of this interactive reception trend.
Photo booths seem to be ubiquitous with modern weddings, but they’re certainly not a requirement. Whether you’re considering a vintage booth, an open-air set up by your photographer, or a DIY backdrop that guests can pose in front of, you may find yourself considering whether this is an expense that’s worth the splurge. Here are some of the pros and cons to help you make the decision that’s best for your wedding and your budget
To have or not to have a photo booth? That is the question! Trust me, and you’re not the only bride or groom who has asked this question when planning their wedding. When the budget is limited and the costs of making your wedding unforgettable start to skyrocket, does having a photo booth fall to the list of “things to cut to save money”?
If you answered, “heck no!” and have always planned on having a photo booth, keep reading for 5 reasons why you made the right choice. If you answered yes to this question, I want you to take a minute and read this blog post that’s all about why you should have a photo booth at your wedding. Then once you’re done reading and convinced, check out our incredible line-up forever Bride Photo Booth vendors. Sure, you may already have a photographer (and maybe even a videographer) to take care of documenting your wedding, but we’re not convinced that’s all you need to capture your big day. We think having a photo booth is worth it and not a waste of money.
In today’s world, the options are endless when you’re planning a wedding. From food trucks and interactive entertainment to doughnut walls and floral chandeliers, deciding on what you want at your wedding—and, more importantly, what your budget can support—can be difficult, to say the least. One more question to add to that never-ending list (sorry!): Should you have a photo booth at your wedding? While there are plenty of reasons to add a photo booth to your reception design—there are also some reasons a photo booth might not be the best fit for you, your event vision, and your budget. But not to fear, brides- and grooms-to-be, today, we’re breaking down the pros and cons of photo booths at weddings. Read on to find out which category you fall into.
Table of Contents
- 1 Why Are Weddings Photo Booths Used?
- 2 Perks of Having a Photo Booth at Your Wedding
- 3 Reasons a photo booth might not be for you.
- 4 Are photo booths worth it?
- 5 Are photo booths at weddings tacky?
Why Are Weddings Photo Booths Used?
Before its recent surge in popularity, the photo booth was famous for over 100 years. The four-shot strip allowed people to express themselves in a fun way without the looming pressure of other people’s opinions. Its real value is not in its ability to capture or immortalize memories but in entertaining people. That’s where the real magic lies. It allows people to be themselves or even exaggerated versions of themselves while creating a memorable experience.
Not everyone who goes to a wedding might enjoy dancing or partaking in other activities. Some people get anxious when they are with a large group of people. There is also a certain amount of pressure that one must act in a certain way at a wedding to be deemed a responsible and sensible adult. Anything that crosses that line is looked down upon and talked about behind one’s backs for years.
This is where wedding photo booths help. It gives you just the right amount of privacy to allow you to showcase all the parts of your personality proudly. When you are inside that booth, you don’t have to worry about what other people might think and just loosen up and have fun. It doesn’t matter if you are a kid, a teenager, or an adult. The freedom a photo booth gives you is universal and cross-generational. Another wonderful thing about a wedding photo booth is that it also allows you to meet interesting people (if random people are paired up before they enter the booth) and develops a sense of camaraderie when multiple people express themselves unabashedly and unashamed.
Pro: You’ll get an additional set of wedding photos.
Your guests love to pose at the photo booth, but these snaps are tons of fun for the couple to look through after the wedding, too. Think of it as a way to see what friends were up to when you weren’t around. Your professional photos will be great for framing and hanging in your home but flipping through an album filled with photo booth snaps is guaranteed to put a smile on your face for years to come.
Con: There are more costs to consider than just the actual rental.
There are often additional expenses beyond just the product and service. You’ll need to provide a meal for the vendor running the booth. You may need to cover the cost of transportation and mileage, web hosting fees for photos available for digital download, and any extra printing or album costs. If your booth doesn’t come with props or lighting, you’ll likely need to save some money for these expenses, too.
Pro: The photos can double as favours.
If you opt to book a photo booth that prints photo strips, your guests will have a wedding favour they’ll want to keep. It’s one less thing to cross off your wedding to-do list.
Con: They can take away from the party atmosphere.
The placement of your photo booth, and when you choose to open it to guests, can mean that its presence splits up the party more than you intended. It’s usually best to have the photo booth open after dinner and set near the dance floor area. But it’s important to remember that, depending on what your guests are like, this interactive activity can be a distraction from the rest of the reception. Imagine what the dance floor would be like if all your college friends were off trying to cram into one photo?
Pro: It’s an excellent option for those who don’t want to dance.
A photo booth is fun for guests of all ages, and it’ll give your attendees something to do when they need a break from the dance floor. Plus, photo booths can be a great ice breaker for guests who haven’t seen each other in a while or who don’t know a lot of people at your wedding. Think of it as a good place for your loved ones to bond.
Perks of Having a Photo Booth at Your Wedding
You Can Have Photo Prints As Wedding Favours.
Probably one of the easiest ways to opt-out of a traditional favourite that your guests will just throw away is to have a photo booth. Think about it, do you even keep the favours you’ve received from other weddings you have attended? We know it’s often the first thing guests leave in their hotel room or even on the reception tables. Instead of handing out a plant or homemade jam, think about giving photo prints that your guests can share online, frame, and most importantly, keep!
You’re also killing two birds with one stone – not only are you crossing off wedding favours on your never-ending wedding to-do list, but you’re also (SPOILER! to the other reasons why you should have a photo booth at your wedding) getting a guest book, giving your guests a chance to document how great they look, adding an element that’s fun for all ages, and giving guests something to do during the awkward downtime at a wedding.
There are so many ways you can customize them, too. Why not use the space at the bottom to thank your guests for coming? Or remind them of your wedding hashtag, so they share the photos they took on their phones? Your photo booth company may even offer options other than a typical printout, such as magnet frames, photo frames, and bookmarks.
A Fun Way To Do A Wedding Guest Book
There’s so much you can do with the photos too! My personal favourite part is that the bride and groom also benefit from having a photo booth! It’s a way for you to cut costs – our favourite thing to help you do here at Forever Bride, sign up here to start saving- by not having a guest book. Instead of a traditional guest book of images of you guys as a couple, use the photos you receive from your photo booth.
It’ll make your guest book so much more enduring, personalized and fun. It’s such an a-typical guest book idea you’ll love filling up blank pages with photos and some signatures. We love that you get to see the faces of the guests you invited to celebrate with you next to their image. It’s a constant reminder of how much fun they had on your big day, and their picture goes along with all of their good wishes for your future! We almost guarantee that if you have other brides-to-be attending your wedding, they’ll want to steal this idea for their big day!
Your Guests Will Enjoy The Photo Opportunity.
Some brides wonder whether or not enough guests will use the photo booth. Is it going to be worth the cost? Would people instead be dancing than wait for their turn to the booth? To give you a simple answer-they will love it! As much as your big day is all about you and your soon to be husband or wife, it’s also probably one of the only times a year some of your family and friends (unless you’re that age where you have 5+ weddings this year” ¦let’s just ignore this small number of people to prove this point) get all dressed up.
Your guests will truly love the opportunity to get their picture taken with excellent lighting and a better camera than their outdated iPhone or Android. Usually, the photo booth operator uses a camera that’s as good of quality as your wedding photographer! If the photo booth you choose doesn’t come with an assistant, your guests will still appreciate an area sectioned off where they can place their iPhones and utilize the staging, lights and props to help document themselves all dolled up. We guarantee a photo booth will draw your guests in, and we can almost ensure you’ll have a few people thanking you for the free “professional” pictures!
Our vendor, Flow Event Group, has made it so easy for guests to access the photos they take. They have instantaneous photo viewing and social media sharing through their Wi-Fi connected interactive booths! I mean, come on, you can’t make it any easier to get awesome photos taken on your big day – remind guests always to use your wedding hashtag!
Suitable For All Ages
Are you inviting kids to your wedding? Do you have several aunts and uncles that have already warned you that they have retired from the dance floor? We all know there are two types of people at your wedding – those who will dance and those who will not. A photo booth is great for those people who don’t like to be on the dance floor. You can always ask the DJ or band MC to announce to visit the booth as simple a reminder.
We love the idea of having a photo booth at your wedding because of how versatile it is. People of all ages really get into the idea of putting on oversized sunglasses, goofy hats and feather boas to show off their best Marilyn Monroe poses. Photo booths are an activity that isn’t polarizing – in fact, we think it’ll even allow the old farts to loosen up and allow their child-like imagination a chance to rule. It’s also the perfect opportunity to get a large family photo. How many large family photos have we seen ruined by a 5-year-old cousin that doesn’t want to sit still or is pouting during the picture? Little kids will love to pose with the props or awesome backdrop – so, we’re challenging you to try and beat our vendor Mirror Me Perfect photo booth record of 31 people in a photo at one time!
You Give The Guests Something To Do During The Downtime At A Wedding.
And last but not least, reason number 5 as to why you should add a photo booth to your big day. No matter the size of your wedding, big or small, there’s always something that is needed to break the ice and kill time, especially during cocktail hours or the gap between the ceremony and the reception. Photo booths are an easy way for guests to gather around, talk, interact, and laugh together! By this time, they’re probably on their second cocktail so imagine the photos you’ll receive. We sat down with Forever Focused, and they said that the photo booth tends to be the talk of the wedding. And we have to agree!
We think it’s because guests wander over to see what it’s all about. You have friends call other friends for a group photo; kids and parents pose together for a picture. From choosing the perfect prop to swapping wigs and hats. Guests get a chance to joke around with friends and strangers! We love that Forever Focused that will help keep all the kids at your receptions having loads of fun and by pulling new faces into the booth in a race to see who can pull more people in.
Even though you have the perfect solution for guests during the downtime at your wedding, make sure you let them know that it exists so they can take advantage of it! If you’re looking for a way to remind guests that you have a photo booth, grab your wedding party or your new groom and take a few example pictures in the photo booth before the ceremony! Place the photos in frames, so people have a reminder at their tables or when they’re sitting at the bar waiting for their drink. After the night is over, you’ll be surprised by the outrageously hilarious and fun photos your family and friends have come up with. Who can resist a photo opportunity when everyone’s looking their best?
Reasons a photo booth might not be for you.
If any of the below points ring true, you might want to skip the photobooth and spend your wedding budget elsewhere.
- You’re having a super formal wedding, and your guests might not “get it.” While we’re firm believers that a photo booth adds energy and excitement to any affair—we also understand a booth can feel out of place or unwelcome in certain formal settings. That’s not to say we can’t make one of our high-quality photo booths work for a black-tie affair (we’ve done it on plenty of occasions!)—but we also want to ensure your resources are well spent. If your guests aren’t the type of attendees who are likely to participate in a photobooth, it might not be as big of a draw as it would at a more laid-back wedding reception—and you certainly don’t want an unused booth simply sitting there.
- There’s not enough space at your venue. If you’re limited when it comes to space and there’s no way to fit a photo booth in without disrupting the overall flow and layout, you might want to skip it. After all, there’s nothing worse than a crowded reception space that doesn’t offer enough room for guests to move around (and dance!). That being said, we offer a battery-operated social booth which we can use with a virtual backdrop. This takes you from needing a space that’s about 10 feet by 10 feet to one that’s only 5 feet by 5 feet.
- Your budget can’t support it. If every penny counts when planning your wedding, a photo booth might be the first thing to go. And, listen—we get it: if it comes down to having music or a photo booth, we agree you have to let them dance. The good news? A photo booth doesn’t have to break the bank. We offer an all-new DIY booth for one-third of the price of our custom photobooth experiences, making it a perfect option for couples on a budget!
Are photo booths worth it?
It depends on various factors such as your purpose, the features it comes with, it’s cost and the total value you can get from it. As long as it meets your requirements, it will always be worth it. It not only captures memories of one of the most important days of your lives, but it also makes for a wonderful, fun-filled and memorable experience. However, you will have to spend some time and effort to ensure that it does. Once you find a few vendors, go and meet them in person to discuss what your needs are and ask them how they can help you. If the visuals, services and the experience the booth provides are worth the cost they quote, then, by all means, go for it. But explore all the angles cost-wise to make sure you will get great bang for your buck.
Are photo booths at weddings tacky?
Almost anything can be considered to be tacky if it’s used without putting any thought into it. If you use a generic photo booth with no additional features just for the sake of a booth, it might come off as tacky. However, if you make it unique enough so that guests would want to try it out because they find it to be different and fun, then it becomes a part of the wedding. If you plan to have one set up, think about how you can use it to create a memorable experience for your guests. It can be done with props, using a green screen, or through a fantastic exterior design. You can even make a fun game out of it that allows your guests to interact with one another while using it to make it unique.