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Is a Bridal Session Worth it? What it is and why you need one

Planning Resources


If you are planning your wedding you have heard the phrase “bridal session” from friends, family, or your photographer and you probably have questions. Is a bridal session worth it? What is a bridal session? Where and when should I schedule this session? How much will it cost?

Look no further – I’m Bri, a Utah wedding photographer with the answers to all your questions!

Outdoor Bridal Photo Session

What is a bridal session?

A bridal session is a photo session in your wedding attire that takes place before or after your wedding day.

In the past, bridals were a solo portrait session of just the bride. But in recent years, more couples have chosen to do bridals together. It is a great opportunity to get those dream wedding photos you want to hang on your walls, in a different location than your wedding venue.

bridal session

Why should I book a bridal session?

Choosing to book a bridal session is purely personal choice, but here are multiple reasons I think a bridal session is worth your time and money:

  • Most importantly, you get stunning, stress free photos in your wedding attire. Wedding days tend to move quick and you will likely feel stressed and tired at some point in the day. Scheduling a separate bridal session enables you to plan a day where you can relax and take your time. And it gives you the opportunity to get all the photos you want without missing any!

  • You can choose whatever location you want! The mountains, a lake, the city, a destination location – the options are endless!

  • You have more control over the lighting, which greatly impacts how your photos turn out. Typically on your wedding day you get what you get on lighting, but doing a separate bridal session gives you the opportunity to shoot at the best time of the day for the best light

  • It saves time taking photos on your wedding day so you can be more present with your guests 

  • Big canvas prints are great wedding reception decor and your guests will love seeing them! And then you can hang those prints in your house after the wedding day!

  • It can help you get comfortable with your photographer and in front of the camera before the big day.

  • It’s an excuse to put on your dress that you love so much again!

  • It gives you an opportunity to see the final look put together with hair and makeup. So you can decide if you want to change anything before your big day. I would highly recommend scheduling your bridal session on the same day as your hair and makeup trial!
lgbtq outdoor elopement


Where to take bridals?

Outdoor bridals are most common and my personal favorite. But if you are doing a solo bridal session then I think studios tend to be very beautiful!

When should I schedule my bridals?

I would schedule your bridal session at least 1-2 months before your wedding day so you have enough time to get them back and printed to display at your wedding. It takes me about 2-3 weeks to get your final photos back to you. And some photographers return in 4-6 weeks.

How much does a bridal session cost?

I charge $550 + tax for my base bridal session. And when booked with a wedding package, you receive a bit of a discounted rate. This is a 1.5 hour session at a location within 25 miles of Salt Lake City. Travel fees between $100-1000 may apply depending on locations further than that.

Thanks for reading! You can find more wedding resources and answers to your questions here.