Make Your Wedding Picture Perfect – Choose the Right Photographer, Says the Better Business Bureau

April 24, 2014

CHICAGO, IL – April 24, 2014 – As wedding season begins, couples are finalizing plans for their special day. Photographers and videographers use their skills to make the day a lasting memory. The Better Business Bureau (BBB) advises couples to do their research ahead of time to choose the right business.

Capturing a memory such as a marriage in a photograph or video takes skill. It also takes commitment and professionalism. The BBB says couples need to search for a photographer that will be timely and offer fair pricing.

“When looking for this service, it is important to research carefully,” said Steve J. Bernas, president & CEO of the Better Business Bureau of Chicago and Northern Illinois. “Before signing anything, make sure that any promises made verbal or written are included in the contract.”

The BBB offers the following suggestions to prospective brides and grooms:

  • Check with the BBB for Business Reviews and listings of photographers and videographers you are considering at
  • Schedule interviews with two or three to get a feel for the types of services they offer, the quality of their work and related fees. 
  • Ask for references and talk to previous clients. 
  • Ask the photographer if he/she is the one who will be photographing your wedding.  If so, that should be stated in the contract.  If not, request to meet personally with the photographer who will be shooting your wedding and review photos from several events before making a decision. 
  • Is the photo package fixed or customized?  How many photos are included and what about reprints, enlargements and albums?
  • What is the time frame for delivery of proofs and other products?  Is there a Web site to view your images?  Can you keep the proofs or negatives?
  • What is the payment schedule?  Is a deposit required; if so, how much and by when? This information should be included in the contract.

Bernas added, “A written contract should also specify what happens if your photographer doesn’t show up, as well as the cancellation/refund policy.”

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The BBB is a non-profit, non-governmental organization.  It is supported by businesses to protect consumers against scams and other unethical business practices.  The group accomplishes this by educating both consumers and businesses, and by highlighting trustworthy businesses. By developing reports and ratings on businesses and charitable organizations, the BBB encourages people to use these as resources and referrals to utilize the free services before making a purchase or donation. The BBB helps resolve buyer/seller complaints through its alternative dispute resolution process. In 2013, the BBB provided more than 22,600,000 instances of service.  Over 80 percent of consumer complaints to the BBB were resolved. The Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and Northern Illinois is a member of the international BBB system that services the United States, Canada and Mexico.