The wedding photos are often one of the largest single expenses when planning a wedding. While you can hop around to find affordable wedding photography, the lowest price is not always the best option. Before booking make sure you see some of the photographer’s past work, and feel free to ask for references. A good photographer will always be happy to let you talk to past clients about their experiences.

Here are five tips to help you find affordable wedding photography:

Book in advance:

Start looking for a wedding photographer as soon as you book your ceremony location. If you wait too long you may have to settle for the photographer you can find, rather than the one with the skills and price you want. Summer is wedding season and most weekends will be booked up shortly after New Year’s.

Choose a package:

Booking a wedding photography package, rather than just a photographer will cut down on your costs. Most photographers offer better prices when you book all of your services, like your engagement session, pre-wedding shots and retouching and albums, through them.

Watch the time:

Many photographers charge by the amount of time that you want them at the wedding site, whether or not they are shooting. Find a photographer that offers unlimited time with their wedding packages to ensure you’re not watching the clock all day and don’t get surprised with additional costs.

Request a DVD:

Your negatives or digital images are not always included in the price. That means you’ll have to go back to the photographer for reprints, which can get expensive. The cost of a reprint ranges from $10- $50 depending on the photographer. It’s also possible that you could loose touch with the photographer over time and loose access to your pictures. Ask if your photographer supplies a DVD of high-resolution images after the wedding.

Ask about add ons:

When you book your wedding photography package ask your photographer upfront for quotes on any add ons you might want like extra albums, a second photographer or photography at the rehearsal dinner or gift brunch. Booking all of your services at the same time may lower your price.