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Guide to Photo Booth Rentals

Updated on January 25, 2011

*Update - Jan. 25th, 2011

I wrote this article in late 2009, about 6 months before I started my own Photo Booth Rental business in Minnesota. I have not changed any information in the article and still believe in it, in fact it is the info here that I built my own business to reflect.

A review of your options before you rent a photo booth online.

A while back I picked up a job working for a photo booth rental company. I got to my first assignment, a wedding, and I could not believe how much fun it was. The guests loved the photo booth and talked about it far more then the DJ.

I would bet they remember the photo booth for a lot longer too, I gave out nearly 200 postcards that night, four photos on each and digital copies for guests to view online.

In four hours the photo booth received no complaints, only gushing excitement and enjoyment.

Lots of Photo Booth Companies, Lots of Choices

There are a lot of photo booth companies out there, and more on their way. Their is a wide range of appearance styles, photo quality, extra services and prices so I will try to point out potential problems to watch for, what to expect, and how to make sure your photo booth rental is a great experience for everyone.

Because the photo booth rental market is a bit of a niche market, and a relativly new idea there are a lot of smaller companies out there. Many are individuals that built the photo booth themselves and run it themselves. Other companies are a little larger and have several people working for them around the country in different regions.

One of the most important things is to make sure you talk to someone in person when you book. Make sure that they guarantee your photo booth rental will be there on time, not being set up as your guests are eating. Some companies charge extra for this, some don't.

Some photo booth rentals come with an attendant, others are stand alone machines like you see in malls. An attendant can help get more guests to participate, take care of technical problems, and coordinate extras like scrapbooks and multiple printing. The photo attendant can also be late, dressed sloppy, or inexperienced so it is best if you can talk to the actual person who will be working your photo booth ahead of time to go over the details of your rental agreement.

Make sure that he or she understands what dress is expected, the time the photo booth should be set up, when it should be running for guests, how late you expect them to keep the photo booth open, and any other questions or concerns you may have.

Appearance may be the most important factor when you rent a photo booth.

The outside appearance may be important to your event so you should rent a photo booth that will coordinate with your events decorating. There are a lot of styles out there, some of the nicest picture booth rental places will work with you to 'dress' the booth too match your events colors and materials. Colors range from red to black to white and are often made of cloth over a steel frame. Panel or hard sided photo booths are usually made of plastic and or metal

The inside of the photo booth will vary but is not as important, except for the background. Most of the rental companies will work with you to get the background color that you want, a few have multiple screens or digital backgrounds.

Extra, Extra... Photo Booth Rental comes with Extras

When you rent a photo booth you will also be offered lots of extras, as I mentioned above. Probably the favorite one is the scrapbook option. The different companies are all slightly varied on how they do this but the end result is similar, a scrapbook made up of the photos taken at your event by the guests. Some photo booth rental places will make the book themselves, others will encourage the guests to make their own pages.

Either way the book is a photo journal of the night, and many couples are choosing to use it as their sign in book, asking every guest to create a page of their own.

I have also seen a couple places that are offering a live streaming of video inside the photo booth out to the crowd in the main room. Personally I think this takes a bit of the fun of the privacy of the rental photo booth. It could also be distracting to guests, but if you have the right setting it could make for a whole lot of fun watching your friends and family on the big screen!

Photo Booth Print Options Explained

You will also want to consider how many prints you would like of each postcard. Some packages will include only one print for the guest to take home with them, and they may supply a digital copy to the bride and groom. If you were going to rent a photo booth and use one copy of the photos for the scrapbook then you should have second prints made so your guests can take their own photos with them.

Some photo booth rental companies may want to keep the printing rights so that you have to buy your prints from them. If you want to easily purchase high quality prints hassle free then this may be for you.

The quality of the photos should be of some concern too, some photo booths rental places have extremely high quality and others are a little more outdated. Most of the pictures are quite small, approximately two inches square but if you want high quality reprints later then photo quality should be something you take into consideration.

Rent a Photo Booth to Remember YOUR Night

You will also want to consider how many prints you would like of each postcard. Some packages will include only one print for the guest to take home with them, and they may supply a digital copy to the bride and groom. If you were going to rent a photo booth and use one copy of the photos for the scrapbook then you should have second prints made so your guests can take their own photos with them. Some photo booth rental companies may want to keep the printing rights so that you have to buy your prints from them. If you want to easily purchase high quality prints hassle free then this may be for you.

The quality of the photos should be of some concern too, some photo booths rental places have extremely high quality and others are a little more outdated. Most of the pictures are quite small, approximately two inches square but if you want high quality reprints later then photo quality should be something you take into consideration.

Beyond this all the photo booth companies have their own unique extras that they will try to sell you, everything from photo books to picture frames all the way to complete event hosting. The pricing is usually based on a set minimum time, usually two to four hours. Most of the places are averaging between seven hundred and fifteen hundred dollars for this first two to four hours, and that would include photo booth setup, an attendant, and generally just single prints.

After that most places charge an hourly fee if you would like your photo booth open longer then their basic package. It is almost always much cheaper per hour then the initial charge, and my experience has been that photo booths become much more popular as the night goes on.

I hope that this information has been helpful. With dozens of photo booth rental places online it can be hard to choose but hopefully I have shed some light on what options there are out there. The photo booths I have ran have been nothing but a hit with all of the guests and I have no doubt that your photo booth rental will be a hit at your wedding or event too!

Just don't tell the DJ, he may get jealous of all the attention going towards the back of the room.

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