How to Choose a Perfect Aerial Photography Services
Choosing a photographer for your event is always an important decision. In the past, aerial photographers were primarily hired by public relations firms to take photographs from helicopters or airplanes to show a larger scene. But today, they are often used by commercial clients and individuals for all sorts of events – from weddings and parties to sporting events and construction projects. With so many options available, it can be challenging to know which company will provide the best service at the right price point. To help you choose wisely, this article put together a checklist that will help ensure you get everything you need when hiring an aerial photography services provider.
First, focus on the licensing. Most companies will have a license to operate, which means the company has met the requirements of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Make sure your photography service is licensed by contacting the FAA directly. Also, ask if they carry proper insurance coverage on their aircraft and meet state regulations for operation. Also, know the costs involved in hiring an aerial photography service provider. Depending on your needs, this can be a per-hour charge, time and materials, or a flat rate. Some companies provide free quotes on their website, while others require you to send a request for quote form via email or that you call them directly.
Second, consider the reputation. Many aerial photography services providers are available, but not all of them have been around long enough to establish a good reputation. Reach out to people in your industry and ask if they had ever used the company before or heard anything about their aerial photography services. Ask for references and then contact these references to understand better how the business operates. Think about the delivery method of your photographs. Some companies can deliver through a website or photo CD, while others require you to leave a hard drive with them. If the delivery method is crucial to you, confirm it at final negotiations. Remember about all of your options before hiring an aerial photography service provider. You never want to feel rushed into deciding on essential services for your business or event.
Finally, consider what you are looking for. Some providers offer specialized services like real estate photography, construction documentation, and commercial consulting to give a greater perspective of the properties being photographed. Ask what types of services they provide and any additional equipment available for rental or purchase. Therefore, know what your needs are. Think about what you need from the aerial photography service provider and how it will fit with the specific job at hand. For example, suppose you need a unique shot with a helicopter carrying an extensive unmanned aerial system (UAS) or drone. In that case, only a few companies will have the equipment to do that. Focus on the turnaround time of your photos. Is it essential to have your images returned right away? A day? A week? Will the photographer be editing the images before sending them back to you, or do they send everything out in one batch? Your provider must give you an estimate on when you will receive the photos.