A while ago I noticed that I don't really have a lot of travel photos of myself. I often travel solo and I'm not big on using a selfie stick to take selfies. I always feel so awkward when I'm pointing a camera at myself and think everybody is looking at me and thinking “Oh no, another selfie taker” when I do.
I still wanted to have some pictures of me during my travels, though, and so it was time to try something new. So I tried Flytographer, a company that lets you hire a local photographer for a travel photo shoot anywhere in the world.
I worked with them for the first time in Berlin and have since also used them again for a photo shoot with my mom in Budapest. Check out my Flytographer review below.
How it works
Flytographer is a company that connects travelers to local photographers all over the world and you can book them for a vacation photography shoot during your travels. From New York to Tokyo and everywhere in between they connect you with local photographers in over 300 cities across the globe.
The company was founded in 2011 by Nicole Smith. She wanted to help people capture great vacation memories which were a bit more special than the average blurry selfie.
You choose your destination, the local photographer you'd like to work with, and how long you want the shoot to be; they can be anywhere between 30 minutes and 2 hours.
After you have made these selections, the “shoot concierge” from Flytographer follows up with you to take care of the details. To be honest, I hadn't expected them to be so thorough and provide such great service. I figured you just signed up for a destination (I chose Berlin in Germany) and shoot time and that was it.
But when I'd done that, I received a short survey from them that I needed to fill in to make the shoot go as smoothly as possible. They asked me to describe what kind of photos I wanted, in what kind of scene or part of the city, at what time of the day and how comfortable I was in front of the camera.
I loved that they asked whether I wanted the photographer to give a lot of instructions or not, as I never really know what to do with myself when I'm being photographed and this way I could let them know beforehand and avoid feeling a bit silly on the day of the shoot.
I also really like that they sent me a link to my photographer's portfolio so that I could refer to her photos and let them know which ones I liked best to indicate what kind of travel photos I wanted for myself.
So whether you want funny family photos, romantic vacation photos to later put in a travel photo album, or just some really good travel pictures, you can let Flytographer know and they'll make sure to brief your photographer.
My Flytographer trip shoot in Berlin
I told Flytographer I wanted very natural looking photos in an urban setting. Now, such a scene isn't hard to find in a city like Berlin, but I was delighted when they proposed to meet at Hackescher Markt. I'd been there last summer when I visited my friend Adam, but I hadn't thought of the location myself. It was perfect!
Hackescher Markt has a beautiful train station with a bit of an industrial feel to it, a graffiti alley, hidden courtyards, and a big shopping lane.
I met with my photographer Sarah on the platform of the S-Bahn and we immediately hit it off. I'd feared that the shoot would feel very staged, with us only talking about good locations and which direction I had to look in, but we shared personal stories and talked about Berlin, more chatting from photo to photo than anything else.
This really made me feel more relaxed and although I still felt a bit awkward at times, Sarah told me to “just move around a bit”, or “walk in that direction” while she was snapping away, which resulted in some pretty great shots.
At least, that's what I think. What do you say?
Practical information on booking and going on a Flytographer shoot
Booking the shoot
On the Flytographer website, you can find all the destinations Flytographer has photographers or “Flytographers” at. When you choose a destination, you can see which photographers are there and check their portfolio.
Once you've chosen your destination and professional photographer, you can choose a package. Prices start at $250 for a 30-minute shoot including 15 digital travel photos and go up to $650 for a 2-hour shoot including 60 digital photos. There's also the option to have a custom shoot created where you choose the duration, amount of photos etc.
Planning to propose abroad? Flytographer has special “proposal packages” as well. A Flytographer gift card is also a cool travel present for friends, family and loved ones who would love to capture their vacation memories.
Once you've booked your shoot, Flytographer will follow up with a small questionnaire to learn all about the kind of travel pictures you'd like to take home. This is also when you get to discuss the location(s) for your shoot. Feel free to ask for a specific location, or let Flytographer suggest a spot based on the kind of photos you want.
Once everything has been decided, you'll receive a confirmation with the meeting time and place, as well as a bunch of useful tips on what (not) to wear and what (not) to bring to your shoot. The concierge provide a great service to prepare you for your photo shoot.
Doing the shoot
On the day of the shoot, you should meet your photographer 10 minutes before the shoot starts to get to know each other a bit and go over what will happen. After that, you just walk around together while the photographer captures you on your trip.
After the shoot
About five days after the shoot, you'll receive a link to your personal online gallery and a link to download all your trip pictures in high resolution. The best souvenir of your trip you could wish for!
And that's it!
$25 off your first shoot – Flytographer coupon code
If you'd like to book your first Flytographer shoot, I can give you $25 off!Just use this link and use the code FLY25. Yaay!
A destination photoshoot like this also makes for a great gift for a travel lover.
PIN FOR LATER
Flytographer offered me a 30-minute shoot so that I'd be able to try out and review their service. I liked it so much I later booked my own second photoshoot for a trip I did with my mom. As always, you only find my honest opinion here, and I hope the photos speak for themselves :-)