The annual travel photographer’s salary ranges from 10k to 100k, with an average monthly salary of 20k. Our guide below will discuss a professional travel photographer’s salary and how they go about making money.
Have you ever Imagined traveling the world, taking pictures, and getting paid to do it at the end of the day?
Do you want to enjoy the perks of being a professional photographer?
Should you consider travel photography as a career?
Travel photography is one of the career paths that an experienced photographer can take. The salary is the best part as travel photographers make a substantial amount of money a year depending on their experience level.
In this article you will learn about How Much Does a Travel Photographer Make and how to make money with travel photography!
What Is a Travel Photographer?
As the name suggests, a travel photographer is a sub-genre that involves traveling from place to place. Travel photography involves taking a series of images, such as landscapes, street life, culture, dining areas, shopping areas, etc.
With travel photography in mind, there are several ways the photos can be used. Photographers can use these images for advertisements, vacation planning, and some even sell their pictures as decor to hang on walls. Travel photography is a way to capture locations all around the world.
Why is Travel Photography Right for You?
Travel photography has its benefits. It gives photographers the chance to experience different environments and things. It also helps you gain experience and skills as well. Travel photography grants the opportunity to make money taking photos and getting paid to travel the world.
You Can Travel Around the World
By being a travel photographer, you have a chance to see the world and take brilliant photos for your job.
There are endless options to choose from and mostly no restrictions, land or water that you cannot shoot. Of course, if that particular place does not permit photoshoots, you must respect the rules.
Having a job that deals with travel photography comes with the perk of having the creative freedom in exploration. Traveling allows you to see new sites and things you would have never imagined. You experience new areas, interact with locals, eat fresh cuisine, and bask in local street life. In a way, it is almost like a paid vacation.
Gain Experience and Skills
Whether new or experienced, a travel photographer can learn and experience firsthand how this job field operates, so they are prepared for the future.
Gaining experience and obtaining skills allows photographers to grow as they learn to become patient and flexible. This kind of job also requires perseverance as it comes with challenges to overcome.
Any new experience for travel photographers will not be perfect, and you will make mistakes. Sometimes there will be obstacles that require the utmost attention. However, you can hone your skills by avoiding errors in doing so.
Utilizing your skills can also enhance your work, strengthening your level of expertise and the quality of your photos.
Strengthens Your Network
You are not the only travel photographer exploring, so it’s necessary to interact with other co-travelers.
One of the reasons this would be beneficial is that it’s an opportunity to make new friends who share the same passion that you have for photography.
Another reason would be that this will strengthen your network in the photography business.
An Opportunity to Document Your Travels
One of the most significant benefits of being a travel photographer is to have photographic evidence of all your adventures and travels. Some memories of your trips will fade over time, so this way, you are preserving your work.
These images will last for a while. Therefore, it is essential to capture breath-taking scenes that you can view in the comforts of your home. And after all is said and done, you can find creative ways to store your images, such as scrapbooking, photo framing, slideshows, videos, and other options.
Making Money Taking Travel Images
Having taken a lot of travel images, not only can you keep your photos for memories, but people would love to purchase them.
Different variations of how you can sell your travel images would be a photo book or Ebook, sell photos online or to travel magazines, selling your photos on stock sites, etc.
10 Tips in Making Money as a Travel Photographer
There are so many factors to consider to make money. There is more to being a travel photographer than scheduling a trip and gathering your equipment. You have to establish your business and professional relationships. Here are the top 10 tips for making money as a travel photographer.
Selling Photos on Stock Sites
Selling photos on stock sites allows you to broaden your portfolio and make money with photography. You can submit your photos to various stock sites and tag them using relevant keywords describing them. Selling to stock sites is suitable for making a little extra income, but it’s not as dependable for full-time work.
Enter Travel Photography Competitions
Believe it or not, there are travel photography competitions where you can participate by submitting your images. This is perfect if you want to advertise or show your skills and have an opportunity to compete with other travel photographers. Some of the prizes for entry winners could be cash, new camera equipment, or a chance to display your work in an exhibit.
Establish an Online Portfolio
Whether online or a physical copy, a portfolio is imperative in displaying your travel photography work professionally. It gives you a chance to show off your top-tier work. It’s best to organize your portfolio based on the destination, year, colors, etc.
Create a Website
Another factor to consider, aside from an online portfolio, would be to establish a website or blog for your work. You can display your work and have contact information for potential clients to seek you out for commissions. You can also write posts that include some of your images.
Establish Your Online Community
Once you have created your website and portfolio, you can now create your online community. Doing this will allow you to advertise your business and market to your target audience. This can be self-promoting your work on social media and gaining a considerable following.
Teach Photography Classes
You can make money by teaching photography courses if you’re a skilled travel photographer. You can either teach the basics or have a class on travel photography. If you are unsure where to start, there are guides to conducting your photography course.
Take Commissions for Travel Photography
Another way of making money is taking commissions for your work. This can mean offering services to clients for wedding photos, landscapes, vacation spots, etc.
The client will have specifications for what they want, so you do not have to create ideas for them. Unfortunately, this is only possible if you are noticed via editors, your website or your portfolio.
Advertise Your Work
Self-promotion is vital when seeking out work as a travel photographer. In this case, this can be from promoting your work on social media sites, creating advertisements, and even using your networking with other photographers to receive more assignments. You can also utilize word of mouth among friends, family, and close mutuals apart from advertising online.
Once you have established a substantial following online, influencers primarily are offered to advertise name-brand products or services on their social media accounts. This is what’s known as sponsored or affiliated marketing. Once you advertise this product or service, you will get a percentage of the sale if your ad attracts sales. Product photography is also a good way to make money
Publish a Travel Photobook
Publishing a photo book or Ebook can further help boost your travel photography business. You can print a photobook displaying all of your images or an ebook of not only your pictures but write about your thoughts and feelings about your work.
Travel Photography Tips for Your Photos
Now that you are inspired or at least have an idea of how you want to go about travel photography, you are probably eager to take pictures of breath-taking moments.
But, taking travel photos requires experience and utilizing your skills. Here are some tips to help you out when taking travel photos.
Preplan Your Visit
As a travel photographer, you’ll feel inclined to travel everywhere to take photos for your business at the spur of the moment. It’s crucial that you read about where you are going before heading out. It’s important to read travel books, blogs, or vacation guides to be aware of your surroundings and the environment itself.
Preparing Your Equipment
Sometimes it’s easy to forget things. However, if you are a travel photographer, you must have everything you need when you go out for a photoshoot. Aside from your travel necessities, your camera equipment is essential to have. Your equipment can be your tripod, lighting, camera travel lenses, or anything that helps take photos.
Packing Lightly and Efficiently
A travel photographer must pack the essential items so you can travel efficiently and lightly. Aside from your equipment, ensure you have your phone, toiletries, money, and any emergency items just in case. You are in an unfamiliar environment, so it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Ask Permission to Take Your Photos
It is crucial to be courteous about the environment and locals around you. So be polite when you are traveling to your destination. Not every location is going to permit taking photos. In that case, if there are locals, always ask if it’s okay to shoot there. Always be polite because you are in their territory.
Prioritizing Your Work
It’s nice to take in the scenery where you take your photos. However, if this is for your job, it is best to prioritize your work. Take your time with photoshoots instead of rushing because, chances are, the rushed quality will show in the final draft. If you have trouble organizing your photography time, preplan a schedule beforehand.
Back up Your Travel Photography Photos
Accidents happen, but you might want to avoid losing your photos or camera. You can back up your photos using a hard drive or an online storage site. Though, it’s imperative to have a physical drive.
Frequently Asked Questions
Sometimes going about travel photography can be challenging to manage. There are always going to be factors that you do not understand. In that case, here are some frequently asked questions (FAQ) about travel photography and earning money.
How do they pay travel photographers?
Travel photographers get paid based on their profile, experience, and portfolio. It’s essential to have a brand for your business to get noticed and offered jobs.
Is it possible to get paid as a travel photographer?
It is possible to get paid as a travel photographer! However, the income is not as recurrent as a professional photography job. So, it’s best to seek out jobs and establish an online community to help promote your work.
Is a degree required for having a travel photographer job?
You are not required to have a degree to pursue a travel photographer job. However, you have to know how to use your camera.
How do you get clients?
Self-promoting your work is essential in receiving clients. This can be offline by advertising your work in newspapers, magazines, or book publishing. For online, you can do the same on social media.
How do you create perfect travel photos?
Creating perfect travel photos requires patience. Not every shot you take will be perfect the first time around. Practicing taking pictures will help you achieve this.
As mentioned above, a travel photographer’s salary ranges from 10k to 100k, with a monthly salary of 20k.
To make money in this career field, you have to devise a plan to establish your business online and gain experience in travel photography.
Properly advertising your work both online and offline is an effective way to get recognized for your work. As a result, you can build your portfolio and gain clients in the long run.
If you are still unsure about the salary of a travel photographer or other topics covered in this article, please feel free to comment.