When should I plan my wedding day ceremony time?
First and foremost, what time of day works best for you? A good photographer will definitely have some thoughts on this and should be able to make it work no matter what time of the day it is, but earlier weddings mean that everything is earlier. If you are not a morning person, maybe starting your day at 5 AM won't be all that appealing to you. Makeup, hair, and all of those other activities take a long time.
Is your wedding indoors or outdoors?
While most wedding receptions are indoors or inside of a tent, ceremonies are often outdoors. Do you want the sun in your eyes? If you are like most people, the answer to that question is an immediate "no!" Look at a map of your potential ceremony location and note where you will be standing. If you are facing the east, you may have the sun in your eyes in the earlier part of the day. If it faces to the west, you may have the sun in your eyes in the evening. Your guests will often be perpendicular to you, and so you may want to keep their comfort in mind as well. Consider choosing a venue that provides shade around the ceremony site. Trees, gazebos, and other structures can help to block some of that light from reaching you.
But isn't bright sunlight good?
You might think so, but bright sunlight is generally the worst case scenario for any kind of portraits. It also means that you will sweat more, and you still have a long day ahead of you after the ceremony. Photographers love the shade. It avoids the aforementioned squinting eyes, bright spots on faces and clothing, bad facial shadows, etc. That's why we will often seek out shady spots for your wedding formals!
The Best Time for Bride and Groom Photos
As a wedding photographer, I feel like this is obviously an important consideration. In my experience, the weddings with the best photos tend to have "afternoon-ish" ceremonies. By the time we get to formals and bride and groom portraits, the sun will no longer be above us and we are more likely to get some good light angles and some shade. It also means that the timing of the "golden hour" (that hour of time before sunset) fits at a time in the reception where we can likely get away for some additional photos. It is important to remember that sunset times vary throughout the year (but are easily predictable and knowable in advance) and so you may want to consider that when choosing a time.
Is there a time of day when Wedding Photography is cheaper?
I suppose this would depend on the photographer. My wedding photography packages are the same price regardless of what time of day it is. You might find that prices for wedding venues may vary a bit depending on what time of the day or what day of the week it is. Definitely be sure to ask them as sometimes the amount can be significant!