Wedding photography is one of the hardest categories to cut. Budget photography is hard to find and when you do there will always be a little part of you who wonders if going budget on something so important as pictures is worth it.
The first thing to remember is cheap does not always mean poor quality. Usually the biggest difference between a small time photographer and a big time wedding photographer is advertising. Advertising means that you will notice them first and it means that they have a lot of advertising costs to make up for with their photography prices.
So, the key is to find those diamonds in the rough. Those photographers who are great, but who have not made a large enough name for themselves to be paying high dollars for advertising. That is the perfect budget wedding photographer.
Student photographers can make a great wedding photographer. Usually their costs are still low and they are willing to take photographs for less if you agree to allow them to include the photos in their portfolio. They need to build up a portfolio in order to gain more business.
Craiglist can be a great place to find a budget wedding photographer. You can find amateur photographers trying to build up a portfolio and you might also be able to find photographers willing to barter for their work.
Friends and Family
Try not to overlook the obvious. Not every bride will have a friend or family member that can act as a photographer, but if you do then you will have the added benefit of having a photographer who understands your family (they will be more comfortable around her/him). Sometimes when brides get caught up in the planning they forget that they can ask for help from the people who are close to them.
And One More Tip…
Try to decide on your budget photographer earlier so you can use her to take your engagement photos. This will allow you to decide if you really like her before your wedding.