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Tips For Making the Most of Your City Hall Wedding Photography

City hall weddings can be a beautiful and highly memorable event. With the right preparation, you can naturally enhance your city hall wedding photography session to take full advantage of the location. Follow these tips to capture every moment of your special day at city hall!

Plan ahead.

Gay couple at the City Hall
Jonathan and James getting ready for their City Hall ceremony

Research the city hall’s policies and guidelines for you and your guests. The implemented COVID policies can change overnight, for instance as of 5/31/24 couples can now bring in up to FOUR guests to their City Hall ceremony. There will be flexibility for children under 12, but outside of little ones, there will be a limit of 4 guests.

Think about timing.

NY City Hall wedding photos
Elena and Amir waiting at the Chapel.

The new system of appointments implemented by the NY City Clerk helps make things run smoother but there still can be delays. For our City Hall packages, we don’t time the session and make sure we cover the wait and ceremony plus a few photos outside with the couple and group shots if needed. Additional locations can be added to our basic City Hall package.

Take Advantage of the Architecture and Light in the City Hall area.

Lola and Asaf at the Supreme Court Building near the City Hall
Lola and Asaf at the Supreme Court building by the City Clerk’s office

The City Hall wedding area with adjacent official buildings allows couples to benefit from beautiful lighting and stunning architecture. For instance, the Supreme Court right in front is an amazing photo spot!

Don’t bring a heavy bag or bulky items.

Especially if it’s just the two of you, you probably won’t want to be in the photos carrying big bags or backpacks. That said, both Leila, the photographer, and David will be there so David can help you carry small items and occasionally your coats if you want to go for a dress photo on a chilly day!

Make sure to capture all the details

Make sure you show us details you want us to photograph such as the rings, ticket number, or any special things such as pins or symbolic jewelry you chose to wear on your wedding day.

Try to relax and enjoy the experience.

Couple getting married at the City Clerk's office
Elizabeth and Ian are about to be pronounced married

Having to fill out paperwork on your wedding day can be stressful, but the locations’ workers are experienced and will go through things smoothly. Also, David is a registered officiant, so he can help clarify and even officiate if there’s something wrong with their computer system for any reason. That happened to one of our couples! 

Bring your puppy!

Cathy, Walter and their puppy
Cathy, Walter, and their puppy

I know we mentioned we don’t recommend bringing big bags, however, if you bring your puppy in a bag, please do! :)

Hope all these tips were helpful. Feel free to send us a note or ask us any questions!


Our work as wedding and elopement photographers

Leila Jacue & David Leon are a team of wedding photographers based in NYC specializing in elopements and intimate wedding photography with boutique inspiration. We develop a stress-free glamour and casual chic style that captures the highlights of your day as well as "in-between moments" to represent your day fully and in a memorable way for years to come.


David is a registered officiant and we are currently offering elopement packages with the option of taking advantage of celebrating the ceremony at great New York City locations. Check our Sweet Elopement Package

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