Your new little one has been born and you want to capture the moment with adorable first-time photos. Should you use the hospital service or do it yourself?
Hospital baby pictures are typically handled by an outside photography company and a picture package usually costs between $30-400. Extra options such as birth announcements and mementos will have costs in addition to those prices. Local photographers, family, and friends can be a great alternative.
Let’s read ahead to see what hospitals offer and if it is worth the money.
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How much are hospital pictures of your baby?
The birth of your child is a moment to be captured for memory. Photographers usually offer the photoshoot called the “Fresh 48”. This is where the best photos are taken within the first 48 hours after birth and most people are thrilled to hear that this service is available – until they hear about the prices!
Usually, hospitals work with an outside company. They will send a representative to your room a day after the baby is born once things have settled down a little bit. They will set up a time with you for the session, taking one or multiple pictures.
This part is totally free and usually takes from 15-30 minutes. Then, they will put together a slideshow to show you the best pictures. You can decide if you want to purchase them.
The price charged for the hospital pictures of your baby depends on the company the hospitals work with for pictures will likely start at about $30 for an extremely basic package with only a few pictures and ranges all the way up to about $400 for a complete package featuring multiple sizes of each picture taken. It also depends on what services you are looking for and extras such as birth announcements, and mementos like keychains will add to the overall price.
Here is a list of common options and upgrades:
- Newborn only, naked or clothed; multiple poses
- Sibling pictures
- Parent(s) with baby
- Family photos
- Photo Packages
- Digital downloads
- Gifts (keychains, blankets, etc.)
Remember that you don’t have to get the photos done at the hospital – they are simply offered there for your convenience and photography companies have learned that new parents are more likely to fork over money with all of the excitement over their new baby.
It can be expensive and pressure for new parents the day after birth. Take the time and figure out what will make you happy.
If you do want to take the photos, it is suggested to bring any outfits you want the baby filmed in as well as a blanket, cover, and any props. Also, any parents and siblings will want to dress for the pictures too.
Do all hospitals take pictures of newborns?
Not all hospitals offer photo services but most major hospitals or hospitals that are part of a larger network will offer the services.
Check with your hospital to see what their options are during your pregnancy so that you can plan ahead for the potential expense. If they don’t, you can ask if someone can come in or wait until you are out of the hospital to get a photography session.
Do you have to buy hospital baby pictures?
Don’t feel pressured to get them at the hospital. There is a lot going on and it seems more “convenient” to get it done at the hospital, in theory.
There is a controversy that the sales tactics are especially stressful for new parents. They can be pricey so you can always take pictures on your phone or wait until you get home.
How much are Mom365 pictures?
Mom365 is a large photography group that can be found in many hospitals. Essentially, they will send photographers out to hospitals to shoot the photos and then all of the sales take place through the corporate office and can be mailed to you.
Mom365 offers a variety of services.
- Portrait Packages include anywhere from digital downloads to physical photographs. The price ranges from $30-$310.
- Birth Announcements have different poses, multiple babies, and holiday selections. The price starts at $39 and up depending on how many announcements are chosen. They are also available in Spanish!
- Mementos and Gifts include phone cases, keychains, etc. The price ranges from $21-$175.
How much are Bella Baby pictures?
Bella Baby offers a lot of services and is a popular company used by hospitals. The prices vary from $50-400 depending on what you want.
- Holiday Cards are available for an adorable way to celebrate the holidays with your little one, while introducing them to family and friends
- Gallery Wrapped Canvases are a great addition to your home. Stretched over the canvases, the pictures are displayed in a great way that will compliment the walls of any room
- Birth Announcements have different poses and room for multiple babies.
- Photo packages have a variety of options and sizes from wallet to poster size.
- Digital Downloads are available as well on a flash drive that comes with a slideshow. You can look on the flash drive and choose what photos you would like printed in the style that you want.
How much are First Day Photo Pictures?
First Day Photo is a company that was started in 2002 when the founders learned that their newborn son would not survive long and wanted to capture as many moments as possible. They strive on the importance of these moments.
- They offer a variety of package options and the rates start at $39.
Alternatives to hospital baby pictures
If you make the decision to not get photos at the hospital, there are a few alternatives to choose from but you will need to plan ahead to make sure that you get the photos you want!
Book a local photographer
Photography is becoming more popular and there are a lot of options out there for photographers for newborns. You can pick an amateur for cheaper options or go with a more experienced person. It is a great way to support small businesses. The packages range from $100 to thousands of dollars depending on what you are looking for.
In my experience, you will get higher quality pictures of your baby if you choose to book a local photographer and you will also have way more flexibility in terms of the type of pictures and poses that you can get. The downside is that you are also likely to pay just as much if not more money for this option compared to hospital services. In my opinion, it’s the better option if you have the money and access to a great local photographer.
Choose wisely and shop around. Ask people you know for references. Check out if your area has a social media page! It is a great way to find photographers in your area and get recommendations. They offer props, different lighting, settings, etc. Some offer more personable deals like an album with the option to add quotes, canvas or pre-framed photos, or usable products like mugs and blankets.
Take the pictures yourself
Everyone carries a camera in their pocket nowadays with smartphones and tablets. If you or a loved one have a fairly good camera and decent editing skills, take your own photos. You are the boss so you choose poses, lighting, and it’s at your own pace.
Save it to Google, Icloud, or whatever file saver you have. Invest in a good picture printer or take it somewhere to get them printed.
If you have a family member that takes photos, ask them! It is a great way to support their business and show off their work. Make sure you get along and communicate what is expected so there is no awkwardness at family gatherings later.
However you decide to get photos done is up to you and your family. The importance is the memories you share.