Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions

A Travelshooters private photography tour — just you, your travelling companion and your expert local photography guide — naturally costs more than a group tour where you’d be jostling for position with perhaps a dozen other photographers. (And, usually, going home with the same shots as everybody else.)

Yet many Travelshooters clients have expressed surprise at how relatively little extra it costs to have a tour designed exclusively for them… with every shot, every session, every opportunity reserved for them and no other participant. (You can read more about the advantages on our Private Photography Tours page.)

Also worth remembering is that the Travelshooters tour price includes privileged sessions with people and in situations simply not on offer with the standard tourism itineraries of the tour-bus groups.

As one client put it:

“We’ve done a few of the group photo tours and the good ones ain’t cheap. When I did the math, me and my wife get a completely bespoke tour with you guys, designed and run around us and no one else, for about 20% more than we paid for our last trip with [photo tour company]. We’re in… no brainer!”

They’re professional photographers, usually well known, international award-winning and published, all with outstanding travel photography experience and a portfolio to die for. We prefer to use local experts: with rare exceptions, we don’t have photographers leading tours in territories where they are not residents nor fluent in local languages and practices. So it’s Indians in India, Burmese in Myanmar.

These are not just local travel guides. They’re local professional photographers who understand the creative result you’re after and how to achieve it. They have explored, cultivated and have the ability to deliver those privileged encounters and special shoot opportunities. Their command of the local language helps breaks the ice, gets you into the shots, ensures cooperative subjects. They know precisely how to connect you with the local people, customs and stories — and to do it in a respectful, responsible way.

And yes, they speak English, often so well that clients remark on long tropical evening conversations over images, opportunities and life in general!

When you’re on tour juggling cameras and lenses, the last thing you need is to be constantly dipping in and out of your wallet to try to find unfamiliar currency to settle some annoying hidden extra. So we try our best to make your tour price as inclusive as possible.

Your tour quotation will specify what’s included. Usually, it’s:

  • Hotels, typically with breakfasts included
  • Local air, ground and water transport, including airport transfers
  • Your photographer-guide’s fees, accommodation and meals
  • Access fees, donations and facilitation fees relating to special photographic opportunities

Typically excluded:

  • Lunches and dinners
  • The usual personal stuff you may choose to order at hotels
  • Tips for the team supporting your photography — we can advise on this and even settle it directly if you wish so that you’re spared even this intrusion into your time.
  • Travel costs outside the tour dates (for example, flights in to and out of the destination country).

This is just a guide. Please do check the details of your quote for specific inclusions or exclusions relating to your specific trip.

Our general approach is to go for accommodation that serves our photographic mission, improving certainty and convenience. In some cases this can mean anything from a modest guest-house to a private landowner’s mansion to a plush luxury hotel. Your preferences are very much taken into account: there are wonderful hotel suites that cost several thousand dollars a night if your budget stretches that far.

At the same time, we never forget we’re here to get you killer photographs. So if we need to house you for a night in a bare earth-floored hut to make that happen, we’ll alert you at planning stage and get your consent rather than just play safe and assume you only want shots accessible from a hotel suite. You’ll always know what to expect before you start your tour, because our itineraries clearly spell out the accommodation you’ll be using.

All of our photo tours are wonderful explorations in their own right. Your partner should enjoy every moment of all our tours as much as anyone. But if, for example, you think your companion might appreciate a different kind of day while you’re out shooting, we can arrange fun excursions they might want to try: stuff like private sightseeing, ethnic cooking sessions, arts and crafts visits, escorted shopping.

You’ll need to:

  • Organise flights to and from the tour start and finish points
  • Get any required visas
  • Complete any medical arrangements that might be necessary (e.g. inoculations)
  • Arrange (and show proof of) mandatory travel insurance
  • Get your shooting kit together, letting us know of any items you might wish us to make available, such as lights, reflectors, backgrounds.

Our photography tours are designed predominantly as a personal rather than business activity. Professional photographers are very welcome (you need holidays too!) but the following points apply to all images taken on our photo holidays by any kind of photographer:

  • We use personal contacts, including friends and relatives, to organise many photo opportunities. For example, when we go into someone’s home to witness them celebrate a religious festival: this is a courtesy they have extended to us, not a commercial arrangement.
  • The human subjects in our photo opportunities are not professional models. No release forms are signed and no permission is given for professional, publication, agency, client or photolibrary use, or for any form of distribution of such images.
  • Reasonable private amateur use  (e.g. amateur competitions, prints, photo clubs, personal website, etc) of images you shoot on tour is fine. Use outside these parameters is not.
  • We do not claim any copyright over the images you shoot. We may request to use some of your images on our website and in our marketing; you’re free to decline to share.
  • Any photos taken during the tour which happen to feature you personally may appear on our website or in promotional material. If this absolutely horrifies you, please say so!

Short version: If you need to be able to use your images for commercial purposes, you’ll need to get clearances on a case-by-case basis; Travelshooters does not warrant that any image you shoot is free from restrictions or fees for commercial use, and you indemnify us from all such claims.

You’re dealing with Travelshooters Limited, a British company. We started operations late 2010.

Our UK registered office is Travelshooters Limited, c/o ALB Secretarial Limited, Farren House, Farren Court, The Street
Cowfold, West Sussex RH13 8BP. Our company number is 07597209.

Typically, we work like this:

  • You outline your key parameters for your private tour: e.g. number of people in your private party, desired duration, where/what you’d like to shoot, any special requirements or interests, etc. We have a nice little form for this.
  • We provide with an approximate price for the tour (this may initially be expressed as a day rate), stating key inclusions and exclusions.
  • If you like what you see, you authorise us to go to more detailed planning. Sometimes this can take several weeks while we make as sure as we can that the things you want (and that we want for you) will indeed be waiting for you when you start shooting.
  • We’ll ask you for a Planning Fee to cover the time and expense involved in planning your private photography tour, and to lock in any vital arrangements. This will of course be offset against the final price.
  • We’ll provide you with a detailed itinerary showing precisely what, when and where you’ll be shooting, staying and travelling.
  • We’ll provide any example images you might need to show the context we’ll be taking you into.
  • When we have itinerary lock-down, we’ll provide a final price. It should be pretty close to the approximate figure initially provided, unless the specification has changed significantly during the itinerary design process. We hate giving people unpleasant financial surprises as much as you do receiving them.
  • When prices and itinerary are all agreed, we take full payment and your tour is GO: key arrangements are paid for or otherwise committed in advance.

We take payment exclusively by inter-bank transfer. Please see our full booking conditions.