Did you know you can book a travel photo shoot through Airbnb for as low as $56?

Airbnb travel photo shoot

If you have a Facebook or Instagram account, by now you’ve surely seen those ads for SweetEscape, a website that lets you hire a photographer at your destination to take professional travel photos of you. It actually makes sense for a lot of people. If you’re traveling solo, you would either have to take a selfie, or keep asking strangers to take your photo, or not have photos of yourself at all. If you’re traveling with other people, you’d have to take turns taking a photo, or use a selfie stick, or again rely on the kindness (and photo-taking abilities) of strangers. None of those scenarios are bad but sometimes it’s just nice to know you’ll have at least a couple of decent photos to remind you of a trip you invested a lot of time, effort, and savings in. That said, SweetEscape is expensive! Their rates range from $300 to $500 for a 2-hour photo shoot that only lets you keep 40 photos. I’ve had friends tell me they were interested in the service until they saw how much it would cost. So I told them what I only fairly recently discovered myself: you can hire a photographer and book a travel photo shoot through Airbnb for as low as $56.

First, a few notes:

  • I believe that if the only thing you take away from a trip are a bunch of fabulous photos, you’re kind of missing the point of travel. By all means, take photos and even hire a photographer to take photos of you, but don’t let having beautiful photos be your goal. Go for beautiful experiences. Learn, try, appreciate, grow. See the world, not just through the lens of a camera, but through the lens of your heart. Make it a trip that would still be worth savoring even if you lost all your photos.
  • I wish SweetEscape all the best and I think they’ve got a blockbuster in their hands. This post isn’t meant at all to put them down in any way. It’s just that, as a frugal traveler, I’m always looking for ways to spend less. This post is written for people like me who can’t, or aren’t willing to, fork up $500 for a 2-hour shoot. (Because for $500 I can go on two trips to Taipei or buy round-trip tickets to Paris!)
  • Here are links to both SweetEscape and Airbnb (see, I don’t play favorites, lol):

    • Get $50 off your first SweetEscape booking by signing up HERE; and/or
    • Get $20-$40 off your first Airbnb booking by signing up HERE.

Why book photo shoots with Airbnb?

  • They’re generally cheaper.
  • There’s usually more than one choice of photographers in a city.
  • Each photographer states from the outset what you can expect, what they will provide, where you will meet, etc.
  • Reviews from previous travelers are right there on the booking page.

SweetEscape does offer photo sessions in more cities than are currently available in Airbnb so you might not have a choice.

Airbnb Experiences

I actually stumbled onto these photo shoots while looking through the different experiences being offered at Airbnb. If you’re not familiar with Airbnb, they made their name offering travelers accommodations that range from shared rooms to entire homes. Recently, they’ve begun offering experiences as well, a lot of which are really interesting: from food tours to hikes to horse riding to samurai classes. If you haven’t yet, you should definitely go check them out.

Below are some of the photo shoots being offered at Airbnb. Take note that these are just some of the cities — just the ones that I came across while doing research — so if you’re going to a destination that’s not on here, it’s best to go to Airbnb itself, type the name of the city on the search bar, and click Experiences.

All photos in this post are courtesy of the Airbnb pages of the experiences featured here.



New York




Book now! Sign up for Airbnb here.



7 thoughts on “Did you know you can book a travel photo shoot through Airbnb for as low as $56?”

    • It’s really a bit like asking a stranger to take your photos, except that you pay for the guarantee of his time and that he’ll do it well. 🙂

      • Yeah when I see people’s insta pictures and I always wonder how on earth did they take such amazing photos! Maybe one day I’ll have them too, with the help of a photographer or better yet train my hubby to take amazing photos.


      • Well, there are “Instagram boyfriends” and “Instagram husbands”! 😀 But seriously, I know some bloggers have an entire team to help them create their content. So we look at their Instagram, they have these beautiful pictures, and we wonder how they do it. And the answer is: with a photographer, a marketing assistant, a writing assistant, etc. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/03/travel/that-solo-travel-blogs-vacation.html

        I would do a 2-hour photo session with my family to have something to hang in the wall, perhaps, kind of like how you’d hire a photographer to cover your wedding or some other event that you really feel is important. But to have a photographer following me around for the entire vacation is something else entirely.

    • For a lot of people, it’s a way of remembering the trip. My son, for example, likes going through photos of our trips. He’ll see one picture and say, “Oh, remember that time we x and there was a y and it did z.” It’s like when we write about our experience of a trip. We don’t just write about what we saw or what the facts are about that place; we also write about how it made us feel, what we thought. We could totally take ourselves out of the story but we don’t.

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