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Photo booth rental

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Photo Booth Rental companies allow a person to rent a photo booth for a short period of time (usually in hours) for a fee. Photo booth rentals have become popular in the United States primarily for wedding receptions along with a growing number of other public and private events. In addition to the photo booth and the printing of unlimited photo strips, rental companies usually include a photo booth attendant to service the photo booth and to help guests construct the guest book of photo strips. Online image hosting, compact disks containing the images and related merchandise are readily available.

Rental History

Photo booth event rentals began in St. Paul, MN in the late 1990s by Photo Booth Memories,[1] a subsidiary of an arcade rental company. Exposure and success inspired others and by 2005, four photo booth rental companies were servicing the Minneapolis & St. Paul area.

Wedding guests visiting Minnesota weddings brought the idea back to their respective states and shortly thereafter, rental companies in California and Illinois appeared.

Market entry was expensive and primarily hindered by the lack of commercially available photo booths and software to operate them. At this time, existing photo booth rental companies were designing and constructing their own photo booths and operating software.

Success in Minneapolis encouraged two local companies, The Traveling Photo Booth[2] and Party Booths[3] to expand nationally with their proprietary photo booths and software.

By July 2006, California programmer Alec Bennett released Photoboof ,[4] the first commercially available photo booth operating software. Pipe and drape enclosures designed to hide the internal electronic components followed and the idea spread across the country.

By 2010, over 40[5] different photo booth rental companies operate in the United States.


The majority of photo booth rentals are for wedding receptions. The photo booths provide entertainment, candid photography, guest favors and a personalized book of photos and guest messages. The photo strip guest book replaces the traditional guest book. In 2008, Google started tracking "photo booth rental" as a trend[6] and the trend is most popular in Minneapolis, MN, Los Angeles, CA, San Diego, CA, and Chicago IL, respectively.


Both traditional and digital photo booths are available for rent.

Chemical Photo Booths

Employ a traditional chemical photography process to create a single photo strip of either 3 or 4 photos. Chemical booths are becoming a rarity[7] as they are expensive to service and transport and are ending up in private collections.

Commercially Available Digital Photo Booths

Most rental companies rent commercially available digital photo booths because they are easier to setup, more cost effective to maintain than their chemical counterparts, and digital imagery provides limitless merchandise opportunities. Output ranges from traditional (vertically-arranged vertical photos) to non-traditional horizontally-arranged, horizontal photos printed on a variety of sized photo paper.

DIY Digital Photo Booths

Access to photo booth software has encouraged many DIY booth projects. Some have maintained the traditional photo booth look (curtains, bench, small size) while others have built photo booths into trailers,[8] pipe-and-drape tents or other constructs.[9] Scott Roth Events based in New Jersey and covering the Tri-State NJ, NY, and CT markets has expanded on this concept by utilizing PVC piping that is well hidden with tight black curtain. Breeze Systems and its PSRemote software which allows digital cameras to run on auto-pilot have recently added a Photo Booth option to their software download.,[10][11]

Mobile/Portable Photo Booths

There are many companies providing portable photo booths such as Mobile Photo Booth and Traveling Photo Booth. Most have a large form factor where a trailer is required to transport the photo booth itself. The Portable Photo Booth by Perfect Shutter,[12] provides a portable photo booth kit for small businesses. This is the most functional photo booth kit around because the entire photo booth with equipments will fit into a normal size SUV or Wagon.

Photo Booth Plus

These kind of Photo Booths have evolved from having a real booth to go in to get your pictures taken into a full Mobile Photo Studio on the go. These companies use heavier and more sophisticated and professional equipment to setup their mobile photo studio on your location. A larger area is also required for the lights and other equipment to fit in. This type of photo booth is very ideal for larger parties and events as it can fit up to 8-14 persons (depending on body size) inside the frame, usually used on large weddings, graduation and reunions.[13]

Short Run Manufacturing of Digital Photo Booths

At least one of the national companies has developed their own brand of digital photo booths and operating software and outsources the short run manufacturing. The Traveling Photo Booth has protected their software methods and photo booth design by filing claims with the U.S Patent office.[14]

Business Models

Most of the photo booth rental companies in the U.S serve single markets utilize the direct sale business model. A few companies, like The Traveling Photo Booth, Shutter Booth, Party Booths, and Rent Photo Booths, operate in multiple US markets with a franchise or distribution business model.


  1. #1 Real Photo Booths for Weddings, Graduations and More. Photo Booth Memories (2010-05-17). Retrieved on 2010-08-15.
  2. Photo Booth Rentals. Traveling Photo Booth. Retrieved on 2010-08-15.
  3. Photo Booth Rentals. Party Booths. Retrieved on 2010-08-15.
  4. Photoboof! Windows-based photobooth system. Retrieved on 2010-08-15.
  5. Photo bootyh Rental links. Retrieved on 2010-08-15.
  6. Google Trends: photo booth rental. Retrieved on 2010-08-15.
  7. Photobooth Community and Photo Booth Blog. Retrieved on 2010-08-15.
  8. On Location Digital Photo Booth Rentals, Weddings, Corporate Events, Parties. Mobile Photo Booth. Retrieved on 2010-08-15.
  9. Photo Booth Rentals. Party Booths. Retrieved on 2010-08-15.
  10. USA. Scott Roth Events - Home - Parsippany, NJ. Retrieved on 2010-08-15.
  11. Breeze Systems - Digital Photography Software, Edit, Download, Remote Capture. Retrieved on 2010-08-15.
  12. Bruce Campbell says: (2010-06-06). A newly designed photobooth for your next photo booth rental. Retrieved on 2010-08-15.
  13. Mobile Photo Booth | Mobile Studio Souvenirs. Photo Booth Rental Philippines. Retrieved on 2010-08-15.
  14. PHOTO BOOTH SYSTEMS AND METHODS - Patent application - of using photo booth systems such as those that provide photo booths and interaction between the photo booths and one. Retrieved on 2010-08-15.

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