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Old October 1st, 2009, 01:03 PM   #16
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Los Angeles (recently from San Francisco)
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Originally Posted by Steve House View Post
I think a distinction should be made between travel expenses for gas, tolls, etc in your "home" area (however that's defined), travel expenses outside your home area, and other expenses such as special equipment rentals, materials, etc. For travel within a normal commuting distance, say a 50 km or 30 mile radius, thereabouts, of your regular place of business, gas and parking are just part of your overhead and not billable (but remember to track them to claim the tax deduction!). But if the job requires you to drive 200 miles and stay overnight in a hotel, then mileage, hotel, meals, etc should considered billable expenses.
With this, I agree completely. However, at least in the U.S., it's hard to ever imagine a situation in which a videographer (or court reporter) would be required to drive 200 miles and stay overnight in a hotel. As I mentioned, I've only traveled with a court reporter and videographer once, taking some folks based in LA to Hong Kong and China. We paid their airfare and hotel, and provided a negotiated per diem to cover their meals and incidental expenses. We did not, however, pay for things like video tape, plug adapters, hard shell cases, etc.
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Old October 1st, 2009, 02:16 PM   #17
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Adapters, cases, etc I certainly would agree with you - if I needed to buy them for the trip I'd keep them after so I'd pay for them. I'm not so sure about "expendables" however. They've gotta be paid for somehow so one would either build them into the basic fee or charge separately.
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Old October 1st, 2009, 03:25 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Paul Tauger View Post
As I mentioned, when I book deposition services, it's a one-stop shopping kind of thing. I call the court reporter service, tell them where the deposition will be and what I will need. They are responsible for supplying the personnel.
Perhaps this is the issue - we can SAFELY assume that the deposition SERVICE (ie. in this case NOT the actual videographer) is billing safely to ensure a profit. As a FREELANCER (who has never done deposition work, although it interests me), I could certainly see passing location costs onto the service (whether you choose to build them into your rate or not, I choose not to) as being fair and actually expected. IF the service is unwilling (or unable) to recompense you for separate costs of expendable and location costs, perhaps working out a higher base rate for THOSE clients is in the videographer's best interests.

As always, however, it is up to the videographer's business sense to make decisions regarding invoicing ESPECIALLY if one is talking about a client that provides a large volume of work and (more importantly) pays on time.

Thank you for the considered (and considerate) reply Paul. And thanks again for taking my question in the spirit in which it was offered.
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