Do a bridal show 1/28 - input please

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DJ Ricky B

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Mar 9, 2015
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#81
Keep in mind also that it's only 7 weeks out and we don't have any other prospects for that weekend. I really was shaving travel to the bare minimum in order to hopefully pickup a date at full rate. A lot of guys will discount this situation, just to try and win the booking.
We live in a Discount/Sale driven society today. I personally don't want to pay high travel costs to bring someone from far away to do work I have available. I would rather choose someone local who wants the work, and can show me a good value for hiring them.

I had a client once tell me they were not going to pay the $95 travel fee I was adding to her Sweet 16 party. ...This was back in February 2009. Things were very slow, and I was hungry for work, she had agreed to pay an extra $30 as she felt that was fair at the time. I agreed to just take the $30, and keep a gig booked. The $30 roughly paid for my tank of gas at the time, and I probably only burned about a half tank to do the gig. It was the recession, and any gigs I could get booked, I did not want to lose over remedial travel costs. ...It was about a 1 hour and 50 minute drive each way to do that one.

The only other time a customer refused to pay travel fees was to a wedding out in Bluemont, VA. I did not really want to drive that far anyway, so I let the prospect go. I wasn't willing to do the gig without additional money for travel. That was 2 years ago. The prospect refused to go outside of their budget to book me for their wedding, so it was what it was.

I look at travel as a built in cost almost, and also tax deductible anyway. If I have to really consider taking gigs that are really far away, then that means I am failing at attracting enough clients in my normal service area. If things are slow, or it's the off season, I would not charge for travel, and just eat the costs myself. Now if a hotel room is absolutely needed, then I would just ask for accommodations, but if I'm charging enough already, I wouldn't make it a deal breaker because earning $1,000, and spending $100 on a hotel room and maybe $50 on fuel is better than sitting at home earning zero.
 

djtaso

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#82
We live in a Discount/Sale driven society today.
Coincidentally, I literally just read an article saying how the mall industry is a reflection of todays economics. The high end and low end malls are actually seeing growth... but it's the middle market malls suffering. One distinct line I read was: "When people talk about the decline of retail, they’re really talking about that classic middle market mall store that’s neither a great boutique nor very high end."
 
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Jeff Romard

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Sep 4, 2006
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#83
My wife was busting my chops for not quoting $500. That's why I posed the question. A decent hotel room will run $100/night so even at the cheaper prices here in TN, she/you are correct.
Around here it's $150 for a decent hotel you can probably get by with $100 and find somewhere clean and not much more. When you factor in fuel and 6 meals each it wouldn't take long to add up to $500 even eating on the cheap. That's not mentioning wear and tear or time travelling. I generally calculate it at a dollar a mile return it comes close

Keep in mind also that it's only 7 weeks out and we don't have any other prospects for that weekend. I really was shaving travel to the bare minimum in order to hopefully pickup a date at full rate. A lot of guys will discount this situation, just to try and win the booking.
You have to do what you have to do to book them especially in the slow season. If it was me in your situation I'd try for the maximum but with what you are being paid taking a little hit on the travel isn't so bad
 

DJ Ricky B

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#84
Realistically, I could book a wedding that is 150 miles/3 hours drive each way at my local Saturday Rate, charge nothing for travel or lodging, and still make out better in pay than I would working a typical office job for 40 hours for the week. Especially after factoring in the cost of fuel to drive to the job all week. 2 trips a day. That is 10 trips a week. Let's say the job is a 30 mile drive each way. That is 300 miles on the car, and a full tank of gas.

Typical office jobs around here pay $11.50 to $18.50 per hour. ...$18.50/hr is pretty unlikely starting with a new company unless your in management. Even at $18.50/hr for 40 hrs, that's $740 before taxes for the week. Not to mention having to get up to go to work every morning, and more stop and go/wear and tear on the vehicle. When you put things into that perspective, driving far to do a normal rate wedding is still advantageous, and you STILL come out on top, and you only worked 1 day compared to 5. Even if I spend $150 on a hotel room for the night, I'm still coming out on top in comparison to a 40 hour typical job for the week.
 

djtaso

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#85
Realistically, I could book a wedding that is 150 miles/3 hours drive each way at my local Saturday Rate, charge nothing for travel or lodging, and still make out better in pay than I would working a typical office job for 40 hours for the week. Especially after factoring in the cost of fuel to drive to the job all week. 2 trips a day. That is 10 trips a week. Let's say the job is a 30 mile drive each way. That is 300 miles on the car, and a full tank of gas.

Typical office jobs around here pay $11.50 to $18.50 per hour. ...$18.50/hr is pretty unlikely starting with a new company unless your in management. Even at $18.50/hr for 40 hrs, that's $740 before taxes for the week. Not to mention having to get up to go to work every morning, and more stop and go/wear and tear on the vehicle. When you put things into that perspective, driving far to do a normal rate wedding is still advantageous, and you STILL come out on top, and you only worked 1 day compared to 5. Even if I spend $150 on a hotel room for the night, I'm still coming out on top in comparison to a 40 hour typical job for the week.
Agreed about the advantages about doing events that have a bit of distance... it’s why I have expanded my base beyond what’s available locally... and especially gone into areas where the locals don’t do what I do. However there is a big difference between and 2 and 3 hr drive and a 5 and 6hr drive which with traffic can be a bit dangerous to try and do without travel fees and a hotel... which the client should be paying for.
 

DJ Ricky B

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#86
Agreed about the advantages about doing events that have a bit of distance... it’s why I have expanded my base beyond what’s available locally... and especially gone into areas where the locals don’t do what I do. However there is a big difference between and 2 and 3 hr drive and a 5 and 6hr drive which with traffic can be a bit dangerous to try and do without travel fees and a hotel... which the client should be paying for.

Yes, 5 to 6 hours drive each way, I would require a hotel room for the night, and depending on when the event ends, I may require 2 nights. I would likely just charge enough on top to cover the lodging + additional fuel costs to get there and back.

Of course, I have never even quoted on an event that far away. 3.5 hours each way was the furthest, and the couple did buy me a hotel room for the night. I didn't charge for travel though at the time.
 

djtaso

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#88
Yes, 5 to 6 hours drive each way, I would require a hotel room for the night, and depending on when the event ends, I may require 2 nights. I would likely just charge enough on top to cover the lodging + additional fuel costs to get there and back.

Of course, I have never even quoted on an event that far away. 3.5 hours each way was the furthest, and the couple did buy me a hotel room for the night. I didn't charge for travel though at the time.
The challenge is when you’re getting an inquiry for an event that because of distance it prevents you from booking an event the night before or the next day or both... those are the ones that require major price adjustments. I do about one of those a year where the quote has to account for the lost potential to book other events that weekend.
 

DJ Ricky B

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#89
The challenge is when you’re getting an inquiry for an event that because of distance it prevents you from booking an event the night before or the next day or both... those are the ones that require major price adjustments. I do about one of those a year where the quote has to account for the lost potential to book other events that weekend.
I can see that, but at the same time for most weekends there is very little demand for Friday or Sunday events these days (Around here with my experience at least). Trying to charge the client because of potential missed gig on a Sunday for me wouldn't be right. Historically, there are a handful of popular Fridays every year, but very few. I guess it would depend on the weekend. A Saturday in August...I can clear my whole weekend out for a long distance wedding and not worry about missing other work. A Saturday in October...Well there is evident potential for Friday night wedding work in October...Especially the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Fridays. They seem to have a slight uptick in inquiries.
 

djtaso

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#90
I can see that, but at the same time for most weekends there is very little demand for Friday or Sunday events these days (Around here with my experience at least). Trying to charge the client because of potential missed gig on a Sunday for me wouldn't be right. Historically, there are a handful of popular Fridays every year, but very few. I guess it would depend on the weekend. A Saturday in August...I can clear my whole weekend out for a long distance wedding and not worry about missing other work. A Saturday in October...Well there is evident potential for Friday night wedding work in October...Especially the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Fridays. They seem to have a slight uptick in inquiries.
I suppose that's all in demographics... around here Friday event's are popular, especially with Sweet 16's but also with Weddings. Saturdays are a day that any event tries to go after... and Sundays are popular amongst weddings and smaller events like christenings, communions, bridal showers (which some are getting dj's for).

An interesting piece of info which applies to me more than most... Greeks are not allowed to get married on Fridays... therefore Sat and Sundays are the only dates available... meaning Sunday is the only discounted date available. We also can't get married during lent... and we don't like winter weddings... meaning there are even less dates up for grabs, making Sundays a very realistic option for us... Also since many greeks own diners and other restaurants that their entire families work at... Saturday is not a day that many choose as it is harder to shut down the business as opposed to a Sunday. Between April and June I have 9 weekends with Fri and Saturday events and 3 weekends in a row with Fri, Sat, Sun events. I have 9 Sunday Weddings this year alone... so for me every day is a potential date for a booking I suppose.
 

tunes4046

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#91
Do you guy take into account time missed with your family meals that have to to bouhhtbon the road vs being made at home the biggest for me is my personal free time what dollare figure do you place on that
 

djtaso

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#92
Do you guy take into account time missed with your family meals that have to to bouhhtbon the road vs being made at home the biggest for me is my personal free time what dollare figure do you place on that
I've been doing this since I was 18 working on weekends in 2004... and have been doing these extensive trips since around 2010... it's kinda built into my dna practically, and my instinct is to accept these parties because logistically I know how to make them possible and a smooth process for all involved. My fiance assumes that on weekends I will be working and during the week I'm pretty much always homes. By going outof state or traveling, doesn't change that... it just means I may be in a hotel for the night instead of coming home at 2am from a party that ended at 12 locally (1hr breakdown at least). As I mentioned, I have many weekends with 2 or 3 events, but I also personally have the luxury of knowing I don't have to work every weekend since I only need 70 events. I mentioned earlier that I'm taking 7 weeks off in july and august... I'd say that's a pretty good tradeoff.
 
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tunes4046

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#93
I've been doing this since I was 18 working on weekends in 2004... and have been doing these extensive trips since around 2010... it's kinda built into my dna practically, and my instinct is to accept these parties because logistically I know how to make them possible and a smooth process for all involved. My fiance assumes that on weekends I will be working and during the week I'm pretty much always homes. By going outof state or traveling, doesn't change that... it just means I may be in a hotel for the night instead of coming home at 2am from a party that ended at 12 locally (1hr breakdown at least). As I mentioned, I have many weekends with 2 or 3 events, but I also personally have the luxury of knowing I don't have to work every weekend since I only need 70 events. I mentioned earlier that I'm taking 7 weeks off in july and august... I'd say that's a pretty good tradeoff.
I’ll bet money that if/when you have kids your views may change, the first time you hear Dad I wish you didn’t have to DJ today will break your heart
 

Ausumm

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Oct 21, 2008
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#95
Do you guy take into account time missed with your family meals that have to to bouhhtbon the road vs being made at home the biggest for me is my personal free time what dollare figure do you place on that
How long have you been married? :laugh:
Seriously, though.....my kids are all grown (2 of the 3 are out of the house)
And my wife gladly deals with me not coming home, as long as I am making money.

We came to an arrangement when we first got married.
She knew the lifestyle I was leading and she is okay with it.
 

steve149

Urbane Legend
Sep 26, 2011
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#96
How long have you been married? :laugh:
Seriously, though.....my kids are all grown (2 of the 3 are out of the house)
And my wife gladly deals with me not coming home, as long as I am making money.

We came to an arrangement when we first got married.
She knew the lifestyle I was leading and she is okay with it.
... even the skirts? :)
 

tunes4046

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#97
How long have you been married? :laugh:
Seriously, though.....my kids are all grown (2 of the 3 are out of the house)
And my wife gladly deals with me not coming home, as long as I am making money.

We came to an arrangement when we first got married.
She knew the lifestyle I was leading and she is okay with it.
I still have an 8 year old at home it’s tough when asks when are you gonna be home, I put a pretty high value on family time we still have a sit down diner every Sunday all three kids attend along with any significant others, no phones no electronics
 

djtaso

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#98
I still have an 8 year old at home it’s tough when asks when are you gonna be home, I put a pretty high value on family time we still have a sit down diner every Sunday all three kids attend along with any significant others, no phones no electronics
DO you do this full time, or on the side on top of a normal job? Me personally I do this full time... my weekdays are mostly spent at home, the gym, and running errands. I have a few calls, and video sessions throughout the week but those are done from the comfort of my house. I have about 2-4 meetings at the office a month... if anything... it feels like im always home lol.
 
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Jeff Romard

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#99
I still have an 8 year old at home it’s tough when asks when are you gonna be home, I put a pretty high value on family time we still have a sit down diner every Sunday all three kids attend along with any significant others, no phones no electronics
My youngest is 10 the next 11 and the next 13. There's also a 16 and 18 at home and the 21 year old lives a few miles away. We do Sunday dinner almost every Sunday too. The have all come to terms nicely with the fact I may not be there every Sunday because the alternative would be to be working a couple of thousand miles away and rarely be home. I don't enjoy being away from home but it's better than the alternative

And my wife gladly deals with me not coming home, as long as I am making money.

We came to an arrangement when we first got married.
She knew the lifestyle I was leading and she is okay with it.
Exactly the same as my wife
 

tunes4046

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DO you do this full time, or on the side on top of a normal job? Me personally I do this full time... my weekdays are mostly spent at home, the gym, and running errands. I have a few calls, and video sessions throughout the week but those are done from the comfort of my house. I have about 2-4 meetings at the office a month... if anything... it feels like im always home lol.
I have several business interests that take my time and attention
 
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