Post # 1
My fiance decided to hire his best friends dad as the photographer at our wedding. This was after we had already hired another photographer. He did this because his best friends dad is a professional and said he would do it all for free. Suddenly, a week before the wedding, we get an e-mail stating all his expenses. He’s taking a “scenic tour” to get to our location (about an 8 hour drive) so he has now decided not only to charge us for his gas (he estimates 300-400 dollars), but his accomodations, and all that he requires while here… I had originally planned to pay for his hotel, but never anticipated also paying for gas and all his ammenties. It is upsetting that he decided to throw this on us when the budget is already way over what we had anticipated. Had we known sooner, I would have just stuck with only our original and highly recommended photographer.
What do we do? Is it normal that I’m this angry and feel kind of used? This “gift” is already one third of the price of our other photographer!
Post # 3
Not cool! Free means free, and I would have seen that as a wedding gift. The fact that you are covering his accomodation, in my eyes, is sufficient. If he wanted to be reimbursed for his other expenses, he should have stated this way in advance so that you weren’t in this awkward position so close to the wedding.
I would say “thank you, but no thank you” to him. It’s not worth getting yourself into debt when you already have a professional photographer organised.
Post # 4
@KAT3: Does your pro photographer have anything in the contract abotu not allowing another pro photographer there? I know my videographer has that, so it might be a good thing to check. I’m not sure you should have to pay for gas for his “scenic tour.” Is there a more direct route from where he’s coming? If so, I’d tell him you’d cover that but not the tour. And even so, there’s a mileage reembursement that’s usually used (http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=250882,00.html) that I’ve been paid back with that should absolutely not come up to 400$. Overall, it’s really crappy he said he’d do it for free and is now slapping unexpected expenses on you.
Post # 5
Yeah… I would “fire” him.
Post # 6
I’ve heard that it’s risky buisness to use your friend as your photographer. Too much drama can come from that. You should politely fire him.
Post # 7
Wow, that is terrible! I would certainly decline his services, informing him that the offer of free photography was indeed a nice gesture, but his extra costs are not something you had factored into your already large budget.
On a side note, $300-400 in gas seems excessive. I get reimbursed by my job for all the driving I do (roughly 3-4 hours a day) at $0.52/km. I would heed the advice of the above poster who suggested using a milegae calculator. My expenses for work usually end up being around $200-250/month, so his quote for an 8-hour drive are ridiculous!. If you do decide to have him there, explain that you will not pay for his “scenic route” tour, but you will reimburse him at X-cents/mile or km for the exact distance it would take for him to get to/from the cermony from his home.
On second thought, was he intended to be a guest at your wedding prior to the offer? If so, do not reimburse him for any of this, and just bump him back down to guest status. This is absurd the more I sit here and write this post. I would be furious. “free” means “free” not “free ride, free hotel, free expense account for me on the dime of the bride and groom”.