Sunday, July 23, 2017
The Cost of Not Traveling
In my youth, the plane tickets were bought by the department through a travel agent, so only hotel bills were on a personal credit card (or check for those who didn't have a card) and we used Traveler's Checks or cash when dining out.
Yeah, I am old, but those were truly the good old days. Food was served with real silverware on the flights, even relatively short ones. Sigh.
Problems I've seen: 1) You can't get reimbursed for meals unless you stay overnight. I recently drove three hours each way to an all-day workshop but couldn't claim breakfast because I came back the same day. 2) No pay/comp-time for travel time. An employee who travels Sunday to a conference and comes back late Friday or even Saturday morning is expected to be back in the office at 8 am on Monday with no additional pay. It's not a big deal when it's a few hours, but flying coast-to-coast with travel days is a lot of family time given up. 3) Not considering the means of the employee. In my first full-time job (at a college), I was sent out immediately for training. I found out right before I left that I wouldn't be paid until the end of my first full month (about six weeks into the job). Coming from a part-time job that paid every two weeks, I was broke and had to borrow money from my girlfriend so I could afford to eat. For an administrator with a six-figure income, it's not a big deal. For a 21 year old with no savings... 4) Not putting people in the conference hotel. Having to hike back and forth can be a hell of a burden, especially in places with harsh weather. Put us in the conference hotel or rent us a car. 5) Not paying for car rentals. In San Francisco, it's not an issue. In Dallas... 6) Calling/texting/emailing every 15 minutes the entire conference. Let us learn. We'll be back Monday.
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