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How far should I be willing to Travel to get work?
Total posts: 245
Joined: 10 year(s) ago
Posted 7:08 PM Aug. 16, 2014

How far should I be willing to Travel to get work.

Here in the Mid-Atlantic area we are fortunate to have several fairly large but totally different Markets - Each with it's own Agents, Casting Directors, Production Companies, Theatres and other Employers.

Traveling to other markets can greatly expand the pool of work available to you but you must take sensible steps to insure that working there helps your career and does not harm your career.

Remember most jobs will require 3 trips -Audition, Call Back, then on the ones you get hired for - The Job.

Experience tells me that starting out - you are better staying closer to home - because you will "Win" fewer Auditions going against experienced actors and while most travel costs are tax deductible the "time/expense ratio" vs "paid jobs earned" makes long range travel very unprofitable at first.

You expand your travel base as you gain training/experience and are earning more paying jobs.

Yes, there is a period when entering a new Market that excepting paying jobs where you loose money doing them is worthwhile because of other gains:
1). To establish yourself with a new Agent, Casting Director or Production Company in the new market.
2). Build a resume of "Known Local work" for other Potential Employers in that new Market.

You want to limit that to the smallest financial loss possible and establish yourself as fast as possible.

You need to think in terms of total cost to accept the job1). Actual travel expenses (Gas, Tolls, Parking, Time, wear and tear on your vehicle - Bus, train, Taxi, Plane) for all 3 possible trips - both ways - up and back..2). Meals both ways - all 3 possible trips3). it's a multi day shoot - you just worked 17 hrs - have to be back on set in 8 hrs and it's a 3 hr drive home - 3 hrs back- Where do you stay?$$$$$4). You have a 3 hr drive and a 5 AM call time - Do leave at 1 AM to be there by 5 AM or go up the day before and get rest? . Where do you stay$$$$$5). You left home at 1 AM for a 5 AM Call time You just wrapped and it's Midnight - Do you drive home or stay over? Where do you stay$$$$$
How much are they paying again???

This is not that difficult if you think/plan.

A 3 hr drive pretty well covers the entire Philadelphia/South New Jersey to Richmond VA area for 95% of us. You can cut your cash outlay (Gas, Tolls, Parking) on a 3 hr drive by 50% by adding a 2nd person in the car and by 100% by adding a 2nd person (your wear and tear on your car, your Insurance - The other 2 should cover all Gas, Tolls, Parking). Adding a 3rd and/or 4th Person in your car and your reasonably priced fast food meals should be covered - Each person should cover their own meal plus their share of your meal as well as their share of Gas, Tolls, Parking.

This must be 100% discussed and agreed to when setting up the trip - NO last minute surprises.

Remember, you will go to far more Auditions than Callbacks and more Callbacks than you get jobs so you can greatly improve the financial aspects of long distance Auditioning by carpooling. If you take 3-4 other actors to the audition - you improve chances of cost sharing on the callback and possibly the actual job trip.

So the Major Expense - overnight stays.

Who do you know that lives in/near the Shoot location that might let you stay overnight (Childhood Friends, Extended Family, College Friends ETC)

You need a clean place to sleep so what is the Cheapest Hotel/Motel in the area?? Is there a YMCA/YWCA with rooms in the area?

Room Sharing with other Actors works here as well.

From our area NYC and Wilmington NC are longer trips but the same Cost sharing works - If you are by yourself there are advantages to looking into Bus, train, Taxi, Plane but the lowest cost / best results is still ride sharing.

Total posts: 17
Joined: 3 year(s) ago
Posted 9:18 PM Jul. 13, 2016
I just traveled 1 hour and 45 minutes for a roll that paid $75.00. I like the rolls I am getting more than money, (at this point in time). I am not hurting for money, I have saved for rainy days lol.