When traveling with work, the trip is expected to be covered by the organization/person sending you. However, what is the norm when you are a volunteer who isn’t being paid for your work and who is doing the “job” as a goodwill gesture for a friend?
That scenario has recently played out for this traveler who feels he has been wronged by a friend. Before you take sides, let’s hear the full story…
Singing for Free
The original poster (OP) explains that as a hobby, he sings in a church choir. While the group isn’t professionals, they sometimes get asked to perform at weddings for people they know. When this happens, the group isn’t paid, but travel is paid for, and they are given a bite to eat at the weddings.
Recently, the conductor’s son got married, and the group performed at the wedding. However, on this occasion, things didn’t go how they usually did. When OP got on the bus, which was taking them to the wedding, he was asked to hand over $15 for his portion of the bus cost.
Paying For His Own Travel
Taken aback, he handed over the money but was shocked that he had been asked to do this. No one had mentioned beforehand that the group would have to pay for their travel, and he felt it was out of order. However, the rest of the day went as normal, meaning he had effectively paid for the privilege of singing at the wedding.
OP rang the conductor the day after the wedding and asked for his $15 back. He wasn’t overly fussed about the money, but the principle of the matter had bugged him. The pair got into a back-and-forth, and the situation remains unresolved. The conversation ended with OP telling the conductor that he doesn’t mind singing for free but isn’t prepared to pay.
Asking For Advice
Taking to a group user forum, he wanted to know if he was in the wrong for demanding the money back or if he should continue to stand his ground on the situation.
A Principle Worth Fighting For
Most people in the comments thought OP was being perfectly reasonable in requesting his travel money back. However, one of the top comments came from someone who said: “You are more than generous for offering to perform for free. The least they could do is compensate you for your troubles.”
Another person not only agreed that OP should be compensated for performing at the wedding but also thought the conductor had been out of order during the phone call. They said: “You’re expected to perform for free at events and don’t even get proper food? Not to mention transportation, that should go without saying. And making you feel guilty about it is a poor move on the part of your conductor.”
Criticism In The Mix
The only criticism that came OP’s way was from someone who suggested he shouldn’t have paid in the first place. They said: “You all should have been told in advance that this time was different, and you were expected to pay for your travel. However, as you boarded the bus and were asked for money, you should have simply exited it rather than pay and then ask for it back.”
Is He Right Or Wrong?
Is OP right to be asking for his travel money back, or should he just move on from the situation, given that it was only $15? Let us know what you think in the comments.
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