Paying for birding trips

To: Tony Russell <>, 'Paul & Irene Osborn' <>, <>
Subject: Paying for birding trips
From: inger vandyke <>
Date: Thu, 19 Jun 2008 06:53:19 +0000
Hi All,

For risk of turning this into something rather wild, can I just assist by 
distinguishing the difference of not for profit pelagic organisers and people 
who run tours as a business?  Tony, you are right that tourism operators do 
send their guides for free and build the cost of the entire package to factor 
in the cost of the guide.

But pelagic operators?  Um no.

For the record, and I am going to go against my upbringing which dictates you 
don't discuss finances out of sheer politeness, I pay for 95% of all my pelagic 
trips on top of organising them.  Unless I am quite naive, many others do the 

I think there is another difference to distinguish here - one that birding 
trips on land involve easier logistics and considerably less expense.  Owning 
and running boats costs A LOT of money and has been likened to standing in a 
shower tearing up $100 bills.  Do you think the average boat owner can afford 
to run for less than what they are being paid?

So, this said, I still believe that 99% of pelagic organisers do more than 
their fare share of work to justify a free trip if that is what they are 
getting but many don't.

Another way of looking at this is that if a boat costs $1000 for the day and 10 
people go at the cost of $100 per person.  If all participants pay $110 to 
cover the cost of a guide that goes for free then all of the organisation, 
burley, running around, free stays overnight in their homes, food, car pooling, 
hosing down the decks, 4am starts, telephone and email costs will cost YOU an 
extra $10.

Sounds like pretty good value to me.


Inger   > From: > To: ; 
> Subject: RE: [Birding-Aus] Paying for birding 
trips>Date: Thu, 19 Jun 2008 15:47:32 +0930> > Yes it is relevant ! Think of it 
this way.> > The organiser wants to go on a trip to start with, otherwise the 
issue> would never come up. So they think up a way of going on the trip at> 
minimum cost to themselves by setting up a system in which other people> are 
talked into covering what would otherwise be the organiser's> expense. Would 
the organiser go at all if it weren't for free ? I> doubt it. Travel agents do 
the same thing when they 'accompany, or> guide" clients on a holiday trip. They 
get a free trip by organising> clients on behalf of holiday destination 
operators.> I understand that this organising may take a bit of work as 
indicated> by Inger earlier today, but the organiser takes that on anyway when 
they> decide to offer the trip.> I used to do some bird guiding around South 
Oz, but only on the basis> that someone, a client, covered my costs of fuel and 
paid me by the hour> for my time. Of course I enjoyed the birding too, but I 
wouldn't have> been out in the field without a client.> > T.> > -----Original 
Message-----> From: > 
 On Behalf Of Paul & Irene> Osborn> 
Sent: Thursday, June 19, 2008 9:35 AM> To: > Subject: 
[Birding-Aus] Paying for birding trips> > > Presumably, if you go on an 
organised birding trip then you know> beforehand > how much it is going to cost 
you. The question then is "Is it worth it"> to > you. Whether someone else is 
going for nothing, or not, is irrelevant.> Paul Osborn> > 
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