Traveling as BigLaw Associate

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OfThriceandTen
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Traveling as BigLaw Associate

Postby OfThriceandTen » Sat Mar 28, 2015 11:56 am

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Last edited by OfThriceandTen on Mon Aug 17, 2015 2:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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mmelittlechicken
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Re: Traveling as BigLaw Associate

Postby mmelittlechicken » Sat Mar 28, 2015 11:59 am

OfThriceandTen wrote:I'm starting at a firm next month and would like to go somewhere for Memorial Day weekend. Obviously the trip could be delayed or cancelled altogether if I'm immediately staffed on something that blows up. If you ever make travel plans like this, what do you do to protect yourself? Refundable fares are a total racket (paying more than twice the amount of a regular ticket makes no financial sense) and trip insurance doesn't cover needing to stay in town for work. Do you recommend just getting the cheapest fare and swallowing the cost if I can't go? Or is there some other way to get refunds on the tickets if you can't use them?

a lot of firms refund your airfare if you have to cancel an approved vacation for work

Anonymous User
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Re: Traveling as BigLaw Associate

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Mar 28, 2015 12:05 pm

I've worked at two big firms. (The non-NYC headquarters of a V20 and a biggish satellite office of an AmLaw 100.) Neither one would reimburse cancelled vacations. One said that I could submit the request to some sort of committee, but they'd recommend not as an associate.

All of that said, I always book Southwest unless I absolutely can't. They don't charge change fees, so if you end up cancelling, it's just like a gift certificate that you can use for a later flight. You can even use it for a work trip and then expense THAT (depending on the firm -- some will pay what the ticket cost, some will pay what you paid out-of-pocket). Plus the let you check bags for free, which can be a huge benefit when you're running late for the plane and you're not really sure whether that suitcase full of documents you need for the deposition is going to be small enough to be a carry on.

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OfThriceandTen
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Re: Traveling as BigLaw Associate

Postby OfThriceandTen » Sat Mar 28, 2015 12:08 pm

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Last edited by OfThriceandTen on Mon Aug 17, 2015 2:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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OfThriceandTen
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Re: Traveling as BigLaw Associate

Postby OfThriceandTen » Sat Mar 28, 2015 12:12 pm

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Last edited by OfThriceandTen on Mon Aug 17, 2015 2:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

dixiecupdrinking
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Re: Traveling as BigLaw Associate

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Sat Mar 28, 2015 12:16 pm

While I'm pretty sure my firm would reimburse if you had to actually cancel a vacation, what happens much more often is that you can still go, but you end up working through a lot of it. Really not much to do about it, unfortunately.

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mmelittlechicken
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Re: Traveling as BigLaw Associate

Postby mmelittlechicken » Sat Mar 28, 2015 12:20 pm

OfThriceandTen wrote:
mmelittlechicken wrote:
OfThriceandTen wrote:I'm starting at a firm next month and would like to go somewhere for Memorial Day weekend. Obviously the trip could be delayed or cancelled altogether if I'm immediately staffed on something that blows up. If you ever make travel plans like this, what do you do to protect yourself? Refundable fares are a total racket (paying more than twice the amount of a regular ticket makes no financial sense) and trip insurance doesn't cover needing to stay in town for work. Do you recommend just getting the cheapest fare and swallowing the cost if I can't go? Or is there some other way to get refunds on the tickets if you can't use them?

a lot of firms refund your airfare if you have to cancel an approved vacation for work


Do you get it approved even if you would not miss any time during regular business hours (i.e. leaving Friday night/returning holiday Monday)? I'm guessing yes since business hours aren't an indication of when I have work but I don't want to be that person who asks for mommy and daddy's permission when they couldn't care less what I do over the holiday weekend.

For holiday weekends you probably just give the people you're working with a heads up rather than getting it formally approved, so yeah, not exactly sure how canceling would work in that case. Vacation cancellations are pretty rare, IME, especially if you're only going to be gone for a long weekend.

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Re: Traveling as BigLaw Associate

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Mar 28, 2015 12:27 pm

While I'm pretty sure my firm would reimburse if you had to actually cancel a vacation, what happens much more often is that you can still go, but you end up working through a lot of it. Really not much to do about it, unfortunately.


I once did an 11 day European trip where I worked 7-8 hours a day because I was so slammed. I didn't want to ruin it for my wife, so I'd get up at 4:30 AM (still jet lagged), work until 8:00 or so, go do whatever touristy stuff until after dinner, then work from 9:00 or so until 1:00 AM or so. Yes, that means I was getting 3-4 hours of sleep. But the thing is, I pulled two consecutive all nighters before leaving to get everything done (on the flight out, I fell asleep on the runway in the US and was woken up when the plane was deboarding in Europe), so it didn't seem so bad.

The things we can do when we're 27.

Anonymous User
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Re: Traveling as BigLaw Associate

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Mar 30, 2015 8:53 am

I think every major airline lets you cancel flights and credits you with the amount you spent, minus around $150, so it's better to buy the cheapest ticket with an airline you regularly use than to waste money on a refundable ticket. You should also look into your firm's policy on paying for cancelled vacation plans. My firm (lower V100) reimbursed me around $700 when they made me delay a flight so I could be in the office, but a lot of firms won't do that.

Also, this may not be the best approach for someone completely new, but you should be aggressive about protecting your vacation plans. E.g. say that you're in a wedding, or that you can't reschedule your trip home because your parents are going to be in Europe for three months, or whatever. Sometimes work emergencies happen and there's nothing you can do, but a lot of times partners don't actually need you in the office and they'll back down when they realize the trip is important.

JackDaniels^
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Re: Traveling as BigLaw Associate

Postby JackDaniels^ » Thu Apr 02, 2015 5:08 am

Anonymous User wrote:I've worked at two big firms. (The non-NYC headquarters of a V20 and a biggish satellite office of an AmLaw 100.) Neither one would reimburse cancelled vacations. One said that I could submit the request to some sort of committee, but they'd recommend not as an associate.

Sounds like a fun environment you work in.

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JohannDeMann
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Re: Traveling as BigLaw Associate

Postby JohannDeMann » Thu Apr 02, 2015 1:25 pm

If you are starting in April, it's not that likely you are going to be up to speed and running full capacity by end of May. You should be fine.




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