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We've received several reports from the SpeakerMatch community about contracts being canceled by meeting planners. Whether the conference itself gets canceled or the speaker budget gets cut, it's often the speaker who gets a raw deal--especially if they've already booked their flight and hotel with the expectation of receiving travel/lodging reimbursement.
Here's the best way to keep yourself high and dry from financial burdens due to cancellations:
Include a section on travel expenditures in your speaking contract's cancellation policy. Before you agree to firmly hold a date and book a flight, you should make sure you have a solid, signed contract backing up the deal. Be sure you have a standard contract ready which considers any penalties and other considerations that go into your cancellation policy.
And, as mentioned in my last travel tip, it is a good idea to purchase travel insurance.