Bringing Your Significant Other on Location

Ashton wants to know if it’s okay to bring her significant other on location

I have a 3 day gig coming up next week – the shoot is taking place 3 hours outside my city so I’m getting put up for the duration. My husband works from home and thought it would be fun to have a little change of scenery for work, even if it is hunkered in a hotel room (it’s right on the beach so that’s a plus) and I figure there’s no harm in him being there – we’ll be out shooting all day and he’ll just keep to himself at the hotel.

But I’ve never been in this situation, am I correct in thinking it’s not a problem? I’m not sure anyone would even have any idea he was there if I didn’t mention it but I don’t know if I should ask the coordinator if it’s cool or at least mention he’ll be around? Any insights would be great! Thanks!

Always Ask

It’s almost certainly not a problem to bring your SO on location, as long as he’s not renting pay-per-view movies or raiding the minifridge on the company dime while you’re shooting.

Still, this is one of those times when you should ask anyway. You should never be superstitious when someone else is footing the bill. The rumor mill being what it is, it’ll get out before long that you’ve got a dude in your room. That’ll eventually get back to the coordinator or UPM, who’ll want to know what else you’re doing to your hotel room and not telling them.

A quick call will do wonders: “Hey, do you mind if my husband stays in my hotel room with me? He’ll buy his own plane ticket, of course; he just thought it’d be fun to come out.” Nine times out of ten, they’ll approve it.

Talk to Your Significant Other

Be sure to prepare your SO for life on location, however. You’re going to be shooting twelve hour days, plus meals, travel time, and whatever prep and wrap you have to do. You’re not going to be in any mood for any of that sweet vacation nookie, because for you, this isn’t a vacation.

I made this mistake with my SO on a shoot in Vegas. I was there for three weeks, and my SO came over on the “weekends.” Except, we were shooting six days weeks, and on the seventh day, TAPA rested. SO spent most of the time watching HBO while I snored away on the bed, and using my per diem to buy meals I didn’t even eat.

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2 Responses

  1. Some things to consider:

    Nothing more annoying then a staff person checking in on their phone all the time. Making plans / canceling them, coordinating a ride etc etc. If you have even the hint of a pouty/fussy SO this makes it worse. You will be distracted big time.

    On location is a great time to bond with the crew after a long day. This means the drinks AFTER the long day, the hanging out at someone’s place / hotel / whatever. A crew is like a family – when you scurry off to your hotel room you will certainly miss out on this, doesn’t always happen but.

    Consider the alternatives – you guys can’t go camping / do a road trip on your own time? With time to relax and enjoy each others company?

    My rule? If my SO doesn’t actively think to invite me, I don’t go. If they are like, please please come, usually they know it’s going to be a boring conference or whatever and I’ll go.

  2. Personally I think it’s a bad idea. You are on set with the inevitable delays and meanwhile your SO is waiting for you outside to pick you up or you’ve an appointment to go out tonight together, etc, etc. which leaves you fretting about doing your job well and at the same time keeping your SO happy and thus you’ll end up doing neither well.

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