Send email to bruce at perens dot com if you'd like to invite Mr. Perens to speak. If you don't get an answer, try again, I might have missed your message or you might have gotten stuck in the spam blocker. You can also reach me via: Contact Information.
I sometimes waive my speaking fee, either for non-profit or government appearances, or when I am appearing for a prospective customer. But please remember that I make my living as a consultant, and too much unpaid speaking time would hurt my family.
The speaking fee is USD$12,000 plus expenses. The typical speaking trip, with travel and jet lag time, is sure to use up what would otherwise be a week of work time. This is what that costs me.
Expenses will include flights, travel insurance to reimburse me for flights booked for cancelled conferences and other mishaps, hotel fees including both destination and en-route hotel stays if these are necessary due to flight connections, cab, train or rental car as appropriate, mileage to and from my local airport (at the rate established by AAA, about USD$0.72/mile), the fee to park my car at the airport, meals, travel snacks for the flight, dry-cleaning, sundries such as and travel-sized shampoo, etc.
Flights are booked coach unless you agree otherwise, and coach flights must be on my preferred air carrier, route, and schedule. This applies to both paid and unpaid talks. The carrier will generally be United Airlines for international flights. I will fly discount airlines in the U.S. if there are direct routes available at the right time. My preferred air carriers give me a seating upgrade, which makes long flights more tolerable, and I generally prefer routes shorter in duration to those that cost less at the expense of my time and energy.
People who book speakers don't always understand what a speaker's life is like. I fly coach, and the San Francisco to London flight means 11 hours each way in that seat, with medicine to help me sleep, and then jet-lag in each direction, and I might do that twice in a month. If I'm going to Europe, that's two travel days, two jet-lag days, and one speaking day. Thus, one talk can easily use up a whole work week. I will not, in general, be visiting your country to be a tourist, just to be as effective as possible in promoting Open Source and then to get home to my 12-year-old and my wife. They have school and work, and except for a few weeks per year they can't travel with me even if you are willing to pay for that. So, I will appreciate it when you help me to use my time effectively.
I may not know my way around, and appreciate it when my hosts arrange for someone local to pick me up and drop me off at the airport, and to take me to my speaking locations and back to my hotel. The rest of the time I am comfortable being alone, and might even want some down-time away from other people to rest or take a walk. If you want to invite me to anything, please do - as long as you will be OK with it if I decline. I am comfortable in a business suit and will always be neat when that's called for, but will wear jeans and hiking boots the rest of the time. I don't have any dietary restrictions. A fancy restaurant is fine, if it'll be special for you. I like them, but I live half a mile from Chez Panisse and it's hard to impress me with a restaurant these days. If I am picking the venue and am not dressed to the nines, I'd as likely go for good but unpretentious food and a beer in a comfortable place.
Loud, smoky parties are best scheduled after my speech, so that my voice doesn't get used up before the speech. A place where one can talk with a normal voice for the pre-show dinner will be appreciated. I tend to raise my voice too much anyway. It's because my wife is hearing-impaired, and my hearing's not perfect either.
I will probably have tight air connections coming in, and leaving, and must be on schedule. I will appreciate having the mobile numbers of my escorts and the conference organizers.