Though it is winter and most places in the country still have snow stacking up nicely by the side of the curb, it is time to work on summer camp plans. Those without kids may not understand the moms who planned the entire summer out months in advance. But once one becomes a parent it is very easy to comprehend. Entertaining a houseful of children is tough!
Kids have a lot of energy. Most of them have gotten used to being on the go and they expect to continue their adventures over the warm summer months.
Someone needs to entertain the kids and many parents need a little help. This is why summer camps are so important. However, summer camp can be pricey, so here are three tips for parents to save money on summer camp:
1) Plan early.
It's no surprise that planning early tops this list. Most camps offer an early bird discount which can significantly reduce the cost, especially for families who have multiple kids. Also, planning early can allow time to recruit a neighbor into the same camp and create an instant car pool partner.
2. Look for scholarships.
Though many people may not realize it, there are scholarships for summer camp. Some camps call them financial aid, and some just offer a discount based on income and other financial issues.
The YMCA, which can be found in many neighborhoods throughout the country, solicits funds specifically to help families afford camp and other activities. The YMCA of Metro Atlanta found that one in five members needed financial assistance to take part in their impactful programs.
In 2010, Ann Sheets, a past president of the American Camp Association, said that about 90 percent of resident camps and 89 percent of day camps offer scholarships.These organizations take into account income as well as other factors like family size and financial hardships. Even if there's no scholarship fund, ask for a multi-camper or multi-week discount.
3. Consider church-run camps.
This may not be an option for people who prefer to avoid religion, but for those who are open, church-run camps are often a fraction of the price.