Keeping Costs Down on a School Excursion

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Keeping Cost Down on a school Excursion The value of a field trip for students can never be underestimated, as these excursions give both an insight into the world outside of school and allow students to explore a wealth of subjects in an interactive manner. However, finding the cash to cover these often costly trips can be tricky for some schools where budget cuts and local income freezes are in effect. This is why, as well as showcasing the best special offers on the market in all areas of the country, School Excursions Australia has compiled a series of hints and tips designed to make your next field trip not only enjoyable but affordable too. Fundraising Activities Fundraising is a valuable tool for cash strapped schools for a number of reasons. Firstly, and most obviously, is that it provides the opportunity to stump up a little (or a lot) of cash in order to pay for elements of an upcoming school trip – perhaps you could raise enough to pay for a coach, or alternatively for the lunches of the students on the trip. Secondly, it plays a valuable part in involving the local community in the activities of your school, drumming up interest in the surrounding area and forming a network which can be called upon for assistance in upcoming projects. Finally, they are the ideal platform for showcasing the knowledge and innovation of the students you teach, especially if they are given the reins in coming up with a strong fundraising event. If the subject for which the trip is required involves history, for example, choosing to put on a historical play and charging parents and visitors an admission fee gives students the opportunity to get involved with acting, set construction, lighting, directing… The list is endless and has been proven to have a beneficial effect upon the educational performance of students. Transport There are plenty of ways to stick to a budget when traveling around Australia, but many schools find that the best cost cutting deals are often reserved for smaller parties and gap year students looking to head to the cities. However, this simply means that a little thinking outside the box may be required – no need to cancel when you can work around cost issues! For example, hiring a coach and driver for the day could prove to be fairly pricey, so perhaps sourcing a company which will rent out a coach without a driver and tracking down a local resident or even parent with a valid coach driver’s license would be a good way to go – after all, parents will be keen to keep the cost down as well. Alternatively, for teachers with small groups of advanced students (perhaps those preparing to sit their final year exams?) simply taking a car or two and splitting the cost of petrol may prove to be more economic than hiring a minibus or taking public transport. Just remember to ensure your car is fully covered, especially if heading to the nearest big city or out into the bush! Asking for Favours The final, and perhaps most obvious, tip we have is to haggle, barter, beg, cajole and possibly even bribe anyone who can help you bring the costs down. Local authorities often have separate budgets for enrichment programmes within the community they assist, so if your trip is particularly expensive or requires air travel, citing the importance of your trip in a funding application could yield some positive results. Press coverage is another great tool at your disposal – local papers and radio stations love to get involved with events such as fundraising drives and school activities because this gives them a chance to increase their reach within a set area. A case of “you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours” if you will! Similarly, businesses operating in the vicinity of the school may be willing to help out if their generosity is noted in a press piece regarding the trip. This contribution can be as little as placing a collecting tin on the counter of the local store, or as much as full-blown sponsorship for a chunk of the trip. It’s certainly worth asking about! The last thing School Excursions Australia wants is for cost to come between a group of students and an enriching experience. By keeping an eye on the special offers we advertise and taking on board our money saving tips, we hope to reduce this chance for you when planning your next school excursion.