Sending kids to summer camp is an exciting time of the year for many families. It may also be expensive, especially for those with multiple kids. Thankfully, there are ways to get creative and save money on summer camp so your kids can attend with more affordable rates.
Tip 1: Look for summer camp discounts
Early bird discounts include price reductions offered when you buy earlier than you would normally. Early bird deals for camps are available from as soon as August through the beginning of the year in April.
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, there may not be as many discounts available since in-person camps are generally going to be smaller group sizes and the camps have to spend money on more equipment, PPE, hand sanitizer, nightly cleanings, etc. So if you see a discount, grab it!
After April, you may not find as many early registration discounts, but sibling and multiple week camp discounts are often still available.
The average family saves 12% with multiple week discounts and 6% with sibling discounts.ActivityHero ©2021
Tip 2: Balance specialty camps and recreational camps
If you’ve been shopping for camps, you have probably seen a wide price range. Some specialty camps, such as programming or horseback riding, are priced higher because the equipment or instructors are more costly. A science camp or coding camp is usually higher in price, but they are constantly updating their curriculum to include the latest technology changes.
While you may want to splurge on a few specialty camps, recreational sports and day camps can cost a lot less. Camps held at the local park or school soccer field don’t have as much expenses to cover. For example, a week of soccer camp is typically one of the lower priced options during the summer at less than 50% the average camp cost.
Your child might be interested in many types of activities, so mixing in a few different camps can keep your average cost lower. Signing up for online camps can also decrease your costs while learning from live instructors for specialized topics such as coding, writing, art and more.
The average session price of in-person camps is $421 and for online classes it’s $94.ActivityHero ©2021
Tip 3: Consider single-day sessions
Sending kids to camp for a day or two at a time can be a great way to break up the monotony of summer, or to supplement your other child care arrangements. Kids still get to experience all the fun of camp, but you’re only paying for the days you need. ActivityHero makes it easy to find camps that offer single-day sessions. (And if it’s a very popular camp, we recommend registering as early as you can to make sure you secure your spot.)
Tip 4: Apply for scholarships and financial aid
Your family may also be able to get assistance from camp scholarships or financial aid. ActivityHero’s scholarship program makes it easy for families in need to apply once and be eligible for several camp scholarships. You can also contact camps directly to ask if they offer financial assistance.
Flexible Spending Accounts & Tax Credits are great ways to save money as well.
Tip 5: Tell a friend
Many camps offer a referral bonus when you invite a friend to camp. On ActivityHero, you can earn $15 for each friend referred, and your friends save money on summer camp too!