Helpful Hints for Planning a School Trip in the New Year

Hints for your next school trip
February 18, 2019

January is here, bringing with it the dismantlement of Christmas decorations, a diminishing of festive cheer and the onset of January blues. We believe that the best way to banish the winter blues and wash the bitter taste of January out of our mouths is to start planning your next school trip.

Give yourself and your students something to look forward to throughout the winter months by getting stuck into planning your school trip using our top tips:

Work out the purpose of your trip

Whilst the idea of just planning a holiday for the sake of planning a holiday might be an attractive thought, in reality, your school trip needs to be purposeful, educational and has a real benefit to the students you take with you. When planning a school trip, be sure to have a clear idea of who you are taking with you such as the year group, what subject it will benefit and why this particular trip will help them. A great way to work all of this out is to see where there are holes in the plans for exciting ways to learn a particular curriculum topic. Also, if you think a particular trip you have in mind will really help to bring a subject to life, you believe that a particular group of pupil’s learnings will be hindered without the experience.

Have an idea of budget

Whilst you don’t have to outline a full budget plan right away, having a grasp on the rough amount you would be willing to spend and ask parents to spend towards your trip is a very important place to start. Some trips are significantly more expensive than others so you will need to factor in the allowance of your group and the school. Also, you need to weigh up if the trip you choose is worth the expense (our trips always are of course!). At this point, we suggest that you discuss budgets with your school’s finance team to get an idea of how much trips in the past have cost, what objections have been given by parents previously and how much is in the school budget to potentially facilitate the trip or give special allowances for certain students.

Decide on your location

Your purpose and budget will now help you to decide on one of the most exciting parts… The location! Whilst you might have had your location in mind from the off, such as if you’re organising a history trip based around the events of the second world war and the Holocaust, you will know that your trip destination should be Auschwitz. However, if your purpose for organising the trip is less clear cut, you can get creative with sourcing the perfect location for your trip. We have a fantastic search tool to help you decide on your school trip location which breaks down our trips by subject, country and city.

For subjects such as art, politics and languages, there are a variety of options to pick from so ensure that when you start looking for your location that you set out objectives for what you want from the location – do you want a city? Somewhere with lots of fun activities? Do you want a destination surrounded by natural beauty? Is it important to be somewhere that’s immersed in authentic culture? All of these are questions you should be asking when researching for your perfect location.

What do you want to get out of your trip

Once you’ve decided on your purpose, budget and location, it’s time to really think about what the outcomes and objectives will be of your trip. The difference between defining your purpose and deciding exactly what you want to get out of your trip is setting objectives that will be more specific. For example, on return, you want your students to have learnt X, tried out Y for the first time, seen Z and discussed how it made them feel etc. It also helps to set out personal objectives such as ensuring students speak to people they haven’t done before, are made a group leader on a particular activity, keep a diary of daily learnings that can then be made into a project in the classroom etc. Really think hard about what knowledge and experience you want your students to come back with that they wouldn’t have been able to gain in a classroom

Find a travel provider to help organise

That’s where we come in! There is so much to consider when planning a school trip; from safeguarding to health and safety, you’re going to need some assistance and guidance. Here at Adaptable Travel we offer safe, cost-effective and innovative school trips with 20 years of experience under our belt to help us do so. Our aim is to make your life as group organiser as easy as possible by removing the burden of paperwork, giving you peace of mind with our verified Safety Management System and giving you our expert advice on what to do on your school trip and how you can achieve this.  We’re also a member of ABTA which means that you’ll have the benefit of ABTA’s assistance and Code of Conduct – pretty handy hey?

Organise your accommodation and travel as soon as possible

Once you’ve decided on where you want to go, the next step is to book your accommodation and travel. Whether you’re wanting to fly, go by boat or coach, look into your possibilities and decide what is best for your group and your budget. We’re old hands at this so please come to us with any questions or queries. Where you choose to lay your head at night is very important to the success of your trip. You want your students to feel comfortable, safe and secure in their base so ensuring that you take time to carefully choose which accommodation is best for you is important. We have a fantastic range of accommodation options to suit your group – their age, budget and experiential preference. It’s important to understand the needs of all of your students and your staff when picking your accommodation and we can help you do just that. The location, the type and the price all need to be considered in your final decision

Consider fun activities for them to do

Unfortunately just planning the educational day activities isn’t quite good enough for a truly successful school trip; you need to plan your extra-curricular activities too. The evenings are a great time for your students to unwind, socialise and have some fun which is why we have a wide selection of evening activities for you to pick from and take inspiration from. From unique cultured options such as ice skating, exploring local areas and sampling local cuisine to more familiar treats such as bowling and ice skating.

Market your trip

Once you’ve put all of this planning into place, it would be a huge shame to not get enough interest in your trip wouldn’t it? To be sure that the news of your trip spreads far and wide, you’ll need to market it to both students and parents. First of all, make sure you pass the idea through all the relevant members of staff at school so that you can be sure that what you tell students and parents first time round is correct. Hand out flyers, put up posters, speak in assembly to gather interest from students and encourage them to talk to their parents if they’re interested. You can then start sending out information in the school newsletter, put a notification on the school website and then call a meeting for parents who are potentially interested for them to find out even more about your trip.

If you would like any further information on how to plan your school trip or would like help in getting started, please get in contact with us and we would love to tell you more!