With summer in full swing, kids are now suddenly home for eight extra hours a day. While parents are no doubt happy about spending extra time with their children, there also comes the question of “what do we do with them all day”.

They can always play a larger role in family chores and maintenance, but it’s summer and they should be having fun and going on adventures. You’re only young once and there’s nothing quite like it being summer and being a kid.

Many families choose to send their kids to summer camps or church groups. Thankfully, these groups often take some of the burden off of parents and put the kids into certain activities and outings.

If you’re a person in charge of kids or a group, you might be wondering what you can do when it comes to planning a retreat or field trip. Sometimes, there are so many options it can be overwhelming.

Below are a couple of tips to help you get started and navigate those summer months.

Think of the Retreat Theme

Perhaps you’re running a summer science camp and talking about dinosaurs. Naturally, you’re going to want any field trip or retreat to line up with what you’ve been talking about. 

So you’ll want to make sure the retreat is in line with what you’ve previously been talking about or focusing on. 

Perhaps you don’t have a certain theme, but you will want your retreat or field trip to have a goal. Is the goal to be an extension learning? Is it a time for everyone to simply have fun and relax? A team-building exercise?

The quicker you have the answer and make a decision about this step, the easier the next item will be.

Setting Up the Budget

Hopefully, you already have a budget laid out before you started whatever activities you’re doing. If not, then you may be in for a long ride. 

But if this is somewhat of a spontaneous adventure or one that you’re planning along the way, look into what you can and can’t do on your budget. Having a budget in place will know what you can spend in some areas, how much you can spend or what you may need to sacrifice in order to have a successful field trip or retreat. 

It’s definitely not the most enjoyable part of planning a retreat, but it is a necessary step.

The Logistics

Maybe after the budget, planning out all the logistics can be difficult. It involves a lot of research, phone calls, Googling and taking care of any last-second emergencies or changes. 

Make sure you make your reservations early. Even though it might be easier to wait until the last moment, making reservations for dozens of people is much more difficult than planning a last-second retreat with you and your partner. You’re not packing for everyone or making sure they grabbed their wallet, but you are going to be making sure everyone gets from A to B safely and without any issues. 

When you’re making these reservations, make sure you set up an email alert or go with two different browsers. While data suggests that cookies may not in fact play a part in raising prices, sometimes glitches and different browsers will give separate results. Which one do you choose? The cheaper one of course!

Make the Itinerary

No matter what, people will want to know what the exact plans are. Even if they know the exact plans, they will be sure to ask you another 50 million times before the actual departure date. 

That’s why you need to make your itinerary and have it planned down to a T. Besides emailing it to parents or participants, make sure you print off hard copies and pass it around to everyone. Everyone has used the excuse “sorry, I just don’t check my email that often” when they really just forgot something, so make sure they don’t have the excuse and put all of the information in their hands.

It also helps those who could be a bit nervous about letting their children go someplace without them or traveling themselves. Let them see exactly what the plans are and hopefully, this could set them back in ease.


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