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To think school trips are too expensive?

(243 Posts)
lucyhoward Sat 24-May-14 11:19:03

My son has just come home from school for half term with a letter about a school watersports trip in France next summer. Whilst I am sure it will be great fun I am not sure whether we can justify the £500 price tag. By the time we have sent spending money and paid for any kit they will need we will be lucky to have change from £600 I imagine.

Is this even something schools should be getting involved in? Surely holidays should be a family thing?

Forgettable Sat 24-May-14 11:26:54

Well the thing is, would you have a family holiday doing watersports in France? No? Nor me! Lots of notice given, pay by instalments, job done.

BerniesBurneze Sat 24-May-14 11:30:40

I agree with Forgettable

Waswondering Sat 24-May-14 11:33:51

That will include all travel, accommodation, food and instruction. I've heard of much more expensive trips ....

Mrsjayy Sat 24-May-14 11:35:10

They offer holidays it is up to parents to send them or not my dds never went on their school holiday but they did get to go on trips

Mrsjayy Sat 24-May-14 11:36:29

You just have to see if you can justify the cost if you camt then they dont get to go fwiw I agree with you

ilovesooty Sat 24-May-14 11:36:37

So you don't want to get involved. Don't then:it's your choice. I don't see why you would want to deny that choice to other parents though, or seek to dictate what schools should and shouldn't offer.

StraddlingTheFence Sat 24-May-14 11:36:45

Is this a state school and is this a trip that most the class are expected to be able to take advantage of? Is it an annual thing?

I agree it's a wonderful opportunity, but if you have the national average of 2 (and a bit) children that's £1,000 per year in school trips. The average salary is £26,500. Minus tax, commuting costs and basic living expenses and that £1,000 is a huge chunk of the remaining take home income.

Forgettable Sat 24-May-14 11:37:14

Our oldest is off to India next year with school

Younger one off to Barbados the year after, a cricket tour

No WAY would we be able to afford family hols to these destinations, so we happily save our £2 coins and deposit them with the bursar every couple of months

BarbarianMum Sat 24-May-14 11:39:28

I think it is fine to say no to these things. Yes of course he'd love it but it's a nice to have, not an integral part of the curriculum. Same w ski trips etc. Great for the school to offer but not everyone gets to go.

StraddlingTheFence Sat 24-May-14 11:39:47

At £1,000 per annum (for 2 children) Forgettable, you'd need to be saving nearly 5 of those £2 coins per week.

Forgettable Sat 24-May-14 11:41:21


middleeasternpromise Sat 24-May-14 11:42:17

Yep bobby bargain try £800 to play netball in Spain plus spends plus entire new wardrobe - its the experience they get, being away from parents having to make own decisions etc budget for the most valuable ones to your child

Forgettable Sat 24-May-14 11:42:43

No no you misunderstand

Not per year, one is going next year, the other the year after

whois Sat 24-May-14 11:45:09

These posts really annoy me. It's a holiday. It's optional. They don't have to go every year or at all

Some children will love to go, some won't. Some parents can afford it, some won't.

Schools shouldn't always play to the lowest common denominator, because there will always be something that somebody can't afford FFS.

I think it's great that there are teachers willing to sacrifice their holiday time to broaden the experiences of the children.

Anyway, how much does a week in a holiday art club or sports camp cost? The incremental difference for your child to have an amazing week away probably isn't loads.

lucyluu82 Sat 24-May-14 11:48:11

State School, optional trip. Apparently it happens every year for Yr8's only. Out of 180 in the year as a whole about 120 went last year so, whilst it's not compulsory the majority do go on the trip.

It does sound like this is good value when compared to the other trips people have mentioned.

Fairenuff Sat 24-May-14 11:49:09

Have a look at what trips will be offered over the five years at secondary school and tell your dcs to pick one (within your price range). Work out how much a week you need to put back and pay in instalments.

My dd opted for France (including Paris) and ds went skiing. We would not have been able to afford either of the trips as a whole family, so they got to experience something that they would otherwise not have been able to do. Plus, they got to go with some of their friends which added to the fun.

Mrsjayy Sat 24-May-14 11:51:05

Our school holiday to italy cost over a grand for a few days in italy the rest was on the coach pfft to that

ThinkIveBeenHacked Sat 24-May-14 11:51:25

£500 is perfectly good value for money. Whether you can afford it is another thing altogether.

Just because something is out of your proce range doesnt make it "expensive" in a general term - just too expensive for you

StraddlingTheFence Sat 24-May-14 11:51:54

Fair enough, I was thinking these were trips that ran each year that more than half of the children in each year would be going on.

For the record, DH & I have a combined income of £76,600 pa I can say this as I will be changing my MN name today To us with our large mortgage and massive travel costs £1,000 per year is doable. A few years back DH & I both lost our jobs within a short space of time and DH had to take a lower paid job working away. It's so very frightening to live life knowing that once you've spent the £10 in your purse you can't draw any more money out until the next week and so sad to know that your children can't do all the things their friends are doing. A lot of people live like that.

Mrsjayy Sat 24-May-14 11:53:08

I agree the nack of school trips is to pick and choose last year dd could have gone on 5 or 6 trips not all kids go on them all thats ridiculos

Thomyorke Sat 24-May-14 11:53:29

My dc where allowed one trip for the whole of secondary. They seemed expensive but once transport, food, insurance and activities where included the price was very reasonable. If you are fortunate to afford they can be very good, my shy DS1 can back a more social and confident boy. I cannot offer my DC's the same as our holidays have to factor a disabled child. However if you can not afford it then in can be pretty crap having to say no. It does seem double crap when children that do go can also afford dream family holidays as well, but I like that state school children have opportunities and that other countries see a variety of British children visiting rather than just private schools.

notnowImreading Sat 24-May-14 11:56:30

If you're picking just one school trip, I would definitely say that the sports trips represent the best value for money - skiing or water sports particularly. The cost of taking the whole family for the quality/quantity of instruction they get on a trip would be astronomical, so if you were thinking of a whole-family holiday at any point, it actually saves money and makes it more likely to be enjoyable if the kids have learned a few skills through a school trip first. If you are unlikely ever to be able to afford a whole-family trip of this kind, it's an experience they might never have access to otherwise.

When I was a child, my parents buckled up and paid for me to go on a school trip to a PGL activity centre in Wales - I hid the letter because I just knew we couldn't afford it but they wanted me to go. It's still, to this day, one of the best things I've ever done (which I know makes me sound a bit sad).

CatsCantTwerk Sat 24-May-14 11:58:11

My dd came back from France yesterday with the school and she loved it.

HesterShaw Sat 24-May-14 11:58:33

I think it's that school offer these opportunities for children. You say that holidays are for families - not they're not, necessarily. My family holidays consisted of poking round Yorkshire in the rain. My parents' idea of fun for teenagers was taking them on a steam train. I am very grateful my school offered adventure holidays, and for my parents for sending me on a few, or I would never have been able to develop my lifelong love of adventure activities that I have even made a career out of.

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