Your School Trip Timeline: When Does Everything Need to be Done?

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You need a strict school trip timeline to make sure everything stays on track. Without one, you might miss key deadlines and end up missing out on exciting activities or exclusive travel offers.

However, it can be hard to know when everything needs to be done by – especially if you’ve never organised a school trip before.

Luckily for you, we’ve created our very own school trip timeline to help you organise your trip. It may need a bit of tweaking to tailor it to your trip, but it should give you a good idea of what’s involved. Use it as a guide, and you’ll have plenty of time to sort everything out before you leave.

Your school trip timeline:

We’re going to work off how long we normally take to organise a school trip. With a teacher’s demanding schedule, it might be wise to leave a little more wiggle room in your school trip timeline. However, the key deadlines are still important to stick to!

1. Enquire

As with any holiday, the earlier you book the more money you save, so try to get in as early as possible.

We’d suggest making your initial enquiry between four and 24 months before your departure date. You can arrange coach tours quite quickly, but if you want to go by plane it will take more time to organise.

A tour operator might be able to help with last-minute trips, but we’d advise giving yourself as much planning time as possible – you don’t want to miss out any important steps!

2. Gain approval

Next, you need to obtain approval from your School Leadership Team (SLT). Without it, you’ll be unable to go on the trip.

From the initial enquiry to approval usually takes between 10 and 14 days, however it depends on how busy your SLT is.

3. Promote your tour

This is a really important part of your school trip timeline, but many teachers forget to promote their tour!

If you work with a tour operator, they’ll give you some supplies (posters, template letters, presentations etc.) but if you’re doing it alone, you’ll have to create your own promo materials. Don’t forget to factor this into your school trip timeline as it can be time-consuming!

Once you’ve created a buzz, hold an information evening for interested students and parents. This will help them decide whether they want to proceed.

The promotion process should take around 2 weeks, as that gives everyone plenty of time to make a decision.

4. Confirm your booking

45 days after receiving your proposal, you’ll need to confirm your booking with an initial deposit. Here are some estimates of how much this might be:

  • Coach tour – £50.00 pp
  • Air tours – 10% of overall cost
  • Budget airlines – 10% trip deposit plus total flight cost

Make sure your students have paid their share of the deposit well before you reach this deadline.

If you’re travelling by air, you’ll need to pay a second deposit 60 days later.

5. Final payment

Now it’s time to make your final payment. Typically, coach tours are 70 days later while air tours are 90 days later. However, this may depend on your provider.

6. Receive documentation

2-3 weeks before departure, you’ll receive your flight and hotel information. Don’t forget to make copies and pack them as they’re essential to the smooth running of your school trip.

7. Depart!

Here comes the fun bit – going on your school trip! If you’ve stuck to your school trip timeline, you should now be organised and ready to depart for your destination.

There are other things to consider when creating your school trip timeline:

  • Visas
  • Activities
  • Insurance arrangements
  • Cover for teaching work while you’re away

Slot these in where appropriate, and you’ll be good to go!

How can WorldStrides help?

We have decades of experience organising school trips. We also have a wealth of contacts within the industry, including LOtC and STF activity providers and ABTA/ATOL protected travel companies.

Our representatives can support you throughout the entire process, including the trip itself. They’ll remind you of specific deadlines and help you stick to your school trip timeline.

You’ll be able to work together to organise a tip-top school trip without the hassle – now, doesn’t that sound good?

Need a hand sticking to your school trip timeline? Our expert team is ready to help you, just give us a call today!

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