Summer Camps Guide – Essential Tips for Parents

Finding the right summer camp for your child can be overwhelming as the options are endless. Location and schedule of the camp should fit with your work and family schedule. Besides, when making a decision, focus should also be given to the format of the summer camp. These days, four basic types of summer camps are available. These include – day programs, overnight (sleep away) camps, day programs with trips and special needs camps. Day camps are held during the day and children return home at night. It is a good option for those kids who have never been away from home at an extended period of time before. Overnight summer camp is also known as a Sleepaway camp. As the name suggests, in overnight camps, kids have their own area to live in during their camp. Special camps focus on the needs of children with disabilities.

What to ask?

Here is a set of question to ask when selecting a summer camp.

If you send your kid to day camp, ensure to know does the camp offer before-care and or after-care if the hours of the camp don’t work for your schedule.
What are the activities it offers? It is important to choose activities that suit your child’s interest.
If you are looking for sleepaway camp, ask about security policy and rules about allowing kids to call home as some of the camps do not allow cell phones.
For day camps, make sure to know whether snacks are provided.
In addition, ask about the field trips offered and is sunscreen applied on the regular basis?

What to pack for overnight camps?

When packing, you should consider the length of time your kid will be away. Here is a checklist of necessary items.

Pack clothes depending on the number of days and whether your kids will have chances to do laundry. If laundry is not available, pack twice as many pairs of underwear and socks as days in the camp. Generally, one t-shirt and shorts for each day, few sweatshirts, and two sets of pyjamas, pants sneakers and few bathing suits are enough for regular camps.

Toiletries including toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, shampoo, comb, hairbrush, two towels and face cloth. Keep a carrying case or plastic bag to get these things to shower.

Sleeping bag should include bed linen, pillow, sleeping bag and blanket. Don’t forget to include a flashlight with extra batteries

Make sure you pack medicines if your child is on regular medication. Besides, if your child has an allergy, ensure the summer camp nurse knows about it.

Other items might include hat, sunscreen, filled water bottles, flip flops, sneakers, bug Spray and Personal Notebook/Journal.

Pack early. Don’t wait until the last minute. Label everything with your child’s name or initial.

The last but not the least is paying for summer camps.

Generally, the cost of a summer camp covers the facilities, meals, accommodation, medical services. If transportation and laundry services are offered, then they may also include in the basic fee.

Do some homework before making payment. Online search, visiting camp expos help to have an idea about the cost of summer camps. Likewise, before making the payment, work with the camps on payment options. Some camps allow you to pay deposits first and pay the balance later. Many camps offer multiple payment option as well. This will help to ease your financial strain.

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