As a general rule of thumb, groups who book tours 6-12 months in advance of their travel date recruit twice as many students as groups who book less than six months early. In addition to starting early, here are our favorite ways to promote your tour, recruit students and get them and their parents excited and onboard with your plan:
1. Class Announcements
As soon as you choose your tour destination and date, be sure to acquire and confirm all of the necessary approvals from your administration. Immediately start making in-class announcements daily, followed up by email reminders to your students and parents. Announcements should include all of the important details about your trip, such as the date(s), destinations, main attractions, purpose, accommodations, price and payment schedule. Create a handout that lists the important dates and deadlines, any fundraising projects, and any events, such as parent meetings. Make it clear that only a projected number of participants may attend, and that those who register late will be placed on the wait list.
2. Parent Letter & Email Announcements
Dream Big Youth Travel, Inc. will provide you with a Participants Guide that includes a parent letter, your itinerary, the tour price, registration information, payment information, a list of everything included on your tour and a bit about what students can expect from their tour experience. While traditional hard-copy letters can be sent out, there are many advantages of communicating through email. For the enrollment form, the email can include a Google Doc that allows them to easily type in the required information. Additionally, your itinerary can include links to the attractions your students will be visiting.
3. Weekly email blasts
Following your initial announcements, continue to keep parents and students in the loop about your tour by sending emails to remind them of upcoming deadlines, fundraisers, fun facts about your tour destination, and frequently asked questions.
4. Social Media
We all love social media for personal use, but did you know that it can also help you bring attention and add excitement to your tour? Facebook can be a great way to post reminders for parents. It can also act as a forum where students and parents can ask questions and address concerns. Don’t just stop there…start a Twitter page for the tour and let parents know you will be tweeting “live” from the tour. Go even a step further and encourage students to use a hashtag and post pictures to a private Instagram group. Lastly, if you or a colleague did the same tour last year, compile your photos and videos into a short i-movie. This can be very helpful to show parents and students what they’ll be doing during their tour. The video can be distributed via email and social media, and also shown at meetings.
5. Posters & Flyers
Once you’ve booked your tour, Dream Big Youth Travel provides you with promotional items such as a downloadable poster to hang up in your classroom and a flyer to copy and distribute.
6. Student Ambassadors
Student Ambassadors will use the Ambassadors’ checklist for ideas on ways to spread the word and generate excitement. PLUS! Every Student Ambassador will be automatically entered to participate in contests hosted by Dream Big Youth Travel for the chance to win cool prizes like a GoPro camera, Beats by Dre, fun travel accessories and free trips! Make sure to connect with us on social media!
Preparing for Your Tour
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Fundraisers are a great way to make field trips and tours more accessible to more students. Though they take planning, time, and effort, the results can be very beneficial. Dream Big Youth Travel partners with http://onlinedonations.us/ to help schools and groups raise funds through an easy email campaign program. Contact Online Donations at 1-888-741-2963 for more details.
Note: Please remind parents that any fundraising questions should be directed toward the school, not toward Dream Big Youth Travel.
After you book your tour, you will be set up with a Tour Manager who is dedicated to assisting you with every aspect of your tour. He or she will confirm your hotel accommodations, transportation, and attractions on your itinerary, and will keep in close contact with you to ensure that you are happy with your itinerary.
There are just a few things you will need to provide to your Tour Manager 30 days prior to your departure:
This information will be collected electronically.
You will need to host a parent meeting at your school. Prior to this meeting, your Tour Manager will work with you to prepare for your meeting. At your meeting, you will:
It is essential to keep parents and student informed from the moment you announce your trip to the time you arrive home from your destination. We encourage you to remind them of important deadlines and events related to your tour. Email messaging, posters, flyers, classroom announcements, and social media are all great ways to communicate facts and post documents that can be accessed by parents.
For many of your students, your tour will be the first time they are away from home, without their parents. Because of this, they will need more help with basic information such as etiquette, puctuality and packing. Prior to your trip’s departure, we will send students resources on packing and behavioral guidelines.
Your team at Dream Big Youth Travel is with you every step of the way to ensure a great trip for you and your student travelers.
Refer a Teacher/Group Leader
If you had a positive travel experience with Dream Big Youth Travel, do your friends a favor by letting them know about us! They’ll thank you — and we’ll thank you too with a $50 gift card for any one-day tour a $100 gift card for any overnight tour. It’s easy!
This is how it works:
Who would you like to refer?
Our student tours wouldn’t be possible without chaperones. If your Group Leader has selected you as a chaperone, here are some very important guidelines to learn how you will contribute to your tour.