Being a chaperone on a soccer trip does not need to be a chore. In fact, if you plan ahead and stay organized you may find it to be a lot of fun!
- Make a list of things you may need as a chaperone and carry these items with you at all times. (I recommend a backpack). (i.e. Tylenol, sunscreen, scissors, tums, pony tails, pre wrap, etc.) Having these items on hand helps to avoid stressful situations for players.
- Send out an itinerary before the trip. This way the players know when they need to be at the airport / bus, when they will arrive / depart, when their games are, where they will be eating, what activities they might be doing and when lights out are and if they are expected to turn in their electronic devises. I have found that the more the players are informed, the less drama there is. They are fully aware of what is expected and prepared for the trip.
- It can be fun to decorate the doors of the player’s hotel rooms. However, for safety reason, you should always decorate the inside of the hotel doors. You never want to advertise there are kids staying in a room.
- When possible, pre order your meals. This will cut down on the stress of the wait staff as well as the players. When you have a large party, the wait time is usually increased and if it is a sit down restaurant, you will have an additional expense for tipping. If you pre order, the kids get their meals sooner and they have already picked out what they want to eat. Try ordering family style trays and bring them back to the hotel and have the players and coaches eat in a ball room or party room. You will not feel rushed to eat and this can also be a good time for the coaches to have meetings / team chats with the players.
- These soccer trips are for the players, NOT the adults or chaperones. Try to let the kids have fun and be themselves. Allow them to listen to their music (language censored). Most rental cars have an auxiliary plug. Always a good idea to bring an AUX cord to plug in so the kids can play music off of their cell phones.
This is a good time to get to know the players off the field. Have fun with them and help them make their trip memorable! You might be tired when you return home, but I am sure you will have had a fun time with the kids!