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Is it customary in your area to pay coaches traveling expenses?


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I'm curious as to what your experience has been in different areas of the country, different types of teams, etc. 

When you travel with a team, regardless of sport, do you pay for the coach's travelling expenses? I'm not referring to coaching fees, rather their hotel, food, etc.. 

I'm not against the practice per se, just curious.

Thanks!

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Usually, coaching expenses are wrapped into the cost of the trip. But, yes, we expect to pay them. If I am not charged specifically for coaching expenses, I do expect that some of my monthly fees go toward travel for coaches.

Honestly, most coaches I know live pretty close to the bone and definitely sacrifice for their job. 

 

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2 minutes ago, bodiesmom said:

I'm curious as to what your experience has been in different areas of the country, different types of teams, etc. 

When you travel with a team, regardless of sport, do you pay for the coach's travelling expenses? I'm not referring to coaching fees, rather their hotel, food, etc.. 

I'm not against the practice per se, just curious.

Thanks!

Yes, the hotel rooms were paid ahead of time by the team. it was factored into each player's tournament fee.

Meals were usually "covered" by a "let me get that for you, coach" when ordering food or when the bill came.

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It comes out of team fees/tuition as a business expense, yes. Sometimes there is a separate competition fee to cover coach travel expenses but not always.

I don't know any coaches who pay their own travel out of pocket.

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For non-public school, club sports, yes. When DD was a gymnast, optional gymnasts split all out of state travel expenses. Lower level gymnasts and optional gymnasts split the local/neighbor island travel costs. Ours were called “assessments” and they were separate from monthly coaching/team fees.

Edited by Sneezyone
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For those of you that pay, do you receive an itemized list of expenses? I think what is rubbing me the wrong way is that the coach's traveling costs are much more than my and my dd's cost combined. Again, this is just for food and lodging. We pay separately for the tournament fees.

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When I managed my dd travel soccer team I set a budget for the year. The coach and I would choose 4 tournaments to travel to. Usually the lists of required hotels were already available so I could get an accurate estimate for hotel rooms. The club gave us suggested per diem (sp) and we covered gas for the coach to and from the tournament. I paid the hotel directly from the team bank account. The rest I gave to the coach as a check before the tournament to cut down on their out of pocket expenses. I sent out a detailed budget to my team before each season. 

The coaches are there because they are paid. It’s a job like any other.

To be honest the coach traveling expenses were minor compared to all the other expenses that go along with travel sports. 

Edited by hshibley
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We never got anything itemized, but they could be including a per diem, which is often higher than the what you would actually spend on food if you are being frugal, as well as mileage at ~$.55/mile, which adds up quickly depending on far away the trip is.

ETA:  they could be adding coaching fees (their pay) to that, as well.

 

Edited by AngieC
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No itemized breakdown, I don't expect to see one.

When my husband travels for work his per diem is more than we would ever pay per person for private travel.

Most of the coaches we have worked with are just as frugal as any of the families, but I wouldn't hold them to a super frugal standard; they work hard and are definitely not over compensated.

Edited by maize
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2 hours ago, bodiesmom said:

For those of you that pay, do you receive an itemized list of expenses? I think what is rubbing me the wrong way is that the coach's traveling costs are much more than my and my dd's cost combined. Again, this is just for food and lodging. We pay separately for the tournament fees.

 

The booster club managed the payments but, if asked, would provide a breakdown. Per diem allowances for food, lodging and travel were budgeted/paid for out of the assessments collected. Coaches did not have to spend the full amount. They also weren’t expected to share rooms. ETA: Just to be clear, per diem is in addition to hourly coaching fees/rates.

Edited by Sneezyone
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Yes, we pay the coach’s fees for travel cheer. Realistically, they are working the entire competition. I am pretty convinced that DD’s coaches were probably making way under minimum wage by the time all the hours they spent were counted. They obviously love why they do-but it’s still their job. 

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I know our coaches weren't making minimum wage. Usually meals were picked up by whatever parent was sitting there. And coffee was offered by another parent--you get to know what they want and just show up with it! Hotel rooms came out of the fees. And if there is a meet t-shirt, someone would just go pick up one for the coach. Yeah, lots of parents were deadbeats, never offering and rarely traveling, but that seems to be par for the course in every activity, especially Scouts!

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I coached gymnastics - I had to pay for my hotel room and then get reimbursed at away meets. I got reimbursed for mileage at whatever the rate was at the time and had to pay for my own meals. Also, I only was paid for 3 hrs per session of the competition and usually worked more like 12-15 hr days. Coaching is not usually a get rich job. 🙂

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We don't do travel sports, but do do travel robotics. The coaches/mentors travel expenses (except dining-out food) are wrapped into the team expenses -- as are the kids' hotels/travel costs. The team covers all that. We get grants, sponsors, etc, so families don't have to pay, but certainly, I'd expect that coaches and mentors should NOT have to pay for ANY of their reasonable and modest travel expenses. 

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All traditional meet expenses were factored in to the yearly team fees for my son's swim team. His team was expensive, but I loved having a set about due each month instead of being nickled and dimed along the way. That way, if only a few swimmers went to one meet in another state (travel team) then those swimmers didn't have to foot the entire coaches expense. It was the same if it was just down the road from our house, or half way across the country.  If a few swimmers qualified for a special meet or decided to attend a training session outside the state, then those expenses were handled privately between just those swimmers.  For training sessions, sometimes the coach would go in place of parents, so the parents didn't have to burn their vacation leave for training. 

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Yes. Same hotel as the rest of the team and then at meals parents took turns picking up the tab for the coach. Ours was high school travel baseball. The fee we paid outright to the coach probably only covered about the gas money to get to tournaments and maybe the fast food on the road. Our coaches were young guys doing it because they liked it. We paid about enough to make sure they didn’t lose money. Maybe a little pocket change. They definitely weren’t doing it for the money.

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DS started at a tiny club run on a shoestring by the owner/coach, and the coach's expenses for each competition were divided equally among the families who traveled. She was so frugal, though, that I always felt bad she wouldn't just charge more (like she would stay in cheaper accommodations than the families, brought her own food or would eat really cheap, would take the bus instead of renting a car, etc.) The monthly dues there were really cheap, too.

Then we moved to a huge, very competitive club with 3 full-time coaches on staff. At least two coaches attend all eight national competitions, plus several regional ones, and their expenses are covered in full by the club. But the fees there are 3-4 times higher than the fees at the other club.

Individual athletes who want their personal coach at international competitions pay the coach's full expenses themselves. DS just relied on the designated US team coach for international competitions, but I was surprised by how many athletes paid to bring personal coaches as well.

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All four of my kids have been/are on travel clubs.  Only one soccer club charged travel fees for the coach each tournament.  We didn’t know ahead of time when joining the club that this would be the case, so I was annoyed by it and it was the most expensive club that any of our children have been in, so that made my annoyance even greater. Plus, every time there was additional fee - sometimes for a change of venue for practice, the coach would say, “The cost is ONLY blah blah blah.”  All those ONLY additional costs added up fast!

 

eta: most of the clubs were coached by someone without a player on the team.  I’m assuming that the fees we paid covered their costs.  Not sure why the costs were not built in to the fees of the one club already.

Edited by school17777
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3 hours ago, school17777 said:

All four of my kids have been/are on travel clubs.  Only one soccer club charged travel fees for the coach each tournament.  We didn’t know ahead of time when joining the club that this would be the case, so I was annoyed by it and it was the most expensive club that any of our children have been in, so that made my annoyance even greater. Plus, every time there was additional fee - sometimes for a change of venue for practice, the coach would say, “The cost is ONLY blah blah blah.”  All those ONLY additional costs added up fast!

 

eta: most of the clubs were coached by someone without a player on the team.  I’m assuming that the fees we paid covered their costs.  Not sure why the costs were not built in to the fees of the one club already.

This is part of my beef with this particular situation-we weren't told ahead of time that this would be the case. 

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We pay a competition fee up front at registration-it lets the gym book travel for coaches when it is cheap rather than waiting, and many competitions have early registration fees for teams that are less than registering later. You then pay monthly for the team fees/coaching/tumbling, which, per hour, is actually cheaper than rec classes at the same gym.

The other big gym in the area has a similar total price, but has it all broken down monthly-and if you leave mid-season for any reason, you are still obligated to pay half the contract amount for the rest of the season-which, I suspect, is covering those fees already paid by the gym. I think having it up front and broken out probably leads to a lot less hurt feelings. I think I would find it annoying to have to pay half the contract amount each month while DD is rehabbing her knee and it's unknown if she will be able to go back at all, but being told "We're sorry, but we can only refund half your competition fees, because we have already paid those expenses through December" is a lot easier to accept.

 

 

 

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Our booster club covers those expenses. I wouldn't expect a non-parent coach to pay their own travel expenses.

For K-6, our wrestling booster club also covers entrance fees for kids whose parents can't afford it. For 7-12, our booster club covers expenses the high school won't cover, which includes team travel expenses. The boosters also cover camp fees, transportation, and gear (team shirts, bags, etc) for kids who don't have the resources to cover those expenses. We don't turn anyone away, and everyone gets equal coaching and opportunities. 

Booster clubs for my kids' other activities opperate the same way, but I'm not as close the actual booster leadership. Regardless, coaches don't pay their own travel and we aren't assessed any fees to cover. We do donate heavily to all activities so we do cover our kids' portion by the time it is all said and done.

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Yes... or coaches would be unable to attend.  It could also be considered illegal in some places to make an employee pay for accommodations/travel costs at a required business function outside the normal business area/hours for the employee.  Yes, tournaments/meets that a coach is *required* to attend are the equivalent of a business function.  Non-profits are not excluded from these rules, as a paid coach cannot volunteer to coach in the same capacity for which s/he is paid.  If your coach is a volunteer, it's kind of the least you can do for the person giving up their free time to coach your kids.

Usually, it's factored into the swimmer fees the team charges and not a separate fee.

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