Important questions to ask before signing up for summer camp

Bristol, R.I. (WPRI) — If you’re sending your children to summer camp, it’s time to start planning.

“They teach you a lot and it’s really fun!” 8-year-old Ella Pirri said.

According to the American Camp Association, there are more than 14,000 day and resident camps in the U.S. and there are more than 14 million campers.

Ella’s mom, Julie Pirri is happy her daughter is one of them.

“I think the health benefit of being outside and exercising and getting fresh air is very important,” Pirri said.

Choosing the right camp is a process that starts months ahead of the summer season.

“Finding the perfect summer camp is a different process for every parent,” said Paula Fleming of the Better Business Bureau. “Parents should look for a camp that covers their child’s age group and skill level and provides activities that are of interest to their child.”

Pirri says she and her husband spend time researching camps and include their daughter in camp-related decisions.

“I try to tie it into what sports or activities she does throughout the year,” Pirri said. “We also look into what makes you bored or tired.”

And because camp is an $18 billion industry, the cost is a factor parents also have to consider. The BBB recommends that you ask several questions:

  • Is my deposit refundable?
  • Is financial aid available?
  • Are there any extra charges that I may encounter?

The BBB also suggests you research the health and safety rules of a camp because it’s important for you to know what happens in case of an emergency.