8 Questions to Help You Choose the Right Summer Camp

It’s summertime, and it’s time to find your kid something fun to occupy their time. Summer camps are a tried and true tradition for fun.

With 14,000 camps existing in the United States, you have your share of choices. Each of them is unique and offer something fun for your child. 

There are many types of summer camps out there, and choosing the right one could seem daunting. But there are questions that you can ask to see if a summer camp is right for your child.

Keep reading to learn eight questions to ask to determine if a summer camp is worth attending.

1. What Is the Staff to Camper Ratio?

When you send your child to camp, you need to make sure that there are enough people available to handle any situation that comes up. If there is a poor ratio between campers and staff, there may not be enough staff available to provide proper care to everyone.

These ratios can also vary across different programs. A camp can claim to have proper staff available, but then have specific programs where those ratios are off. Make sure you ask about each program you are interested in so you can make the best decision.

2. Is the Camp ACA Accredited

If you don’t know what an ACA accreditation is, you can think of it as a set of standards set out by the American Camping Association.

These standards include a set of over 250 health and safety standards that must be followed to keep the accreditation. When you find a camp that supports these standards, then you have some reassurance that they take health and safety seriously.

3. How Does the Camp Handle Injuries?

You can take every precaution possible, and an accident can still happen. The question is, how are you going to deal with an accident when it occurs?

Before sending your child to a camp make sure staff is available and trained to deal with emergencies. Someone on the camp’s team should have training in risk-safety and other treatment protocols.

4. What Insurance Is Offered?

Just like injuries can happen, other accidents can happen too. Things can break, and property can get damaged. How does the camp handle these situations?

Sometimes things come up in life, and you have to cancel a camp trip. Does the camp offer cancellation insurance?

Having these options available for you can give you peace of mind when picking your camp.

5. What Are the Activity Schedules?

Are the activities at camp required or can your child pick and chose what they do?

Some kids may work well with a more regimented schedule where they have their activities lined up for them. Others may prefer independence and want to do things at their own pace. Make sure your choice has a schedule that your child will enjoy.

6. What Food Does the Camp Provide?

We know a lot more about nutrition than we used to. Parents are always on the lookout for high-quality food that isn’t going to make their kids sick.

Always check with a summer camp to see what food they provide to their campers. A lot of camping programs still offer all the staples: pizza, hot dogs, and snacks. But if you require a higher standard for your food, you will need to do more research to find a camp that offers it.

If your child has allergy restrictions, then a camp will need to provide dietary alternatives.

7. What Types of Summer Camps Do You Offer?

Are you looking for your child to have a fun getaway or want them to learn something while they are away? No matter your preference, there is an option for you.

Traditional Camp

When you think of a traditional camp experience, you probably think of campfires, bunk beds, and group activities. These camps are generally overnight camps that last at least a few days. For someone wanting a fun and social experience, a traditional camp is a great choice.

Sports Camp

Whether it’s traditional sports, watersports, or something more unique, a sports camp is excellent for kids who want to get out and move.

A sports camp will help your child get outside to do something more physical, and take part in a competition that will help them grow their character.

Art Camp

For children that want to explore their more creative side, they can explore the arts at camp. They can learn about acting, painting, dance, and any other creative outlet you can think of.

Exposing your children to the arts has shown to provide several benefits:

  • Improved motor skills
  • Inventiveness
  • Visual learning
  • Decision making

Allowing them to go to an environment where you can expose them to the arts can benefit them for a long time.

Action and Adventure

Paintball, rock climbing, zip lining, and obstacle courses. An action and adventure camp will provide your child with an experience that is hard to forget.

These camps provide a thrilling experience that will challenge and push your child further than they think they can go.


Sometimes we want to provide our kids with a way to learn something during the summer months. Educational camps exist to provide a way to accomplish this.

These camps can provide a hands-on experience that let your child engage in academics that they might not get at school.

8. How Long Do the Camp Sessions Last?

Are you looking for a day here or there? A weekend or a week? Or would your child like to spend the whole summer away? Some camp sessions may last less than a week, while others will last a month or more.

Each child has their own comfort level when it comes to this. Talk with them to verify what they want to do.

Shorter camps can provide specific experiences that offer fun and skill learning. An extended camp can give a sense of independence for your child and allow them to branch out on their own. Extended camps also allow for deeper skills development and more activities.

Don’t Be Afraid to Ask Questions

Picking a good summer camp shouldn’t be a quick decision. There are many types of summer camps out there, and you won’t know if one is the right choice unless you ask.

Talk with your child to learn what they want, so you know what you need to learn.

At Pali Adventures our Parent Liaisons are eager to answer any questions you have. Contact us today to learn how we can provide a safe and fun adventure for your child.