Overseas Trips / Week without Walls

Here's how to set up an Overseas trip, by combining the benefits of our instant book and preference features.  If you need a way to manage who is eligible to book an activity, for instance by who has paid a deposit for an activity, a great way to do this is to use the Pre-Requisites feature of SchoolsBuddy.  You can use this for paid or unpaid bookings as required.  

Using this 'deposit' booking process you can quickly create a group of people to easily manage communications, preference selection, billing and indeed many other functions in SchoolsBuddy.

This article assumes some prior knowledge - if you need help with any of the included topics please see these other guides:

Creating an Instant Book and Pay Sign Up (School Trip)

Creating a preference based- After School Activity Sign Up

Charging Parents a Fee with Quick Charge

First, create an Instant Book container where parents are able to book and pay a deposit.  Making a booking will add them to a group which we will call "Deposit Paid".  Set up the container like this:

  1. This Description is shown to parents on the Bookings pages.  You can use it to explain that they will be able to make further bookings, once they have paid their deposit.
  2. The Maximum Bookable Events doesn't really need to be limited - a parent should be allowed to book for the same number of times that they have children if they are paying for 1 deposit per child.
  3. Set the Activities Start & End Dates to the latest date that you would like all deposits to be paid by.  After this date, nobody will be able to pay a deposit.
  4. Set the Sign Up Opens & Closes Dates to the period of time when parents are allowed to book.  In this case, they can book from now, until last day they can pay the deposit.
  5. Be careful to deselect Use Organisation Block Dates if the last day to pay the deposit is scheduled in holidays which have been blocked out already.
  6. Use this space to add any terms and conditions, which the parent will need to agree to before they are able to book, or link to further details on your school website.

Create one group: this will include all students that have paid deposits after the parents have made the booking;

Create one, individual event.

  1. Title this the "Deposit Payment".
  2. Set the place limit to match how many places you have available on the trips overall.
  3. Set the price of the deposit amount.
  4. Set the Event Date and Time as the last day that deposit payments will be taken.

Next, set up a preference container for the Overseas trip options:

  1. Select the Ignore day of week button.  This feature was designed for trips where parents already know the dates so the calendar doesn't matter too much.   The trips will be defaulted to a Monday in the diary, within the activity date range selected.
  2. Set the Number of Preferences up to a maximum of 5.
  3. Set the Activity Start & End Dates to the week when the trip will show in the calendar (this date range must include a Monday).
  4. Set the Sign up Opens and Closes Dates to the period that parents have to make their selections (after which you will allocate places).
  5. If the trips are in the School holidays, don't use Organisation block dates as these dates will probably be blocked out.

Add groups for each trip. 

  1. Set the group's Availability but add a Prerequisite that the booker must be in the "Deposit Paid" group that you have created previously.  This stops parents from accessing the container to make selections until after they have paid their deposit.
  2. Add the cost of the next instalment for the trip that you would like to charge and select the cost type "Per term" (All preference container billing is managed per term)
  3. If your finance team uses Billing codes, you could use these to group all the charges together by using the same code for each group, including the original deposit group.




When parents begin to book and pay their deposit, they will automatically be added to the group you created:

This will allow them to see the 2nd container where they can make selections: 

When parents have made their selections you can allocate and generate the register / attendance list for each group.

You can send messages to the "Deposit Paid" group with any updates for all the trips, or you can send messages to the individual trip groups.  You could also use these groups to charge any final payments: