Do you need to raise money for a trip? Need some travel fundraising ideas? Whether you’re traveling internationally, domestically, studying abroad, or volunteering, here are some easy ways to fundraise for a trip.
Piggybackr.com is a crowdfunding website for teams of all ages and experience levels. We’re the only fundraising tool that is instructional and safe for users of all ages. Set up an online fundraiser, raise money for your cause, and collect donations all in less than 5 minutes. Sign up for free.
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I. Why fundraise for your trip?
Trips can be expensive. Airfare, transportation, housing, and program costs can add up quickly. The good news is, you know people right now who want to help. Your friends and family would love to see you study abroad, go on a class trip, or participate in great programs like the Student Ambassador program from People to People.
In this article, we’ll cover the main types of fundraisers so you’ll know which is best for you, and teach you how you can reach out to your entire network to help raise money for your trip.
II. Examples of trip fundraisers on Piggybackr
Piggybackr has helped people in all 50 states raise money. Here are just a few of our successful trip fundraisers.
Let’s Send the 8th Grade to DC!, Northern Light School’s Class of 2015
Organized by 8th Grade Fundraising
Northern Light School has been “Educating the Whole Child” for 25 years. The focus is on excellence in teaching basic academics as well as non-violence, acceptance of differences, respect for the environment, and the moral advancement of humanity - so that the children develop an understanding that they have a responsibility to make a difference in the lives of others.
People to People
Organized by People to People
We’re here to help you fundraise online for your upcoming trip. People to People Ambassador Programs has provided educational travel for students around the world for more than 50 years and taken more than 500,000 students on journeys to destinations spanning all 7 continents. Start crowdfunding now!
Study Abroad to Ghana, Charnae’s Study Abroad trip to Ghana
Organized by Charnae Betton
I am a senior at the City College of New York studying business with a minor in art. I am also a volunteer teacher who is passionate about art and education. I enjoy singing, listening to music, teaching, learning, and drawing. I am excited to learn about Ghanian culture and help build sustainable programs in the communities of Kobina Ansah and Akoanso.
New York, NY
Help Me Go to Europe!, People to People Student Ambassador
Organized by Avery Overholt
My name is Avery Overholt. I am a freshman honors student at Golden High School. I love playing volleyball, watching movies, and photography. I have 3 sisters and one lazy dog. It has always been my dream to travel to Europe. My family hoped to go to London last summer, but with a family of 6 including a two-year-old, none of us thought we could endure it. Then I applied for People to People and here I am.
Getting us to Guatemala!, Lending a Hand in Guatemala
Organized by Nicholas Bachhuber
My name is Nick, or Mr. Bachhuber to my students. I am currently a 10th grade social studies teacher and football coach in Detroit, Michigan. My girlfriend Morgan and I will be taking a gap year starting fall, 2014 to volunteer in rural Guatemala.
Royal Oak, MI
Help Us Serve Costa Rica, SixFiftyLacrosse Costa Rica Service Trip
Organized by Matt Bond
SixFifty Lacrosse is a Bay Area company dedicated to developing youth athletes and providing life-changing opportunities to give back to local communities.
Santa Clara, CA
Nursing Students Volunteering Peru, Clarke International Health Expedition
Organized by Emily Merritt
Group of Nursing students in Dubuque Iowa going to Huancayo Peru in 2015 to volunteer with an organization called FIMRC. We will be volunteering in the local hospitals, clinics, orphanages, and community to provide medical relief and health education. Please help us get to Peru!
Madison’s Trip to the Middle East, Olive Tree Initiative Trip
Organized by Madison
Hey there, I’m Madison and this summer I am headed to Palestine, Jordan, Israel, and DC! Along with 12 other of Berkeley’s best and brightest, I will be traveling with the Olive Tree Initiative to meet with influential politicians, think-tanks, NGOs, and civilians. If you support my decision to learn about the Palestinian-Israeli conflict first-hand, please show your support by DONATING :)
III. What are the different types of trip fundraisers?
There are many different kinds of fundraisers you can have for your trip. Here are the three main categories.
Product fundraiser - Selling items like the ones listed below to friends, family, and the neighborhood by going door-to-door or to local businesses.
- Candy bar
- Cookie dough
- Yankee Candles
- Krispy Kreme donuts
- Discount cards
Service and event fundraiser - Providing a service to your neighborhood and getting support in return.
- Car wash
- Yard clean-up
- Talent show
- Silent auction
Online fundraiser - Creating an online page and asking for support from friends, family, and community by email and social media. If you’re fundraising for travel, this could be a good option, as you can share pictures and updates during your trip.
IV. What are the pros and cons for each type of fundraiser?
Proven to work - Raising money for a trip may be difficult, so it’s safe to stick to what you know works. Since product fundraising has been used as the main type of fundraising for years, its proven to be successful. You’ll get money for your trip for every candy bar you sell.
It’s easy to understand - Anyone can go around selling cookie dough. Whether they are new to fundraising or an expert, they won’t have a problem with selling products to supporters.
Engage your neighborhood - You’ll be able to get support from people you wouldn’t normally be able to by going door-to-door or to local businesses to sell your products.
Low profit margin - Companies take around 50% of the money you raise from selling their product, so if you sell a candy bar for $2, you’re only left with $1 when fundraising for your mission trip.
Great for groups, but not for individuals - If you’re the only person raising money to go on your service trip, you’re going to have to sell a lot of popcorn to raise enough money. Product fundraisers work best when a large group is fundraising together.
Not safe - Going around the neighborhood to businesses or door-to-door is not the safest option to raise money. The street are not as safe as they use to be anymore so robbery is always a risk.
Takes a lot of work and time - Being able to sell enough candy bars or cookie dough to go on your trip will take a lot of time and effort. You’ll only be able to raise $1 from every candy bar you sell and supporters are usually not going to buy a ton of candy.
Service and event fundraisers
Everyone works together - Everyone gets to work together to fundraise for the class field trip. They’ll be learning valuable lessons working with the rest of the group while raising money for their upcoming trip.
Bring the community together - Hosting a car wash in your neighborhood will bring everyone together to support your cause. You’ll be reaching a lot of people in your community and getting a lot of support from them. It’s also a great time for you to interact with people in your community in person and tell them about your trip.
Takes a lot of time - Hosting a service fundraiser takes a day but it doesn’t guarantee that you’ll raise enough money for your trip. You might have to host a few fundraisers before you reach your goal.
Not a good option for individuals - Just like product fundraisers, they’re great when you are fundraising as a group, but it’s hard to host a car wash by yourself.
Keep more of what you raise - With online fundraisers, websites usually only take a small percentage of each donation. On Piggybackr, we only take 4% of each donation so you’ll be able to keep more of what you raise. This makes it an attractive option when fundraising for studying abroad.
Reach distant relatives - You can’t sell candy bars to friends and family that live in another state. With an online fundraiser, you’ll be able to reach your distant donors to ask for their support.
Less work - Create a fundraiser page, let supporters know about it, and see the donations roll in! No door-to-door sales and car washes.
Raise more - Instead of only getting $1 for every candy bar, supporters are more willing to donate based on how much you ask. On Piggybackr, the average donation is $86 - compare that to selling 86 candy bars!
Great for groups AND individuals - On an online fundraiser, you don’t have to be in a group to be able to raise a lot of money for your trip. With a group raising money for the same trip, you can save your team members work, and easily keep them motivated throughout your campaign. As an individual, we make it easy to reach out to your entire network for support. This makes it a great option for mission trip fundraisers, or any other kind of travel with a group, as well as personal travels like when studying abroad.
It’s still new - Crowdfunding is still pretty new so some people may not feel comfortable using it.
No interaction with the community - Since your fundraiser will be online, you won’t be able to interact with your community like having a product or service fundraiser. Even so, you can let your wider community know what you are doing, and keep them updated with notes and pictures.
V. Which type of fundraiser is best for me?
After seeing the different ways to raise money for a trip, deciding which type of fundraiser is right for you may be difficult. Here are some tips on picking the right one for your trip.
A product or service fundraiser may be right for you if:
- You want to stick to the traditional way.
- It’s worked for you before.
- Bringing the community together is important to you.
- You want in-person interactions with your supporters.
An online fundraiser may be right for you if:
- You’ve tried offline fundraising before and it didn’t work for you.
- You want to keep more of the money you raise.
- You want to reach more people all over the country.
- You want to raise more money with less effort and time.
If you’ve always had a product or service fundraiser and want to try another option to raise money for your trips, online fundraising could be the perfect choice for you. Read below for tips on how to fundraise for a trip online.
On Piggybackr, we’ve made it easy for beginners to switch from offline fundraising to online. With step-by-step instructions, you’ll learn how to fundraise online while creating your page.
VI. How do I run an online fundraiser on Piggybackr?
With an online fundraiser, you can either fundraise by yourself or as a team. We’ll show you how to raise money for a trip, like with People to People, as an individual, and as a team.
Create a page - Upload a photo to your page so you’re supporters know who they are donating to. Make sure it is a bright photo that represents yourself or what you are raising money for. We found that uploading a video really helps donors understand your fundraiser but it’s okay if you don’t have one.
Fill out your page with some information about yourself, what you are raising money for, and why donors should give. Show your supporters how passionate and excited you are about your trip. Remember to pull at their heart strings.
Promote your page - No one can support your fundraiser if they don’t know about it. Send an email to your friends, family, and community telling them about your fundraiser. You can also share it on social media like Facebook and Twitter and get support from your friends and followers.
Remind your donors - Once your supporters know about your fundraiser, just sit back and see the donations roll in. There are some donors that forget about your fundraiser so it’s a good idea to remind them when it’s close to the deadline.
Create a page - Upload a picture of your team and a video (if you have one) that depicts what you and your team is raising money for. Share with your potential supporters a little bit about your team, what you’re fundraising for, and why they should give. Show them how important this trip is to your team.
Invite your team - Have the rest of your team come on and fundraise with you. Piggybackr has made it easy for you to invite your team so you can all fundraise together. Just gather everyone’s emails and send them an invitation right on the page. Your team members will be able to come on and create their own page in just 2 minutes.
Promote your page - Let all your friends, family, and community know that your class is having a fundraiser for your upcoming field trip. We recommend each team member send 30-40 emails each. The more emails you send, the more people will know about your fundraiser.
Send reminders and updates - Send reminders to your team members to send out their emails or post their mid-fundraiser update. Let your potential donors know when there are only a couple days left to give.
Once you’ve gotten back from your trip, remember to send your donor’s an update on how your trip went - you can post pictures too!
VII. Successful online fundraisers on Piggybackr
SixFifty Lacrosse gives young players an opportunity to travel internationally and help serve local communities in Costa Rica. Their athletes facilitate education programs and work on construction projects to help underserved communities.
SixFifty Lacrosse needed to fundraise for their service trip so they brought their fundraiser online with 12 team members. They raised more than $6,000 for airfare, housing, meals, transportation, and more.
Empathy FX International is a program that allows students to travel to Ghana to help them build a school. They believe that education is for everyone, not just for those born into privilege.
For the 3 weeks that they will be traveling to Ghana, they wanted to build a school, send school supplies to the students, and teach them a variety of subjects like english, math, science, and art.
Within a few weeks, with 7 team members, they were able to raise more than $2,000 for their service trip to Ghana.
VIII. Tips on running an online fundraiser
Appreciate your donors - Even though you’re not selling anything on your online fundraiser, you should still show your appreciation to your donors. Give them small gifts that won’t cost you much like a thank you card or a picture from your trip.
On Piggybackr, you can select what sponsorship perks you want to give your donors right on your page. Pick small gifts you would like to give your supporters when they donate a certain amount to your fundraiser.
Set your sponsorship levels high - Donors usually give based on how much you ask so don’t be afraid to set your sponsorship levels high. The average donor on Piggybackr donates $86, so set you want to set at least one sponsorship level high! Donors will give more.
Send emails - This is the most important part of your fundraiser. You won’t get any donations if no one know about your fundraiser. Remember to send an email to everyone you know asking for their support or else you won’t raise enough money for your service trip.
Use Piggybackr’s emailing tool to send all your emails with just a click of a button. Simply upload all your contacts, use the template or write your own email, and click send. Within minutes, everyone you know will know about your service trip fundraiser.
Keep your team motivated - If you are running a team fundraiser, remember to keep each member motivated to reach their goal. Give small prizes for putting the most effort into the fundraiser or for sending the most emails. Or have a celebratory party when your team reaches their goal.
Piggybackr has a tool where you can see how all your team members are doing. Easily see how much effort they put into their fundraiser and how many emails they’ve sent. If one hasn’t created their page yet, poke them to remind them to join the fundraiser.