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Questions to Ask When Choosing a Camp

The success of your conference, workshop, camp or weekend away is heavily dependent on the site you choose. You need to select it with care and ensure it matches your needs. These questions will help you to make the appropriate choice.

In addition to these questions, the Australian Camps Association offers a free booking enquiry service that can be of immense help to you in locating a camp that meets your needs, for your particular date, location and price range. Visit our Free Booking Enquiry Service for more information.

A key resource at the planning stage is the camp operator - they’ll be happy to discuss your group’s requirements and how the camp may be best utilised. Plan to meet the manager well ahead of your camp so adequate arrangements can be made. A visit to the site well before the camp and preferably before making a final booking will ensure things go smoothly.


sleepy.pngDo you know:

  • How many people the camp can accommodate?
  • How many people are likely to attend your camp?
  • If the site has a minimum number or minimum fee for booking?
  • If you have sole occupancy or will you be sharing the site?
  • Is the site inclusive in its physical structure / management - eg. are the buildings and surrounds suitable for people living with limited mobility or disability (if required)?
  • If the site has many cabins or one large lodge?
  • How many people will share a room?
  • What bedding is provided (e.g. doonas, blankets, pillows), or what bedding do you need to bring (e.g. sheets, pillow cases, pillows, sleeping bag)?
  • If heating/cooling is available and in which buildings?
  • If there are sufficient indoor meeting areas if the weather turns inclement?

Toilets and Showers

Do you know:showerhead.png

  • How many toilet and shower areas there are?
  • If there are ensuite facilities?
  • If the toilets and showers areas are adjacent to the accommodation or in separate buildings?
  • If the toilets and showers meet your special needs (e.g. are they wheelchair accessible)?
  • If there are clothes washing or drying facilities?


Do you know:

  • Your group’s special dietary needs – eg. does anyone have any food anaphylaxis, allergies, intolerances or faith-based requirements?
  • If you want catering provided or do you want to do your own catering?pasta.jpg
  • If the latter, what self-cater facilities are available – eg kitchen, cool storage, utensils?
  • If the former, will there be morning/afternoon tea and supper?
  • If there will be a continuous drink supply (eg. tea/coffee)?
  • If the meal times suit your program or can they be changed?
  • If there is a BBQ area?
  • If the campers are required to set tables, collect dishes, help with the washing up?
  • If meals can be provided off-site, if required?

Campers Dutiescleaning.jpg

Do you know:

  • If the campers have duties during the camp (e.g. cleaning, dishwashing, table setting and clearing)?
  • If the responsibilities and duties of campers is provided in writing?
  • The clean up procedures for the end of camp?


Do you know:

  • What activities are available on-site?
  • Which activities you can run yourself and what activity equipment is available for your use?canoe1.jpg
  • What training do you need to conduct these activities?
  • If the camp will brief you on the conduct of certain activities?
  • Which activities require camp staff to manage?
  • If there is an additional charge for these camp staff?
  • If camp staff are available for other assistance (eg after hours)?
  • If there is a handbook which describes this information?
  • If the camp has information about nearby attractions and resources?
  • If any activities are outsourced by the camp?


Do you know:feesicon.png

  • The total cost per person?
  • If there are any concessions (e.g. 1 in 10 free for schools)?
  • If you can claim any GST (if a school group)?
  • What additional charges (if any) apply?
  • How much the deposit is and by when it must be paid?
  • When you need to make your final payment?
  • If you pay a bond?
  • The timing of payments, confirmations or cancellation, and deposit payments?
  • Under what circumstances would you get your deposit / bond refunded?
  • If the conditions of hire are provided in writing?
  • Is there a ‘self-cater’ charge for using the kitchen / cool storage areas?

Getting There

Do you know:bus.png

  • The travel time to the camp by coach or car?
  • If the camp can organise transport?
  • If you need transport on hand (eg for any hospital runs) while you are at the camp?
  • If there is a local coach company for local use?
  • The precise directions to find the camp?


Do you know:group leader.png

  • How to contact the manager after hours?
  • If the manager resides on-site?
  • The telephone number / email for booking?
  • Your group’s special dietary and/or medical needs and have you informed the manager of these at least 10 working days prior to arrival?
  • Your special program needs and have you told the manager of these?


Do you know:

  • If there is reliable mobile phone reception?firstaidkit.jpg
  • If there is a public telephone available for emergency use?
  • Where the emergency numbers and emergency procedures are displayed at the camp?
  • If there are any fire or water restrictions in place during your planned visit?
  • The telephone number of the camp for camper use?
  • If the camp has public liability insurance?


Do you know: ATAP logo.png

In many states, schools are required to only use accredited camps. You might prefer to do the same for your group.

  • Is the camp accredited?

If the answer to this is ‘yes’ an independent check will have been regularly carried out at the camp.

The requirements that must be met to attain accreditation are available from the Quality Tourism http://www.qualitytourismaustralia.com/

An up to date list of all Australian Camps Association member camps and their accreditation status is available on the Australian Camps Association website https://auscamps.asn.au/camps-activities/search-camps.

Find out more about accreditation here.

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Latest News

Call for Expression of Interest ICDC - Trainer

The Australian Camps Association (ACA) is seeking expressions of interest from suitably qualified and experienced Camp professionals to become an International Camp Directors Course (ICDC) Trainer.

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