One of the great things about educational tours is the distinct learning experience it provides to every attendee. No two students will ever have identical recollections of a trip. Each will experience it in their own unique way and leave with different life lessons.
The same can be said for organizing these tours. Each group will have individual needs that you, as the tour organizer, have to meet. Because of this, the demands on your organizational tools will vary each time.
As each trip has a unique set of requirements, many tour operators may not have the technology to capture booking and student registration information on their website. In this case, you might use a number of registration tools to action this. Ideally, though, the answer is to find a tour organizer platform that provides a single point for everything.
To help simplify things for you, we will take a look at some of the pros and cons of tools commonly used for registration purposes in the educational tour organization process.
Registration Tools Used For Registering Students On Educational Tours
When you get to the point that you need to finalize tour numbers, record attendee details, and start booking various elements of the trip, it is ideal to have technology that supports you in these endeavors.
However, what happens if you don’t have an advanced website or educational tour organizer platform that supports the trip registration process? You probably use separate tools for different facets of organization, although they hardly provide a holistic solution to streamline the process for both you and the students registering.
Google Forms are an obvious solution for recording registration information online. You compile the fields you need to be completed and then send the link directly to the interested students, parents, or stakeholders to fill out online. On receipt of the link, they can fill out the fields with the required information and submit the completed form. This information then populates into a database that you can use as a dashboard.
On the plus side, Forms are free to use, quick and easy to set up if you have the know-how, and automatically export information to Google Sheets. However, you won’t receive a notification when the forms are submitted, which means you have to frequently check back on the database. Also, as the organizer, you need a Gmail account to access the functionality.
Google sheets are useful for the team to collaborate during organization, but they have slower loading times and less processing power than excel. There aren’t as many formula options as the latter either, and in both cases, there is a large learning curve if you want to do any complex formatting or data analysis.
Excel has more functionality than Sheets but has no collaboration functionality for team members who may need to access it and work together.
When it comes to communicating with everyone after registration, Slack provides a central point to keep all communication in one place. You can create multiple conversations under different channels to stay organized, people can share files, and organizers can set up to-do lists to stay on top of tasks.
However, it’s not always easy to get students and parents onto the platform. This is because it’s fairly advanced and not an everyday communication channel that people use.
WhatsApp, on the other hand, is an everyday communication channel, and this means that the attendees will likely be open to using it. While you can send unlimited messages internationally, constant notifications can be distracting and sharing files on your phone can take up space. Not to mention that you need to transfer them for access from your laptop or work machine.
Facebook Groups are another option to communicate with your registered students and team. It is easy to set up an event for the tour as well as send out updates via messenger. Participants need a Facebook account to access the group though.
One final aspect that these registration tools lack when compared to a professional tour organizer platform is the connection with a payment platform. There is no easy way for you to collect deposits from trip attendees or process your own vendor payments.
Using A Platform To Register Students For Their Trip
We have good news for educational tour organizers. You can use the WeTravel platform to register and communicate with students, collect and manage their information, collaborate with the team, take in deposits, and pay your vendors all from one simple dashboard.
There are two ways to register students. You can embed WeTravel’s Book Now button onto your webpage to give it an iFrame overlay that keeps clients on your site while they book the tour. Alternatively, you can design a booking page for the tour and send the interested participants a link to it.
In either case, when the participants click through to register, they will be prompted to choose a package. After that, they will be directed to a form which requests all of their information. You can customize the form fields to collect exactly the data you need. From there, the next step is for them to input their payment information to pay their deposit.
Once completed, you will be able to access all of the student’s information and financial details from the WeTravel dashboard. You can send out bulk emails to everyone directly from the dashboard, as well as issue payment reminders when the time comes. Students will also be able to upload any relevant documents you require, such as passport copies.
Finally, you can add user permissions to give your team members access to the information, where they will be able to work on it together.
The Bottom Line
As you can see, WeTravel really simplifies the registration process for your educational tours. With a single point that facilitates booking, registration, communication, and payment functionality, it becomes much easier for your participants, and you, to be organized. To find out more about how WeTravel works, watch the video below. Alternatively, contact us via live chat to find out more.