When getting ready for the summer most families plan on one of three things: Taking a vacation, sending kids to summer camps, or staying closer to home and using local parks and community centers.
As governments ease restrictions on COVID-19, price increases are impacting all three of these options.
Arizonans planning on summer travel already feel the increase in oil prices that have resulted in high gas prices. AAA says that while the price of gas will be a consideration people will still travel this summer.
One of the largest expenses for any traveler is lodging, and inflation is hitting that industry as well. According to data from the bureau of labor statistics, year over year growth in the cost of lodging away from home is up 25% from this time last year. Much of the spike can be attributed to the industry’s COVID-19 slump in 2020 and 2021, so if you booked a hotel room last year, you will be paying more now.
What about Summer Camps?
Data surrounding commercial or privately held summer camps is difficult to come by. A survey from 2020 done by the company Campminder reported that 1 in 5 summer camps ran above $1,500 in weekly tuition. But there are options for tighter budgets as well. Thirty-one percent of summer camps had a weekly tuition of under $200.
If you don’t have travel or summer camp plans there are options closer to home as well.
There are over 100 public community centers in the valley, many of which offer summer camps of their own. City of Phoenix spokesperson Adam Waltz told ABC 15 that their summer camps are low cost and open to all kids aged 6 to 12 regardless of where they live in the valley.
“Prices range from about $60 to $80 a week depending on the site, which are the same prices as 2019.” Waltz said.
Aside from these community centers, cities and towns across the county manage 996 parks and recreation spaces that include everything from BMX bike courses to splash pads. The map below is from the Maricopa Association of Governments and includes all of these spaces as well as the amenities offered.