Events, functions and fundraising activities
Shopping tours take players, parents and friends on a bus tour of direct factory outlets for a spot of retail therapy.
The day is full of shopping as your participants are offered deals by participating outlets, exclusively for your club’s tour party.
With most bus companies that run these shopping tours, there are an array of outlets to choose from and they each offer a nominal gift for choosing them on the tour. These gifts are ideal raffle items to run between your shopping stops.
These events are a particular favourite with the female club members and can reap anywhere from $1000-$2000 from ticket sales and a percentage of all purchases made on the day. All that’s required is one co-ordinating volunteer and potentially a glass of bubbly.
Why a Shopping Tour?
A shopping tour is great for clubs who have an audience that likes fashion and likes to shop. It can also be easily held in conjunction with other fundraising ideas such as raffles and auctions.
While this fundraiser does call on your club community to donate you can invite your members to bring along family and friends. One of the benefits of a shopping tour is that your audience spending money on the day receive goods for their fundraising dollars as well as great discounts.
Traditionally an event that attracts more women than men, ensure you take into account your club and whether this will be appealing for your members.
When should I hold this fundraiser?
A shopping tour can be held at anytime during the year but linking it to a change in season (for fashion) is a great idea as people will often be looking to update or refresh their wardrobe.
These are the tasks you will need to consider assigning to volunteers at your club:
Before the Day
- Decide a date for the shopping tour.
- Contact and book a bus company.
- Promote the fundraiser.
- Organise ticketing arrangements.
- Organise volunteers to help.
- Organise any food and beverages that will be for sale.
- Organise any raffles or auctions that might run at the same time.
- Sell tickets.
On the Day
- Ensure the bus has arrived and your attendees are ready to go.
- Brief Volunteers of their roles.
- Enjoy the day!
- Monitor the event.
- Take lots of photos.
After the day
- Publicly thank everyone involved
- Announce the amount of money raised in club newsletters, on social media, website and around the club.
Who can help?
It is important to engage your members to help in the running of your fundraiser.
For a shopping tour you could approach them to help:
- Promote and sell the tickets
- Help organise any additional activities or raffles your club plans to hold on the day.
- Help logistically on the day
You could also approach current club Sponsors for any prizes you plan to use.
Recruiting your people
It is important to create a culture of volunteering at your club to help not only with fundraising but also across the day to day running of your club. For more on how to create this at your club, click here.
Using technology to make it easier
You may like to consider using technology to reduce the work load on your volunteers and increase your fundraising dollars.
You may like to sell tickets for your shopping tour online. An example of a website that allows clubs to do this is trybooking.com. This takes care of a great deal of the work usually left to volunteers and automates the ticket selling process. It also allows tickets to be purchased at any time of the day or night.
Selling tickets online means the event can be easily shared online by your members and supporters.
Your club may then also like to use social media, email newsletters and your club website to promote the event.
You may also like to live stream parts of the event on social media for anyone who can’t be there on the day.
The major risks for a shopping tour fundraiser is not filling the bus. A way to ensure this is not a problem is to pre-sell the tickets before making the final booking. A minor deposit will be required from the bus tour company, usually around $100.
Some other minor expenses should also be factored in such as water, soft drinks and nibbles on the bus if deemed appropriate.
You club will make sponsorship dollars through the selling of tickets, any percentage that shops are offering to donate back to the club for items purchased on the day and any additional activities (such as a raffle) that your club chooses to run.
Be sure to promote the kind of discounts and bargains shoppers can expect and encourage members to invite their friends.
Shopping tours are best promoted using:
- Club website
- Signs around the club (especially the canteen)
- Club Facebook and Twitter.
It is a great idea to encourage your club community to bring their friends and family along too! The more people that attend the greater the opportunity to raise even more fundraising dollars for your club.
As a shopping tour may also double as a social event at your club, you can use social media to build excitement. You can use social media to sell tickets and countdown to the day. You can also live stream parts of the event on the day so that those in your community that can’t attend can still be part of the event.
Social, Moral and Ethical Considerations
Supply of Alcohol
As this event could include alcohol it is important to consider whether there will be limits or restrictions set in advance. Clubs need to consider how they will manage the risks of binge drinking as well as the Responsible Service of Alcohol.
What can go wrong? (Risk Management)
There are obvious financial risks if enough tickets aren’t sold and the bus and tour costs more than is made.
The health and wellbeing of those who attend your event should be a focus at all times. It is important that your club takes time to consider all possible risks and how to minimise these.
Licenses and Permits
Food handling and service laws need to be considered. Liquor licencing and RSA requirements for serving drinks also need to be adhered to. If in doubt, check with the liquor licensing and food safety authority in your state or territory.
It is also important to contact your insurance company to ensure your public liability insurance policies cover the event.
Additional Factors to consider
When catering food ensure you cater for those with allergies and these are clearly labeled. Allergies can be life threatening and need to be considered seriously.
Additional Revenue Opportunities
A shopping tour provides an opportunity to run a raffle or silent auction to help build your club’s fundraising dollars. It is important however not to take away from the day by overdoing it on the extra fundraising activities.
This procedure should be treated as a guide only. Your club should seek advice specific to the needs of your club and event. Seek further details from authorities and service providers; especially in regards to insurance, licences, permits, spectator and participant safety.
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