Save money on fall sports: Registration, equipment and more

With fall on the horizon, it’s almost time to start registering kids for fall sports teams. While sports are a valuable activity for kids, registration costs, travel expenses and equipment can all add up to an expensive bill in the end.

We’ve put together some suggestions to help you save money while signing up your child for fall sports:

Volunteer with the team

A lot of sports leagues offer discounts if parents are willing to help out with the team. Teams are often looking for coaches, assistant coaches and trainers. But if being a coach is too much of a commitment, see if there are other opportunities like organizing fundraising events, managing travel logistics for tournaments or even being in charge of snacks and water for practices and games .

Bonus: Not only will volunteering for your kid’s team hopefully save you money, but it’s a great way to spend quality time together.

Plan to carpool

Between practices, games and tournaments you can end up having to drive a lot over the course of your child’s sport season. Save wear and tear on your car and money on gas by carpooling with other team members. Find another parent and rotate days that you drive the kids to practice.

Buy or swap used equipment

You can usually find used sports equipment for a fraction of the cost compared to buying brand new. Most kids grow out of their equipment fairly quickly so you can often find used gear in good condition. Visit your local sports store – most have a used equipment section. Otherwise check out what people are selling online, or see if your child’s league organizes an equipment swap (if they don’t, maybe volunteer to organize one).

And, don’t forget to sell or swap your kids used equipment that they don’t use anymore. We suggest taking the money you make from used equipment and putting it towards costs for the next season.

Register siblings for the same league

Most leagues offer a discount if you have two kids registered for the same league. You likely have to pay full price for your first child, but are able to take advantage of a discounted registration fee for your second and/or third child.

Register on time

Make sure you register by the deadline in order to avoid late registration fees. Even better, you can try and take advantage of discounted early bird fees.

Finally, take advantage of offseason times to put money towards a fund for your child’s sports and other recreation activities. By saving year-round, you’ll be able to better budget for sport expenses rather than making a big dent in your wallet at the time of registration.

Good luck to all the teams starting their season this fall!