We recognize the efforts that teachers and school trips organizers make in order to produce an educational trip. It is another element of their unflagging labor of dedication and passion as educators. Teachers are heroes.
Teachers travel with us for free, in recognition and appreciation for their efforts and support for organizing a trip and serving as a chaperone.
However, some teachers are now receiving direct and very large kickbacks from other student travel companies. This is a disturbing trend occurring in the “educational” travel business. Some travel companies offer and pay direct kickbacks to teachers who select them as their educational travel provider.
While the practice is nothing new in the world of business and politics, it has intensified in the realm of educational travel. Some teachers are offered incentives by these travel companies, typically by the large companies, to select their services. Some teachers receive cash payments, airline tickets that are not associated with the tour, and flat screen TV’s.
Many parents today are afflicted by economic adversities, and many of them feel pressure nonetheless to send their child on a class trip but cannot realistically afford it. We offer a different solution that helps the children and their parents. We believe the children come first.
Students paying a higher price
Before dissecting the practice let’ s look at who is paying for it – the traveling students. By selecting a tour company offering kickbacks and incentives, these incentives have to be paid for by the paying travelers – students. The teachers are therefore making money directly from their students. This is a practice we are sure some parents would be more than curious to know about.
Favors the highest bidder
This is disruptive to an efficient market. A company can have a better offering and overall service, but the kickback can skew the selection process. The trip will not necessarily be awarded to the best educational tour company.
Ultimately, the parents and students pay more for a tour than what was necessary.
No obligation of service – no need to invest in Quality Control
The tour organizers, having received a large kickback, are not impartial in judging the quality of the service, and the result is that tour companies may not deliver as best they could. When the fix is in, it obviates the obligation for Quality Control.
The defense waged by most culprits is that “everyone else is doing it”. GO Educational Tours has always spurned this practice, and is now exposing it. Smaller and better tour companies exist, and like them, we work hard to offer the best tour possible at the best price.
We work for the result: a rewarding, educational, fun tour experience that is easy for the teachers and memorable for the students. We want our groups to be happy at the end of their tour. Paying a kickback vitiates the obligation of fulfillment because the selection was based on a financial windfall and not on the execution of a good service.
We are proud to offer a referral incentive program, in lieu of kickbacks, which reduce the cost of the tour to the parents and children. Our referral program offers students and teachers travel credits that will directly reduce the cost of their tour.