Venues, including museums, planetariums, and farms, need to attract school groups to remain financially viable and ensure a diverse audience. But no comprehensive platform exists that connects teachers with the field trip programs that will enrich their classrooms. That’s a major gap, considering that every day in America, there are over 200,000 field trips.
EdTrips, the leading platform for planning and managing educational travel, announced today that they have launched just such a platform. The new, expanded version of the EdTrips platform includes the new Explore, an online marketplace and crowdsourced educational travel platform, where teachers can find field trip programs based on travelers’ ages, Common Core objectives, and other criteria. Venues can share their educational programs, promoting them to teachers. Educators can post field trips they create, review sites, and share tips and ratings.
EdTrips launched the first version of their platform, an online payment and traveler management platform, in late September, and has already garnered over 36,000 signups. The new platform adds the online sourcing component. “We’re really now one-stop shopping for educational travel,” notes Laura Wallendal, EdTrips’ co-founder and COO. “Teachers can plan and manage educational travel, and discover creative trips to give their students something new. Venues can promote their educational programs to educators at the moment they’re planning a field trip.”
“Teachers learning from other teachers is central to what we’re doing,” adds Wallendal. “Any teacher can post their favorite field trip, and other teachers can take that exact trip. It’s a perfect way to share best practices.”
Educators can join the platform for free. The platform adds a 4% fee to online ticket sales, and this online payment system is the only fee for teachers and travelers. For venues, the company will be offering a freemium pricing model for promoting their destination on the site. In addition, the platform also has offerings for travel abroad and adult-learning programs, including traveler management and payment. With over $20 Billion spent every year in the educational travel market, the company sees huge efficiencies that can be realized with the online platform. “Educational trips are an area where technology can make such a huge difference, the way it has in other areas of travel and learning. It’s so exciting seeing our users be able go on the perfect trip—anywhere—with just a few clicks,” says Wallendal.