How much does summer camp cost?
$50 – $500 day camp cost per week
$1,000 – $2,000 sleepaway camp cost per week
$100 – $1,000 specialty camp cost per week
Summer camp cost
Summer camp costs $50 to $500 per week for day camp and $1,000 to $2,000 per week on average for overnight sleepaway camp. Non-profit club and YMCA summer camps cost $50 to $300 per week. The price covers camp fees only, with added costs for transportation, meals, and extended hours.
|Type||Average weekly cost||Details|
|Summer day camps||$50 – $500||
|Resident (overnight) camps||$1,000 – $2,000||
|Specialty summer camps||$100 – $1,000||
Summer day camp costs
Summer day camp costs $50 to $500 per week, with many camps open from 6:30 am to 6:00 pm for working parents. Public parks and non-profits offer the most affordable camp options, starting in early summer and running until school resumes in the fall.
|Programs||Average weekly cost|
|Public parks||$50 – $200|
|Non-profit organizations(YMCA, Boys & Girls Club)||$50 – $300|
|Scout camp(Boy and Girl Scouts of America)||$100 – $300|
|Aquariums, Museums, & Zoos||$100 – $350|
|School-run summer camp||$275 – $500|
Camp tuition is just one expense to consider when budgeting for summer camp. Other costs include:
Meals and snacks – Day camps that include breakfast or lunch cost more than those who have campers bring a packed lunch.
Transportation – Day camps may offer daily transportation for an added fee.
Extended day – Day camps running 4 to 8 hours may offer before or after care for an added fee.
Facilities and amenities – Camps with swimming pools, tennis courts, and gymnasiums often charge higher rates than those held at a local community center or park.
Overnight sleepaway camp prices
Traditional overnight summer camps cost $1,000 to $2,000 per week, often with reduced tuition for full-summer stays. Sleepaway campers live in cabins and spend their days playing games and water sports, learning wilderness skills, and exploring nature.
|Length||Average total cost|
|2 weeks||$2,000 – $4,000|
|3 weeks||$3,000 – $6,000|
|4 weeks||$4,000 – $8,000|
|6 weeks||$6,000 – $11,000*|
|8 weeks||$8,000 – $15,000*|
*Includes price reduction for full-summer enrollment
Top overnight summer camps cost
The top overnight summer camps cost $3,700 to $14,700 and run for 2 to 8 weeks on average.
Camps typically host kids from7 to 15 years old.
Sleepaway camps may be single-gender or co-ed.
|Camp||Gender(s) served||Duration||Average total cost|
|Camp Pemigewassett||Boys only||3.5 – 7 weeks||$7,550 – $10,800|
|West End House Camp||Boys only||2 – 8 weeks||$3,700 – $10,000|
|Lake of the Woods||Girls only||2 – 8 weeks||$3,800 – $12,800|
|Lake Bryn Mawr Camp||Girls only||5 – 8 weeks||$11,000 – $14,700|
|Camp Weequahic||Co-ed||3 – 6 weeks||$5,000 – $11,600|
|Camp Watitoh||Co-ed||4 – 7 weeks||$9,300 – $12,600|
Specialty summer camp prices
Specialty summer camp costs $100 to $1,000 per week. Specialty camps focus on a single subject for kids who want to explore a specific activity or sport, such as:
Arts – Ceramics, photography, painting, fashion design, film and video
Education – Language, engineering, math, robotics, STEM, and computers
Sports – Baseball, Golf, Tennis, Horseback riding, Multi-sport, Sailing
Religion – Jewish education, Christian retreat, vacation bible school
Are there financial aid options for summer camp?
Financial aid options are available for parents that can’t afford summer camp. Funding may be found through:
Camp scholarships for financially disadvantaged students
Camp sponsorships through local organizations, churches, and clubs
Government subsidized camps
Federal IRS tax credits and reimbursement programs
Does summer camp count as dependent care?
Day camp expenses count as dependent care under the federal Child and Dependent Care Credit program. Parents with children under age 13 are eligible if they use the camp as child care while they work, look for work, or attend school full-time.
Is summer camp tax deductible?
Summer camp for children under age 13 is a tax-deductible expense. Eligible families claim a tax credit of up to 35% of expenses, with a maximum of $3,000 for one child or $6,000 for two or more children.
Summer camp alternatives and costs
Summer camp hours and fees do not always fit the parents' schedule or budget. Many parents rely on these additional summer childcare options:
A daycare center costs $400 to $1,500 per month or $100 to $350 per week.
In-home daycare costs $125 to $225 per week.
A private nanny costs $525 to $1,000 per week and works a more flexible schedule.
A live-in nanny costs $700 to $1,200 per week, plus room and board.
A nanny share costs $350 to $600 per week to split private nanny costs with another family.
An au pair costs $325 to $480 per week as part of a cultural exchange program.
Summer camp rates FAQs
Are summer camps worth it?
Yes, summer camp is worth the cost to build a child’s confidence, independence, and sense of adventure.
What do you do at summer camp?
Summer camps typically focus on outdoor activities like team sports, swimming, archery, and exploring nature. Indoor rainy-day activities include board games, arts and crafts, science experiments, and scavenger hunts.
When do summer camps open?
Most summer camps open in May or June, depending on the last day of school. Public school and county Parks & Recreation camps typically run through the entire summer.
How long is summer camp?
Sleepaway camp sessions run for 2 to 8 weeks, while summer day camps run for one week, two weeks, or even full summer sessions.
Are there summer camps for adults?
Yes, there are summer camps for adults wanting to take a break from adult responsibilities to enjoy the lazy days of childhood. Some camps have nostalgic dining halls and organized activities, while others offer gourmet dining and cocktail parties by the pool.
Finding the right summer camp
When evaluating summer camps, be sure to:
Decide whether a day camp, overnight camp, or specialty camp is best for your child.
Look for camps accredited by the American Camp Association (ACA).
Select camps that fit your budget, schedule, and child’s interests.
Ask about counselor training, safety policies, and medical supervision.
Take a camp tour to see the facilities including the dining hall, cabins, nurse’s office, sports fields, and swimming or play areas.
Request a sample activity schedule.
Questions to ask
How long has the camp been operating?
Is your camp accredited by the American Camp Association?
What age group is the camp for?
What is the student-to-staff ratio?
Where is the camp held?
What is the background and experience of the camp directors?
Are the camp counselors adults or teens?
Does the camp fill up fast? Is there a waitlist?
Do you offer any financial aid or scholarship programs?
Do you offer discounts for siblings, referrals, or multi-week enrollments?
What deposits are required? What payment plans are offered?
What is the camp's cancellation policy?
Are the kids allowed to call home or receive comfort packages?
Is transportation provided to and from camp?
Do you have trained medical staff on-site? What happens in a medical emergency?
Are meals and snacks included in the camp cost?
How do you handle food allergies and medication needs?
Will drinking water be accessible throughout the day?
Where do students sleep, eat, and play?