The cost of gas reached an all time "month of March" high yesterday. Experts are predicting $5.00 per gallon by the summer. This is a scary number for youth sports parents. There are many reasons for these high prices including; 1) high demand for energy from emerging countries like China and India, 2) the shut down of several US refineries, 3) the seasonal move to higher cost summer blends, 4) the unrest in the middle east, especially in Iran and 5) a US government that has been short-sighted regarding energy policy for over 40 years.
If you were told you had to pay $7.62* for each practice, would you sign your kid up for sports?
* Assumes you drive a Honda Odyssey with MPG of about 20 mpg (hwy / city), practice is 10 miles from your house, you do not stay at the practice for the entire 2 hours - instead you drive back and forth twice.
If behaviors don't change in our government, then youth sports parents will need to change. Here are some interesting suggestions to deal with the rising cost of gas.
- Youth sports parents can charge their kids and any carpool kids a baggage fee for each trip. Little Bobby better fit his baseball bag under the seat or pay up. Tip for hockey moms - charge more for those oversized bags.
- Youth sports parents can stay at each practice for the entire 2 hours. This cuts the per practice cost in half to $3.81. Beware - this is like torture for many parents. Youth sports parents reveal deep dark secrets when tortured - like their disdain for the coach, some snotty kid on the team or the Hot Mom in the toddler sized spirit wear and push up bra.
- Youth sports parents can limit food service in the car. Yep - No more drive through visits to McDonalds for trips under 2 hours. You can provide a 1 oz bag of peanuts, a third of a can of soda with ice and a cocktail napkin. Bonus - If you can get a brand to advertise on the napkin.
- Youth sports parents can carpool more - great more stinky, sweaty, dirty kids in your car. Of course this is when you get the dirt on your teenager because chatty kids forget you are in the car after the first 5 minutes.
- Youth sports parents can charge their coach a fuel surcharge. If they really want little Johnny in goal, or batting clean-up, or posting up in the paint - they will need to pay up. I'm hiring Drew Rosenhaus to negotiate this deal for my son.
- Youth sports parents can abstain from one Starbucks Carmel Macchiato per trip to a practice. Yep - a trip to and from practice is about the same cost as a Starbucks foofoo coffee. Drive the kid to practice or drink a Starbucks Carmel Macchiato - ooh a tough choice for many moms and dads. I think a lot of kids will be missing practices, especially the morning ones.
Share your ideas in the comments