Cheerleading can be a great experience for athletes, but like most things in life, it comes with a cost. That cost, however, can be somewhat controlled with these easy tips. Program Tips Research the team. Before committing to a team, research the season expectations and find out what the extra costs will be. If the team travels, you’ll have a lot of fees for transportation and accommodations, and possibly for additional gear. Decide if you can really take on that responsibility, or if you should look for another team to join. Register early. Some teams may offer a discount for early registration, as an incentive for people to commit to the team. This helps the team plan their season more easily. Keep an eye out for reduced costs with early registration. Pay your fees on time. Overdue payments may result in late fees. Stay on top of all your fees and pay them early to avoid these unnecessary charges. Ride sharing. Create a carpool club with other team parents and develop a schedule for practice pick-ups. This will help save each parent time and money throughout the season. Gear Tips Set a budget. Determine a budget for extras, like cheer practice wear, and stick to it. All those small shopping sprees for new shorts and tanks can add up. Take proper care of your gear. Read the wash and care label on all of your gear, and follow the instructions. Don’t leave your practice and work out clothes sitting in a gym bag for a week – wash them sooner rather than later to avoid permanent smells and stains. Plan ahead and shop for deals. You may not need practice wear for the new season in November, but many retailers have tons of deals and sales for the holidays. Plan ahead and shop for your gear early to help save money! Pair up with other parents to buy in bulk. Some cheerleading retailers will offer discounted pricing or free items with the purchase of a package. Pair up with other parents and make your purchases together to access those buy-in-bulk deals. What creative ways have you found to save money during your cheer season? Share your tips with our readers!