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Review of CampLeaders

CampLeaders reviews

57 reviews
24-26 Mount Pleasant
Liverpool, CT L3 5RY, UK
Tel: (44) 151-708-6868
uk@campleaders.com

57 Reviews From Our Community

Service
10
Value
9
Shipping
1
Returns
1
Quality
7

All Reviews

leighannr1
1 review
0 helpful votes
10/5/18

My 18 year old signed up with camp leaders, I wasn't sure she was mature enough, but thought if she does it all herself then it's ok.
I read all the information, at loads of stages it states, if you haven't completed this by this date you will be removed. She hadn't completed a lot of the information and at no stage did they warn her or remove her.
Infact they even went as far as booking her flights when she hadn't even applied for a visa.
We contacted them within the timescale on the website to withdraw , but were told she'd still have to pay for flights, I find it hard to believe they don't book flexible flights.
I wonder how many more young kids they rip off for hundreds of pounds .......

shaunp16
1 review
0 helpful votes
10/6/17

I've ended up at the best camp and had the best summers of my life thanks to camp leaders. They have helped me threw my whole application without any hassle. I was a tennis specalist at my camp for 3 years and the opportunity for me to end up such a great camp wouldn't have happened if it wasn't for camp leaders

rebeccah117
1 review
6 helpful votes
9/22/17

I applied for Camp Leaders as soon as the applications opened in June of this year. I have had an interview, passed, spent several hours completing all my details and have now just been rang to be told, point blank, that my date of departure is too late. I wouldnt mind if they would have told me that in JUNE when they rang me to confirm my dates but I was told they were fine. I have had to inconvenience people to get my references and Im not even being paid the full deposit amount back even though it is completely their fault. Ive had to have an interview as well, I do not understand how it has taken them until September the 22nd to ring me and tell me this. 3 months after I first applied. I am thoroughly disappointed and very angry with the service I received and the fact that their error is resulting in some of my hard earned money not being returned. DO NOT USE THEM even if your dates are fine. If they do this to me, who knows what other tricks they will pull.

ianm122
1 review
0 helpful votes
6/15/17

I went to camp several times and it is one of the best things I have ever done. I would absolutely recommend camp and camp leaders. Go do it.

danielh145
1 review
0 helpful votes
11/15/16

Thanks to these guys I spent a great summer working out in America. I was teaching children how to sail which was both enjoyable and rewarding. I would recommend this experience to everyone as it really has taught me many things.

rossj9
1 review
2 helpful votes
10/4/16

Best summers of my life were spent at camp in America and was all made possible by camp leaders. They have amazing customer service and support you every step of the way.

Tip for consumers: Get your application in early to avoid dissapointment!

Service
Value
Quality
charlotter16
1 review
3 helpful votes
10/4/16

I spontaneously signed up to go to camp after years of wanting to go and definitely made the right choice going through Camp Leaders. They helped me every step of the way, answering endless silly questions, kept me up to date with what I needed to do to showcase myself in the best possible way, greeted me at my embassy appointment and made sure that I was completely ready for camp. I have since had 2 of the best summers of my life at a camp for underprivileged children. I urge anyone who thinks this is what they want to do, to go through camp leaders and have THE best summer youll ever have!

amyt69
1 review
2 helpful votes
10/4/16

I can't thank Campleaders enough for all their help and for giving me the opportunity to spend 2 amazing summers in America!
My first summer at camp was 2014 and after a few recommendations from friends I signed up with Campleaders. The application process was so easy to understand and the Campleaders staff were so helpful and available anytime. I was able to go straight through to the phone lines to speak to someone who was always so enthusiastic to help. I was placed before Christmas so within just a few months!
My time at summer camp was honestly life changing and I came home with such a new perspective of life and with some insane experiences. It really helped me grow as an individual. I made some life long friends which I still skype and meet up with all the time! After having a year off camp last summer, I decided I needed to go back! Campleaders were again great with helping me as a returner and get all the relevant paperwork ready. They were speedy with email queries and with confirmation of uploaded documents. This summer at camp was my favourite yet! I returned to my previous camp and met some more amazing people. I then traveled around 10 states post camp with my Aussie Bestie and had an absolute blast! I can't thank Campleaders enough!

beccab15
1 review
1 helpful vote
9/30/16

I spent a fantastic summer at camp through the help and guidance of camp leaders. As soon as I applied I was contacted by a team member in the office who explained the process to me and what I needed to do. Following the interview, I finished my application and called the office countless time to ask various different questions. Everyone I spoke to was happy to help and not at all bothered by my potentially silly sounding questions. I was lucky enough to be placed at the camp leaders job fair, and after completing all of the paperwork I was off to camp. Having researched all of the agencies before I decided to use camp leaders, i could not recommend them enough. All of the office staff are so helpful and the pricing system is so well explained on the website! If you're debating whether to go to camp, do it and use camp leaders, you will not regret it!

maevew
1 review
3 helpful votes
9/28/16

Thanks to Camp Leaders I had a fantastic summer this year at camp. From when I started my application all the staff were so helpful and informative which helped the application process go smoothly. The office were always friendly and happy to help anytime I phoned no matter what my questions were. Applying through Camp Leaders helped me to get placed at a camp that provided me with a great experience and allowed me to get the job I wanted to do. I would highly recommend for anyone to apply through camp leaders.

emilym103
1 review
1 helpful vote
9/28/16

If you are thinking of applying for this programme, all I can say is just do it. Take the leap of faith and apply! I did just that last year and I have just returned from what I can describe only as being the best summer of my life. It all sounds cheesy, but it's true. Camp opened up my eyes and I have came home a better person. I'm hoping I get the chance to do it all over again in 2017. Camp Leaders is an amazing company to go with, they help you with every step of the journey. Anytime I needed help with the application process, it was nice knowing that Camp Leaders were only a phonecall, email or tweet away. Every member of staff goes out of there way to help and they make the full process easy peasy.

Service
Value
yasminc1
1 review
1 helpful vote
9/27/16

In Summer 2016, I was successful in hired by Camp Nock-a-Mixon (a summer camp in Philadelphia) and it was all down to Camo Leaders. From the start of my application, right to the end, they were there to give friendly help and guidance. I never once felt alone whilst applying for my summer role, with Camp Leaders helping hand, I feel like I reached my true potential- and was able to experience my best summer (yet) as a result!

kerrid3
1 review
2 helpful votes
9/27/16

I've just finished my second incredible summer working in America and I can't thank Camp Leasers enough for helping me get there and guiding me through the process. The customer service I received was excellent, the staff were super friendly and helpful and went out of their way to stay in contact with me throughout the journey and answer any questions I had. They made the daunting process of obtaining a visa and organising transport so easy, and given the amount of support I received, it was definitely great value for money and worth every penny.

lilibetd
1 review
0 helpful votes
9/27/16

After using camp leaders last year, I cannot say a bad word about it! The staff are absolutely wonderful and make a very complicated process seem simple. If I ever had any problems I could always get through to a member of staff and the issue would be rectified straight away. I could not recommend camp leaders more!

mariskah1
2 reviews
0 helpful votes
9/27/16

I have been through this company 3 summers in a row and they have been equally helpful each time!! They are always willing to help everyone and keep in contact with you so you keep ontop on deadlines and payments. I would totally recommend this company!!

philippac3
1 review
1 helpful vote
9/27/16

I applied through Camp Leaders to go to work at a summer camp in the USA last year. The application process was straightforward and the Camp Leaders team were there to support me with any questions I had along the way. I would recommend Camp Leaders to anyone wishing to work at a summer camp.

Service
Value
natasham26
1 review
1 helpful vote
9/27/16

Camp Leaders are all about getting the best experience for the individual. Very grateful for my journey and opportunities gained with this organisation.
Would recommend the Camp Leaders experience to any young person. Life changing!

emilyi4
1 review
1 helpful vote
9/27/16

I applied late in 2015 after a rash decision and I could not fault Camp Leaders! They supported me right through my application and helped to make sure I completed everything on time. I had an amazing time and have just returned from my second summer working and travelling in the States. Couldn't recommend this experience to anyone more, wish I could go back to camp every summer! :)

Service
Value
Quality
markw242
1 review
4 helpful votes
8/30/16

Had the best summer, meeting and working with people from all over the world. Traveling after was so fun. Nothing better the Lifeguarding in the sun. Can't wait to go back and see all my friends!

rachaelm23
1 review
6 helpful votes
8/24/16

I went through Camp Leaders a few years ago and could not have been happier with the service they provided. The application process was very clear and straightforward and I could contact Camp Leaders so easily if I had any queries. I was placed at one of the job fairs and had a wonderful summer. Would definitely recommend!!

ep429
1 review
4 helpful votes
8/24/16

When I applied to Camp Leaders, I was expecting the best summer ever. The reality is that not only I missed different lots of other opportunities, but also money, time and tons of phone calls.
Even though I was told that about 99% percent get placed, I was one of those 1%. Personally, I think there are more that 1% in my situation each year.
I think that if someone wants to do this during summer, they should directly contact camps, as the chances of getting a job would be higher.
Moreover, if you do so, you won't have to pay ahead a big amount of money and not even have a job secured.

Response from Camp L., CampLeaders Representative
Thank you for reaching out to us. We appreciate your feedback.

You might already be aware of this but we do not own any summer camps in America, and we can not guarantee placement. In an ideal world we would love to place everyone that applies to our program but for a very small percentage of our participants this does not happen. Our dedicated customer service team reach out to our entire database regularly and are in constant contact with the camps we work with to try secure everyone a placement.

When you build your online application with Camp Leaders it can be seen by over 500+ ACA accredited camp directors on our database with the aim to save you the time and energy from applying individually to multiple summer camps. Our entire process is also designed to help match a participant to a camp that is best suited for them, make the visa paperwork and sponsor process easily understandable and attainable, book all participants flights and travel whilst get them prepared and ready for an entire summer in America at a cost effective price.

We value your opinion and we’re sorry that you didn’t achieve a placement with us, but at any point please feel free to call us (0151 708 6868) if you wish to discuss any of this further.

Kind Regards,

Liam - The Camp Leaders Team
nickk56
1 review
13 helpful votes
8/23/16

I'm afraid to say that Camp Leaders, though a useful mechanism for applying to summer camp, is essentially a way to siphon off a huge amount of money from young people wanting to work at summer camp. They take several hundred pounds in fees from you at the beginning, largely simply for so-called 'admin costs' (i.e. to supply themselves with salaries). Once I arrived at my camp in the US I found out when talking to American counselors that my paycheck was half of what they were earning - why? Camp Leaders. About $1,700 was . This was not something that had been made clear upfront to us; in fact, at the preparation day in London we were told to go to, they discussed the fees, and they claimed that it was 'camp' that paid this sum, not you. What they happily omit to say is that camp is paying this money out of your own paycheck, so in fact it is you paying this money.

This is utterly ridiculous. The fees to work at camp in the United States are not that high; it is simply a job, and under no other circumstances would you spend that sort of money (for me £450 fees plus $1700, i.e. about £1750) to go and work! The main services they provide are the following: sending off your application to camps; booking your flights; providing health insurance; sponsoring your visa.

The first of these seems very useful when applying, because you only have to fill out one form for Camp Leaders detailing the areas you would like to work, and they send out lots and lots of applications, almost guaranteeing you a job. However, your chances of working at summer camp are very high if you simply apply straight to camps; of course, you have to fill out a separate application per camp, but for the amount of extra money you will make not having to give it to Camp Leaders, it is well worth the extra effort. Camps need a lot of people, and especially if you have some experience working with children or skills (however basic) in outdoor activities finding somewhere to work should not be too hard.

Secondly, booking your flights; quite simply, this you can easily do yourself, and not something you need to have an external company do for you.

Thirdly, providing health insurance; again, basic health insurance coverage is not too difficult to purchase.

Finally, they sponsor your visa. This is something that often seems very attractive for Brits coming to camp; there are two points to make on this. First of all, I was personally very irritated at Camp Leaders because I have a US passport, so I did not need a visa, something Camp Leaders knew. As a result, the proportion of my fees that were spent on this aspect were simply me giving money to the company for nothing in return. However, if you do require a visa there are many other organisations (google 'designated sponsors j-1 visa' for the government-approved list) that will sponsor it for you. These will of course require some fees, but you will still be paying far less than you would if you operated through Camp Leaders.

Overall, therefore, the company is an utter scam. Their business model is simply to exploit young people's desire to work at camp by performing tasks for them that they could do themselves, as detailed above, and then taking an enormous chunk of their paycheck when they are working the US. They will get few repeat customers (all the other British counselors I know who used them will never use them again), but they know that they will get enough new customers every year that it does not matter. This is straight-up exploitative and very unfair.

Two further things to add; first of all, I do not mean to be disparaging on the individuals you interact with at Camp Leaders; those I talked to were all very friendly, helpful, and kind people to work with. As far as my experience went, the system was operated smoothly and efficiently. The second thing to add, is that I cannot recommend working at summer camp enough; it was an incredibly fun experience, you meet a wonderful group of people, and working with children in an environment like that was enormously fun. I very much urge anyone thinking about it to go and do it, it was a very special experience. I simply think that using Camp Leaders is an awful idea because of the hidden costs; I was lucky in that my camp paid fairly well, so I still managed to come home with money. I know other people who went through Camp Leaders and who worked at different camps who earned maybe $800 (£600 or so), which means they essentially break even when you take into account the fees they gave Camp Leaders at the beginning.

I would therefore urge anyone considering Camp Leaders to think very hard about it; the benefits you receive from Camp Leaders are all things that you can do yourself, and which may take a little more effort and time from you, but overall will mean you earn far more when you are in the US.

Response from Camp L., CampLeaders Representative
Hi David, thank you for reaching out to us, we appreciate your feedback.

First of all we’re very glad that you had a great experience working at a summer camp in America and would recommend the experience to others. We’re also glad our process worked smoothly & efficiently for you and that our staff were helpful for you.

We are disappointed however that you would describe our company as an utter scam when you’ve highlighted that you had a successful summer camp placement through Camp Leaders, complimented our customer service and had a great summer in America.

The first and most important thing to note is that the summer camp J1 program is a cultural exchange program, not a program that is there to make money. We make this as clear as possible. If you are looking to earn good money whilst you travel, camp is not for you. If you are looking for an outstanding experience with lots of support with great people, with a bit of pocket money, camp is for you.

In response to your payment issue

To make the program accessible to all we have set up the fee structure in such a way that the participant only has to pay a portion of the fees in advance of their departure to America. The rest of the fees are then covered by the camp at which the participant will work for the summer. The camp pays an agency fee to Camp Leaders when the participant completes the full contract. So in essence, the participant is 'working off' the fees which have been paid on their behalf by the camp.

When you get placed you get a contract from camp outlining what your pocket money is. You get 100% of that pocket money. This will be the contract that you signed before you left for camp. Any participant can call us to walk through the contract before they sign it.

The placement fee that camp pays depends upon where in the US they are based, the age and experience of the participant, what they will be doing at camp etc. It is not fixed. This cost is outlined to the camps, as they pay it. It is usually referenced in the contract you sign with camp too.

This is all outlined in the program agreement you sign before joining the program and the fee disclosure section of your profile. It also highlighted multiple times by our customer service team throughout the process and at the preparation day you attended.

The pricing page on the front end of the site gives you an idea of the amount of pocket money you can could get for the summer; http://www.campleaders.com/gb/summer-camps/pricing/

This practice is standard with all of the agencies who work with camps, allowing more people to head to camp by lowering the upfront fees.

In response to apply directly to camps

Yes, you can apply directly to a summer camp without using an agency. However by building your online application with Camp Leaders you are adding your skills, strengths, experiences & personality to our online database which can be seen by all the American Camp Directors we work with. We work with 500+ ACA accredited camps which means you’re chancing of getting a placement are much higher. We also try tailor to your needs as much as possible so we can place you with a summer camp that is the best possible fit for you. Our customer service team are all in constant contact with directors and each team have all personally been to summer camp so can help you build your online application to look its best.

Of course you need to get your visa which you can not do directly yourself as the US Government needs a recognized body to carry out checks on both the camp and the participant, things like collecting and checking references and ensuring the camp has appropriate insurance.

In response to flights

The Camp Leaders program offers every participant that applies the option for us to book their flights or not. Therefore you can book your own flights if you wish. However 85% of our first time participants choose to let Camp Leaders book their flight due to the added advantages and cost-effective price.

Our flights team will then arrange and book your flights but also organise your onward travel to camp and be there to help you with any flight changes or problems that may arise with airlines.


In response to insurance

The Department of State insists that every participant has insurance. To fulfill this obligation we provide insurance as a part of your package.

During your preparation day we walk you through the insurance so if anything does happen to you in America you have the necessary basic coverage required. The American system works differently to the U.K. and we aim to make the differences as clear as possible for participants.

In response to Visa

You can contact any of the other visa sponsors and join their programs. Each has it’s own merits.

We believe in the in country support that we give ensuring that people are ready for camp. All of the agencies work on the same cost model for first time placements. In some cases you might be able to pay less, but in that case you would get less support, for example not having a local office to get you ready, not having a face to face interview and so on.

The program includes a lot more than listed above. This includes the 24/7 support in the US, camp visits in the summer checking in with participants, the support offered at the embassy on busy visa days, the fairs we have where we bring America camp directors over from the US to meet participants and much more. We believe the program offers great value for money and an outstanding experience.

Thanks again for your feedback, if you wish to discuss this further then give our team a call on 0151 708 6868

Kind Regards,

Liam - The Camp Leaders Team
sophieg11
1 review
1 helpful vote
1/25/16

From my experience with Camp Leaders they have been nothing but helpful and made me feel comfortable when it comes to questions or even when I had my interview! Also with my Camp Fair day they where full of energy and making sure everyone had the best chance possible.. I feel this the most as they persuaded me too stay and try and now I am off to New York for the Summer thanks to them!

saleema3
1 review
5 helpful votes
1/24/16

Very helpful and the best option out there compared to rival companies such as camp America.

imoc1
1 review
4 helpful votes
1/24/16

I'll be returning to camp this summer for my 3rd time! If Camp Leaders didn't take the time out to explain the programme in full to me on the phone then I would of never gone to camp! I felt like they would answer any question I had and would do it with a smile, they have such detailed step by step instructions through the whole visa process and made the whole visa day a smooth process! I shout about Camp Leaders everywhere I go!! Thanks guys! You're awesome!!

Customer Questions & Answers

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Hello, thanks for the clarification there Max - much appreciated. This page should help - http://www.campleaders.com/gb/summer-camps/pricing/ If you have any further question please do not hesitate to ask. Mark, Camp Leaders

By Camp L., CampLeaders Representative
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YEP :) Flights, Insurance, a Job, Visa Sponsorship. . . . .AND YOU GET PAID AT THE END OF CAMP. Going back for my third summer as the Waterfront Director! Super eager to get back

By Max J.
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Hi Shane, if it's your first time going to camp through Camp Leaders then you have the option to book your own flights but most people choose for us to book them for you. This page should help - http://www.campleaders.com/gb/summer-camps/pricing/ If you have any further question please do not hesitate to ask. Liam, Camp Leaders

By Camp L., CampLeaders Representative
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Hi Michael, we are making placements everyday, so yes for sure. As I am sure you are aware we do not own any camps so we can never guarantee it, but I team both here in the UK and in the USA continue to make placements. If you would like specifics about your application, please just drop your team an email.

By Camp L., CampLeaders Representative
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