Each year the London Frontrunners travel overseas on the official International trip. This gives us the chance to run in a different country, to be an ambassador not only for London Frontrunners but for all LGBT+ sporting clubs and to have a good old-fashioned party.
This page gives you a bit more information on the work of the International Trip Committee and the trip in general.
2018 International Trip Committee:
Chair: Richard Cristina
Finance/Member database: Eduardo Schmidt
Race Registrations: James Spalding
Hotel Bookings: Helen Keeley
Flights/Logistics: Darren Gillen
Meals, restaurants, entertainment: Martin Hooper
Please send all enquiries to the following e-mail address: [email protected]
Who organises the trip?
The International Trip is organised by the LFR International Trip Committee, a sub-committee of London Frontrunners that reports, and is accountable, to the main elected committee of the club.
The LFR International Trip Committee usually commences work on the next international trip a year in advance and as the trip tends to take place in the autumn of each year that means the first committee meeting will be in October or November.
The outgoing LFR International Trip Committee will usually put out a call for future volunteers and committee members shortly after the return from the previous trip.
How does the International Trip Committee work?
The exact workings of the LFR International Trip Committee will always be determined by the committee of the day and are not set in stone but generally speaking responsibilities are allocated between members and these include budget responsibility, researching and booking travel arrangements, such as flights or trains and any possible onward travel such as coaches, researching and booking accommodation (plus hotel liaison), researching and booking restaurants (plus liaison), race entry registration logistics and publicising and selling the trip.
The first month or so of planning is taken up with brainstorming about possible locations and detailed research, after which potential races and locations are whittled down to a shortlist and then put to a committee vote.
After that, the next few months are spent on working out a more detailed budget for the trip, narrowing down accommodation and travel options and getting ready for the launch of the booking process. Once the trip is open for booking, detailed work on the logistics of the trip continues including booking accommodation, entertainment and race entries as well as regularly updating future attendees about the trip.
The International Trip Committee typically meets once a month and stays in touch via email between meetings when individual members progress their work streams. As the trip draws closer, there is usually an uptick in the work put in by the committee members.
How do I sign up to come on the International Trip?
Bookings for the International Trip usually open some point in the first quarter of the year, typically around late January/early February. A communication about the booking process will be sent via LFR’s main email distribution list.
In order to deliver a successful and safe trip, we have found that capacity for the trip is constrained to somewhere between 80 and 120 members. This is usually dictated by finding suitable accommodation options and restaurants that can cater for a large group of gay men and women and making sure the trip can be delivered on an affordable budget.
The downside of such capacity constraints is that the trip can sell out in a matter of days. If demand for places exceeds supply, the International Trip Committee will operate a waiting list so that those who have been unsuccessful can still register their interest and get first dips if any further places become available, for example if a signed up member has to drop out. Details of how to sign for the waiting list and how the waiting list works will be circulated around the same time as (or shortly after) the booking for the trip opens.
As capacity is constrained, only paid up members of London Frontrunners can register for the trip.
How is the International Trip financed?
The International Trip is financed from the sales proceeds of places offered. Unlike other LFR events, it does not receive subsidies from the club and the budget has to be self-sufficient. This requires a lot of thought as the International Trip Committee will always seek to strike a balance between making the trip as accessible as possible to all club members and making sure the trip does not operate at a deficit.
Whilst the trip receives no subsidies from London Frontrunners, the club usually provides repayable funds to the International Trip Committee that enable the International Trip Committee to start making bookings and down payments on transport, venues etc. before all members that are travelling on the trip have fully paid up. This enables the International Trip Committee to allow payment for the trip by club members in instalments, generally making the trip more affordable to a broader section of club members. Any such advance funds provided by London Frontrunners are repaid out of the sales proceeds of the trip.
The International Trip Committee generally expects to spend all the funds raised from the sales proceeds of a trip on that particular trip. However, from time to time, we may end up with a small unspent surplus. Where this occurs, the surplus will be held in the London Frontrunners bank account and the International Trip Committee will liaise with the LFR main committee on what should happen with the surplus. This may include using it towards a future trip.
I have signed up to the International Trip - what’s the small print?
The International Trip Committee asks everyone attending an international trip to read and understand the terms below that enable it to put together a safe and successful trip: