What is travel soccer?
There are three predominant levels of soccer programs available in western New York: recreational soccer (house programs), travel soccer, and “premier” programs. Costs and ability levels vary with each.
- Travel Soccer teams play competitive games with teams from other towns in western New York
- Travel soccer is more competitive than recreational
- Scores and standings are recorded (but not for U-10 teams)
- Teams are gender-specific
A member of the Buffalo & Western New York Junior Soccer League (BWNYJSL), the Grand Island Soccer Club travel program is intended for players and parents who are willing to make a more formal commitment to the game.
Where do the teams travel to? Where do they play?
Home games during the summer are played at Veterans Park on Grand Island. Outdoor practices are usually held at the Charlotte Sidway School or Veterans Park.
Away games may be played within 30 minutes of Grand Island, for example: Niagara Falls, Lockport, North Tonawanda, Tonawanda, Amherst, Clarence, West Seneca, East Aurora, and Lancaster.
During the winter months, travel teams typically play games or practice at Epic Sports Center, Sahlen Sports Park, Sportsplex. Game venues are determined by Grand Island Soccer Club travel coaches and their teams.
Please visit the travel facilities page for facility locations and directions.
What kind of commitment is involved? What are typical seasons and schedules?
After tryouts are completed and teams are formed (typically in September), coaches will meet with their teams and schedule practices and games throughout the winter and spring. Weather-permitting, outdoor practices begin in April.
League games begin the first week of May and run through first week of August. There is usually one game a week, played on weekdays. In addition to league play, travel teams may schedule weekend tournaments, often in the western New York area.
What if a player wants to continue playing other sports?
Travel soccer requires more of a commitment than recreational (house)soccer programs. That said, many Grand Island Soccer Club travel team members also play other sports. Team members are encouraged to coordinate schedules with their travel coach as far in advance as possible to minimize conflicts.
How are players chosen for the travel team?
Travel team players are chosen at tryouts, usually held on a Saturday or Sunday in August and September. There are typically two tryouts per age group. While they are encouraged to attend both, players must attend at least one tryout to be considered for a travel team.
How many travel teams are there per age group?
The number of teams depends on how many players and coaches participate. There are usually one or two teams per age group.
How much will my child play?
U10 through U12/U13 players average at least 50% participation per game. Older players may experience more or less playing time depending on effort, ability, and attitude. Our coaches make every effort to be fair to all players.
What are the expectations and responsibilities of the parents?
Parents are expected to get players to practice and games on time. They should also may every effort to attend all or most games and/or practices. Parents should proactively coordinate schedule conflicts as early as possible.
What if my child does not make a travel team?
Team rosters are typically finalized within two weeks of the last tryout. Two players are added to team rosters each year through U12. Players who do not make a travel team roster are encouraged to participate in training programs offered by the Grand Island Soccer Club or other outside organizations (more information available on our programs page). These players can also continue playing soccer in our summer recreational program. They are eligible to try out again the following year.
What is the cost?
While registration fees vary from year to year, the cost is approximately $160. Registration fees are paid online prior to tryouts. Players who do not make the team will receive refunds. After a player is placed on a roster, they are no longer eligible for a refund.
What days of the week are the games played?
What days of the week are the games played?
U8-U10 Boys and girls Fridays starting at 6:45 p.m.
U11/U12 Girls Tuesdays starting at 6:45 p.m.
U13/U14 Girls Mondays starting at 6:45 p.m.
U15/U16 Girls Thursdays starting at 6:45 p.m.
U17/U19 Girls Wednesdays starting at 6:45 p.m.
U11/U12 Boys Mondays starting at 6:45 p.m.
U13/U14 Boys Tuesdays starting at 6:45 p.m.
U15/U16 Boys Thursdays starting at 6:45 p.m.
U17/U19 Boys Wednesdays starting at 6:45 p.m.
Players are expected to be at the field at no later than 6:15 p.m. for 6:45 p.m. games. Dates and times are subject to change.
What do travel players wear?
Grand Island Soccer Club travel team members wear identical uniforms. Uniform fees are not included in registration fees. The club tries to keep the same uniform from year to year. For more information, visit our uniforms page.