Counting the Cost
If you are anything like our family, we have a rule; any purchase over $100 gets some serious thought put into it as to whether it is truly a need, once we take a look at it in the light of our family goals. Once it gets a “green light” and it is established that it is what we really need, we count the cost as to whether or not the purchase price is going to be worth the benefit to us. So first, we look at our goals, and then we look at our budget. Some things might seem to be on the pricey side, but then we look at whether or not that purchase would fit into the goals that we have for our family.
We are a Great Outdoors Family that wants to provide the Backyard-To-Die-For for our three kids and their friends. Trampoline gyms are expensive (and indoors) so we are ready to make a long-term outdoors investment. We love to entertain too, so this is not just for our kids! We are looking for a hospitable haven to enjoy our extended family and friends in. We are starting with finding the best trampoline to fit our backyard. By doing our research, we are sharing it with you, the reader. Maybe we have found just what you are looking for.
So, just how much does a trampoline cost?
Well, that is a very good question and one we certainly were asking when we started this process of discovering all we could about trampolines. What we found though, is that there isn’t just one easy answer to the question. It all depends upon taking a good look at what kind of trampoline you want to fit the needs of your family. Here are some questions that you might want to ask yourself:
- What do you want to do with this trampoline? Do you want it for recreational use only? Or do you need it for sport or exercise?
- What kind of weight do you want this trampoline to hold? Is it meant for just a few small children or the whole family?
- Are you looking for something pretty basic? Or are you needing something with extra safety features and durability (highly recommended!)?
- What kind of size and style will fit well in your backyard area? Would you be looking for something round? Or maybe rectangular would fit your space better?
My husband is a real safety buff so this is one aspect that I knew we would be looking into first. You know the old adage; safety first! So, this is something that we definitely wanted consider before anything else. One of the first things that we looked at was whether or not trampolines come with safety features such as an enclosure or is that something we have to purchase separately. We knew this would definitely have an impact upon the price.
What we found, is that these days, it is rare to find a trampoline that doesn’t come with some basic safety features. All trampolines (with the exception of the mini-trampoline meant for small children or for cardio workouts) come with some kind of enclosure and a mat to cover the springs and frame. This has increased the price of trampolines some, but it is our opinion that those safety features are completely necessary and we are glad to pay the price. The alternative…well, let’s just not go there, shall we?
So, if you are looking around for a very basic round trampoline (with enclosure) you would be looking at spending about $250-$400.
For a rectangular model that is likewise basic (with enclosure), you are looking at spending more. A nice trampoline would be costing between $500-$1,000. Why the price disparity you might be asking? We found that round shaped bouncers are used mainly for recreational use while rectangular ones are used more for sport and therefore tend to be more heavy duty as well. They are generally bigger/longer. The length is needed for some kinds of gymnastic tricks. So if you have a child who is a fledgling aerialist, gymnast or cheerleader, the rectangular shaped trampoline might be the one for you.
Something else that we found important was to think about the weight that you want this trampoline to hold. It just makes sense that if you purchase a trampoline that recommends a maximum weight capacity of 200 lbs., but you want your whole family bouncing away on it (Mom, Dad and kids), you might want to look for a trampoline that has a higher weight capacity. This is very important to consider since you will be investing some serious money into something that you want to last for years to come. You will want to consider the ages of your children and how fast they are growing too!
Make sure that any trampoline you purchase exceeds the ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) standards for trampolines and their safety features.
Not all trampolines come with some of the basic accessories that you might think they should (like a ladder and such). This can increase the price tag, but they are quite essential to the whole experience, don’t you think? Be very careful to read the packaging details to find out what your trampoline set includes so you won’t be surprised and then begrudgingly have to fork over more and more money to make sure you have everything you need.
The Bottom Line
For our family, price is an issue. But we are also keeping in mind that this is an investment. We are thinking about all the money that we will save by having this entertainment source right in our own backyard. We are thinking of all the time that we will be able to enjoy as a family. How cool it will be to have our kids want to be home where we can monitor their activities with friends more closely. The money that we will save on mind-numbing video and computer games is worth the price alone! So our advice is to think hard about the questions we posed at the beginning of our post and then to shop for what suits your family the best.