How groups handle fees for competitions

Some kids from my son's STEM club qualified for some sort of competition that requires travel and hotel for the next step.  It is individual basis or at least does not require the whole team (so the whole team does not have to participate and travel) and not the whole team is going.  There is fee to participate (that might be covered by the PTA though it is still being decided) and individual travel costs will be each participating student's and accompanying adult's responsibility.  We were going to pay out of pocket but my son decided he does not want to go since it would conflict with a sport event he needs to play in so looks like I'm off the hook on that one.  Though I am wondering how other groups (clubs, sports teams, etc) handle travel costs.  It is not a lot from my perspective, but involves airfare and hotel, so adds up and I think it would be viewed as a lot for some kids' families on the team.   It is not school sponsored club (more like a loosely organized club/activity led by parent volunteers) so PTA cannot cover individual travel costs (not even an option this late in year when most discretionary funds were already allocated), especially since it is voluntary and only about half the team max is planning on going so it is not a whole team outing.  Are there funds out there that kids get for travel to competitions and events? Or do the families that cannot afford it do fundraising or ask PTA for help?  This event is coming up too quickly and everyone found out late, so a lot of kids are not going for various reasons anyway (no time to fund-raise, also no time to move sport games) but if this occurs again next year, what do other teams do for travel costs? 

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