Travel Teams

  1. Affordability/Scholarship: The team must meet one of the following requirements:
    1. No Paid Compensation: No compensation may be paid to any coaches or administrators.
    2. Scholarships: The team must offer the following:
      1. A full scholarship shall be made available to any San Francisco (SF) player on the team that is eligible for a 100% scholarship under Recreation and Parks Department (RPD) scholarship rules provided that a team shall not be required to make more than 2 full scholarships available to SF players. A team may require a good faith commitment payment of up to $100.
      2. A 50% reduction in all fees for any family that is eligible for a 50% scholarship under RPD scholarship rules.
  2. Club Requirements:
    1. Applicability: If a team is part of a club, the club must separately meet the standards set forth below and submit an application for Approved Public Benefit Programs (APBO). A team will be considered part of a club if:
      1. The team is branded with a club name
      2. The team’s players pay fees through a centralized organization (as opposed to a family on the team pooling funds for that team only and hiring a coach)
    2. Not for Profit: The club must be a non-profit (501c) with an Internal Revenue System (IRS) determination letter.
    3. Independent Board: The club must be administered by a volunteer board of directors
      1. Election of Board: Board members must be elected by a vote of the players in the club (or in the case of youth their parent or guardian). Coaches and administrators may not vote on behalf of players and safeguards must be in place to ensure independent voting.
      2. Compensation to Board and Family Members: No compensation may be paid to board members or their family members by the club or any participating teams.
        1. Board Family Members: Includes parents, children, grandparents, grandchildren, spouses or domestic partners (regardless of residence) and any person residing in the same home with the board member.
      3. Exceptions:
        1. Compensation paid to a board member or family member as a licensed or trained referee provided it is the same compensation paid to all similar referee/umpires and that the aggregate paid to any family is not more than 10% of the total.
        2. Compensation paid to a youth family member for summer or part-time work (office work or camp counselor) where the aggregate compensation paid in any 12 month period does not exceed $750.
      4. Each Board Member will be required to submit a Board Certification Form (PDF).
      5. Exception: The Board of Directors requirement shall not apply to any organization that receives specific funding from the DCYF children’s fund for its soccer program.
  3. Disclosure: Clubs and teams must provide transparent, detailed information regarding fees, scholarships, costs, programs, tryouts, playing time rules and guest polices. Such information must be provided to any interested parent, posted on a website and submitted have been submitted to San Francisco Recreation and Parks Department (SFRPD) prior to tryouts or registration.
    1. Beginning the 2021-22 season, clubs and teams seeking APBO status are required to attend the annual Soccer Info Fair hosted by SFRPD. Attendees are to provide an info flyer for approval in advance of the Fair event
    2. Failure to submit an info flyer by the requested deadline will make you ineligible to receive practice and game fields for the season in which you are applying for
  4. Good Standing: The team and any club with which it is affiliated must not have been found to violate SFRPD field permits, residency requirements, tryout requirements or any of the above conditions in the previous 12 months or been found to misrepresent information in prior APBOapplications.
    1. First violation – loss of APBO status for the next year for the team. club and any other team in the club and any affiliated coaches or administrator.
    2. Second violation – loss of APBO status for the next three years for the team and additional loss of one year for the club.
    3. Third violation – loss of APBO status for the next three years for the team, club and any affiliated coaches or administrator.
  5. Roster Eligibility and Verification: Each team must provide proof of residency for all players on its roster:
    1. Number of Nonresidents: A team may not have more than 2 nonresidents on a team for ages up to 8th grade and 3 nonresidents for older teams)
    2. Evidence of Residency: Each team will need to present a folder to SFRPDwith residency information for each of its players that is not more than 12 months old.
      1. The best and clearest way to establish San Francisco residency for a player is an official communication from the child’s school to the child or child’s parent showing the child’s address and child’s name. Examples include:
        1. Notice of Enrollment
        2. Report Card
        3. School Bill
        4. Letter from school on school letterhead signed by Head of School or Registrar verifying address of student.
        5. Screenshot of student profile from school website portal. Screenshot MUST show student name, address, and date/semester year info to be acceptable.
      2. If the other are not available – you must provide 3 of the following (no more than one from any category):
        1. Driver’s License
        2. Federal records
        3. Financial (loan, credit, investments, etc.) records
        4. Homeowner or tenant records
        5. Insurance documents
        6. Internet or cable or records
        7. Local (municipal) records
        8. Medical records
        9. Military records
        10. Residential Utility bill:
          1. Electric
          2. Gas
          3. Heating
          4. Mobile phone
          5. Phone
          6. Waste disposal
          7. Water/sewer
        11. School records
        12. State records
        13. Support payment records
        14. Voter’s Registration
        15. Welfare/child care records

How to Obtain APBO Status

You must do the following two steps:

Step 1

Pre-Clearance of APBO Status: Teams may apply for pre-clearance of their APBO Status in order to ensure that their team fees are correct when they solicit players. If the team is part of a club, the club may submit on behalf of the team. For pre-clearance go to:

Step 2

Individual Travel Team Applications: After your team has been formed and pre-cleared, each team must submit an application for each season of play. Applications must be submitted by the applicable deadline for that season. Applications must demonstrate that the team meets the eligibility criteria set forth above and also include the following information:

  1. Applications must demonstrate that team meets the eligibility criteria set forth above and include the following information:
    1. All fees, expenses and services
    2. Any commitment to play times
    3. Club affiliation (if any)
    4. Dates of Player Registration
    5. Guest player Policies
    6. Information provided to participating families regarding their fees and services in a form required by RPD
    7. League of Participation
    8. Method for allocating scholarships
    9. Plans for covering playing games if field allocations are not adequate
    10. Season of Play
    11. Size of field and length of game
    12. Tryout dates
  2. Applications must include the Filing Fee of $348
  3. Application Deadlines:
    1. Fall Season (September 1 through November 30): May 7
    2. Winter Season (December 1 through February 28): October 1
    3. Spring Season (March 1 through May 31): December  7
    4. Summer Season (June 1 through August 15): April 1
  4. Processing Fee: Each team must pay an APBO application processing fee per season. (Fees may be waived or reduced for hardship for teams with all volunteer coaches and administrator but a minimum fee of $50 will be required). This fee covers the cost of verifying information, checking rosters and allocating fees.
  5. View the Travel Team Field Application to submit application once your team is formed and you have a complete roster. Applications must submit a roster of players for the team using the required Roster Submission Form (XLSX).