BSA Must Read: Tour Plan Change

Effective March 1, 2011, what are currently known as local and national tour permits will be superseded by what will be called the tour plan. *The online tour permit system will be suspended. This update is the accumulation of work by a cross-functional team of volunteers and staff including the Health and Safety Support Committee, Council Solutions, Outdoor Program Group, and Risk Management Advisory Panels.

Here is the definition of the tour plan in the Language of Scouting: “Units complete this form when planning for local, national, or international adventure. The plan helps ensure the unit is properly prepared, that qualified and trained leadership is in place, and that the right equipment is available for the adventure.”

The plan is available for your staff to see and begin training with at this link:

What’s different?

1) The council is the reviewer of all tour plans; there is no regional review required.

2) The tour plan consists of a tour planning worksheet to be completed by the unit/contingent. It is retained by the council and a tour plan is returned to the unit after processing.

3) It’s on standard 8.5 x 11-inch paper!

4) There is a 21-day advance notice requested for units to submit the plan for your review.

5) A single point of contact (not on the tour) for council use is included.

6) Defined reasons/times when a tour plan must be submitted for council review:

a. Trips of 500 miles or more

b. Trips outside of council borders not to a council-owned property

c. Trips to any national high-adventure base, national Scout jamboree, National Order of the Arrow Conference, or regionally sponsored event

d. When conducting the following activities outside of council or district events:

  • Aquatics activities (swimming, boating, floating, scuba, etc.)
  • Climbing and rappelling
  • Orientation flights (process flying plan)
  • Shooting sports
  • Any activities involving motorized vehicles as part of the program (snowmobiles, boating, etc.)

e. At a council’s request (allows council to add review times based on local needs)

7) There is an updated Pledge of Performance.

What is not changed?

1) A council can define “local” tour plan review needs in addition to the above.

2) The Scout executive still needs to have in place a policy/procedure for tour plans.

3) Requirements for qualified supervision, training, insurance, etc., remain unchanged-for example, CPR and Wilderness First Aid requirements for high-adventure camps.

Recommended council implementation strategies include:

1) Review and update your tour permit policy to a tour plan policy. Using the administrative review checklist points, you should make sure this includes:

a. Definition of activities or conditions that require a tour plan submission

b. Numbering, log sheet, and filing system for quick retrieval

c. Fax policy/procedure

d. Systems for handling and maintaining online tour plans*

e. Rules that find forms submitted after the fact, forms with only one signature, and incomplete forms defective (notify the submitters)

f. Procedure for “after-action” reporting

g. Retention of forms until the statute of limitations has expired

h. Training is provided on the use of and requirements for tour plans

2) Set up your newsletters, council websites, and roundtable helps to communicate the changes.

3) Destroy any paper copies of the local or national tour permits you may have in place.

4) Hyperlink the tour plan,, and the FAQ page,, on your websites effective March 1 vs. hosting the document so that it can remain evergreen.

If you, your staff, or your volunteers have any other concerns, please direct them to

One response to “BSA Must Read: Tour Plan Change

  1. Pingback: BSA Tour Permit Change Update | Boy Scouts on Staten Island, NY

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