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Registration 101: The first step of volleyball tournament prep

Welcome to Registration 101! Figuring out how to register for an outdoor volleyball tournament can be daunting. It often seems like every organization uses a different platform and process than the others. Sometimes registration is completed directly on the AVP America website. Sometimes texting your teammates’ names to a random phone number will suffice. Other times, it’s necessary create a new account on an external site. Then, when it comes time to pay, there’s even more to learn. Use Venmo? Pay cash at tournament check-in? Advance pay online? It’s tough to know what to expect when you want to sign up for a new grass or beach tournament. Gainesville Volleyball is here to shed some insight on why it varies between organizations and to provide you with a quick reference guide to our registration process.

Why is tournament registration so complex?

We get it. Learning a new process and navigating new websites every time you want to play a tournament doesn’t make you want to complete registration any faster. There are many juniors, parents, newcomers and experienced players alike that are curious to understand why there isn’t a uniform registration process for grass and beach volleyball tournaments.

There are two main reasons to highlight:

1) Affiliation determines most of the process. Typically, any local organization that is affiliated with a larger, national governing volleyball association must follow the rules and expectations of that larger entity. If the local outdoor volleyball organization is affiliated with AVP America or USA Volleyball, for example, then events must get listed on the respective AVP or USAV registration site and comply with any expectations that have been outlined by AVP or USAV. Truthfully, using the national, standardized platform as a starting point is a huge help at the local levels for marketing events. Affiliation is also where things like membership ID numbers come into play, if required. Additional layers may be added to the registration process for events that are considered special series, national events, and more. Those extra components are used for things like organizing the event and tracking player standings.

2) The organization’s preference is really what it comes down to in the end. The local organization running the volleyball tournament gets to weigh the different pros and cons of the available registration options and pick what it feels is most advantageous. Some organizations have been around for a long time and there’s no need for them to change. Some organizations have limited staff, time, and/or resources, and that plays a part in the decision. Other organizations and individuals may not be affiliated with any larger body at all, making it easy for them to keep the event registration process super flexible and simple.

At Gainesville Volleyball, it’s essential for our operations and mission that we handle all registration related transactions online. Because we are an AVP America affiliate, we do list all our event details on the AVP America website and require AVP membership numbers, but we choose to use Volleyball Life for actual registration, payments, and gameday administration. Using Volleyball Life ensures that:

• Players can always view an accurate representation of who has registered because payment must be submitted online to complete registration

• All Gainesville Volleyball staff receive live updates regarding registration and changes without extra tracking mechanisms

Gainesville Volleyball events are paperless, due to the digital scorekeeping and scheduling features provided by Volleyball Life

Gainesville Volleyball Tournament Registration Process:

Step 1: Get your team together!

We do require that you have a full team lined up before registering. Once you have confirmed your teammates, you will need their AVP numbers (learn more in step 2 if you aren’t familiar with this!) and contact information (cell phone number and email address) when you begin the registration process. If your teammates already have a Volleyball Life account or you have played with them at a prior Gainesville Volleyball event, you don’t need to collect this information again. Make sure you select the correct player in the search feature on Volleyball Life and have your teammates verify that the contact information listed in their account is up-to-date. To select your event, go to our tournament listing page, and select the 'RSVP' button to proceed to the next step.

3 women standing in front of grass volleyball court and net

Step 2: Visit the AVP America schedule website

Advanced tournament-goers: You know the drill on the AVP America site. Skip ahead to Step 3!

You’ll always find the full event details listed on the AVP America schedule page if you have questions about divisions, start time, early registration deadlines, location, and more. Therefore, we usually recommend you start your registration from the AVP site if you are brand new to Gainesville Volleyball tournaments. Please read the event profile before registering to ensure a great tournament experience!

Pro Tip: There is automatically a date filter applied on the AVP America schedule search page. You may need to select a different date range in the drop-down menu and then click refresh page to see the event you are searching for! You can also filter by organization to see all scheduled Gainesville Volleyball events.

If you have not played in an AVP America event before, you will need to obtain an AVP America membership number at this point. You need to choose the "Athlete - Silver" option to be eligible for our tournaments. Current players can also look up their AVP numbers at any time.

When you are ready to proceed, click “Register” on the left side bar of the event page.

Screenshot of AVP America webpage with register highlighted in box

Step 4: Complete registration & payment on Volleyball Life

Once you have been redirected to the Volleyball Life page for the event, the fastest way to register is by clicking the blue clipboard icon located on the right side of your desired division. From there, it’s smooth sailing! Verify your selected division, enter your player names & AVP numbers, verify your information and then click “Add to Cart” and then “Check out Now” to proceed to pay your registration fee.

Screenshot of Volleyball Life registration page with arrow to the button used to register

Step 5: Check your email

You’ll receive a confirmation message directly from Volleyball Life to the email you input on the payment page within a few minutes after the transaction is finalized. You may need to check your spam folder to find the email!

We hope you better understand the ins and outs of tournament registration now. Gainesville Volleyball tournaments are always listed in the following places:

Players can always access our FAQs page for more help or contact Gainesville Volleyball via our website, Instagram, Facebook, or email. We look forward to welcoming many players from across the country at our next grass volleyball tournament, Grassroots Coed 4’s, on Saturday, June 19th!

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