My son started playing in July and has ambitions to attend the worlds.
Shaymin is part of the issue (we pulled one and bought 3 as they were more reasonable back in July). Shaymin is a one time expense that can be reused over and over. If your son is serious about the game I can over look the one time expense. It's like buying baseball gear (bat, glove, bag, shoes and helmet).
We then looked at going to Orlando, and quickly realized it was going to cost $1000 for all the same reasons Brent listed in the article (airfare for 2, own hotel room, etc...). I looked at my wife and knew what the logical answer was. At best if he won, he would win $1000 so it was a break even, but realistically he wouldn't so he would win $0.
Hopefully Pokemon realizes that these juniors (seniors and younger masters) are the future of the game and should be doing everything they can to accommodate them. Realizing that anyone under 18 will most likely have a parent accompany them. Maybe offer them a travel voucher for the parent for 1 or 2 regionals. I don't know how the other Pokeparents justify the $1000 expense to attend each event and then attend multiple of them on top of that.
Our decision in the end was to attend the one local Regional event and as many League Cups until he wins 6 for 300 points. He's won two league cups so that is 30 points.
Hopefully we have some special events where he can win the extra 70 points needed to attend the worlds (assuming less than 32 juniors at these events means he would have to place top 4 to get any points).
If the special events don't get him there we may decide to attend a regional at the end of the year, knowing he would have to place in the top 8 to get any points (as all events to date have been less than 64 juniors).
If anyone know's of other ways to make this work, please share.
I wish everyone here the best of luck at every event they attend!