RMS North America, a provider of reservation and property management systems for the outdoor hospitality sector, has once again partnered with OHI (formerly ARVC) and RVshare to unveil the 2023 Generational Campground Report.
This annual report, a cornerstone for campground owners and operators, sheds light on the latest camping trends observed among enthusiasts across the United States.
According to Adelle Rodriguez, senior director of Marketing at RMS North America, this report serves as a vital tool for campground proprietors and operators, offering profound insights into the backgrounds, behaviors, and future travel plans of campers.
This invaluable data empowers operators to strategically plan their operations, ultimately boosting occupancy rates, revenue generation, and enhancing the overall guest experience across all generations of campers in preparation for the forthcoming 2024 camping season.
“This data helps operators strategically plan their operations to increase their occupancy, drive revenue, and bring an excellent guest experience to visitors of all generations for the 2024 camping season,” says Rodriguez.
According to the report, 94% of survey participants expressed their intent to maintain or increase their camping activities over the next 12 months, underlining the enduring popularity of camping as a recreational pursuit.
In a digital era, the preference for online reservation systems is pronounced, with nearly half (49%) of campers favoring the convenience of online booking. Furthermore, an additional 26% of campers displayed no particular preference, indicating a readiness to adapt to online or other reservation methods.
The report underscores the paramount importance of online search platforms, with a remarkable 82% of respondents designating platforms like Yahoo, Google, Bing, and others as their primary means of discovering the ideal campground destinations.
Cost remains a pivotal factor influencing campground destination choices, with one-third (33%) of respondents ranking the cost of reservations as their top consideration when selecting a campground.
Campers are willing to traverse an average distance of 179 miles from their homes to reach their chosen campsite, highlighting the dedication and enthusiasm of camping enthusiasts.
Additionally, the report discloses the average spending habits of campers, indicating an expenditure of approximately $50 per person per day or $200 per day per site for a family of four.
What sets this report apart is its in-depth analysis of generational data, offering a nuanced understanding of the varying camping behaviors across different age groups. This insight empowers campground owners and operators to make more informed and targeted operational decisions, taking into account the distinct preferences of their diverse visitor demographics.
David Basler, OHI’s chief strategy officer, emphasizes the shifting demographics of modern campers, with a consistent trend towards younger generations. Understanding these generational differences is of paramount importance for making effective business decisions in the outdoor hospitality industry.
“The modern camper demographic is changing—skewing younger every year—so it is of vital importance to understand these generational differences when making business decisions,” Basler said.
Jon Gray, CEO of RVshare, underscores the industry’s need to adapt to evolving demographics and preferences. To maintain interest and growth, it is essential to align offerings with customer expectations, whether in the realm of RV rentals or campground operations. Preparing for the future, especially in the context of 2024 and beyond, requires a comprehensive understanding of the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.
Furthermore, the report highlights the significance of aligning with camper preferences through the utilization of suitable property management and reservation software. This data provides campground owners and operators with the necessary insights to prioritize software solutions equipped with efficient communication tools, including triggered correspondences and SMS capabilities, customizable rewards programs, and a robust rate manager.
The report was prepared by Readex Research, a nationally recognized independent research company, ensuring the credibility and reliability of its findings. The survey’s design was a collaborative effort between OHI, RMS, RVshare, and Readex.
The 2023 Generational Campground Report is a game-changer for campground and outdoor hospitality operators. Its insights into camping trends, online reservation preferences, cost considerations, and generational differences provide a roadmap for success in the ever-evolving outdoor hospitality industry. By leveraging this data, operators can enhance guest experiences, increase occupancy rates, and drive revenue growth, ensuring a prosperous 2024 camping season and beyond.