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RV Industry Booming In Abilene

The pandemic has altered numerous people’s lives and business conditions in various ways, with the majority being negative. In the world of RV, however, the virus has pushed the industry to new heights, and some local companies have experienced the boost.

Dave Cochran and Leslie Cochran are the new owners of the Four Seasons RV Acres, which is located east of Abilene. Their inventory is impacted by national shortages. However, sales have grown as their products have become more available.

“The supply chain has been what’s keeping us from probably completely blowing everything out of the water from a growth standpoint,” Dave Cochran said.

RV sales were on a climb anyways,” Leslie Cochran said. “So in 2017, [the industry] had the biggest year in RV sales ever. So there was an increase happening already. I think everything with COVID spurred that on.”

According to the RV Industry Association’s (RVIA) data chart, 504,600 RV units were sold in 2017. Since 2016, sales in the industry have surpassed 400,000. The trend is likely to continue into 2021, with the RVIA forecasting that approximately 577,200 units will be sold. Prior to 2016, the previous record was set in 2006, with just 390,500.

In the past several years, Dickinson County and beyond has seen an increase in RV parks too. David Riley, owner of the Chapman Creek RV Park, stated that since he established the park six years ago, four additional parks have been opened. One of them is situated in Abilene—the 24-hour Travel Store’s Flatland RV Park which opened in June. Natalie Dick, the general manager, said it’s the first RV Park that the company has ever opened.

“We’ve always catered to RVs in all of our stores,” Dick said. “We have ten stores state-wide. Most of them have dump and water [hook-ups]. We’ve had that extra land back there, so it seemed like a good fit and a good time to dip our toes in that.”

Local RV parks have been extremely successful as well. Kelly McKenzie, owner of Walt’s Four Seasons RV Park, said that the park had a fantastic year and in 2020. The park has been operating at about 80 percent capacity, even during lockdowns in 2020. McKenzie said that from her point of view, the growth in RV sales has led to new campers entering her park.

Dick said that the number of RVs she has seen come through her store has increased since the outbreak began.

McKenzie and Riley both noticed people who wanted to leave their houses, particularly during the COVID lockdown.

“A lot of people live in their RV. They can travel in their RV, unlike staying at a hotel. So people continue to move,” McKenzie said. “You can work from your RV. If you can work from home, you can work from an RV, whether it’s parked in Abilene, Kansas, or parked in Montana.

Dave and Leslie Cochran said the RV trend does not appear to slow down. A few in the business believed there would be a greater quantity of used RVs on sale since they were bought by so many people in 2020, as the Cochrans stated.

“It’s absolutely not the case,” Dave Cochran said. “It’s extremely hard to find a used RV right now. As a dealer, we used to be able to buy all we wanted, but now it’s much harder.

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Hi, you might find this article from Modern Campground interesting: RV Industry Booming In Abilene! This is the link: https://moderncampground.com/usa/texas/rv-industry-booming-in-abilene/