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RV LIFE Survey – Will Campground Locations Be Hard To Find?


Will campground locations be hard to find in 2021?
Will campground locations be hard to find in 2021?

RV LIFE recently polled their audience with a survey to determine if RVers felt that finding campground locations in 2021 would be difficult. The survey looks at the habits and concerns of campers and RVers who are making their camping plans for 2021. The results proved interesting, and yielded some surprising insight. We’ll look at the most pertinent questions below.

Have you started planning RV trips for 2021?

Late February and early March mark the traditional start of planning season for the year’s RVing journeys. As of mid-February, 84% of respondents had already started their RV trip planning for the year.

This is a fairly strong number, especially in the midst of nationwide winter weather emergencies. Perhaps being forced to live in their RVs during recent winter storms provided a strong reminder to make those reservations early.

84% of RVers have started their trip planning for 2021
84% of RVers have started their trip planning for 2021

Will you make more campground reservations this year than in years past?

Just over half, 51%, indicated they would be securing more of their campground locations ahead of time than in previous years. Only 17% stated they would not be making more reservations.

More than half of RVers will be making more campground reservations
More than half of RVers will be making more campground reservations

Have you had difficulty finding campground locations for your 2021 plans?

45% of campers that had started planning their 2021 trips indicated that they were already having difficulty finding campsites. Granted, it is early in the season and not all seasonal campgrounds may be accepting reservations just yet. Still, this is consistent with the overall results in that planning early is key.

90% of RVers looking to buy or upgrade an RV will continue to do so in 2021
90% of RVers looking to buy or upgrade an RV will continue to do so in 2021

Has concern over campground availability changed your plans to purchase or upgrade your RV?

The most interesting and perhaps surprising statistic of all was that over 90% of those looking to purchase or upgrade an RV were not dissuaded or concerned by the availability of campground locations and planned to continue with their RV purchase. RVing might be the only vacation option available this year, and the dream of owning an RV or becoming full-time RVers apparently won’t be quenched quite so easily.

Has concern over campground availability altered your travel plans for 2021?

Similarly, though to a lesser degree, 71% of participants were not planning to alter their travel plans over fear of not being able to find campground locations.

Nearly 30% of RVers have altered their travel plans for this year
Nearly 30% of RVers have altered their travel plans for this year

When you flip the focus however, this means that nearly 30% of RVers have altered their travel plans due to the surge in RVing and the RV lifestyle in general. That surge has certainly been influenced by the COVID pandemic, which is allowing more workers and students to earn a living or get an education in less traditional locations. 

What are your preferred campground locations?

These results were less surprising. Allowing for multiple answers, the survey found that roughly 65% of campers preferred Private RV Parks & Campgrounds or State & National Parks.

12% preferred the luxury RV resort lifestyle. Roughly 22% are looking forward to spending time boondocking on public lands. The majority of the 8% of write-ins mentioned locations like Corp of Engineer campgrounds.

Campground type preferences for 2021
Campground type preferences for 2021

Conclusion

New campgrounds are being built every day, and more sites are being added to existing campgrounds equally as fast. Still, this survey is a clear indicator that RVers looking to visit the more popular destinations should start booking those campsites and campground locations immediately. 
Finding those locations is simple with Campground Reviews, RV Trip Wizard, or the RV LIFE app.

Author Patrick Buchanan Avatar

Patrick Buchanan

All around RV enthusiast who has been RVing for 7 years and enjoys trips with his wife and little dogs in their 43-foot diesel pusher. 

7 thoughts on “RV LIFE Survey – Will Campground Locations Be Hard To Find?

  1. The biggest factor for many of us, including friends and families, is that if masks are required, we will not go.
    Trip destinations are planned where freedom exsists.

  2. We rented a motor home last year and found many campgrounds limit both size and number of dogs. Is there a directory showing campgrounds allowing dogs. We’re fine with keeping them on halters and leashes and we would never leave them outside. We have two 70 lb dogs and two small dogs.

  3. Good survey! Thanx. From Victoria, British Columbia, here’s my take. The RV industry is churning out more and more RV’s than the RV maintenance industry or the RV ‘campsite’ industry can possibly support. Eventually – I expect sooner than later – folks who had been interested in recreational RVing will hear of the horror stories that abound and have second thoughts. I’m included amongst that group. Certainly, if one has a large property that can accommodate a maintenance facility, and an RV owner is handy with maintenance, the situation would be mitigated, but I’m afraid they are in the vast minority. My experience with my 40′ Gulfstream Tourmaster has been disappointing for the above reasons.
    Cheers! .. Ken

  4. Here in Ontario it is almost impossible to get a site this year in a provincial park. You can reserve up to 5 months in advance and as of today, there are zero electrical sites available for the last week in July. It’s a crap shoot at 7 am every morning to try and reserve a spot. Because you can reserve 23 days at a time, people reserve all of them to get the long weekend at the end. A month later they change their reservation to delete the first two weeks. That means you need to be prepared to snap up their cancelled days at a moments notice. Luckily we are retired and will wait for the kids to go back to school to do our camping

  5. There will be some pain finding campgrounds, but only those places that are around LARGE TOURIST TRAPS.
    People should realize this and figure to drive a little extra distance to the Tourist Trap and you will probably find a nice RV Park!

  6. We are booking 6 months out. As soon as a COE campground opens a month on their website we try to book. Its getting harder and harder.

  7. We made it out just after the big storm through the South stretching to New England. We had made plans last year to head south. Been on the road for 3 days and tomorrow we will be on the beach. We have already made plans for the rest of the year. We stay at mostly state parks and COE’s and we did have to make some adjustments but no problem getting the sites we liked. Talk about planning ahead, we have additional plans scheduled for 2022.

    Love your articles. Great information and gives us ideas for future travels.

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