It looks like, in spite of high gas prices, campgrounds are still booking up quickly. My lovely wife and I just booked a week on the coast of Maine in July. We’ve been going to this campground since the kids were little. Now they bring their kids.
Unlike a lot of campgrounds, this one is still owned by the same people. A lot of mom and pop campgrounds have sold out to big corporations. The new owners hike the rates, often doubling them or more. One campground we used to love in Florida doubled the rates, halved the size of the sites, and put in a bunch of restrictions. Unfortunately that’s a trend.
For campers on a budget that’s a problem. A lot more people are now trying to camp free on Federal land. That’s great, but the more popular camping spots are overwhelmed. It doesn’t help that so many campers are destructive and leave a mess in their wake. Because of that there are places that have been closed.
At least I didn’t buy into the RV market. Last year the average price of an RV was over $73,000. That’s just crazy. Heck, I’ve seen little teardrop campers going for over $60,000. That’s a lot of money for something that’s essentially a rolling bed. People are taking on $1,000/month payments and that’s before they even leave the driveway. Full hookup RV sites can be stupid expensive -if you can afford the fuel to even go anywhere.
Then there’s the issue of tow vehicles. People are paying $100,000 for a truck capable of hauling a 5th wheel or a tow behind. That’s if they can even find a vehicle to buy.
This will be our first camping trip since early 2020. We’ve missed it. Hopefully we’ll figure out camping for next winter too. That’s totally up in the air as conditions are unsettled. However, when we do decide we can load up and be out the door quickly. Our record for packing up and leaving to go camping is 20 minutes. Good bug out practice too.