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Fuel Prices Are Not Expected To Fuel A Slowdown In Camping Plans
Thu, 19 Jun 2003, 22:54

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(NAPSI)—Green lights, full speed ahead—the economy will not put the breaks on this year’s camping season, say the experts.

Steadily rising fuel prices and an erratic economy may have fueled the notion that some people would cut back on vacation travel plans, but travel experts say that some kinds of travel may benefit from a renewed focus on saving money.

A recent survey for the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association’s (RVIA) biannual “Campfire Canvass” found that people with recreational vehicles plan to travel an average of 46 days this summer—ten more days than last year.

They plan to log an average of 2,965 miles each—200 more than last summer.

More than half (59 percent) expect to travel more than last summer, and nearly a third (29 percent) the same amount.

According to travel experts, RV travel will remain popular, because despite higher gasoline prices, it remains a highly affordable vacation.

Even after factoring in the cost of the vehicle, RV vacations cost less than trips that involve hotels, restaurants and rental cars.

For families with a few children, vacations become even more expensive and taking the RV to a campground can offer savings.

The RV campground industry expects a strong season, with more than average advance telephone and Web site bookings.

Again, experts say that this may be prompted by economic concerns and the affordability of family camping vacations.

Jim Rogers, president and CEO of Kampgrounds of America (KOA), America’s largest campground franchiser, says his company has received many phone calls this year asking if they see any slow down in travel coming this summer because of the higher gasoline costs.

“So far, not only do we see no slow down, but we expect camping to show an increase, because despite higher gasoline costs, camping is still one of the best values around,” said Rogers. “Affordability is again at the top of everyone’s mind. RV camps offer a lot at a far lower cost than RV resorts.”

RV companies also report that more and more consumers are interested in rentals and this trend is expected to continue.

“Traveling by RV is such a comfortable, convenient way to travel,” said Rogers. “Once you travel that way it can be hard to deal with the usual travel hassles.”

For more information on KOA, visit

Advance bookings are high at RV campgrounds this year.

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