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RV industry booming as more turn to road trips over flights due to pandemic

Posted at 4:38 PM, Jun 08, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-08 16:40:05-04

The RV industry, like every other sector of the travel industry, took a hit in business at the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

“April was down about 30 to 35%,” said Jim Bracking.

Bracking is the manager of the Loveland RV Resort in Colorado.

“For every reservation we were gettingm we were getting a couple of cancellations,” Bracking added.

However, about a month after a slew of cancellations came in, things have started to pick up significantly.

“Reservations are up quite a bit,” said Bracking. “If you have been in the office, you could see the reservation clerks are very busy.”

Vacationers started rebooking road trips as soon as Colorado and other states started to reopen.

“You just got to get some form of normalcy back and yet be safe. This is one of the only ways we know how to do it,” said Suzie Limppo, who is vacationing in an RV at Loveland RV Resort.

RV resorts, RV parks, and RV rentals are seeing a bounce back across the country.

“We are now up over 1,000 percent from where we were in April,” said Jon Gray with RVshare.

RVshare rents RV to vacationers and it’s just one RV rental company that has seen dramatic increases in rentals.

“There is a premium on keeping your distance. There’s a premium on driving to where you want to go instead of flying, because people are afraid to get on airplanes right now,” said Gray. “So, we thought those things benefitted our business, but we didn’t realize it benefitted it as much as it has. It has been truly amazing.”

The RV industry is one of the only sectors of travel and leisure seeing such a strong rebound, and until the threat of COVID-19 is behind us, industry experts expect continued high demand.

“It is clear that this summer is a moment for the RV industry, for drive-to travel and for people kind of experiencing travel in a different way,” said Gray.

Because of high demand, RV rental companies and resorts warn those interested in taking road trips and camping should book soon.

“If somebody want to go camping, they should book their reservations now,” said Bracking. “For this year and even next year, because they are filing up and I suspect by July 4 they are going to be very full.”

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