Forget Italy or the Maldives. This summer it seems everyone is hitting the open road. RV dealers across the country are reporting high demand as people look for a way to travel and stay socially distant, according to a report by Jen Rogers at Yahoo Finance.
The RV lifestyle can be an affordable alternative to booking flights and hotels, but there’s a whole luxury RV subset that that’s anything but economical.
“It’s kind of a world that most people are not familiar with unless you just happen to pass one on the road on vacation. But, these things are well over $2 million in value,” Jer Goss, the CEO of luxury RV company Goss RV told Yahoo Finance’s The Final Round. “It’s a large apartment. The walls extending create a lot of extra space on the inside. It’s basically a luxurious home on wheels.”
Take the Prevost Legendary. It’s a 45-foot RV with three televisions that rents for $3,500 a day. That’s a bargain, compared to this Prevost Marathon that Goss RV rents for $7,900 a day, $39,500 a week, or $158,000 a month.
‘We’ve never seen anything like this’
“It was unbelievable,” is how Goss characterizes the surge in demand this spring. During the first three weeks of May alone, inquiries were up over 350%. It was a huge reversal from the immediate COVID-19 reaction.
“About the middle of March, we just kind of hit a standstill. And not only that, we were probably at 10% revenue for the month of April.”
While one-way rentals out of New York City happened early on, with the economy beginning to unlock, the floodgates are now open and demand has never been higher for Goss RV.
“We’ve never — we have a lot of partners in this industry as well. We sell them. We rent them. And so it’s just — it’s amazing. We’ve never seen anything like this. There are facilities that are selling out of all their products. We’re putting people on the roads. So it’s crazy right now.”
RV stocks on the move
The so-called “stay-at-home trade” has been hot this spring with Peloton (PTON) and Netflix (NFLX) benefiting from people sheltering in place. The mobile home trade is also seeing big gains. RV and camping companies, including Winnebago (WGO), Thor Industries (THO), and Camping World Holdings (CWH) — have seen their shares not just recover from the lows of the year, but turn positive.