WOODALLSCM.com May 2018 - 19 the quality of sites,” the report states. “Both MillennialsandGen-Xerssayon-campground recreation is important. This is also true, to a degree, among all younger campers.” The report shows that 87% of Millennials arelookingforsomeformofphysicaloutdoor recreationwhentheygocamping,while82% of Gen-Xers and 69% of Baby Boomers feel the same way. Accommodations are also a factor when campers are selecting a campground. “A quarter of new campers are camping in cabins and that is a big increase over 2016,”saidO’Rourke.“Overall,themajorityof campers (61%) are tenters, but both cabins (14%)andRVs(24%)areseeingmoretraffic.” Peer-To-Peer Models Growing RVcampingcontinuestogrow,but44%of campers who say their primary camping accommodationisanRVsaytheydonotown the RV they use the most, according to the report which pointed out that one-fourth of this group says they borrow their RV from someone they know and 1 in 5 say they rent from a traditional RV rental company. Among Millennials, 22% say an RV is their primary type of camping accommodation, while half of those campers say they do not own the RV they use. “They tend to borrow or rent,” states the report. “About 3-in-10 Millennials who don’t own an RV now say theywouldconsiderpurchasingone,butonly when they retire.” Gen-Xers are the most likely to rent an RV, with 23% saying they were “very likely” to. O’Rourkesaidthatthepeer-to-peermodel for camping — businesses like Hipcamp, where you can rent a camping spot on private land — is also starting to register in the annual report. “In 2017, 9% camped on public land, other thanacampgroundorprivately-ownedland,” she said. “And 4% of that was peer-to-peer. That’sinteresting.I’mcurioustoseehowthat grows, year over year.” The report in its entirety can be accessed at:koa.uberflip.com/i/960378-2018-koa-north- american-camping-report.— Ben Quiggle “We are seeing 8 in 10 campers taking tripsthatincludeaweekend,”saidO’Rourke. “Half of those are weekend only or an extended weekend trip — taking a Friday or a Monday off. So, we are seeing camping being perceived as a very easy way to get away. Campers can pop out for a weekend. They can pop out for three days. They don’t have to go far and that gets their family that mini-break.” How Do Campers Choose Campgrounds? “As more young families start camping, campgrounds that are kid-friendly have become increasingly important,” the reports states. “This factor has increased 6% between 2014 and 2017, with more than one-third of Gen X campers saying it is an important consideration.” The importance of Wi-Fi when making a decision on where to camp may actually be decreasing as it becomes more widely avail- able and an “expected amenity,” according to the report. Other camper considerations include clean and well-maintained restrooms and bathhouses (44%), self-guided recreational activities (20%) and campgrounds that allow pets and have pet areas (20%). “Younger campers choose campgrounds based more on atmosphere, compared to older campers who prioritize the location and report.Only1in10saythatunpluggingmeans no access to any technology. When asked how they “unplug” while camping, about a third of all campers say that they have their smartphone with them, but they don’t turn it on. Only 9% of campers reported that “unplugged” means “no access to any technology whatsoever.” Why Do People Camp? Camping is viewed as an escape from the routine, noted the the report, with 40% of campers saying, “camping is a time to just relaxandnotfeellikeIhavetobesomewhere or do something.” Escaping stress, clearing their minds and spending time with family or friends, are all cited as top reasons why people are camping. Affordability is also a factor in why people camp, with the report noting that 62% of campers saying they think camping is an affordable vacation option. The cost of other types of travel also impacted people’s deci- sions to camp, with 40% saying it impacted their decisions on what to do for vacation. Distance has also begun to impact why and where people camp, according to the study, with 35% of all campers saying they camp at a campground within 50 miles of their home. That number is up from 26% in 2016 and 17% in 2015. Among new campers, 46% stay within 50 miles of their home.