b'they have no intent to stop traveling by RV. many of the new developments are fol-We are predicting, barring another un- lowing this luxury and customer-focusedforeseen massive event, that our industry design trend.will continue to see record demand and The new wave of properties will raisetravel well into late fall, when cold and snow the bar for operations across our industry.finallymutesoutdoordemand. Without Combined with consumers that demandsolid data points to validate, we are estimat- a more hospitable experience from pri-ing that our industryone that traditionally vate parks we expect to see a few promis-sees 40 million American camperswill ing trends occur:likely host 65-70 million American campers Continuingincreasesinaveragethisseason.Thismassivewaveofnew nightly rates.campers portends a long-term trend towardA more lenient development envi-RV and camping travel as not only a vaca- ronment for new builds.tion option but as a long-term alternative to Millennials are exploring the RV lifestyle more as advances inIncreased access to capital for exist-living in stationary quarters. technology has allowed them to work and play from the road.ing park development and purchases.As we shake our new crystal ball a few A rising tide will lift all boats and amaz-factors come into play that will determine years, we will combine our already favor- peated in forest service and BLM proper- ingly what began as an end of days sce-how long and how big our boom will be: able pre-COVID19 trends bolstered by the ties across the country, their dispersed nariohasbecomethecatalystsfora Severity and length of COVID restric- new normal trends leading to significant free camping sites are over-run, over- renaissance in the outdoor hospitalitytions. The worse they are and the longer increases in RV and tent camping. used and mistreated. sector. If we shake our crystal ball in Sep-they last the more people will seek out- Outdoor hospitality was on the cusp of As an additional benefit to the private tember 2020, it shows us a five-year trenddoor travel as an alternative. great change and diversity before the na- sector, we expect to see public lands begin that will grow our industry to heights we Public perception of traditional travel tional health crisis. RV manufacturers had aggressiverestrictionsondispersed only imagined in the past. The outdooris still struggling to gain ground. already begun to create a #vanlife version camping. As a double hit there are indica- hospitality sector is on the cusp of a sig-Arapidswitchtoalternativeand of their RVs to attract the Millennial and tions that many public agencies will be nificant growth trend that will fundamen-homeschooling will free millions of fami- simplified living campers. Glamping is forcedtobecomeself-fundingorrev- tally change the industry.liesfromtheschedulesoftraditional now a common word used to describe enue-neutral operations. The combinedschooling. This adjustment will directly fancy camping. There is a multitude of impact of these will be a supply squeeze Mark Koep is the founder and CEO ofimpact shoulder season travel and mid- options to arrive at an individual outdoor on available camping sites (fewer camp- CampgroundViews.com and Outdoor Busi-week travel, boosting park income by in- experience. Whether that experience is ing sites available) driving more demand ness Pros. He heads the widely popular RVcreasing their occupancy on normal low dispersed camping or upscale glamping, for private camping sites. Park/ Campground Owners and Managersoccupancy days. the pandemic has shown us that there are Already we are seeing a significant in- Operations & Marketing Forum on Face- Advances in connectivity and trends plenty of consumers to go around. The in- crease in new park developments and ac- book and his team successfully held thetoward work-at-home jobs are enabling dustry is poised for growth and the next quisitionsfromsmartmoney.Any Back to Camping Summit in May. Camp-more to travel full-time and work remotely. five years will change the face of outdoor industry in the real estate space that has groundViews.comreachesover200,000 The disconnect between local home- hospitality like never before. limited supply and massive demand will campers every month sending millions ofowners and their elected representatives This increase in traffic will have the inevitably see an investment spike and leads to parks across the country.has caused many to reconsider the effi- largest impact on the public agency side ours is no different. These new develop- Dyana Kelley is the president and CEO ofcacy of the American Dream. of our business. Federal, state and local ments will take some time to come online CampCalNOW RV Park and CampgroundThe net effect of these trends on our in- camping facilities, already traditionally with properties opening in rapid succes- Alliance,anadvisortotheAmericandustry portends a near-term future where run at maximum capacity, will be strained sion over the next three years. Sun Com- Glamping Association, holds a seat on theoutdoor travel continues to see rapid in- to the limit with new campers. As noted munities Inc. has set a high bar with its board of CalTravel and is a member of theircreases in new entrants. Over the next five in the Inyo example above and being re- recent high-end property openings and Government Relations Committee. WCM14 -October 2020Woodalls Campground Management'