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KOA Monthly Report Highlights Surge in ’24 Travel Bookings

KOA’s most recent monthly research report shows that travelers are eager to get outdoors as early bookings are on a strong pace.

Kampgrounds of America, Inc.’s (KOA) latest monthly report showcases a significant uptick in travel bookings for the 2024 season, particularly among Gen Z campers. This increase points to a marked eagerness among travelers to secure their spot for future trips and emphasizes a desire to celebrate life’s milestones and foster relationships through shared outdoor experiences, according to a press release.

The report indicates the continuing trend of integrating road trips with camping, noting a 10% higher preference for road trips over traditional camping activities. This preference highlights a broader enthusiasm for exploration and adventure, with 59% of campers favoring road trips and 49% opting for stationary camping. This underscores a deeper integration of road-tripping into the camping experience, reflecting a dynamic approach to travel and adventure.

Travel demand has surged significantly beyond last year’s figures, with 64% of campers already making reservations for upcoming trips. This proactive booking behavior starkly contrasts with non-camping leisure travelers, of whom only 29% have made similar arrangements. Among these bookings, camping trips are the most popular (54%), followed by hotel stays (46%).

Gen Z campers and individuals who began camping during the COVID-19 pandemic lead the early booking trend. Key motivations for these bookings include family reunions, birthdays, and celebrations during major holidays such as Memorial Day and the Fourth of July. This points to a collective desire to use these trips as opportunities to celebrate and deepen connections with loved ones.

“The increase in travel bookings year-over-year isn’t just about the act of traveling,” said Whitney Scott, senior vice president of strategy at KOA. “It reflects people’s desire to plan for meaningful celebrations and kindle relationships through shared experiences in the great outdoors. It’s heartening that the outdoors is becoming the place to commemorate milestones and strengthen bonds with family and friends.”

The report also notes that a segment of travelers (16%) has or intends to shorten booking windows in 2024, influenced by weather concerns and work schedules. This trend is less evident among RVers, while 25% of those combining camping with other forms of travel are inclined towards last-minute plans. Weather concerns, particularly among Gen Z campers and tent users, have prompted a more cautious approach to planning trip duration and timing.

“Although the intent to shorten booking windows in 2024 is observed within a small group of our campers, it’s crucial to recognize that this trend correlates significantly with the delaying and canceling plans in 2023,” said Scott. “It’s imperative that we stay ahead of these changes to ensure that we continue to meet the needs of our campers and adapt to the shifting landscape of outdoor recreation.”

To view the full findings of the KOA Monthly Research Report – February 2024 Edition, past and future editions, and review the research methodology, visit the KOA Press Room.

 

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