Thursday, September 21, 2023


Around the Campfire: Some RV dealers and campgrounds sell your personal information

The campfire conversation a few nights ago introduced a topic I’d never even considered, let alone feared. This may be “news” to you, as well. It started with Penny complaining, “I don’t like that some RV dealers, organizations, and camps sell my information. It’s an invasion of my privacy.” Wait! What? RV dealers sell personal information?

RV dealers sell personal information?

Turns out Penny is right. Some dealers routinely sell your information to ancillary RV businesses like those that sell campground memberships, for instance. You can insist that your name and personal information not be passed along, but if you finance your RV through the dealership, they should comply with the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act.

As I understand this law, companies must tell customers what information they collect, how they share this information and describe the ways in which they protect your information. Companies should also explain your right to “opt-out” if you don’t want your information shared with third parties. (I’m guessing this information is buried in the “fine print.”)

Campgrounds, too?

As for campgrounds sharing or selling your personal information, you can inquire about this issue when you make reservations or when you check in.

Some campground brochures advertise the fact that they do not share your private information (name, address, phone number, credit card information). Good for them!

Other campgrounds do collect such information, and may also gather your work email/phone number, and lifestyle information, as well (e.g., leisure activities, names and ages of children, health conditions requiring special accommodations, etc.).

Campgrounds may also collect and share non-personally identifiable information, like IP addresses, web pages visited, and more. Third parties use this information to promote offers and surveys.

If you don’t want your personal information shared, voice your opposition. Jake added, “Or just pay cash for your campsite. Then there’s no financial trail the campground can share.”

Penny clarified, “I’m not paranoid. I just don’t want junk mail or all of the solicitor’s calls on my phone.”

Jake added, “Well, you don’t want personal information to get into the wrong hands either! Identity theft is real, after all.”

Is this a problem for RVers?

The entire conversation rattled me a bit. I wondered: How prevalent is this practice? Do just the “big boy” RV dealers sell personal information? Or is it more widespread than RVers know?

Do you have concerns about your privacy while RVing or do you have any experiences with this? Share your thoughts in the comments below, please.

Last week’s Around the Campfire:

Around the Campfire: RVers share their funny and ‘yikes’ newbie mistakes

Read more from Gail here.


Gail Marsh
Gail Marsh
Gail Marsh is an avid RVer and occasional work camper. Retired from 30+ years in the field of education as an author and educator, she now enjoys sharing tips and tricks that make RVing easier and more enjoyable.


  1. I can’t believe anyone now-a-days would be shocked that their name, address, and phone numbers are sold by businesses.

    Anytime you put that information on a form or give it out the expectation should always be that it will be given out!

    I made the mistake of accepting an emailed receipt at one campground. Never ever again anywhere! Literally within minutes my email was getting filled with junk emails.

    Why would anyone somehow think the RV and camping industry is different than any other, especially the way things are?

  2. This is news to me. I will ask our salesman at North Trail RV in Fort Myers, Florida if he knows if his company sells customer information. I have seen no signs that they do and we recently purchased there (7/12/22), but we also self-financed (if that matters). Thank you for this eye-opening article!

  3. I’ve gotten sales calls from a Sun Resorts chain location. Guess they find it more lucrative to have staff spend their time selling, rather than updating electrical posts. .

    It doesn’t help to pay cash, they still have to have your name, address, phone, license plate, and demographic data. Funny thing, they never use that phone number to let us know there’s a tornado or flood warning at the campground. They must be collecting it to sell.

  4. When you add a app to your cell phone you authorized the company to track you. The auto makers now want you to download their app and even give you points when you buy a new vehicle. Which you can use for accessories or service. These auto companies have a computer in your vehicle and will be trying to make you pay for convenience like heated seats, gps, remote start. But when you agree to their terms and conditions your allowing them to snoop as well as allow third parties to do the same. Even RV companies want you to download their app to operate equipment in your RV. Read the app’s terms and conditions.

  5. We have one email address that everyone gets; it fills up with lots of ‘junk’ on a daily basis; I quit trying to unsubscribe from many of those incoming junk emails. A second address is used for trusted businesses (like this RV Travel newsletter) and special persons (close family and friends); a third address has recently been added for emergency notifications and gets ‘special monitoring.’

  6. Using a credit card or debit card? Data is being collected. Just wait for the “cashless society” of the coming future for massive, invasive data collection. Hard to trace cold cash.

  7. What a joke… Are you a member of a social media group, do you play “free” games on your phone or laptop, do you play games that pay you to play? They all are collecting your data and selling it.

    • Yep, all in good taste I suspect. Lol. Everything you do online is tracked by someone, especially the government. If you comment on something or like something that is tracked. Our daughter is very good at her crafts, last year she was making dolls that look and feel real, most of the materials are Chinese made naturally, she made a baby boy doll and the face looks exactly like my oldest son when he was a baby, that’s what they do with the pics you take with your phone and share online. The internet is a great tool, but it can bite you if you’re not careful. Look at everything that people share on FB, that’s being tracked by someone. That’s why I’m not on FB any longer, they know too much about me from the 1 1/2 years I used it.

      • Yup. You and me and almost everyone is being tracked: your cell phone location, internet usage, credit card use, some places – your vehicle license plate, the local store you walk into, your neighbor’s security camera, and more. Just gotta live with it…


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