Saturday, June 10, 2023


KOA will add electric vehicle chargers to campgrounds

The new Jamestown charger soon to be installed in many KOAs.

Interest in adding electric vehicle charging stations to campgrounds is accelerating faster than a Tesla Roadster.

KOA (Kampgrounds of America Inc.) just announced a new program to add Level 2 EV chargers to a few select campground locations across the U.S. and Canada. The announcement came during KOA’s annual International Convention in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. All KOA owners will also have access to add the new chargers to their parks.

The new charging stations are being supplied by Jamestown Advanced Products, a New York-based steel manufacturer best known for supplying campgrounds with fire rings and picnic tables. Jamestown’s expansion into the e-vehicle charging station market with its Level 2 EV Station is certainly a bold move. By providing KOA with a branded, standardized EV station, Jamestown gets instant access to 520 campgrounds in North America.

When will they be installed?

Campers will likely begin seeing the pedestals at KOAs as early as spring of 2022.

KOA says its latest research shows that campers own electric vehicles at a higher rate than the national average. KOA said one in five campers have an EV in their household, compared to 12 percent of non-campers. The national average for EV ownership is around 7 percent.

Each charging unit will be able to charge one electric vehicle while also providing amperage for RVs through an available outlet. The Level 2 chargers utilize a 240-volt electric supply and can charge the vehicle up to 10 times faster than a Level 1 (120-volt) charger.

“KOA is always looking for innovative ways to make our properties more environmentally friendly and reduce our carbon footprint,” said KOA President and CEO Toby O’Rourke. “This amenity is a first-of-its-kind for a campground network, and we could not be more excited to offer EV chargers as an amenity to campground owners and guests alike. It’s an important step in promoting sustainability in the outdoor industry and making it easy for electric vehicle owners to enjoy their favorite activities such as camping, road-tripping and RVing.”

KOA campers can charge their EVs at their campsite

Jamestown Advanced Products Director Josh Lodestro said the KOA program will accelerate the development of EV charging networks for campers. “Our EV chargers will be fast and reliable, solving for the common problem of finding enough chargers on the road when you leave major urban areas,” Lodestro said. “Best of all, the camper will never need to leave their campsite to charge.”

Each EV charging station will allow for added 50-, 30-, or 20-amp receptacles to make on-site installation a one-stop solution for all power needs. No prior knowledge of EV charging is required for installation, as each unit arrives pre-wired and installs in a similar fashion to standard campground RV power outlet pedestals. Each unit will also include a universal access charging plug and 25 feet of cable. Registered KOA campers will receive priority access to the charging stations.


Electric vehicles could change the way we camp


Mike Gast
Mike Gast
Mike Gast was the vice president of Communications for Kampgrounds of America Inc. for 20 years before retiring in 2021. He also enjoyed a long newspaper career, working as a writer and editor at newspapers in North Dakota, South Dakota, Oregon, and Montana. He and his wife, Lori Lyon, now own and operate the Imi Ola Group marketing company, focusing on the outdoor industry.


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Sean Oleary
1 year ago

So…. all the people who are NOT going to buy an EV will now be forced to subsidize the few who do? Why are limited-range fancy road going golf carts being forced down our collective throats?

Thomas L Wenzler
1 year ago

How much is the cost for charging?

Alan Candra
1 year ago

Good to see that there are some smart people out there who can see where the future (near) is headed and planning for it, and will make a good living off it.

Sean Oleary
1 year ago
Reply to  Alan Candra

Don’t worry… as Elon Musk himself pointed out, gas cars aren’t going anywhere for the next 50 years!! Will YOU be around that long, because I won’t. Therefore, I don’t really give the whole fancy golf cart thing a second thought!

Tom Herbert
1 year ago

During the Summer of 2021, I ran into a father and son camping at a KOA near Ft. Collins, CO with a teardrop camper pulled by a Tesla Model 3. He said the trailer cut his range in half from about 360 miles to 180 miles. Didn’t have much trouble finding Superchargers on the road and he could get almost a full charge overnight from the 110v plug on the campground pedestal. It’s coming!

Sean Oleary
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Herbert

My neighbor 3 doors down from me had his Tesla flat bedded home 3 times in the past year. You see, you can’t just plug ’em in every night to top ’em off, (you have to let the battery drain down a bit) and you can’t let the batteries drain all the way down either – both scenarios don’t bode well. So, try remembering – constantly – exactly where your batteries are at charge-wise and let me know how that works out for you… 😂

Ron Sifford
1 year ago

I did not see where they have to pay for charging. This would stick the cost to everyone.

1 year ago

A very smart move to jump on this, both for Jamestown and KOA.
A small EV will be a very popular towed vehicle behind RV’s, but only if they can be kept charged.
Then there is the coming wave of EV pickup trucks that will be towing travel trailers modest distances from homes to campgrounds, but again, only if they can be charged at the destination.

1 year ago
Reply to  Eric

Yes, a “towed” vehicle. Right now, there is not a truck that can tow a trailer more than a hundred miles without charging for 8 hours (1 hr for a supercharger). They just are not practical for towing…. yet.

1 year ago
Reply to  TexasScout

“They just are not practical for towing…. yet.”
Just a matter of time. The times they are a changing.

Sean Oleary
1 year ago
Reply to  jcav55

Yeah… with lithium (for the batteries) not occurring in nature in large amounts, change WILL be coming soon – back to gas cars when lithium either runs out in 10 years as predicted, or soars through the roof in price!

1 year ago
Reply to  TexasScout

That’s why I said “modest distances”. If there is charging available at the destination campground, and that campground is within ‘one charge’ towing range, it’s going to work great, and save the campers quite a bit of money in fuel costs.

Sean Oleary
1 year ago
Reply to  TexasScout

FINALLY! A guy with some sense and awareness of the issue!

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