Larger RV owners requesting higher-end campsites with more amenities is cited as the reason for Nebraska parks to increase fees in an attempt to draw more high-end rigs. But it is not good news for tent campers and families on a budget as campers will likely pay more to hang a hammock, pitch a tent, or electrify their condos-on-wheels at state parks in Nebraska next year, reports the Kearney Hub.
The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission will vote on a gamut of fee increases for camping and indoor lodging at its meeting Friday in Kearney. The estimated $2 million generated by the higher fees will help the agency meet demand for upgraded campgrounds pushed by recent record sales of RVs nationally, said Jim Swenson, administrator for the parks division.
“The most common visitor comment we receive in our parks is, ‘The parks need more campsites, including more full-service connections’,” Swenson said, referring to sites that offer water, sewer and higher-amperage connections to power campers equipped with flat-screens, double air conditioners and full-sized refrigerators.
So parks officials have recommended that the commission raise the cost of a primitive Tier 1 tent site from $8 to $10, while charging $35 for full-service Tier 5 sites. Swenson also wants the ability to add a $5 or $10 surcharge to designated “prime” sites, a relatively small number of spots with the prettiest views and highest demand from campers, he said.
The director of a statewide RV club cautioned that Game and Parks could price itself out of the market. Norm Richardson, leader of a group called Nebraska Good Sam, said state parks compete with private campgrounds, and campers definitely compare prices.
Apparently, neither the seniors nor the young adults really want to disconnect their smartphones and tablet computers while getting away from it all, as there is a demand for campground Wi-Fi as well. RV campgrounds equipped years ago with 20-amp electrical outlets are inadequate to fully power modern campers.