Thursday, September 21, 2023


As of right now, how far in advance have you reserved a campsite?

With campground crowding and an increase in campers in general, we all know how hard it can be to reserve a last-minute campsite… even a site at all! Some of you are still just winging it when it comes to where you’ll be staying each night, but others of you have every night of your trips planned out for six months, some of you even a year.

As of this very moment, how far in advance have you reserved a campsite? Is it just tomorrow night? Four months from now? Six months? A year? A year-and-a-half? After you vote, please leave a comment and explain your answer. Thanks!


  1. Most state parks have a 6 month prior to rsvp. I know Michigan is one. So I plan about a year out where to go next unless I have a working camping job and know I need a seasonal to stay at. The one I am staying at is expensive but very nice. I am in Maine and love the seasonal people here. Maine has a lot of great people and very friendly as well.

  2. I don’t travel for campgrounds, but for things to see and do in their vicinity. I have never stayed in a campground for longer than three days. I book one or two days ahead. I have only once, in Torrey, Utah, been unable to book for the night I needed and so I just boondocked on BLM land that night.

  3. We spend the winter in Florida State Parks & reserve 11 months ahead. Many sites were booked already!
    As we camped there last winter, we noticed a lot of empty sites. Assumed they were ‘no shows’ who hadn’t cancelled. How rude!

  4. Reservations were made at two campgrounds two days ahead, one reservation one day ahead and two reservations made the same day.

    Now for the fine print: All reservations were for one or two nights and all were during the week. No Friday-Sunday stays.

  5. I booked stays at state Park campgrounds 90 days out which is as far in advance as allowed. Am in one in Nebraska now and there are still open spots available. I think price of fuel is effecting RV camping.

  6. Depending on where you want to go is how far in advance you need to reserve. In indiana state parks 6 months ahead is when the window opens. Usually it fills up pretty quick but some parks do not fill up. Around the holidays there is definitely not much room to book so the sooner the better. Some of the surrounding states open a year ahead. So I have had to change my thinking when we want to go out of state and reserve accordingly.

  7. We typically book our Winter stays in Gulf shores Alabama at least 6 months in advance but this year we booked a year in advance So that we could get our 4 months at the park we like to stay at.
    in our normal travel throughout the year we will not book anything in advance anymore as we just lost $250 in deposits due to changes in our plans beyond our control.

  8. We reserve our site for our Winter Texan trips. The two places we reserve are never full but we have a particular site we really like and reserve for the following year as we leave each spring. Other than that we seldom have a problem so don’t reserve more than a week or so ahead.

  9. We go to Daytona 500 every year so book the next year before we leave campground to dry camp at the race track. Same with CG we stay at for the INDY500. And, we would have booked next year at Sugarloaf KOA in the Keys if they hadn’t changed their booking policy without notifying anyone. It was one year. In the past we would book while there even giving site numbers preferred. Always got what we wanted. Evidently they now let people book up to 14 months out. The CG was destroyed by hurricane, they just reopened late last year & called us before allowing online reservations. Got a great site. Was looking forward to returning. Not to be.

  10. WA State parks book up fast, so we have to reserve them the day they open, at 7AM when the system opens to ensure we get the space we want. Popular parks, are another story. If you can start your stay on a Thursday or even Wednesday, you have the best chance of getting a prime spot at Wenatchee Confluence, Birch Bay or Fort Casey State Parks.

  11. We generally travel out of Phoenix from late-April to early-November. Being 45 feet plus toad, I’m used to having a detailed plan for each year’s travels well in advance. I usually start in January/February, so “six months to a year” out.

    That said, we also like to stay at Elks Lodges when possible. While more are now taking reservations, many are still “first come, first served” (“FCFS”). So far this season we’ve stayed at five Lodges. Only one took reservations and that one was essentially full. The others were all FCFS and none were even close to full. It could be that in this time of reservation need, people aren’t taking a chance on FCFS locations.

    Also this year, for the first time we have a month’s reservation at our last spot before returning to AZ. If we like it, we’ll probably try to reserve next year’s stay before we leave.

  12. I’ve done one month out, six months out and more. I don’t mind going through the process and paying whatever and planning etc. What I do mind are the no-shows. We’ve seen quite a few of them lately. I think ReserveAmerica and and the state fish and game and national forest service really need to step up and start denying sites to people that are doing that consistently. Has anyone seen sites sold on a secondary market? I think we’re getting closer to that possibility. We’ve never been asked for ID.

    • Once talked to a ranger at a Florida State Park and he freely admitted that the reservation system is manipulated however they do not know what to do to keep it from happening.

  13. No reservation. When all people do the charm of RV ing is gone i think. Just hit the road and see where it brings me.

    • Anthonia, we totally agree. We have only booked once and that was to attend a wedding. Other than that, we don’t know when or where we will be.

  14. Our 4th of July trip to MO where we’d park at relatives got cancelled. Our former neighbors who now own a nearby campground, are squeezing us in on a shared pedestal, but our great grandsons will get to sleep in the motorhome so they won’t care.

  15. I book our campsites the day they go on sale. Sometimes the minute they go on sale depending on the campground. Often that’s a year in advance sometimes less. To me it’s the most important part of a trip–to have a home base. All the rest is dependent on that.

  16. We have done mostly reservation camping since some time in the 90s, when the SW got discovered. We decided we didn’t want to spend vacation time looking for any type of accommodation, with rare exceptions.
    We’ve made reservations 9 months to a year in advance, to camp in concessionaire CGs with hookups in national parks. We also reserve that far in advance for holiday weeks at some state parks or KOAs, such as when we visit friends in AZ for Thanksgiving.
    Otherwise, we mostly reserve 6 months in advance, when the window opens for the US Forest Service and national park campgrounds that are our main destinations. Planning is part of the fun of our trips, but it does get interesting. This year’s major trip planning began more than a year in advance, when my husband got a raft trip (Grand Canyon) reservation. With 2 NPs, 3 stops at the same KOA, and a hotel for him, we made reservations over several months.

  17. A week ahead for state parks. I haven’t had any problems finding a place to stay. Granted, if we were trying to stay at a popular destination (which we try to avoid) there may be issues.

  18. Regular unleaded gas has dropped below $5.00. Yesterday I spent $4.74.9 per gallon at the Flying J in Carneys Point. This coming week we will be camping in South Jersey, about 35 miles from home. Taking one grand child to enjoy what the campground has to offer. The fuel prices have definitely adjusted my travel plans for the summer.

  19. We are lucky that our state (MT) has a lot of sites reservable at Do I hate the website and find it difficult to reserve the best sites for the dates I want? Yes. Do I still want those sites? Yes. When you’re reserving six months ahead, you take the dates you can get. We make the best of it.

  20. With a few exceptions, I generally reserve campsites 30-60 days ahead. The exception is certain areas in the winter months. We have a standing reservation at one place from Dec. 18th thru Dec. 28th at a place near our daughter in Texas. We confirm the next years reservation the day we leave.

  21. On a 4 1/2 month 4,000 mile trip, we reserved a one month stay in a very overpriced area to see our Son’s new house and be with the grand kids.
    So far it’s worked. Two more months to go.

  22. In January we made reservations for October 14-24 at a campground. That’s our most distant in time set of reservations. Given that it’s now almost July, I selected “Less than 6 months out.”

  23. Go ahead and make your reservations 6-months out and see where that gets you when you have to make a change 2-weeks away. The CG will dink you for 2 nights stay “for making a change too close to the day of arrival.” You want your money back? Uh, no. But you can use it towards another stay. Oh really? 1500 miles away!? It isn’t like they can’t get someone else to stay there within 15 minutes.

  24. I have never reserved more than a month away from our arrival date, but I don’t use online reservations. I do it the old fashion way, I call on the phone! For some reason, whether it’s the intelligence or lack of, by the people in the online facility seem to always be somewhere else in their mind. See there I go again stating it in a non-politically correct way. Can’t help it, I call them as I see them.

  25. To reserve a campsite at a FL state park you need to do it within a week or so of the opening date which is a year in advance to be sure you can stay where you want. If reserving for a 3 day weekend or holiday you have to act fast or lose out especially the more popular parks. With the price of fuel we can’t afford traveling cross country and local parks only have a few days during the week available. We can no longer go where the wind blows we need unavoidable reservations.

  26. Our Go-to places in Florida and the Adirondacks are booked more than a year in advance. We book the parks along our travel routes as well as exploring new areas 6 months to a year in advance. The park we’re staying at now just asked us to book for next summer because they have other folks wanting to reserve out that far in advance. Some parks limit reservations to less than 3 to 6 months. If a park does that I move on to another one.

  27. We have a few booked for next summer just to make sure we don’t miss out on the campgrounds we really want to get in but typically we book in February for the summer trips.

  28. One place we stay fills up very quickly. To get the spot we want on the dates that work for us, we reserve exactly @ the one year in advance time limit. Otherwise, our reservations are no more than a month out, simply to get those dates on our calendar.

  29. We do rallies (about 12 coaches) with our local RV club. So as of now we have rallies for January, March, April and May of 2023. We could not get a spot for February in Florida.


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