Sunday, September 19, 2021
Sunday, September 19, 2021

Reserving a campsite for “tonight”? Maybe some help

By Russ and Tiña De Maris
One of the biggest frustrations facing some RVers is the inability to do a spur-of-the-moment trip. With so many RVers vying for a finite number of RV park spots, it’s nearly impossible to reserve your spot for tonight. Or is it? A new app is about to roll out that suggests you can find an RV park spot without booking it days or weeks in advance.

Reserve your spot for tonight in real time

Spot2Night promises you can reserve your spot for tonight, now. The app, set to go into beta testing before year’s end, makes it possible to book an RV site in real-time. The app’s creators say their system integrates with existing RV park reservation system software, telling users if a site is available at a campground near where they want to drop the hook later in the day.

Too many RVers are finding the use of paper or internet campground directories have major drawbacks. First, find an RV near where you want to stay. If you’re using paper, you’re stuck calling each potential park for a “yea or nay.” Even when using internet compatible systems, you’re still stuck fishing through a website for each potential park, and drilling down through the filters to see if you can find a site that fits your needs.

Not so with Spot2Night, says the app’s creators. The app integrates with park management systems to show sites meeting your needs in real-time without having to transfer to another site. The system is already aligned with several reservation system providers including RMS, Newbook, and Checkfront. It doesn’t complete with the reservation systems but, rather, compliments them.

Reservations without “reservations”

Once you decide on a spot and book your reservation, the Spot2Night app no longer shows that spot as “available” so as to not frustrate other users, who think they really have found a spot only to find out that, whoops, “the system hasn’t quite caught up yet” and the site they’d set their heart on really didn’t exist.

While the system will make for easier “quick finds” for RV sites, like anything else it comes with a price. To reserve your spot for tonight, you’ll end up spotting another $2 to $5 per reservation made using the app. But for RVers who really have to have a spot in a real campground, the extra bucks are probably worth it. Learn more here (website under development) or on their Facebook page.

Related

Campground crowding. How long do you spend looking for reservations?
A firsthand look at what it’s like to travel by RV with no reservations
Reader letter: Days of RVing without reservations are gone

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Terry Broussard / CEO / Co_Founder
9 months ago

Good morning from Spot2Nite. First I want to thank you all for the lively feedback regarding Spot2Nite. As a four-time RV owner and working full-time, I was frustrated with trying to find last-minute spots and thought there had to be a better way. Over 14 months ago we started our development journey and are getting very close to launch. I appreciate your comments as we fine-tune the app to deliver on the availability of those spots that are immediately bookable. Of course, you can also use Spot2Nite to book long-range to the limits set forth by the parks. One key feature that I think you will enjoy is that you load your RV info and spot preferences one time, and the filters are applied across every park in the system for your chosen destination. No more going down each system only to come up empty, returning to the next, and so forth. There is much more and I hope you give us a try to find your next Spot2Nite.

Don
9 months ago

We have traveled from Maine to Arizona since 09/21 and have not had a reservation problem. When moving I call a RV park in the morning and there have been spots available. Only once did I have to call a second campground to get in. Most were far from full. All were rated 4 stars or better on Google. I am wondering where the full campgrounds are.

ffford
9 months ago
Reply to  Don

If you’ve been making reservations since “09/21”, then it’s no wonder you “have not had a reservation problem”.

Eric M.
9 months ago
Reply to  Don

Try getting into a state or national park. RV parks are a last resort for us. They’re more expensive and not as wooded and rustic.

Bounder
9 months ago

Wally docking is the easiest when we’re moving between destinations plus we can pick up the few items that are on our shopping list.

Don
9 months ago

Interesting, maybe. But “about to roll out” and “website under development” do not generate much confidence. How about telling us again, when it’s up and running…

Diane Mc
9 months ago
Reply to  Don

Click the link & sign up to be notified. If something shows up I may check it out. If not, no harm, no foul.

Terry Broussard / CEO / Co_Founder
9 months ago
Reply to  Don

Don – I invite you to sign up for early access to the app at http://www.spot2nite.com . We will certainly keep you posted on launch and appreciate your feedback. Thanks, Terry

ken
9 months ago

The trouble with these apps, “garbage in – garbage out”. How they hook into existing reservation systems and receive those park’s “available” spots, remains to be seen. Good luck finding spots from ReserveAmerica, the most inaccurate out there. Like noted here, planning is the key. And Harvest Hosts. And rest stops.

Firefly
9 months ago

If it was offering last minute discounts, I might be interested.

Terry Broussard / CEO / Co_Founder
9 months ago
Reply to  Firefly

Firefly – Yes indeed…our app reflects the immediate pricing of the park, i.e. dynamic pricing. If the park makes rate adjustments or specials, they are immediately reflected in the app. Additionally, the rate returned on your query reflects all rates for spots that meet your search criteria. We hope you check us out. Thank you! Terry

Really
9 months ago

Planning is the key to any RV Journey!

With the (pandemic) in full swing, My Wife and I have found that the parks that are still open, within 500 miles have plenty of space! While the Snow Bird Parks (none close by to us) are overrun with the “BIRDS”

Plan your trips at least a month in advance and as much as a year! We’ve done it and it works fine.
(Bleeped by Diane at RVtravel.com.)

Last edited 9 months ago by RV Staff
Terry Broussard / CEO / Co_Founder
9 months ago
Reply to  Really

Indeed, we like to plan as well. However, one evening as we were watching my RV sit idle, the family decided to just go…. No such luck. Of course, we could spend time calling all of our area parks and looking for a spot, but that was just way too time-consuming. From that scratchpad idea, we built Spot2Nite to support immediate as well as long term planning of RV travel. I hope you’ll check it out. Thank you!

Ran
9 months ago

Just what we need, another computerized APP that is killing us from reservations…..It’s already impossible with everyone in RV’s today! I don’t agree with it, but I get it.

Eric M.
9 months ago
Reply to  Ran

I agree. It will now be impossible to snag your own last minute cancellation. So now we must pony up for another fee on top of Reserve America’s fee. A state park without all the amenities of an RV resort will now cost close to the same amount.

Terry Broussard / CEO / Co_Founder
9 months ago
Reply to  Ran

Ran – Thanks for the feedback. We built Spot2Nite for just that situation. Let’s face it, we all know people who book, and then cancel, just before their deadline, for whatever reason. These maneuvers often keep other travelers from their spot for a family vacation. Spot2Nite will give you the ability to search across all of the integrated parks in your destination for the future or as you make your way across America and just need a spot for the night. Simply put, the navigator can look ahead for spots an hour or so and provide a safe stop for the driver, etc. I appreciate your comment and hope you give us a try. Thank you!

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