By Chuck Woodbury
You wonder when it will end — booming sales of RVs.
RV wholesale shipments this year are expected to reach 539,900 units, a 7 percent increase from the record 504,599 units shipped last year, according to the new quarterly projection from Dr. Richard Curtin in the RV Industry Association’s spring issue of the RV RoadSigns forecasting newsletter. The anticipated growth would mark the ninth consecutive year of expansion for the RV market.
Statistical Survey’s Inc. reported that in January, Winnebago travel trailers were up 56.8 percent in market share from last year, with a nearly 70 percent increase in unit sales. Motorhome sales were up, too, but far less dramatically.
I hesitate to jump on my soapbox again, but here’s what I think: There is no way the RV park industry can possibly create enough new campsites to keep up with this growth. No way. Maybe it can increase the net number of sites by a few thousand, a tiny drop in the bucket.
So keep on making your campsite reservations at least a few months ahead, or better yet a year ahead and just hope you don’t get sick, or your rig doesn’t break down, or your daughter doesn’t announce she’s having triplets the weekend you planned away.
The RV industry is gloating over all these sales, as they have been for years. There’s nothing wrong with selling a lot of RVs except it would be nice if there were more places to stay with them except Walmarts and truck stops. The RV industry continues to look the other way. It’s leaders don’t care. RVers will get fed up soon. Just watch.
Don’t miss campground owner Andy Zipser’s article on what all these newbie RVers and the crowding mean to an RV park (hint, it’s not necessarily a good thing).