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Old 04-11-2024, 06:13 AM   #1
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Campground Availability in 2024

Anyone else noticing a lot more vacancies on weekends this year?

I'm in northeast and go to campground in NY in summer, and normally all of the campgrounds that used to be completely booked on weekends are available. Even this one now Sun Resort park in PA which has been historically impossible to get a site show lots of availability.

This is especially true of KOAs, especially when the rates are $175-$200.
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Old 04-11-2024, 06:21 AM   #2
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Anyone else noticing a lot more vacancies on weekends this year?

I'm in northeast and go to campground in NY in summer, and normally all of the campgrounds that used to be completely booked on weekends are available. Even this one now Sun Resort park in PA which has been historically impossible to get a site show lots of availability.

This is especially true of KOAs, especially when the rates are $175-$200.
We even noticed numerous empty sites at Fort Wilderness during Spring Break which is highly unusual. My guess is it was only 80% full. Granted it's not inexpensive, but it was still a "go to" for that time period.
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Old 04-11-2024, 06:27 AM   #3
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We've noticed many private campgrounds that have raised their prices since the pandemic. A few that added "resort" to their name to apparently justify it but have priced themselves out of our budget. Time will tell if decreased attendance will cause them to drop prices some.

We start early at the nine-month window to try for reservations at our favorite NYS parks. Either you're right and reservations are easing up, or we got very lucky this year. It'll be interesting to see how full they are when we get there.
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Old 04-11-2024, 08:42 AM   #4
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We even noticed numerous empty sites at Fort Wilderness during Spring Break which is highly unusual. My guess is it was only 80% full. Granted it's not inexpensive, but it was still a "go to" for that time period.
We were there in March and noticed that as well... it's definitely the most empty since our first trip in 2017, and we go there every spring break.

It's relatively empty despite them closing entire loops for renovation. And it's empty despite the parks being packed.

My theory was that the people who RV are getting squeezed financially or decided it was too expensive.
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Old 04-11-2024, 09:13 AM   #5
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Ones you do not see at the campgrounds are sitting on for sale lots!
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Old 04-11-2024, 08:19 PM   #6
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Out here where we live I have Been trying to get a spot in a state park for next Feb or Mar. Been trying to get it since the first of Feb this year.. all the way thru March.. no go. Must be the weather here,, maybe that is why your spots are empty.
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Old 04-12-2024, 03:42 AM   #7
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I have also noticed there are many vacancies in both the Catskills and here in the Poconos. My wife even got a beach site in Delaware Seashore for 10 day in August

There also seems to be a fair amount of seasonal sites available. Maybe high fuel prices high rates at campgrounds and high inflation are really putting a hurt on everyone.
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Old 04-12-2024, 04:28 AM   #8
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I go to Montana and Wyoming for a couple months every year ( I am also trout bound) and have not noticed a decrease in demand in place where I can make reservations. We'll see how it is in the 1st come 1st served National forests. Yellowstones still a pain because 3 of its campgroinds are still closed.
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Old 04-12-2024, 05:24 AM   #9
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We also have little issue getting reservations here in the southeast. We also get regular emails from some advertising discounts/specials. Also note the number of new campgrounds opening. I am sure that is making a difference as well. For whatever reason, I am getting a lot of campgrounds advertising on Facebook, and where I am seeing a lot of these NEW places just opening up.
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Old 04-12-2024, 05:45 AM   #10
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Ones you do not see at the campgrounds are sitting on for sale lots!
It's easy to agree with that observation. Compared to what it used to be RVing has become a very expensive activity.

It's also difficult to buy and maintain a quality product. I think there are many folks who don't want to deal with the problems of ownership.
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Old 04-12-2024, 06:16 AM   #11
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We found mostly full state and provincial parks in Minnesota and Ontario. But we signed up for alerts when sites become available and traded up in a few parks to better sites.

I didn't think we'll get back to the days we showed up at Yellowstone on the spur of the moment and stayed a couple weeks without reservations.
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Old 04-12-2024, 06:19 AM   #12
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We made reservations for 2025 in our favorite place when we arrived there this March.
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Old 04-12-2024, 11:28 AM   #13
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No not really but have noticed many full timers. Young and old
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Old 04-12-2024, 01:53 PM   #14
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A number of the better campgrounds we've staying at have become Sun Resorts over last 2 years... and the rates have shot up as a result.
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Old 04-17-2024, 11:58 AM   #15
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when you can not afford milk and bread you are not going camping
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Old 04-17-2024, 12:16 PM   #16
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Our Arizona State Parks are usually reserved 1 year in advance. Our group does this religiously so we can camp together at the various parks in the state. Also at some county/local forest parks as well.
It hasn't slowed down. Yet. But that's Arizona and we locals have to deal with "foreigners" who come in to warm up every year! Grins ...
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Old 04-17-2024, 12:25 PM   #17
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Not the case here in SoCal. Pretty much no availability till September now.
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Old 04-17-2024, 12:51 PM   #18
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maybe it's the economy "stupid"

I've heard recent news that:
1) 60% of American households are living paycheck to paycheck
2) 50% have less than $1000 in savings
3) Inflation is making most families spend well over $1200 more per month for necessities than they did before the pandemic.

Add it all together and the above unfortunate folks probably are not going to be camping in those empty spaces you are noticing.
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Old 04-17-2024, 01:02 PM   #19
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Regarding Disney's Fort Wilderness, Some loops are being upgraded to cabins and are being marketed as sites for their "vaction club". I agree that the FW price increases and the costs associated with visiting WDW have put it out of reach of retirees like us.
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Old 04-17-2024, 01:23 PM   #20
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It is extremely rare we go to a private CG, I suspect its been 7-8 years since we stayed at one. We tend to do mostly State Parks. MN St Parks changed the reservation rules so you can only book 120 days out now.

We have no major plans this year. Just started booking a few sites for the summer. I would say it is a mix bag. The popular parks we looked at were full. Some of the less popular parks were full for the major holidays, but we easily found open spots as we were very flexible about where we wanted to go.

I will admit, we booked a spot for Memorial day weekend a few weeks back and what my parents say is a fabulous park (we've never been there). I was surprised by all the open spots. Everything on the lake's edge was booked. But we were able to still get what looks like a great lake view from our site.

We camped this past weekend at a local park that is always booked tight all summer. Booked the site 2 weeks prior and they showed maybe 5 sites open. They had a number of loops closed for tree maintenance. So it looked fairly full, but they were not.

The price of fire wood has gone up through the roof! $8 a bundle. Decent bundles but they were $5 just a couple years back.
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