CampgroundViews: Camping fees hit all-time high

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – Labor Day marks the traditional end to the summer camping season. According to data gathered by 2018 will have the highest overnight camping fees ever recorded with average nightly rates for a traditional camping site increasing 6 percent (from 2017) to $31.53. The company gathers data on campgrounds and RV parks in the United States to help campers make better choices about where to camp.

“Even adverse weather out East earlier this season and fires out West late this season have not stopped record numbers of campers from getting outdoors,” stated Mark Koep, founder and CEO of “Camping, either in a tent or in a RV, is back and this increased demand is allowing park operators to increase rates.”

41.7 million Americans camp every year in the United States¹ creating 56,430 jobs2. With improving economic numbers, the retirement of baby boomers, and millennial families seeking affordable travel options the camping industry is experiencing record growth. RVIA reported July wholesale RV shipments increased 10.9 percent from the previous year and are on pace to set another annual record3. All of this demand is driving overnight camping rates up.

The average nightly rate is moderated by lower increases at publicly operated parks run by public agencies where average rates have increased 2 percent.

“The private campground industry is primarily small family owned operations situated in popular destinations and rural areas, ” added Koep, “It is encouraging to see so many campgrounds finally able to improve their properties and provide affordable family fun for millions of campers.”

According to internal data rates have increased at a faster pace on the “resort” side of the industry with some overnight camping fees exceeding $170 for location and amenity driven RV resorts. On the other end of the scale many publicly operated camping options are available for under $15 per night.

“While the $170 dollar amount creates a big wow don’t let it fool you,” stated Koep. “Only 70 parks out of the 9,583 surveyed exceeded the $100 per night threshold with the most common, or mode, rate at $30 per night.” data is generated from site users submitting recent rates and includes nightly camping rates for 9,583 RV parks and campgrounds operating within the United States.

SOURCE: press release


Ronnie Wendt

Ronnie Wendt

Ronnie Wendt has been a writer/editor for more than 25 years, working in law enforcement, aviation, supply chain and the RV industry. She's not a stranger to RVs, however. She grew up camping, and still camps as many weekends as she can every year. She is the owner of In Good Company Communications and can be reached at

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  • Desuhu says:

    We find that average cost of overnight camping is $35 and up. If the keep rising, it will soon be more expensive to RV than to stay in a hotel, what with the cost of the RV’s, cost of fuel, which keeps rising, insurance, taxes, tags on RV, etc. A fun way to travel, for sure, but being priced out of the reach of average middle classers.

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