Sunday, June 5, 2016

Why Are Visitor Fees Charged At Private Campgrounds & RV Parks?

No matter which campground that campers choose to stay at, if they have friends or family living in or near that area, chances are, they’ll want to visit them.  When guests arrive at the campground, they are often charged a visitation fee, and many are surprised by that.  Below, we’ve listed some reasons why visitor fees are necessary.   

The campground’s facilities can only handle so many people at a time.  It isn’t that campground owners don’t want visitors.  On the contrary, we love you to invite people to come visit.  We love to have people see and enjoy our parks.  We take great pride in them.  However, additional people place an extra burden on the facilities.  There are the obvious additional expenses of toilet tissue, paper towels, cleaning supplies, attendant’s labor, garbage bags, and more.  The prices of these supplies have sky rocketed with increased petroleum prices.  We have to recoup those costs. 

Popular, private campgrounds receive hundreds of visitors a month, which can translate into thousands of visitors a season, which translates into huge extra expenses for the campground.  The less obvious long-term expense is that expanding facilities is a huge investment these days and in order to maintain the facilities a campground has, they have to stay within the capacity boundaries for which their water and sewage systems were designed and for which they are permitted.  Water system quality, pool samples, and sewage testing are required by the state to the tune of thousands of dollars a season.  All for good reason, as they are designed to keep the public’s drinking water, swimming facilities, and ground water safe.  However, when extra burdens are cast upon those facilities, the costs to maintain and operate them increase as well.  If the testing of those systems is that expensive, imagine the increased operating expenses for them as well.

State and local laws, set occupancy, and facilities are only permitted for so many people accordingly.  Design load and licensing of campgrounds or the facilities is similar to the ‘seating capacity’ license you see in food services, however recognize that because a campground does not have tables and chairs that limit occupancy, it must be done in another fashion.  The state issues sewer treatment permits based on the total number of campsites and number of people per campsite, times the average water usage per campsite.  That is why the number of people per campsite and the total number of campsites is limited.  When the campground is full, an extra 8 people is another campsite.  Multiple that by several campsites, and the idea of overflowing sewer systems should come to mind.

In addition, the visitor rates aren’t normally set on the person who uses the facilities the least, but on the average cost of the visitors to the campground or RV park.  The campground owner assumes that your family will participate in activities and events, enjoy the entertainment provided, and or utilize the swimming pool, and other facilities and amenities.  These business owners know that their visitor rates go up dramatically on holiday and special event weekends.  The numbers of visitors increase because we have special activities and events; have better entertainers or entertainment and more things to do.

In some states, laws require that every visitor to a private outdoor hospitality property register, regardless of intent to visit residents or use the facilities. State health department require that business owners can identify all in residence and visiting in case health issues arise.  User pay fees are the fairest way to cover the costs of those inherent costs, and should a health risk arise, to identify the users at risk.

Security is always a concern.  Campgrounds, like anywhere else, can be a target for thieves, child predators, etc. So tracking who is in the park helps to reduce the chances of theft, child abductions, among others.  It provides more security for both your family and possessions.

Emergency Preparedness is essential!  What if the campground had to be evacuated in the event of a fire, flood, hurricane, or tornado?  How would the campground account for who was on the premises and who might be missing?

Parking extra vehicles is another issue.  In most campgrounds, real estate is a premium.  So, too many cars per campsite quickly become a congestion and safety issue.  Most campgrounds limit the number of vehicles per campsite to one or two for safety reasons and rescue vehicle access.  Therefore, the campground needs to provide extra visitor parking areas to relieve that congestion and ensure access for emergency vehicles.  That means that there is a clerk that has to assign the visitors tags, provide access to the park, a campsite map to help the visitor to find the folks they desire to visit, and finally directions on where they are to park.  All of these materials and the employee’s time is an additional increase to the cost of operations to the business. 

Be a courteous camper!  No one wants to be camped next to a mob.  If you’re planning a family reunion, birthday party or another celebration of some sort, ask about using a pavilion or facility so as not to intrude on your camping neighbor!  

Increased visitors increase a campground’s liability insurance costs.  The rates for a campground’s liability insurance are based on the risk assessment and the number of people who occupy a campground during a season.  The higher the number of occupants in the RV Park or campground, the risk increases accordingly.  In addition, some insurance carriers argue that visitors are more likely to be injured because they are unfamiliar with their surroundings, may not be aware of all the rules or safety policies at campgrounds, and are less likely to be dressed appropriately for the camping or outdoor experience.  All of these things place the visitor at an increased risk for an injury.    

Remember that privately owned and operated campgrounds aren’t subsidized by tax dollars like federal, state, and county parks.  Even at most of those campgrounds, there is an entrance fee, and then camping fees on top of it.  They charge for visitors too.  It’s called day use fees.     

Read the back of your visitor's tag!  Many campgrounds, offer a full refund if you're only there a short time (less than an hour).  You just take the time-stamped tag back to the office and they'll refund your visitation fee if you were there in less than that amount of time.   
State Laws define unlawful trespass and theft of services.  Visitors or users of any private property that have not identified their purpose are considered trespassers, and are subject to trespass laws, and or theft of service charges. In some states, this is also called defrauding an inn keeper.  These laws help protect campgrounds from thieves, vagrants, etc.  Trying to cheat or defraud a campground owner as to how many people you have camping with you or visiting you can land you in hot water with the law.  Please don’t do that! It’s not only more honest and the right thing to do, it’s the law.  Please don’t place a campground owner in the position of having to have you arrested for unlawful trespass, defiant trespass, and/or theft of services.
Visitor’s fees, as you can see, are necessary.  There are additional costs associated with visitors.  It isn’t fair to pass those costs on to all the campers.  That is why most campgrounds charge the people receiving those services (i.e. the visitor) for the services rendered.
So the next time you hear someone complaining about a visitor’s fee, or worse yet encouraging another person to cheat or to avoid paying a visitors fee, remember that it is you, the RVer or camper, who will ultimately pay for that visit.  At the end of the business year, when the numbers come in, and that owner looks at the bottom line from that camping season, the campground owner will have to set their rates for the next season to offset their losses.  In other words, they’ll have to raise the campsite prices accordingly to pay for those extra supplies, extra tests, extra labor and extra maintenance.  So when visitors cheat, they aren’t cheating just the campground owner and breaking the law.  In the end, they are cheating the American consumer, and in this case, that is you, the camper. 
By Robyn Chilson


Tim & Robyn Chilson, own and operate Meadville KOA Campground in Meadville, PA.  You can contact Robyn at 814-789-3251

Saturday, May 7, 2016

May is National Lyme Disease Prevention Month

Lyme Disease Awareness Month is a campaign which promotes preventative measures which can be taken against Lyme disease.
Lyme disease is an acute inflammatory disease caused by the bite of a tick infected with the bacteria, Borrelia burgdorferi; Lyme disease is spread through the bite of ticks which carry Borrelia burgdorferi bacterium.
In the United States there are two main species of tick which carry and spread Lyme disease. The deer tick or black legged tick (Ixodes scapularis) spreads the disease in the north central and eastern parts of the United States.
The western black legged tick (Ixodes pacifus) spreads Lyme disease on the west (Pacific) coast. Both species of ticks are found in wooded areas. The life cycle of the Ixodes tick is complex.
Symptoms:
There are two types of symptoms of Lyme Disease: first and late symptoms. First symptoms are usually flu-like and include fatigue, tiredness, joint and muscle pain, and also a characteristic rash. Late symptoms can take much longer to develop: weeks, months or even years. Late symptoms may include fatigue, mental health issues, the condition arthritis and chronic encephalomyeltits.
Chronic encephalomyeltits is a progressive condition (symptoms become worse or more widespread), and include back pain, bladder problems, vertigo and weakness in the legs. Late Lyme disease can also cause brain, joint, and heart infection.
The Need For This Awareness Month:
In the United States over the last few years, there has been a steady increase in the number of reported cases of Lyme disease. Lyme Disease Awareness Month educates both the young and old about Lyme Disease and how they can take steps to prevent it.
As both types of ticks which carry the Lyme disease virus live in wooded areas, people who visit these areas are encouraged to wear protective clothing around the ankles.
White or light clothing is recommended as it is easier to spot any ticks. Shirts and T-shirts should be tucked into your pants (trousers), and socks pulled up over the bottom of the pants. Using an insect repellent can also help prevent the ticks from getting on to you. Pets should also be checked. Before returning inside it is recommended to do a tick check first.
Tick Removal Lowers The Risk Of Lyme Disease:
Carrying a tick removal kit is advised as they can be used to effectively remove ticks from body reducing the risk of disease transmission. Often the disease is transmitted when a tick is not removed properly.  We carry these in the camp store.
The body breaks away with the head still buried in the skin; this causes the tick to regurgitate its contents into the person’s body.
'Do It Yourself' tick kits should include an insect repellant, a tick removal, an antiseptic and small vial. 
Using the removal tool, remove the tick with the tool, hooking the tick as close to the skin as possible. A gentle twisting action is recommended by the Lyme Disease Foundation to remove the tick, and all the tick’s mouth pieces as thoroughly as possible. By placing the tick in a vial with a blade of grass, the tick can be kept alive for testing.  Take it and seek immediate medical attention.  In tick prone areas, emergency room or urgent care centers may prescribe a 10 day dose of antibiotics as a preventive medicine without testing the tick. 
Remember, ticks can happen anywhere in the US.  You can get a tick from any outdoor activity like hunting, hiking, gardening, mowing, etc.  What you may not know is that you can also get Lyme disease from your pet, Christmas tree, picking strawberries. 
Make sure you know how to protect yourself and your family.  Buy and routinely wear tick repellent.  Practice good hygiene practices and bath or shower thoroughly after being outside, and checking yourself and family members for ticks.        

This article was reprinted from Lyme Disease Foundation Page.  You can get more information at: http://www.whathealth.com/awareness/event/lymediseaseawarenessmonth.html 

Saturday, April 2, 2016

There Is More To Comparing Seasonal Campsites Than Rates!

There is more to comparing Seasonal Camping at campgrounds than just rates.  To decide where you want to camp Seasonally, you’ll want to compare the type of campground, location, camping rates, ratings, things to do in the surrounding area, events, activities, and amenities the campground provides, and more.  We’ll look at each of these items individually, highlight the differences, and look at why they’re important to consider when choosing the right campground for your family. 

What is Seasonal Camping?  Just about any RV can be used for seasonal camping.  RVs are any recreational vehicle used for camping recreation.  They can be a park model, motorhome, 5th wheel, travel trailer, camper van, truck camper, or ear drop, or tent trailer (popup).Seasonal camping is best described as parking your RV at one campground for the entire summer (or year), versus traveling.  Why would people want to do that? Travelling, while fun, is a lot of work.  You have to pack the RV, tow it to the campground, unhook and set up, camp, tear down, hook up, tow it home, and then unpack it. 

Parking your RV for the summer provides you almost a vacation home-like get away!  You set it up in a park, and then go to camp when your schedules permit.  It saves a lot of time, work, and wear and tear on you the camper, and on your tow vehicle.  You can also drive a more economical fuel vehicle back and forth to camp, thus saving money on fuel.  And of course, Seasonal Campers pay a flat fee for the whole summer.  They get a greatly discounted rate over the weekend rate.  In other words, it allows you to maximize the use of your RV, while minimizing your work load and costs.  Basically, it provides you the equivalent of a summer get-away or vacation home.   

Campgrounds differ greatly in the kinds of campers they serve.  Campgrounds can be primarily travel parks where travelers stop in, stay a day or two, and then continue their travels towards their destination.  They are usually located near a major highway (or intersecting highways).  There are also tourism/recreation destination parks that cater to people in the area for another reason, usually for a large amusement park, or a high tourism or recreation area (near a beach, lake, state or national park, etc.).  Then there are destination campgrounds, where people camp to attend the events, activities, and utilize the amenities that are specific to that particular campground. 

Because campgrounds serve different types of campers, as you might expect, they also vary in what they have to offer in the areas of facilities, activities, events, and amenities.  Some are family campgrounds, some cater more to partying, and some are adult only (retirement age) parks.  These are not hard and fast rules, either, of course. 

Our KOA is primarily a destination family campground, but we receive travelers too, and we have lots of couples without children who camp with us.  At KOA, they are branded as Holiday Parks. 
Many times, our campers attend local fairs, concerts, amusement parks, and more.  So while a campground may consider themselves primarily in one of these categories, they certainly can fall into all of these categories.

Seasonal Camping Programs Vary.  Some campgrounds sell the site, and campers become part owners in the park and then they pay a maintenance fee (much like a HOV fee), for their seasonal services.  There are good points and bad points to owning a campsite.  Many times, it is very involved, and when you are ready to leave, you then have to sell your lot and RV which can take a lot of time.  Often they are run by an owners association, which may or may not have people on the board who know anything about running a camping facility.  By the time you purchase, pay for insurances and yearly fees, you could have camped seasonally for many years without all the additional liability, costs, and other issues.  And, of course, you can stop seasonal camping with the freedom to leave at the drop of a hat.   

Location, Location, Location!  When choosing a campground for Seasonal Camping, you want one with a close enough commute that you can maximize the use of your RV, but minimize your travel and time commitment.  That said, it is well worth your money and time to travel a little further to get you to that higher rated campground, that serves your camping needs better than to camp at a not as nice park.  Some parks have very small sites, and campers are too close to have a relaxing stay without feeling intruded upon.  Some don’t provide utilities and conveniences you’d want – like TV or Wi-Fi.  Some have activities for children and adults, and some do not.  So while location and close is important, meeting all your camping needs is the primary requirement!    

Are There Additional Charges for Facilities, Amenities, Activities, and Events?  Many campgrounds offer children’s crafts, events, activities, or rental amenities.  These items often have additional costs associated with them.  So the campground that charges less per season for the campsite, may sound like a better deal than a campground charging more for the campsite, until you look at all of the ancillary charges.  Some campgrounds charge for 2 adults and extra for each child, some (like us) it’s a family of 4, some limit your camping to just weekends, and some (like us) have unlimited camping.  Some charge extra fees for activities, Wi-Fi, Cable TV, or onsite winter storage, and some (like us) include everything in the seasonal campsite.  In fact, we even mow your campsite for our Seasonal Campers at no additional fee.  To the best of our knowledge, we’re the only campground in Western PA who provides that premium service without a premium price tag.  You have to ask a lot of questions when pricing Seasonal Campsites, and not just how much the site is.  

Questions You May Want To Ask:  How many people are included in the seasonal camping fee? How much is it to add additional people?  What are the charges for those?  What are their visitor’s fees?  Do they offer 50 amp electrical service?  Are their sites spacious?  What recreation do they offer?  Is there a charge for the recreation?  What activities do they offer?  IS there are charge for those?  What rental amenities do they have to keep the kids busy?  Is there a charge for those?  Do they offer Wi-Fi?  Is there a fee for it?  Do they offer cable TV?  Is there a fee for it?  Do they offer meals?  What do they cost?  Do they allow golf carts?  What are the rules?  When is quiet hours?  Are they enforced?  Do they offer onsite winter storage?  What’s the charge for that?  How does their payment plan work?  Do they charge interest?  So make sure you add all of those individual charges that aren’t included, to look at them versus a campground where they are included, to see which one is really the most affordable.  You need to know the real bottom line total before signing on the dotted line!          

Check campground ratings before you become a Seasonal Camper.  If they aren’t rated well by their overnight guests and campground directories, chances are, you aren’t going to have the family experience you seek.  Make sure that the place you choose to spend your summer serves their campers well.  When you look at campground ratings, you’ll know where you’ll want to be, and where you won’t want to be.  Just don’t underestimate their importance!
 
Try camping at the campground of your choice before becoming a seasonal camper.  Camping at the facility, walking the grounds, and meeting the other seasonal campers will tell you the most about the facility.  Are the other campers friendly?  Is the campground neat and well maintained?  Are the other seasonal camper’s campsites clean and well maintained?  Are quiet hour policies really enforced?  Are people drinking and driving golf carts all over?  You may not think about some of the things you’ll learn both about the campground, and the campground owners.            

As you can see, there are probably more variables involved than you originally thought.  Choosing the right campground to camp for the season is important.  Don’t short change your seasonal camping experience by picking a campground without fully investigating what it has to offer and what it’s really going to cost you to camp there.  The old saying of “the devil is in the details,” says it all.  So make sure you ask the right questions and know exactly what your camping will really cost you, before you sign a seasonal camping agreement! 

You can check out our Seasonal Camping Sites that are available for 2016 at https://meadvillekoa.com/seasonal-camping/

As always, we hope that you come see us at Meadville KOA Campground and allow us to show you what we can provide your family!    

 By Robyn Chilson
Tim & Robyn Chilson, CPO own and operate Meadville KOA Campground in Meadville, PA. Robyn can be reached at 814-789-3251. 


  

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Big Savings Weekends!

March is a great time of year to begin booking your summer campouts.  Everyone loves a discount, and that is why you need to know about the KOA Value Kard Rewards Membership, and these special discount weekends offered at KOA Campgrounds.  They can provide big savings for your family!

All campers are welcome at KOA campgrounds.  You do not have to be a KOA Value Kard Member to camp at a KOA campground.  If you do become a KOA Value Kard Rewards Member, it pays you back with big savings!  The more you camp at KOA Campgrounds, the more points you accumulate, and the more discounts or free camping you’ll receive.  First, for a yearly membership of just $30.00, you save 10% on every stay at any of the almost 500 KOA Campgrounds across the US and Canada.  Secondly, you receive points for each stay, card renewal, special offers, and more.  Those points can later be redeemed for more discounts or free camping,  as long as you maintain your membership.  Third, being a KOA member entitles you to these special discount weekends listed below, and the Hot Deals advertised on the KOA website for each individual KOA Campground.  You can get more information about KOA’s Value Kard Rewards Program at https://koa.com/value-kard-rewards/.  If you have any questions about the program that we can answer for you, please feel free to call us, and we’ll help you!

We hope you’ll join us for these three super savings weekends offered by KOA! 

May 13th & 14th is Care Camps Big Weekend!  All paying guests renting a campsite Friday May 13th, receive Saturday May 14th for just $10.00!  We dedicate this weekend to raising money for Care Camps across the United States to help send sick children to enjoy the healing nature of camp.  In 2015, thanks to the generosity of our wonderful campers and suppliers, KOA raised over $1,000,000 for this effort.  KOA covers all the administrative costs for the charity.  That means, that every dollar of every donation you make, goes directly to sending a critically ill child to camp.  This weekend can save your family 40% on camping! We hope you’ll donate to help us send a child to camp!  Your family saves big on your weekend of camping, and you’ll walk away feeling great about helping a sick child enjoy just being a kid at camp!  It truly redefines who they are, and as always, we thank you for your generosity.   

On Father’s Day Weekend, June 17th & 18th, kids camp free for all Value Kard Reward Members at all participating KOA Campgrounds.  If you have a large family or want to take the grandchildren camping for Father’s Day, this is the perfect weekend for you to go camping!  The campgrounds will have fun family events and activities planned to celebrate Father’s Day!  And of course, our rates include 2 adults and two children every weekend all summer long! 

Each year in September, KOA hosts a national Value Kard Reward Members Appreciation Weekend!  KOA wants to make sure you know how much we appreciate all of our great KOA Value Kard Reward Members!  All KOA Value Kard Members receive Saturday night at no charge when they purchase Friday night at all participating KOA Campgrounds.  This year, the national Value Card Weekend is September 16th & 17th at all participating KOA Campgrounds.  However, at Meadville KOA, we’re actually having ours the weekend prior on September 9th & 10th.  That gives our campers the opportunity to camp with us for one night free, and then to camp for one night free when they buy one, with another participating KOA on the weekend of the national campaign! 

No matter how you add it up, if you take advantage of just the Care Camps Big Weekend, or just the Value Kard Rewards Membership Appreciation Weekend, you’ll have more than paid for the cost of the KOA Value Rewards Kard Membership fee and already started saving money and collecting points.  You can get more information about KOA’s national events and which campgrounds are participating at http://koa.com/national-events/.           

If you don’t have an RV, but want to try camping, some KOA’s offer these discounts on cabin rentals.  It’s a great, low cost way to introduce your family to camping!  Check out the KOA deluxe cabins.  Most KOA Campgrounds now offer Cable TV in their deluxe cabins.  All KOA Campgrounds offer Wi-Fi.  KOA deluxe cabins will change your perception of camping, as they are a great, affordable, fun family vacation value.  

We hope that your summer camping plans include us at Meadville KOA Campground! We invite you to join us for Care Camp Weekends and to not only get a great discount for your family, but to help us change the lives of critically ill children.  We thank you, as always, for your generosity.  

We also have other great discount offers!  Make sure you check out all the special discount offers we have for police, Fire fighters, and EMT’s, and our repeat camper’s discounts (within the same season) that will save you up to 20% on all future campouts this season!  And we have a very special cabin offer of buy 4 nights for the price of 3 for May and June!  You can find all of those discounts and more at: https://meadvillekoa.com/discounts-and-free-camping/

We look forward to seeing you this summer!  Until we do, we always wish you safe and fun camping, wherever your travels take you!     

By Robyn Chilson
Tim & Robyn Chilson own and operate Meadville KOA Campground in Meadville, PA.  Robyn can be reached at 814-789-3251 or at www.MeadvilleKOA.com.  Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Febuary RV Shows, Contests, A Sweetheart of A Deal on Cabins, and More!

RV show season isn’t over just yet!  We still have a couple to go!  So, make sure that if you haven’t visited one of the local RV Shows, that you get out to visit one!  It’s a great low cost day out!  Call some friends, and get out of the house for a bit!  Look at RV’s, have dinner together, and get in on some great deals that include free camping offers, contests, and much more!  We hope to see you!

Listen to NASH FM 98 For Your Chance To Win A FREE RV Rental from Ray Wakley RV and a FREE Weekend of Camping at Meadville KOA Campground!  That’s right, Ray Wakley RV and Meadville KOA have teamed up with NASH FM 97.9 to provide you an opportunity to win a FREE RV Rental and a FREE Weekend of Camping at Meadville KOA!  So make sure you listen to NASH FM 97.9 from Feb 1 through the Erie RV Show for your chance to win!  Get more info at: https://meadvillekoa.com/recreation/contests/

Erie RV Show Feb 11-14 At the Bayfront Convention Center, Erie, PA!  Show Hours: Thursday 2 pm to 8 pm, Friday Noon to 8 pm, Saturday 10 am to 7pm, and Sunday 10 am to 5 pm.  General Admission: Adults $6.00, Children 10 & Under Free, and FREE PARKING!More info & coupons to save $ online at: http://www.eriepromotions.com/RV/eri/default.aspx

Win Free Camping at the Erie RV Show!  Come to the Erie RV Show for Your Chance to Win Free Camping from attending campgrounds! Erie Promotions will be raffling off a free night of camping from over 12 attending campgrounds at the Erie RV Show! All you have to do is attend the show and register to win! There are no additional fees! So come on out to the show, and get Registered to Win FREE CAMPING! And of course, Meadville KOA is one of those Campgrounds! We wish you luck! But you can't win if you don't come to the RV Show and get entered!  https://www.facebook.com/ErieRVShow/?fref=ts

Butler RV Mall RV Show at the Clearview Mall, in Butler PA! February 19 – 21, 2016 Time: During mall hours!  More infor and mall hours are available at the Clearview Mall Site: http://www.shopclearviewmall.com/

We invite you to attend any and all of these RV Shows!  Stop by the KOA booth and say hello!  We hope to see you there!

Don’t forget that we have fun online in the winter with our campers too! Follow Meadville KOA on Facebook for updates on fun contests too! 

Surprise your sweetheart with a cabin vacation getaway this summer!  It’d make a GREAT Valentines Day gift for your special someone!  Book a Cabin in April – June for 4 nights for the price of 3!  Book our Lake-Front Deluxe Cabins, Kitchenette Cottage Cabin, or Camping Cabin for any three nights between April 22 and June 30, and get 4 nights for the price of 3! Get more info on at https://meadvillekoa.com/discounts-and-free-camping/

Seasonal Camping RV Show Discount!  Become a Seasonal Camper for the 2016 season from the RV Show!  When you pay for seasonal campsite in full by May 1, you receive a $75.00 rebate!  See our Seasonal Camping page for campsite availability, prices, and more details!  Check out our seasonal camping, and all the premium services you get at a less than premium price at: https://meadvillekoa.com/seasonal-camping/

By Robyn Chilson

Tim & Robyn Chilson are CPO’s who own and operate Meadville KOA Campground. Robyn can be reached at 814-789-3251. Kampgrounds of America, is now the world’s largest system of open-to-the-public family campgrounds.  

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Happy New Year! It's RV Show Season!

RV Shows are a great place to begin your search for local reputable RV dealers.  They are generally scheduled for January and February in the Northeastern US when dealerships are slowest.

RV Shows provide you the opportunity to see newest models and talk to dealerships that you may not have heard of, and reduce your expenses and time by not having to drive to many different dealerships.  As a customer you can see and compare prices, brands, layouts, and more with one stop shopping.  There is always a huge range of quality & prices.  So when comparing units, make sure you’re comparing the prices of like models of differing brands.  One RV may look like another one, but you need to compare the options, construction, equipment, and features they both have to offer. See who offers the best deal but remember if the dealer isn’t reputable or isn’t equipped to work on the RV, or is located too far away to conveniently return the RV for service, your purchase may not turn out to be the best deal.  Don’t be afraid to talk with other RVers at the show. Many of these people have years of RV experience and knowledge of different products and dealerships.  Most will be honest and tell you when and where they’ve gotten the best deals & service.

We talk to dozens of RV owners each year.  One of the biggest complaints we hear is that campers bought their RV from one of those big “discount dealers” that is 4-5 hours drive away, have trouble with it, and it’s a pain to take it back to the big discount dealership, and the local dealerships don’t want to work on it.  If you think about it, you can kind of understand their position.  after all, you didn’t buy it from them, and them doing the work and getting the refund from the factory is very time consuming to their business.  Time is money.  That time also means time that they are taking away from serving the customers who did buy from them.  Who can blame them?  If you were their buying customer, you wouldn’t want to stand in line behind a repair for a non-customer, would you?  There you have it.  So, keep that in mind, these small business owners can’t compete with these “Wal-Marts” of the RV industry on price because they can’t buy the volume of RVs those mega discount RV dealers can.  But, those big discount RV Dealerships can’t and don’t offer you that home town connection, service, and responsiveness that your local RV Dealer can.  And remember, you're not just buying an RV.  When you buy from a local dealer, you're supporting a neighbor and all of his employee's families!  

Buying an RV from a local reputable dealer insures you the best possible service, convenience, and shortest distance to travel for maintenance, repairs, & warranty work.  It is always a good idea to visit the dealership’s physical location before you buy, check out their service department, service hours, etc.  In addition, many RV dealers offer show discounts and sometimes manufacturer rebates are available.  So not only do you save money with the one stop shopping, but there are huge savings in the purchase prices!  Show specials also sometimes include discounts or coupons from campgrounds.  So, your new RV sometimes comes with savings to use it, too!

For more information about local RV Dealers who have partnered with campgrounds in Western PA who offer $800.00 in free Camping with the purchase of a new RV from those dealerships in a Very Special Camper (VSC) Discount Offer, visit our website at:  http://meadvillekoa.com/discounts/

RV shows aren’t just for RV dealers to showcase new and used RVs.  RV shows offer a wealth of information on the whole RVing industry.  Most campgrounds & RV resorts are slow or closed for the winter.  RV shows allow campgrounds to showcase new activities, special events, new amenities & extended stay (aka seasonal camping) availability to potential campers.  Make sure you stop by their booths and find new places to explore and exciting things to do with your family this summer!

You can also find information for aftermarket RV products, RV accessories, RVing insurance, Camping or RVing Clubs, Discount Clubs, pick up brochures, camping directories for your state and other states, or the free KOA directory for the whole USA and Canada, and more!

You don’t even have to own an RV to enjoy camping or go to the RV Shows!  Even if you don’t intend to buy an RV, you can learn about cabin camping or pick up information about campgrounds for tent camping!

Many people think of camping as ‘roughing it” with a tent, the ground, the rain, and a less than pleasurable “vacation”.  This is no longer the case.  For about the price of a hotel room, most campgrounds are now supplying cabins.  Prices vary by campground and the amenities offered.  Camping cabins are generally the least expensive.  They are generally one room with beds and a table.  Cottage Cabins may offer kitchenettes, or a few more amenities, and deluxe cabins are lodges with deluxe facilities like suits with multiple bedrooms, full kitchens, and bathrooms.  So, there is no requirement to own an RV to have a family fun camping vacation!  You can enjoy the luxury of RVing with a camping vacation in a cabin and not miss any of the campground recreation programs and planned activities!

Why not pack up the family for a fun winter-day activity and attend one of the local RV shows in your area.  Invite a friend to come along, and enjoy a day of looking forward to a summer camping season filled with friends & fun at these RV Shows:

Cleveland, Ohio RV Super Show, January 6 – 10, at the I-X Center, Cleveland, OH.  Show Hours: Wed. – Fri. Noon to 9 pm, Sat. 10 am to 10 pm, and Sunday 10 am to 6 pm.  Ticket Pricing: Admission is $12.50/person.  Two Day pass $20.00.  Children 12 & under are free.  Parking is $10.00.  Discount coupons for admission available on their website at: http://www.ohiorvshow.com/!

Pittsburgh RV Show January 09 - 17  At David Lawrence Convention
Center, Pittsburgh, PA!  Show Hours: Saturdays: 10 am - 9 pm, Sundays: 10 am - 5 pm, Monday through Friday: 4 pm - 9 pm.  Ticket Pricing: $10.00 for Adults, $9.00 Senior (55+), $5.00 Children 6-16.  Monday and Tuesday are BOGO nights!  Buy one adult ticket and get one free! No other discounts accepted with that discount!  One dollar off Discount Coupons available online at: http://www.pittrvshow.com/!

Erie RV Show Feb 11 - 14 At the Bayfront Convention Center, Erie, PA!  Show Hours: Thursday 2 pm to 8 pm, Friday Noon to 8 pm, Saturday 10 am to 7pm, and Sunday 11 am to 5 pm. General Admission: Adults $6.00, Children 10 & Under Free, and FREE PARKING!  More info online at: http://www.eriepromotions.com/RV/eri/default.aspx

We invite you to attend any and all of these RV Shows!  Stop by the KOA Kampgrounds booth and pick up some brochures, a KOA directory and a KOA bag!  Tell folks in the booth that you received your invitation to the RV Show from Meadville KOA Campground!  We hope to see you there!