Nearly a year-and-a-half after we first began talking about COVID in this country, we are in the midst of a slight surge in the coronavirus’s Delta variant. Meanwhile, the impacts of the pandemic have been felt in nearly every industry. COVID has certainly impacted the RV lifestyle.
RVing may represent the preferred means of vacationing for years to come. Between travel restrictions and fears of spending time on crowded planes and in packed hotels, people are turning to RVs and campgrounds for their vacations. But above and beyond increased popularity, RVing has been impacted by COVID in other ways.
The owners of AirSkirts, a Connecticut company that makes a patent-pending inflatable RV skirting product, are avid RVers themselves. They encourage RV owners to step back and assess how COVID will affect their future travel. Below are five things AirSkirts executives believe are worth considering.
1. Campsites Harder to Reserve
RVing has suddenly become extremely popular among Americans looking to vacation without utilizing public transport or accommodations. Because all of this has been so sudden, campground owners haven’t been able to increase capacity fast enough. In a nutshell, campsites are harder to reserve now.
It used to be that a few weeks advance notice was all that was necessary during peak camping season. Off-season, you could pull into most campgrounds and find an open site. Those days are gone. If you haven’t booked a site for your summer travel yet, you’re not going to get one. You would be wise to start booking sites for next summer. The sooner you can book, the better off you will be.
2. Fewer Public Activities
The need for physical distancing has led some campground owners to limit their offerings of public activities. For instance, swimming pools and fitness centers at some campgrounds may be significantly curtailed or closed altogether. Community campfires and sporting events may be canceled.
Until things return to normal, campers are urged to plan to spend more time on private activities; plan on public activities and amenities being limited. If they end up running as normal at your chosen campground, consider it a bonus.
3. Getting ill While Camping
For the time being, most of the world is extremely sensitive about illness. Even a little sniffle from the common cold could send your campground neighbors into a frenzy. In short, you have to be prepared to isolate should you become ill while camping. It is also wise to familiarize yourself with the location of the nearest hospital or after-hours medical clinic.
4. Stocking Sufficient Supplies
Skilled RVers know where to find supplies on the road. However, shortages of some RV supplies are inevitable while the industry works to catch up to the lifestyle’s growing popularity. This suggests obtaining as many of your needed supplies before you leave home. Stock your trailer or motorhome as full as you can get it. You will be less dependent on finding external sources during your travels.
5. Scheduling RV Service
Outside of the actual camping experience, COVID has impacted the RV lifestyle by making it harder to schedule a service. There are a number of issues here, not the least of which is that service centers are still understaffed as a result of the pandemic. Fewer technicians mean work isn’t done as quickly.
We will probably look back on this point in time as being a boon for the RV lifestyle. For all of its negative impacts, at least COVID has introduced an entirely new group of people to RVing. That can only mean good things down the road.