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RV Camping Vacations in High Demand

May 2008 - In the midst of increasing gas prices and questions about summer travel plans, consumers are not surrendering their hopes of summer vacations as they look to alternative and less-costly vacation options, namely camping and RVing. Many are choosing to offset the high-fuel prices by staying closer to home, looking for new experiences with less driving required.

According to statistics from the National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC) and Friend Communications, total campground and RV bookings are up 23 percent from January to May 2008 versus the same period last year. Web bookings have increased by more than 17 percent, as more consumers plan their trips online.

These numbers show that RV camping continues to be a strong and viable vacation option even in this uncertain economy," said Linda Profaizer, ARVC president. "People still have a desire to get outdoors and travel. The statistics say they are turning to camping and RVing as a getaway."

According to the statistics, people are using the Internet even more for those transactions. "We've always known that consumers appreciate the convenience of being able to make reservations online at anytime with just a couple of mouse clicks. We continue to see online traffic and revenues increase as more and more campers and RVers turn to the Web to make their travel plans," said Kelly O'Bryan, vice president of marketing at Friend and Camping.com.

The numbers show that the top 10 states for camping activity this year are Arizona, California, Florida, Michigan, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, South Carolina, Texas and Wisconsin. Michigan and Wisconsin have seen some of the most favorable changes this year with 30 and 29 percent increases, respectively. "What does this mean? This is good news for the outdoor travel and hospitality economy," O'Bryan added. "For those consumers planning to head out this summer, we suggest booking early. With these numbers, it's clear that sites are filling up quickly."

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