A recent series of surveys has revealed some interesting trends when it comes to camping. In a nutshell, everybody seems to love camping these days. Older generations are leaving the activity at a fairly slow rate, but it’s the millennials that are really pushing the hobby forward. That particular generation is joining the sport at a fast pace.
The study was conducted by KOA (Kampgrounds of America). The company has more public campgrounds in America and Canada than any other entity. Their study consisted of a series of questions that would reflect how people liked to camp, from how far they traveled, shelter preferences, and length of stay, as well as other demographics like age.
Another interesting find was that the majority of campers actually prefer staying in a tent as opposed to other forms of shelter. In fact, at 59% in favor of tents, it’s more than those who prefer RVs, open air, and cabins combined.
One of the more interesting discoveries involved how far people prefer to travel to reach their camping destinations. Fifty-four percent of the folks surveyed said they like to stay within 100 miles of their homes when camping, whereas 46% said that they usually only camp when it’s someplace more than 100 miles from home. Twenty percent say that they actually prefer camping trips that are more than 200 miles from home.
One of the biggest changes in the industry shown in the survey is that fewer seniors are engaging in camping and a huge number of millennials and young families seem to have taken up the torch. In 2018, the survey revealed that 77% of campers were either Millennials or Gen Xers. That’s a huge jump from 2015 when Millennials only accounted for 35% of all campers.
As for how and why campers pick specific destinations, the biggest driving factor is location and the atmosphere, accounting for nearly half of the votes on the survey. Surveyed campers also mentioned that site quality, pet acceptance, recreation activities, cabin availability, and Wi-Fi factor into how they choose destinations.