I agree with the majority of your post........well stated.
The one point I think you are off on is the WiFi.
You are conducting business while on the road......YOU should be providing your own internet connection and not relying on a CG Wifi system to meet your needs.
CG WiFi are nice but should not be used for conducting business.
Many choices for internet connection that are reliable and cheaper than $5/10 day that you MIGHT be paying for at a cg. Although most of the time I find it is included or very minimal charge.
We use Verizon air card, have been very few places it hasn't worked.
You should be looking into a MiFi system for multiple use.
2007 RAM 3500 QC LB SRW 5.9L CTD 48re 4:10 4K in bed 'quiet genny'
2007 HitchHiker II 32.5 UKTG 2000W Xantex Inverter
Hit the Road Debt Free & Clear April '07
Came off the road still Debt Free & Clear Jan. '14
Good review! I also use www.mapquest.com to map our route and www.woodalls.com as a starting point, then go to www.rvparkreviews.com
It's pretty simple. A long, level site with a little elbow room, full hookups, 50 amp, clean restrooms and laundry, all at a fair price. Another pet peeve of mine is that it seems some campgrounds give you a bad site if you're getting a discount, when there are open sites available. We don't use their wi-fi unless we're in an area where we can't get Verizon. We don't mind a back in site if we're staying a few days. For one night, we look for pull thrus. Good customer service is a must. At the end of a day driving you want to feel welcome. We won't go back to a campground where we don't get good service or a friendly smile. Thanks for reminding us of what matters!
Lonny & Diane
2004 Country Coach Allure 33' "Big Blue"
Towing 2008 Chev Colorado 4x4
Many people seem to differ on wifi. Maybe it's generational or something but if you don't offer decent wifi I think you're immediately eliminating a huge chunk of your potential clientele. I agree that we need variety and many people don't care about wifi, but I'm guessing a lot more people do than don't. As more younger people are Rv'ing and the next generation, a very wired generation, get to retirement age, not having Wifi is going to be a non-starter for a lot of people. Even some states are beginning to add it to their state parks. I would rather have wifi than a full hookup and I think a majority of Rv'ers, especially in the near future, are going to feel the same way. I don't demand it or anything, I'm just sharing an opinion like everyone else. I don't mind a place not having wifi, i'll just look for another campground. I do get pretty annoyed when you say you have it and don't, that's different.
I do business from the road so I don't mind paying extra for wifi. Cell coverate is not widespread enough, especially in the wilder places, and data caps are not high enough for me to be able to use the technology effectively. I do use it, but i need campground wifi to supplement. Ignore it at your own perile, I'm 40 years old and can't live without it. If you don't think the 30 and 20 year olds behind me wont be the same I think you're a bit out of touch with the times.
As for RVparkReview being opinions I totally agree. That's why I read the reviews and don't rely on the numbers. This talk about variety is exactly why. If I read very rustic, no pool/tv/wifi, a bit of a drive to get to down a big dusty road... that is a 1 for one person and a 10 for another. Same thing with great big pool, lots of kids, right near the city. Depends what you want. But when 10 people talk about how dirty your bathrooms are or how helpful and kind a manager or owner is, it's not just an opinion it's a majority opinion and it's usually pretty accurate. Just ignore the minorities on either end of the spectrum, put more emphasis on the written reviews than the numbers, and I think RVParkReviews is invaluable.
Again, generational. People under 30 years old don't buy ANYTHING without reading online reviews. It's a fact. If you own an RV park and don't care about RVParkReviews, maybe you can continue catering to the current retired generation but the next one is going to be a bit different.
Obviously, different people have different requirements. I never check to see if a campground has WiFi. I got enough of that at work. Lack of cell service is a plus. If the place has swimming pools, putt-putt golf or similar kids amusements, I never go there because I have no kids and don' want to pay for something I won't use. I do check the RVparkreviews website but I look for different criteria than you. I look for shade, a wilderness like landscape and privacy.
X2 on the No Wife and Cell service. I RV to get away!
But I do like a pool, and sometimes I like a hot tub.
Alaska is next! Still trying to fit the pontoons to the RV so We can get to Hawaii!
Great post. We're not fulltimers, but we do RV 4-6 months out of the year. I insist on wifi, satellite TV access or cable, and good cellph coverage. If I can't get that, then I don't stay there. A lot of our friends say "you're camping" you don't need all that. WRONG! We don't "camp". We have 43ft of rolling luxury with all the amenities and I insist on having those amenities. We are a mobile hotel room with dogs. Camping? We gave that up years ago.
Everyone camps and/or RV's differently. There are so many disciplines of RV'ing it would be hard pressed to come up with one good set of advice for CG's for all.
For Some its a one week vacation destination, others just the weekend, there's CG's needed for just sleeping while on the road traveling and of course the extended stay Snowbird needs. Just to many variables to base a CG's worthiness based on so many different opinions and what 'their' needs were and how the CG measured up to 'their' needs.
IMHO, JMHO I think its foolish to make CG decisions solely on RVPR for deciding which one to stay at or only stay at ones that have been reviewed.
"We must be willing to get rid of the life we've planned,
so as to have the life that is waiting for us".
Speaking of price, I have a serious pet peeve, actually it immediately turns me off. I don't know why I'm paying $5/night extra for my kids.
Some CGs charge an extra $3 to $5 a night if someone has a dog!
You MUST have wifi. If you don't have it I don't bother even calling. I need wifi to work, my wife needs it to stay in touch with family and friends,
Why not carry your own "hot spot" around with you like we do? We have Verizon and so far get a good signal almost everywhere. We also take our home phone with us everywhere in case someone needed to reach us, that there was an accident or illness in the family. The wifi in CGs that had it was so bad it didn't matter if they had it or not. It was worthless. What was galling was their bragging about their wifi over the phone, never telling us that it only worked reliably for those parked closest to the office. That all those spots were already taken. And no boosters around the parks.
* This post was
edited 08/09/12 05:54pm by WandaLust2 *
I tend to agree with nearly all your points. On our recent journey accross country we certainly did not follow all your rules. We did not want to make plans in advance ( no children makes that easier)! We used RVpark review and relied on services parks offered 50 amp, etc. and used mainly reviews to guide us. Made our dicisions on the fly. Found one thing at over 20 stops..they keep one or two spots open for drop ins. Perhaps we are just lucky! For one night might not worry too much about facilities, many nights more selective. As far as WIFI is concerned, we never once found it adequate for our needs. Way too slow or difficult to use We just put our own "Hot Spot" in place and or used 3G.
RVparksreview drives our decision, as well. I just wish more folks would take 5 mins and enter a review. It's ridiculous to see 300 campers come/go in a month, and only 1 review, on average, for that same 30 day period.