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Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Reinventing Vacation Travel, RVs Back In Style

Above, The Beast at Blackstone North RV Park in Fresno, California. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

If there's one thing that the coronavirus pandemic has caused, it is the big surge in RV sales and rentals.

People are skipping air travel and cruises and are looking into places closer to home by way of an old-fashioned mode of vacationing: the road trip.

It is easy to see why. Airlines and cruise ships are well-known to be virtual "petri dishes" for communicable diseases. Hotels and motels can also be sources for illnesses, depending upon how good an establishment's cleaning crew is.

I have gotten sick during air and cruise ship travels, but I never have during a RV trip. I've had my current RV (a 2015 Winnebago Minnie Winnie 22R, called "The Beast") for five years.

According to Business Insider:
Travel experts expect that as people venture out again, they'll start by traveling closer to home instead of hopping on flights. And that could make the summer of 2020 the summer of RV travel. 
"There's some indication that as we settle into a new normal, folks will forego air travel, cruises, and overseas trips in favor of destinations that are closer to home," Bob Wheeler, the CEO of travel trailer company Airstream, recently told Business Insider. "RVs are the perfect vehicle for that kind of mindset. You can move at your own pace, and bring along your own environment in which to live and cook and relax." 
RV dealers across the US are already seeing a surge in inquiries, per the The RV Industry Association, the national trade association for RV makers and suppliers. 
Mike Regan, the president of Crestview RV, told Bloomberg last week that floor traffic at his two RV dealerships outside Austin, Texas, was up 30% compared to last May. The biggest group of interested buyers and renters are people who are looking to travel by RV for the first time because of the pandemic, he said. 
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