Are camping club memberships worth it?

Discussion in 'First Time & New Camper Owners' started by DansAndDogs, Aug 4, 2008.

  1. DansAndDogs

    DansAndDogs New Member

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    I was wondering what folks thought about camping club memberships. Are they worth the costs? What is the going rate? Are there member discounts that apply, and if so, will it eventually cover the cost of membership? What are the best clubs?
     
  2. bknjohnson

    bknjohnson Tyngsboro MA

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    The only one we've joined so far has been KOA, the price isn't bad and it gets you a discount for each night plus membership rewards. The membership pays for itself after a few nights. Not sure the membership reward points are going to be worthwhile, but there are discounts to other retailers available that we haven't tried quite yet. I think it depends on how often you plan to camp and what type of campgrounds. My family likes the relative consistency of KOA so this is worth it for our situation. If we were only stating at state or national parks or other locations, I'd look into something else. I'm interested to see the other responses you'll receive.

    <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_pu.gif border=0 align=middle alt="PopUp"> 06 Fleetwood Williamsburg
    <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_suv.gif border=0 align=middle alt="Tow Vehicle"> 05 Grand Caravan
    DH '71, DW '73, DD '97
     
  3. Luv2ridebikes

    Luv2ridebikes New Member

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    Our type of camping - state parks in our region - doesn't lend itself to memberships. But my folks have found their KOA membership helpful since they travel cross country each winter.

    Steve & Deb (boys are grown & gone)
    Aspen & Riley (the 4 legged children)
    05 Fleetwood Sequoia & lot's of bikes! <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_bike.gif border=0 align=middle alt="Bicycle"><img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_bike.gif border=0 align=middle alt="Bicycle">
     
  4. DansAndDogs

    DansAndDogs New Member

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    bknjohnson, I noticed that your pup and TV are close to mine. We just got our Utah, do you have a transmission cooler on the Caravan? Any problems towing?

    2000 Coleman Utah
    2006 Town & Country
    Me, the Wife, our daughter and 3 dogs
     
  5. EnglishTeacha

    EnglishTeacha New Member

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    We used to have Good Sam and KOA. We had Good Sam when they sent a promo membership for $10, and we saved that $10 over the course of the 12 month membership. When we had KOA, it was $12, and again, we saved more than $12 in one summer (actually, 2 summers because we got it in August and used it the next year through August). However, now the KOA membership is up to $24, we wouldn't recoup that cost.

    Chasing roller coasters with a 1986 Palomino TXL!
     
  6. PattieAM

    PattieAM New Member

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    I have a Thousand Trails membership as well as an outdoor world membership - both of which I purchased resale, so saved quite a bit of money - and the dues are about $500 annually. My camping style/frequency is about 50 nights a year, so when compared to $25-$30/night campground fees, my membership pays off.

    My daughter moved to Ft. Bragg earlier this year, and there were few/far between campgrounds close to the base or even Fayetteville. So, in checking the member campgrounds of CampClubUSA, and Passport America....I found 'Art's RV Sites' - a passport america location...full hookup and the PA rate was $12.50/night with no restrictions. Granted it wasn't a campground with amenities (pool, lake, etc.), it was excellent for my trip/purposes (delivering my daughter's washing machine and dog). So for the price of membership (less than $50/yr) and no long term contract....I felt it well worth the purchase price. I stayed 5 nights.

    I have GoodSam also, which has given me a 10% discount on camping, and a discount on mdse. purchased at the GoodSam Campground store. In addition, I have GoodSam Emergency Road Service as ya never know!

    I looked into KOA, but it didn't meet my needs.
     
  7. bknjohnson

    bknjohnson Tyngsboro MA

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    DansandDogs, we have the transmission cooler on the Caravan and we've had no problems pulling the camper, even in the greater Four Corners region including Colorado and Utah elevations. I take it easy and do not usually get above 65, anything more than 70 my camper tends to sway a little. I also make certain to have regular transmission service on the TV. Hope this helps! Brett

    <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_pu.gif border=0 align=middle alt="PopUp"> 06 Fleetwood Williamsburg
    <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_suv.gif border=0 align=middle alt="Tow Vehicle"> 05 Grand Caravan
    DH '71, DW '73, DD '97
     
  8. Yellowkayak

    Yellowkayak Popups.....when sleeping on the ground gets to you

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    We also have Thousand Trails membership. To US its worth it and here is why: 1: SECURITY, 24 hours a day, 2: Quite...your noicy with loud music or a barking dog...your outa there! 3: If we camp 20 days or more a year it pays for the annual dues.

    The wife and I plan on being on the raod 200 days out of each year traveling the US and Canada, Alaska and staying at Thousand Trails Resorts. It will pay for itself in 1 1/2 years. Its an investment and can be sold or given to our kids. Its worth it to us for safe and quite camping at come really neat places...did I mention the spaces are far apart and have FULL HOOKUPS.

    JJ

    Wichita Falls, TX
    USAF Retired

    Edited by - Yellowkayak on August 05 2008 23:41:45
     
  9. YellowRose

    YellowRose New Member

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    We have a Good Sam membership, which has paid for itself several times over this year. Not only do we get the 10% discount at campgrounds, but I saved quite a bit when my laptop died...ordered a new one through the Good Sam program with Dell. Good Sam has been around forever...my parents were members when I was a kid and we camped.

    1 Texas Chick / 1 Scotsman / 1 Heinz 57
    '03 Chevy Tahoe / '08 Fleetwood Niagara
    5 bicycles of various breeds
     
  10. ShawnBrown

    ShawnBrown New Member

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    We got the KOA membership for $24 when we booked a week in the Black Hills. We saved $35 dollars with the 10% off per night at the Hill City KOA. This KOA also has various "Hot Deals" that give you other things too. They offered a GPS Tour of the area for one day with any stay over 3 nights. I booked the Hot Deal and the 10% off on line on the KOA website. When I arrived at the campground, they would not give me the GPS. Turns out in the fine print in my confirmation, it states that Hot Deals are not valid with the 10% discount. Still fighting that loosing battle... So check the fine print in any membership club on what is truly included.

    If the membership has enough campgrounds in the area you will spend your time camping and you can recoup the fees, I would do it. In my area, I won't be renewing my KOA membership since there are few KOAs I would stay at.

    <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_pu.gif border=0 align=middle alt="PopUp"> '94 Coleman Sequoia
    <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_suv.gif border=0 align=middle alt="Tow Vehicle"> '00 Toyota Sienna
     
  11. kmh1596

    kmh1596 Wilbraham, MA

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    Thanks for posting this! I had always assumed Good Sam, etc.. was hundreds of dollars. While I don't think it would benefit me much at this point, as we generally do state parks, its great to know its as inexpensive as it is, especially if it pays for itself over the year.

    You learn something new every day. Thanks!

    *Kevin*
    <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_pu.gif border=0 align=middle alt="PopUp"> 2004 Rockwood 1940 LTD, <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_suv.gif border=0 align=middle alt="Tow Vehicle"> 96 Cherokee 2dr 5spd, <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_canoe.gif border=0 align=middle alt="Canoe"> ~16' Old Town Canoe
    Nights Booked 08: 46, Camped so far: 36
     

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