Pop Up market declining or staying the same?

Discussion in 'RV Industry & Camping Related News' started by LaTuFu, Jun 1, 2015.

  1. gruss

    gruss Active Member

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    I'm sure some of the Apache die hards know more than me, my memory of ours is going on 30 + years...I do remember though having to replace the gears for the lift system. They would strip out. The panels were expensive to replace I've heard, never had an issue that I remember. You didn't get the open feeling of a canvas pop up, windows were small. things could still get wet in the rain putting up or taking down but was easier to control.

    Setup was fast, well faster than a canvas pup IIRC, Seems like I could set that thing up in 10 minutes, again could be glamorizing things with age because I loved that pop up.
    I do wonder why no one tried to copy that. I guess between the A frames and canvas pop ups the market would be slim, but the old ones are cool and love seeing people still using them.
     
  2. vinmaker

    vinmaker Member

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    I can say this. When I was in the market for my current pop up, I was not able to find the one I wanted. I searched 600 miles from my home and was not able to locate one. I ended up buying it sight unseen and based on the brochure only. It was a bit of a jump for me. Hard to send a $20K check to a dealer before you actually see the thing. But what is one to do?

    I for one love pop ups's I get a 28' open trailer that closes up into a nice tidy 16' box. It is super easy to tow and will fit into many sites because the beds pull out and can hang out over the edge of a camp site or into the woods behind. I also do not need a huge TV to pull it. A mid size SUV will tow it just fine.

    Today's pop up's have all the amenities of a TT with a much more open floor plan and large windows.

    Viva la' pop up!!!!

    Vin.
     
  3. JeffC

    JeffC New Member

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    Nicely said Vin! I am a fan as well. We were lucky enough to find the pup we wanted used. I talked to a friend who owns an RV dealership. His words to me when I asked him if he had pups were "well, we can get them". He personally prefers 5'ers and couldn't imagine why I'd want a pup. Kind of a snobby deal. Even got the look down the nose when I asked about it! I prefer not to do business with friends as it generally ends up bad, but his response was interesting.
     
  4. tcanthonyii

    tcanthonyii Member

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    I think it's declining for a myriad of reason. The 100lb elephant is the margins. The other is was of ownership. I love my popup BUT I will move on to a hybrid at some point. The sticking point for me? Access when I get home. I don't want to pop up the dang thing to clean it out or get things out of the cabinets. I'm a big guy. About 300lbs and 6'1". I can crawl all the way to back and do it regularly but I don't like it. I'm a tent camper and love being on a tent so a hybrid fits the bill for me without loosing floor space to beds like a full on camper would be plus I can unzip the windows at night and have awesome airflow, even better than a tent. I don't mind the setup/take down process at the camp ground just when its sitting at home.

    I think hybrids have eaten into the popup market share. Buying new the cost isn't that much different than a popup especially the per month cost. The usable space is amazing in some of the hybrids, it's the best of both worlds. Just my opinion.


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  5. cztardust

    cztardust Active Member

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  6. tcanthonyii

    tcanthonyii Member

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    Also I rarely see Popups at the camp grounds around here. Last time all we saw was one toy hauler. It was super cool lookin. Should have stopped and talked to him. I could really use one of those.


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  7. tfischer

    tfischer Well-Known Member

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    At least in my mind, A-frames don't really compete with pop-ups since they're only good for 2, maybe 3 people where a pop-up can easily hold 4-6+. We only have a 'small' family of 4 but we'd never fit in an A-frame. On the other hand, having a hard-sided pop-up would appeal to me more than a travel trailer. I do like the open feel of a pup though so I'm ok with what I already have. But since this whole thread was about whether or not TT's were replacing the pup's old market share, seems like such a hard-sided folding beast would be attractive in today's market.
     
  8. cztardust

    cztardust Active Member

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    *Oh how I love keyboard short-cuts... Ziltched out an entire reply just as I was submitting-
    I would think that Menard's, Depot and Lowe's would be the place for the makers of pop-ups to start targeting. It would address a huge number of "middle-management" families that would love to travel and have the afford-ability, portability, and comfort they're looking for. Not only do the stores have the room to showcase the product at the front of their lots, but it would open whole new product lines and would compliment their existing product lines. I have seen where they have dabbled with a nylon tent trailer in hopes of doing just that, but missed the mark "by that much."
    [​IMG]
    The afford-ability was there, but the level of product comfort was not... leaving no desire to expand or add upon the product they offered and any buyer will tell you that everyday is like Los Vegas... Unless your willing to put the money out there to do it right, you'll never get the chance to get the return you want.
     
  9. gruss

    gruss Active Member

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    @tfishcher interesting, and yeah the sleepability of a pop up without the concerns of water soaking through canvas would be a definite selling point.

    @cztardust that could work, I know a lot of my friends ask how you can afford a camper, they don't seem to realize you can jump in easy for under a grand. One of these people haul kids around to softball stuff all the time and fork out $ for hotels...camper would pay for itself in one summer. Forrest River's or Jayco's marketing should give you a call.
     
  10. tcanthonyii

    tcanthonyii Member

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    Gruss -- I recently saw a camper for sale locally that said they were selling because they were doing too many baseball games. I thought wow a camper would actually be good for them. Lots of parks around here have camper stalls at the park.


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  11. niagarafam

    niagarafam Active Member

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    We saw a ton of PUPS at Desoto State Park last week. We were surprised. They outnumbered the fivers and were a close second to TTS. It was really neat to see them. Most were families.
     
  12. kitphantom

    kitphantom Well-Known Member

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    The number of pups and hybrids seems to vary quite a bit at the dealers here.
    On some trips, we see lots of pups. On the trip we took Memorial Day weekend and the week after, we didn't see very many pups or hybrids. My guess is that it was cold and rainy, more so than usual for that time of year in that area. It is also a very popular time for rental rigs in the campgrounds.
     
  13. daveman

    daveman Member

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    Up here in NS, most dealers seem to keep a few new and decent traded units on their lot. I bought my 2012 new, and the dealership then was selling about 15 new PUP's each spring. I just made an appointment for the provincial inspection due every 2 years, and they had 8 units on the lot, 5 had deals pending on them...so still selling up here!

    My wife is from the Baltimore area, and thinks we're PUP crazy up here :)
     
  14. novagirl

    novagirl retired camper

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    We still see a ton of pups here in Michigan.

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  15. metro6775

    metro6775 New Member

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    Camped at Fort Mountain State Park in GA on Memorial weekend. I saw many pups.
     
  16. adrianpglover

    adrianpglover Well-Known Member

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    First time out didn't see any PUPs, just big 5vrs, MHs, and a few larger TTs. A couple of weeks later went to the same park again and saw another PUP and mostly smaller TTs. Seemed to depend on the weekend and the school schedule. In other campgrounds since, I've seen a good mix. Including one FEMA trailer that was painted up to look like a '60s NASA rocket.
     
  17. metro6775

    metro6775 New Member

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    I think it depends when you go camping. If kids are in school you see a lot of old people with their TT, 5ers and MH. On holiday weekends and summer you see more young families with popups.

    It is like this when I travel. Travel on a weekday when school is in and the rest areas look like they are holding old folks conventions. Does that mean younger travelers are going out of style?
     
  18. tfischer

    tfischer Well-Known Member

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    I think it also depends on where you camp. If you favor the more primitive loops like I do, the huge rigs don't even fit, and you'll mostly see tents, pups, and small trailers. If you prefer full hook-ups, you're going to see very few popups.

    Still I think it's hard to argue that the pup market is not declining. Most of the pups I see while camping are far from new. I consider ours newer and it's now 10 years old.
     
  19. tigerflier

    tigerflier Member

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    Quite possibly - or rather, those in a position to buy "new" are older - the youngsters just don't have the disposable income.
     
  20. kitphantom

    kitphantom Well-Known Member

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    We do see younger folks camping, with and without kids. Their equipment varies from tents to pups to TTs and RVs. Some are in rentals. Again, the mix of ages, styles of camping etc. seems to vary by time of year, and somewhat by location.
    Other factors may include the number of Babyboomers who may have camped for years in a variety of equipment. In our case, we ground camped for years, the moved on to two pups. However, age and cranky joints and a deteriorating back on my part forced a move to a TT.
     

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