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RV Ideas for Family Traveling
Having driven across the United States three times and experienced camping, family stopovers and hotel accomodations, I must say that I'm dreaming of the day I can experience America again from the vantage point of an RV. There is no way to experience the VASTNESS of the United States than by driving! Flying just doesn't give your the full experience of the land, the people, the vast distances in our country.
Here's some of my RV research...thought you, too might enjoy learning more about how to make the rubber hit the road.
"Affordability is one of the reasons more and more families are choosing RVs over other forms of vacation travel," said RVIA President David J. Humphreys. "They realize that RV travel is the most economical way to go, regardless of gas prices.
"But there are other important reasons to go by RV, too. Many people tell us their RV trips are the ultimate family bonding experience. Travel is far more comfortable, convenient and flexible with an RV, as there are no worries about flight delays, crowds and heavy baggage to lug or lose. And when the weather forecast calls for a beautiful weekend, RV owners can make a last-minute decision to head off to the mountains, beach or anywhere they choose, without the stress of scrambling for hard-to-get hotel or flight reservations."
In a recent survey conducted by Robert Hitlin Research Association of Reston, VA, respondents cited desire to enjoy nature (66%), travel anytime and anywhere at their own pace (57%), escape stress (54%), and spend more quality time with family (51%) as the top reasons for using an RV. In short, in this age of over-scheduled families and busy lives, 96% of RV owners feel they have greater flexibility and control with RV travel. Plus if you do the math, it becomes obvious that RV travel is definitely affordable. A family of four, traveling by RV can spend up to 70% less than traveling by car, plane or cruise ship and campground fees are well below hotel/motel room rates.
According to Arthur Frommer, one of the world's leading authorities on travel, RVs are 'hot and getting hotter' in the current travel climate. A statement that is reinforced by the fact that factory to dealer delivers are expected to set a new quarter-century record this year.
A 2001 Harris Interactive study found that 95 percent of parents consider RVs the best way to travel with children.
One in 12 U.S. vehicle-owning households now owns a motorhome, travel trailer, folding camping trailer or truck camper, according to a 2001 University of Michigan study. That number rises to one in 11 among households headed by 35 to 54 year-olds.
The nation's 16,000 campgrounds catering to RV travelers are frequently located near popular tourist attractions and historical sites to provide families with alternatives to hotel stays. Swimming pools, recreation centers, area tours, evening entertainment, snack bars and camp stores are fairly standard offerings. After a day of sightseeing, families can return to heir RVs, cook their favorite meals at leisure and relax in a comfortable and familiar atmosphere.
RV vacations are also the most affordable. A recent vacation cost comparison study conducted by the international travel and tourism research firm PKF Consulting found family RV vacations are more affordable than travel by personal car, commercial airline or cruise ship. Even factoring in RV ownership costs, and considering the resulting tax benefits, the study shows that a family of four can spend up to 70 percent less when traveling by RV.
"RV camping is also a great value compared to other forms of popular entertainment like cable TV, video games, movies and concerts -- in more ways than one," said Humphreys. "Not only are these pastimes increasingly expensive, they often exert a questionable influence on children. On RV trips, kids can experience new ways of having fun and develop lifelong skills while parents closely monitor the electronic entertainment available."
The most comprehensive web source is www.GoRVing.com, created by the Go RVing Coalition of RV manufacturers, component suppliers, dealers and campgrounds. Designed for first-time RV buyers and renters, this user-friendly website describes the variety of RVs available and allows you to search for RV dealer locations and rental resources, as well as order a free 18-minute 'getting-started' video of RV buying tips.
From the Go RVing website you can link to the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association's (RVIA) website at www.rvia.org and browse the manufacturer directory, RV retail show calendar, industry news, maintenance tips, market trends, photo gallery and RVIA's online bookstore.
Additional links take you to websites by the Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA), www.rvda.org; its subsidiary, the Recreation Vehicle Rental Association (RVRA), www.rvra.org; and the National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC), www.gocampingamerica.com. RVDA's site shares information on locating and contacting RV dealerships nationwide; RVRA's provides U.S., Canadian and European listings of over 270 RV rental companies, as well as consumer tips on renting; ARVC's offers campground information for 3,700 member properties.
For your reference, here are some other popular RV travel-related websites: www.funroads.com -- Personalized RV trip planning and maps, fun stops en route, recipes, and locators for RV service, parts, and products.
www.gorp.com/gorp/activity/rv.htm -- Scenic drives, links, driving resources and tips, campgrounds and clubs from the Great Outdoors Recreation Page.
www.koa.com -- KOA campground locations, online reservations, giveaways, newsletter, camping tips, trip planner, and adventure vacation ideas.
www.rvamerica.com -- RV News magazine forums and chat rooms, campground reviews, RV shopping mall, RV show schedules, tech help desk, classifieds and directories of businesses serving RVers. Plus, how to calculate the retail value of used RVs.
You might want to visit the Annual California RV Show each October at the Fairplex in Pomona, Calif., it will mark the start of the most spectacular RV show on the West Coast. Running for 10 days, this show of shows offers the largest selection of RV models and products on the market today.
The only major recreation vehicle show in California hosted by the manufacturers and produced by the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA), the California RV Show provides both first time and seasoned RVers the perfect chance to see and learn just about everything there is to know about RV ownership.
This once-a-year gigantic display and sale showcases over 1600 towable and motorized recreation vehicles. It is California's ULTIMATE ONE-STOP SHOPPING CENTER for travel trailers, motorhomes, 5th wheel trailers, tent trailers, slide-in truck campers, buses, mini motorhomes, van conversions, folding tent trailers and toy-carrying trailers.
SEMINARS: One of the highlights of the CALIFORNIA RV SHOW is a full program of daily seminars designed to enhance all your RV experiences. Hosted by some of the country's top RV experts, these seminars are filled with hundreds of really good tips and helpful information. Well-known RV driving school instructors give driving demonstrations to show just how easy driving an RV or towing a trailer can be.
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