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By Andy Zipser Author, Renting Dirt Last week, I briefly outlined how soaring demand for RV campground sites is stressing out commercial campground operators, even as it has sparked growing interest in the investment class. People with money see campgrounds as relatively unexploited investment opportunities, while campground owners are increasingly receptive to being bought out. But what does all that mean for the RVing public? The answer, I’m afraid, is less personal service, higher prices and more dissatisfaction overall. Let’s start with RV site rates. I’ve mentioned “dynamic” or “demand” pricing in the past, under which the cost of a site will vary according to demand. This algorithmic approach is already familiar to anyone booking an airline flight or hotel room, and the “hospitality industry” gurus sweeping into the campground sector don’t see any reason it shouldn’t be applied to RV sites as well. For these experts, campgrounds are simply a “back of the woods” sector of the lodging industry – that’s exactly how a former CEO of Kampgrounds of America (KOA) described it almost a decade ago – that needs to be dragged into the modern age. And the RVers who are rolling into campgrounds with their oversized fifth-wheels and motorcoaches are making the case for them. “These aren’t campers,” one campground owner told me at the Virginia Campground Association (VCA) meeting two weeks ago. “They’re hotel rooms on wheels,” and they’ll be priced accordingly. Occupancy rate at RV campgrounds But there’s an additional dynamic that most RVers […]