Camping has truly arrived as a popular outdoor recreation among Millenials and GenXers across America and Canada. Based on a statistics provided by Kampgrounds of America (KOA) via the “2019 North American Camping Report,” year 2018 saw an increase of 6.8 million in the number of North American households that have at least one member who camps out regularly.
The increase was noted across all ethnicity to which the new non-white campers have outpaced the Caucasians. This is in contrast to the previous year’s report in which the number of white and non-white campers were almost even.
The report also stated that majority of today’s campers bivouac at least three (3) times a year, of which 63% bring their children usually for a 7-night stay. The frequency suggests that camping grounds have become the basic itinerary for outdoor travels among the new generation of North Americans.
According to KOA President Toby O’Rourke, the continuing rise in the popularity of camping can be attributed to several factors. Mainly, spurred by other outdoor interests such as fishing, hiking and biking. Regardless of ethnicity, Millenial and Gen X campers share the same desires; to relax by escaping stressful conditions and polluted environments, as well as to bond with family and friends, whilst communing with nature. In fact, about 96 percent of the teenagers who responded to the survey said they enjoy camping with their family.
In the 2018 KOA report, it cited important factors such as the general availability and accessibility of outdoor accommodations, along with the broadened spectrum by which cell sites and Wi-Fi connectivity can be accessed. Recreational bivouacs all the more became desirable because of the wide range of campsite choices. So much so that even those who were previously less inclined to consider camping as a form of recreation, now engage in this type of outdoor activity.
After all, even hotel chains are offering high-end guests the experience by building campsites outfitted with luxurious amenities. Staying in plush outdoor accommodations has in fact become so popular that the new trend has been branded as glamping or glamor camping.
Camping Styles, Equipment and Other Options
KOA’s “2019 North American Camping Report” also presented statistics about the preferences of today’s campers. About 59 percent, mostly Millineals, still prefer to set up traditional tents in back country locations, while 16 percent choose to stay inside cabins. Twenty-four percent set up camp with their recreational vehicle (RV), while the rest try out the more modern types of temporary shelters, e.g. yurt, tree houses, tepees, camper vans or glamping. Actually, more than half of those surveyed also expressed interest in experiencing glamping.
This denotes that back-to-basics camping is still the in-thing. Mainly because the camping gear industry are using new materials in manufacturing a wide range of tougher and more durable gears, equipment, accessories, garments and other products that avid campers can invest on for long-term use; including those that offer greater resistance to extreme weather and/or climate conditions.