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6 Things to Know about Campground Memberships

6 Things to Know about Campground Memberships

RVing can be an affordable way to travel and explore the country, but campground fees can quickly add up. What if there was a way to save on those? Campground memberships, a favorite of camping aficionados, offer a way to save on campsite costs. Before you break out your wallet, check out RV Trader’s list of six things to know about campground memberships.

1. Membership Cost

The first step when researching a campground membership is determining your budget. Membership fees are usually charged monthly or annually, with higher memberships typically offering more campsite locations or exclusive access. As you look at the cost of membership, keep in mind the additional benefits and restrictions associated with your club, which we’ll discuss more below.

2. Types of Memberships

There are a few types of campground memberships that range in price and offerings.

Reciprocal Camping Membership

Reciprocal camping memberships require you to first be a member of one of the affiliated resorts or campgrounds. Because of this, fees are typically lower. Think of it as a supplemental membership. Joining a reciprocal membership program, such as Resort Parks International, can enhance your membership benefits at one of the affiliated sites. 

Campground System Membership

Campground system memberships offer a network of RV resorts and campgrounds under one umbrella. Unlike reciprocal camping memberships, you don’t need an additional membership for access to one of the campsites in the network. These memberships, such as Thousand Trails, can be more expensive since the cost of the campsite is covered in your membership fee.

Discounted Camping Club

Similar to campground system memberships, discounted camping clubs feature a network of campsites and RV parks. Instead of the membership fee covering your stay, you’ll receive a discounted rate to one of the campsites. Memberships like Passport America grant members 50% off camping fees at participating campgrounds.

Rewards Membership

Rewards memberships are offered by an individual campground brand. For example, Club Yogi Rewards is free and gives campers who stay at Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park™ Camp-Resorts points to redeem there. Others, like KOA Rewards, charge a membership fee but give you on-site discounts and other perks.

3. Campground Locations

One of the best parts of traveling by RV is the ability to go anywhere. A membership can grant you access to campgrounds across the country. Most clubs and memberships have campground directories and online maps that you can browse to see all the locations you can visit. Tow your fifth wheel to one of the hundreds of participating campsites, depending on which membership you choose.

4. Membership Benefits

The biggest draw to a campground membership is receiving a lower rate or exclusive access to one of the participating campsites, which varies by membership. But you can also get additional perks. Many memberships include benefits such as: discounts on retail stores and nearby attractions, loyalty programs, access to social groups, and more.

5. Membership Restrictions

Campground memberships are pretty straightforward, but it’s always best to read and understand the fine print. Some memberships have restrictions on how often you can visit the campsites, length of stay, booking windows, and more. It’s also important to pay attention to how benefits, if any, are applied and cancellation fees.

6. Popular Campground Memberships

Each campground membership has something for every type of camper, from weekend warriors to full-time RVers. Here are some of the most popular campground memberships to choose from:

  • Boondockers Welcome
  • Escapees RV Club
  • Good Sam club
  • KOA Rewards
  • Passport America (click the link and get three months for free with a referral from RV Trader)
  • Thousand Trails

Campground memberships are an investment that can help you save on your RV adventures. Now that you know more about campground memberships, you can start your research and determine which is best for you and your RV lifestyle.

If you’re looking for a new or used RV for your next camping adventure, browse the nationwide for-sale and for-rent units available on RVTrader.com.

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Arielle Patterson
Arielle Patterson

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One Response

  1. It’s good to know that discounts can also be one of the benefits of getting an RV campground membership. I’m thinking about looking for an RV campground soon because I’d like to be able to travel around with my dog soon. I think that will be a good way for her to both get used to riding inside vehicles as well as having more time spent outdoors and experiencing nature.

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