campground membership

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stormy2000

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 27, 2010
Posts
67
Location
fl
hello again,

  we also went down to the good sams rally in daytona past week, as we live cent fl, it was great and there we heard about memberships.
we got a catalog "thousand trails," i believe.  wife's friend has a class C and wants to go camping soon, and they talked about a koa
campsite, looked it up and they have membership. 

is it worth it to get a koa membership? or just pay as we go, we are FT and as we travel, looks like their are a lot of them. 

thanks for input.

bill & jodi
 

Ned

Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Feb 1, 2005
Posts
25,107
Location
USA
If you're going to be staying at KOAs, then the discount card is worth buying.  It gives a 10% discount, I believe.
 

znerf

Active member
Joined
Apr 20, 2011
Posts
41
Location
Brant Lake,NY
KOA gives 10% on camping and also has a point system for a free night. I use it most of the time when I travel and when in the Venice Fl. area stay in one for a few weeks. So far in the last 4 years i have gotten about 10 nights  free.
 

Jammer

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 20, 2009
Posts
1,491
We only rarely stay in KOAs.  It depends on your intended destinations.  We spend a good deal of time in state parks and in private campgrounds unaffiliated with any nationwide organization, so the various discount cards don't help us.
 

John From Detroit

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 12, 2005
Posts
24,960
Location
Davison Michigan
Regarding Thousand Trails.... MOST campground sell what is called a "Lifetime membership" kind of like a marraige and divorce, You get to pay "Alimony" (membership dues) for the rest of your life to keep the campground owners in the life style you have accustomed them to.    Thousand Trails.. Used to do that too, I do not know if you can still buy such a membership from them (You can on the re-sale market).

What they sell now is a "Zone pass" this is a renewable 1 year pass that gives access to roughly 1/4 of their parks, N.E. S.E. S.W or N.W.  It actually gives you access to parks I (As a lifetime member) DO NOT have access to.  (Bear cave in Michigan for example) Which kind of bothers me (Big time).  When the year is about over you have 3 choices.. Continue, (Renew) cancel, (Do not renew) or change zone,  You have to notify them in writing of the last two I am told, Otherwise they auto-renew on you.

In any case.. If you'd like to TRY membership camping,  Since this is a one year "Contract" single payment up front.. It is clearly the way to do it.

That said, TT is about the oldest membership outfit, many of their parks are older, and sites may be not as "Modern" as some of the newer parks.  Most are 30 amp (With a add on charge for the few 50 amp sites) not all have full hook up even at that.. They do give free Wi-Fi though.

IF you decide to go with Thousand Trails PM me for my ID number. I don't mind getting paid.

(Save for one or two nits, like that major one above, I am happy, I have no plans to either sell or sue my way out of the membership,  But I do suggest you visit a park or two first)

Also, unlike most of the other membership parks,, You can spend a few nights (As long as you want) in a TT park for,, Generally around 35 a night as a general public type person.  No membership required, An  even better waqy to come in with eyes open as it were.
 

stormy2000

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 27, 2010
Posts
67
Location
fl
thank you for your input,  we will start camping at some sites and see what they have to offer and if we like them enough
to purchase membership.  the koa will be our first campsite traveling, other than the one we are at now.


bill & jodi
 

Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Posts
73,979
Location
At our Silver Springs FL home
Don't rush into buying any campground membership that involves a commitment for more than a year.  Take your time and look around, and learn what suits you best. Ignore salesmen with once-in-a-lifetime deals on memberships - they will be back around later with yet another "once-in-a-lifetime" offer.

You may get some advantage from short term discount clubs, e.g. Passport America, Good Sam, KOA, etc. But you have to use them often enough to get your money back in discounts. If unsure, wait awhile.
 

Clay L

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Joined
May 28, 2005
Posts
1,725
Location
X Full Timer Now Palisade CO
We rarely stay at KOAs because as a rule they cost a lot more than the average RV park and are often no better or even worse than the less expensive parks.

As as far as the membership parks go they don't work for us because they require you to move more often than we want to - two weeks to three weeks as  I recall. We prefer to stay at least a month in a given location.

When in transit we use Passport America ($44 per year). Passport America membership parks give 50% discounts. There are some restrictions on how long you can stay and holidays and weekends are sometimes blacked out. That doesn't bother us since we can set our schedule as we wish. Also sometimes there isn't a member park where we want to stop but that is true of the thousand Trails parks and their ilk as well.
 

Joezeppy

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Joined
Mar 16, 2009
Posts
2,388
Location
Upstate NY - Kuyahoora Valley
The KOA card is currently $25 (used to be $10 up until about 5 years ago) and, as stated above, gets you a 10% rate discount. By being a "member", you will also be mailed a countrywide KOA directory every year, get some junk emails and an online newsletter but there really aren't any "benefits" other than the discount. There are a couple of things to keep in mind, too:

1. If you buy a card as you are registering at a campground, you only get up to $25 credit for that stay. So, buy one on-line before you camp anywhere and you will reap the full 10% for your entire stay.
2. If you don't renew, you lose the credits/points you have accumulated. We learned this the hard way when I decided not to renew one year when we knew we would not be camping much. The next year when I signed back up, I could see my old account and my new one - with 0 points! I figured I was smart saving $25 when in fact, I lost 2 or 3 free nights - bummer!
 

stormy2000

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 27, 2010
Posts
67
Location
fl
thanks for info, lots of food for thought.  will probably, wait and camp and see how things are and then make decision.


bill & jodi
 
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