The 2023 North American Camping and Outdoor Hospitality Report was released earlier this month and the report makes it clear that camping is here to stay. Considered the biggest survey of campers each year, and highlighting key trends in the outdoor travel sector, the report is sponsored by KOA campgrounds.

Key Findings

The report reveals camping and outdoor hospitality have become significant segments within the leisure travel industry. 78% of campers consider outdoor hospitality important in their travel experiences, while the camping and glamping market accounted for 32% of all leisure trips in 2022.

Financially, campers spend. a lot. $52 billion went back into local communities in 2022 thanks to campers, and that number is expected to hold steady, if not grow, in 2023.

Seeking New Experiences in 2023

The report also emphasizes the desire for new and unique camping experiences. 80% of campers are willing to try new and unfamiliar forms of camping in 2023. Additionally, the average camper plans to seek out three new or unique camping experiences during their trip.

Trips centered around natural events, such as eclipses, meteor showers, and animal migrations, are highly sought after. Other popular types of trips include food tourism and visits to small towns.

Glamping also continues to gain momentum, with over 10 million households going on a glamping trip in 2022. For 2023 40% of campers expressed interest in glamping trips.

Opportunities to Connect and More Accessibility

Creating new family memories and the importance of shared experiences are emphasized, as campers seek opportunities to connect with their families and friends. Accessibility in the outdoors is another key aspect, with one-third of leisure travelers viewing camping as more accessible than other outdoor activities. However, campground accessibility remains an important consideration, especially for campers with physical mobility issues.

KOA Campers Report

Some of the Biggest Takeaways

Some of the biggest takeaways include highlighting the resilience of camping during economic uncertainty. 50% of campers consider outdoor recreation a more cost-friendly way to travel. Despite economic headwinds, campers plan to continue camping throughout the year. The younger, more diverse, and urban-based demographic is discovering and embracing camping too. Gen Z campers comprise over one-fourth of all campers.

Overall, the report supports the continued significance, resilience, and adaptability of the camping and outdoor industry. It’s an industry that continues to appeal to a wide range of travelers seeking unique experiences and connections with nature.

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