Enthusiasm for Camping, Outdoor Recreation Remains Strong as Canadian Campers Head Outdoors and “Unplug” from Technology

Outlook for 2017 Camping Season Positive as Campers Report Strong Intentions to Visit Provincial Parks

BILLINGS, Mont.--()--More than 75 percent of Canadian campers plan to visit provincial parks this year and the number of active campers in North America continues to grow rapidly, according to the 2017 North American Camping Report, an annual independent study supported by Kampgrounds of America, Inc. (KOA).

“With camping incidence among Canadian continuing to rise and programs like the Discovery Pass helping to make the outdoors even more accessible, the outlook for the 2017 camping season is encouraging,” said KOA Chief Operations Officer Toby O’Rourke. “With the desire for outdoor experiences growing stronger by the day, Canada’s unique destinations and rugged landscapes hold strong appeal for outdoor enthusiasts and leisure campers alike.”

Canadian camping patterns remaining relatively stable to activity seen in 2016 with few changes in reported number of trips taken, planned trips or where they plan to stay this year. Additional Canadian highlights from the 2017 North American Camping Report include:

Nature is Calling, and Canadians are Answering

  • The most preferred recreation activity among Canadian campers is hiking (52 percent), followed by fishing (39 percent).
  • Consistently, about one-third of Canadian campers report that they intend to visit backcountry or wilderness areas.
  • Canadians are most likely to camp in tents (60 percent), followed by RVs (22 percent) and cabins (16 percent).

Taking a Break from Tech

  • Canadian campers continue to use and rely less on technology compared to U.S. campers, suggesting that they are using the outdoors as a way to truly “unplug” from technology.
  • Canadian campers are significantly more likely than U.S. campers to say that technology detracts from their camping experiences (50 percent versus 38 percent).
  • More than one-fourth of Canadian campers state that they never go online while camping compared to 16 percent of U.S. campers.
  • They are also less likely to expect free Wi-Fi at a campground or to be influenced by the presence of free Wi-Fi than their U.S. counterparts (25 percent vs. 37 percent, respectively)

2017 Season Forecast: Canadians Will Continue to Get Outside

  • More than half (57 percent) state that they did not change their camping this past year, or intend to do so in 2017 (50 percent).
  • Campground location is important to Canadian campers who are more likely to be destination campers than U.S. campers, staying at a single location for a greater number of days, and less likely to stay at multiple locations during a trip.
  • Trips are more likely to include weekend getaways (52 percent) or visits to friends and relatives (37 percent).

SURVEY METHODOLOGY

U.S. and Canadian Household Results: This survey was conducted by Cairn Consulting Group, an independent market research firm with extensive experience in the hospitality and services industries. The survey was conducted in January 2017. The sampling methodology targeted a randomly selected sample of U.S. and Canadian households. Sampling was designed to obtain n=2,426 completed survey among representative U.S. households and n=508 completed surveys among representative Canadian households. A sample of n=2,426 U.S. households is associated with a margin of error of +/- 1.99 percent. Among Canadian households, a sample of n=508 is associated with a margin of error of +/- 4.37 percent.

All surveys were completed online via an outbound solicitation sent by Survey Sampling International to a randomly selected cross-section of U.S. and Canadian households. The sample of households from which the surveys were completed was statistically balanced to ensure that the results are in line with overall population figures for age, gender and ethnicity.

ABOUT KAMPGROUNDS OF AMERICA

For more than 55 years, Kampgrounds of America (KOA), the world’s largest system of open-to-the-public family campgrounds, has provided millions of campers with fun, memorable adventures. KOA was born in 1962 when founder Dave Drum constructed a campground on the banks of the Yellowstone River in Billings, Mont. Since then, KOA has grown to more than 500 locations in the U.S. and Canada. KOA's family of properties offers diverse camping experiences, while maintaining the excellent standards and family-friendly atmosphere the company is known for.

ABOUT CAIRN CONSULTING GROUP

Cairn Consulting Group is a market research firm with extensive experience in the hospitality and services industries. For the past several years, Cairn Consulting Group has worked with organizations in both indoor and outdoor hospitality, including the gaming/casino areas, food services/restaurant space, accommodations, travel/tourism and the products and services that are a part of the hospitality industry. The organization also serves clients in branding/brand positioning efforts, evaluating consumer behavior, public opinion & policy and product development.

Contacts

Kampgrounds of America Inc.
Mike Gast, 406-254-7409
Vice President of Communications
mgastkoa@gmail.com

Release Summary

Survey findings reveal strong enthusiasm for camping among Canadians, according to the 2017 North American Camping Report, an independent study supported by Kampgrounds of America, Inc.

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Contacts

Kampgrounds of America Inc.
Mike Gast, 406-254-7409
Vice President of Communications
mgastkoa@gmail.com