Need to change your vacation plans? Camping and RV popularity is on the rise

Posted at 6:38 PM, May 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-26 18:44:42-04

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — Summer 2020 will include less traveling, and more social distancing. Many families are re-thinking their original summer vacations. Health experts and outdoor enthusiasts alike agree that camping and RVs are two great options.

"The safest activities that people could do right now are definitely outdoor activities," said Dr. Thomas Russo Chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases in the Department of Medicine at the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University at Buffalo.

At Cabela's in Cheektowaga, General Manager Scott Armstrong said there was a rush for tents and sleeping bags heading in to Memorial Day Weekend, with many people being first time buyers. He added that there was a stronger than usual demand for kids tents.

He said fishing is the second biggest category after camping.

“Specifically kids rods and reels, where people are gonna take their kids out for the first time fishing, if they’re going camping they might as well take them fishing," Armstrong said.

Dr. Russo said RVs are a safe alternative to hotels.

“It’s like a mobile hotel that’s sort of safe because you’re in there with people that you know.”

Casey Colton is the operations manager at Colton RV and said they've seen a ten percent increase in sales this May compared to last year, even with the new appointment only rules.

“But what’s crazy about that is those increases have really come the last week to two weeks where we’ve seen appointments jump about 60-70% week over week," Colton said.

Just like with camping, Colton said there's been a lot of new interest in RVs. A private hotel proving to be an attractive destination for many Americans cancelling their summer vacations.

“We were actually due to go on our honeymoon this past weekend to Europe, and that didn’t happen, so we were actually in an RV in Niagara County and that was a really great time," Colton said.

Other safe summer activities that Dr. Russo recommends include:

  • Drive-in movie theaters
  • Local hikes/walks
  • Pick your own strawberries/blueberries

He said swimming in pools and lakes is safe as long as there is enough distance between everyone in the water.