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The Impact of COVID-19 in the RV Industry

Posted on Jun 24, 2022

At this point, two years removed from the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, we are all still trying to catch our breaths and figure out what moving forward actually looks like. The RV industry is no different as we, too, experienced unforeseen changes due to the global pandemic. While Orange County RV rentals are starting to pick up, Southern California campgrounds are at long last filling reservations, and visitors are rediscovering that RV rentals in California are a wonderful choice for vacation, the challenges are not over yet.

Here at 1st Choice RV – a longtime leader for RV rentals in California – we are constantly evaluating and evolving for this changing world. Below are some of the challenges we have faced, and anticipate facing, as an Orange County RV rentals provider.

The Beginning of Covid-19

It should come as no surprise that the early days of the Covid-19 pandemic – starting in March 2020 – were challenging for RV rentals in California. Burdened by stay-at-home orders, cancelled flights, and a general fear of travel and the unknown, Orange County RV rentals plummeted through spring 2020. While people largely stayed home and in lockdown through March, April, and May it seemed like the world opened up a little bit for the first time in Summer 2020. While people were still a bit nervous about the shared space of Orange County RV rentals, motorhome sales stabilized and skyrocketed. As travelers began to recognize self-sustained RV road trips as a viable way to get out and stay isolated, an increasing amount of people begin to take advantage of RV rentals in California as well.

RV Travel Throughout the Pandemic

As the initial scare and uncertainty of Covid-19 diminished and we began to better understand the severity of the virus, travelers largely recognized the importance of staying local, getting outside, and socially distancing from others. With international travel not an option, many of the national parks and destinations in this country reported record visitation numbers in 2020 and 2021. People were hitting the road, and many were looking to do so in motorhomes. RVs proved to be an excellent option to stave off cabin fever, maintain social distance, and still scratch the travel itch that had largely been squashed by a global pandemic. More and more people turned inward and began to explore our beautiful country instead of taking off to exotic international destinations. This proved beneficial for the RV industry while also adding a lot of stress to campgrounds, parks, and public spaces. With vaccines and boosters becoming widely available in the U.S., more and more people became okay with travel and the world opened up even more.

Current State of RV Travel and What Lies Ahead

Inflation rates and gas prices are at an all-time high – both of which pose threats to the RV industry. It should come as no surprise that motorhomes are far from the most fuel-efficient vehicle on the road. Still, when calculating total vacation costs, they are an affordable way to travel – especially if you hope to visit some beautiful Southern California campgrounds. Camping fees are cheap, you can cook all of your own meals, and many RV activities involve exploring the outdoors or hanging out around the picnic table or campfire. With more and more people turning toward travel with their leisure time, RVs will once again prove to be a viable and resilient way to inject some adventure into your life.

Book Your RV Rental in Southern California Today!

It has been a wild couple of years for 1st Choice RV and everyone else intimately involved in the motorhome industry. While it feels like we’ve weathered most of the storm, you can never be too prepared for what lies ahead. At 1st Choice RV we will always strive to do our part in helping customers safely travel and create shared experiences with those they love, despite the challenges of the outside world.


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