VIDEO: 11AM Checkout Times — ANNOYING?

Posted In: Blog, Campfire Question

Today I’m filing a blog entry in the ol’ complaint box. Early campground checkout times are one of my chief annoyances with the camping industry.

Kristy and I typically do our driving in the afternoon, and arrive at campgrounds in the evening. There have been a couple of occasions when we checked into a campground for an overnight stay at 10PM. The next morning, some guy in a golf cart was rapping on our door to boot us off our site by 11AM. At times we’ve even encountered nasty confrontational attitudes! In a tip of the hat to Seinfeld, we’ll dub these overzealous characters Campground Nazis.

We’re talking about a campground, not a hotel. There’s no team of maids coming through to clean the campsite. In most cases, there’s no shortage of available campsites for new arrivals. Why shouldn’t campers be able to stay until 2PM?

For those of us who are “location independent professionals,” mornings are often important times to work. And there’s the process of hitching and breaking down camp; having a little extra time to do these chores is quite helpful. Three hours may not sound like much, but sometimes it’s the difference between a pleasant enjoyable morning and a stressful one.

Yes, campground owners are free to set 11AM checkout times if they wish. But RV’ers are free to “camp” at Walmart or other such places where there are no early checkout hassles. Sure, we’d all rather stay in a REAL park, but it sucks away the fun when some “Campground Nazi” is barking orders for no good reason.

If I owned and operated a campground, I’d want my guests to have as enjoyable an experience as possible. I’d want repeat business. I’d have a 2PM (or later) checkout time.

That’s what I think. What do YOU think?


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