Summer of the RV: 2020 Camping and Travel Trends

Aug 31, 2020 | Travel & Destinations

Summer of the RV: 2020 Camping and Travel Trends

So far, 2020 has seen a considerable spike in RV trip planning because of the pandemic. These were the most popular RV destinations, campgrounds, and attractions this summer.

By Togo RV

The travel season of 2020 may forever be known as “the summer of the RV.” RV sales are booming across the U.S. and more people searched for RV information on Google this year than ever before.  

So, what did RVers do this summer? We reviewed app usage from nearly 18,000 RVers who use Roadtrippers, Togo RV’s companion road trip planning app, to find out. Here’s what we know about the trips RVers planned this summer—from where they planned to camp to which national parks they planned to visit. 

Top 10 States with the Most Stops Planned by RVers

The top 10 states that had the most stops planned by RVers in Roadtrippers during the summer of 2020.
  1. California
  2. Arizona
  3. Utah
  4. Colorado
  5. Wyoming
  6. Texas
  7. New Mexico
  8. Florida
  9. Oregon
  10. South Dakota

Many RVers took to exploring the western half of the U.S. Not surprisingly, California took the top spot by a long shot. With its scenic coastline, numerous national and state parks, and comfortable climate, the Golden State has long been a popular road trip destination for RVers. Arizona and Utah rounded out the top three, much thanks to national parks such as Zion, Arches, and Grand Canyon

Fun Fact: Despite being home to just 1 percent of the U.S. population, Utah had 7 of the top 50 destinations.

Top 50 Stops Planned by RVers

Of the 50 most popular points of interest from Roadtrippers app users, 46 were west of the Mississippi River. The only stop along the East Coast to appear in the top 50 was Acadia National Park. Other popular stops east of the Mississippi were Chicago, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and Nashville. Check out all 50 top RV road trip stops below. 

  1. Yellowstone National Park
  2. The Grand Canyon National Park
  3. Zion National Park
  4. Arches National Park
  5. Glacier National Park
  6. Yosemite National Park
  7. Mount Rushmore National Memorial
  8. Sequoia National Park
  9. Four Corners Monument
  10. Great Sand Dunes National Park
  11. Badlands National Park
  12. Horseshoe Bend
  13. Monument Valley
  14. Crater Lake National Park
  15. Las Vegas
  16. The Hoover Dam
  17. Grand Teton National Park
  18. Denver
  19. Lake Tahoe
  20. Death Valley National Park
  21. Crazy Horse Mountain Memorial
  22. Rocky Mountain National Park
  23. Shoshone Falls Park
  24. Joshua Tree National Park
  25. Garden of The Gods
  1. Devils Tower National Monument
  2. Mesa Verde National Park
  3. Canyonlands National Park
  4. White Sands National Park
  5. San Francisco
  6. Los Angeles
  7. Bryce Canyon National Park
  8. Great Smoky Mountains National Park
  9. Nashville
  10. Salt Lake City
  11. New Orleans
  12. Cadillac Ranch
  13. Portland
  14. Seattle
  15. Carlsbad Caverns National Park
  16. Grand Prismatic Spring
  17. Albuquerque
  18. San Diego
  19. Redwood National and State Parks
  20. Hot Springs National Park
  21. Havasu Falls
  22. Graceland
  23. Petrified Forest National Park
  24. Acadia National Park
  25. Chicago

Fun Fact: A road trip to all the top 50 destinations would take 285 driving hours and span 14,837 miles. This would likely cost at least $3,000 in fuel (using $2.25 for the national average price of gas at 10 mpg), depending on the RV you drive.

Outdoor attractions, like national parks, are always popular among RVers. In fact, 15 of the top 20 RV stops this summer were national parks. Even with campground closures and travel restrictions due to COVID-19, outdoor attractions remained popular in 2020. 

Top 10 National Parks

The top 10 national parks RVers in Roadtrippers planned to visit during the summer of 2020.

With their wide-open spaces and access to some of the country’s most spectacular nature, national parks can be the perfect places to practice social distancing. Of the 10 most popular national parks among RVers this summer, parks across three states—California, Montana, and Utah—accounted for 60 percent of planned visits.

Fun Fact: It would take 27.5 driving hours and cost around $160 in gas (depending on your vehicle) to travel between the five most popular national parks among RVers in the summer of 2020. 

Top 10 RV Resorts and Campgrounds

  1. Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch Resort
  2. Yellowstone Park / West Gate KOA
  3. Watchman Campground
  4. Yellowstone Grizzly RV Park
  5. West Glacier KOA
  6. Resort Moab KOA Holiday
  7. Ruby’s Inn RV Park & Campground
  8. Wahweap Campground
  9. Zion Canyon Campground
  10. Albuquerque KOA Journey

Of course, RVers need a place to park and sleep for the night. Many of the top RV resorts and campgrounds were located in or near national parks. Of the top 10 campgrounds among RVers this summer, only Albuquerque KOA Journey along Route 66 was located in a major city. 

Four of the top 10 RV parks were located in Utah, which was also one of the top three most popular states among RVers this year. Half of the top campgrounds were KOA properties while the remaining five were privately owned, with the exception of Watchman at Zion National Park.

RVing Beyond the Summer Months 

When planning an RV road trip this year, make sure to keep up with local travel orders and restrictions. Some national parks are fully open, while others are limiting services and/or capacity. For example, Yosemite National Park is open, but only to those with advance reservations

You can view state-by-state opening and closure information here. Always be sure to research your destination ahead of time and stay up to date with current CDC recommendations.

Disclaimer: While RV users on freely select their own campgrounds and points-of-interest, KOA is a current advertiser and sponsor of select content and trip guides.

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