You’re about to announce a moment to people who can’t wait to step foot on a campground once again. Opening day. It’s fast approaching – building upon great anticipation that has been initiated by time and the unprecedented. As the owner of a property that hosts unique experiences and prompts memorable emotions, the responsibility to make this moment right has never been greater. Here are five tips to consider as you walk into a season where the campground takes center stage.
Make Sure Your Campground is a Safe Space for Campers
Coming off of a year where there was much uncertainty, creating a truly safe and welcoming environment for your campers holds incredible weight. Be sure to regularly communicate to your guests that their health and safety is your top priority. Provide them with guidelines and updates on what you have done and what you will continue to do to ensure their security. Being comfortable enough to camp again is an individual decision and if some of your frequent flyers just aren’t ready to participate in opening season yet, let them know that you support them and will gladly welcome them back when they are
Even though not everyone may be inclined to revisit the campground just yet, there are many who cannot wait to do so. In fact, according to the 2021 KOA North American Camping Report, “As the world continues to deal with COVID-19 into 2021, North American campers intend to increase their trips in the coming year.” The need for staff to meet the demand that your property may foresee is quite great. Use online hiring platforms like Indeed and LinkedIn to promote and fill any open positions you might have. Utilize apps that you and your staff can communicate through to stay organized and to limit the possibility of scheduling conflicts. Your staff is the face of your campground. Make sure you have everyone you need to run it successfully during opening season.
Give your campers moments to look forward to. Whether that be a fireworks show on the Fourth of July weekend, a sporting tournament on the field, or a cook-out with entertainment by a musical guest, plan activities that will encourage campers to pick your campground when opening season rolls around again next year. Begin organizing and budgeting for these events well in advance so that you are not searching for substitute opportunities at the last minute. Upon their arrival, don’t forget to invite your guests to the activities by providing them with a schedule of these events. It shows them that your property does more than just host its visitors.
Take regular inventory of your facilities and ask yourself these questions: Are they purposefully functioning for your campers? Are they aging well or do they need some updates? Is it time to add more to the campground or is focusing your attention just on what you already have enough? When you are able to offer options to your campers, it gives them flexibility in how they spend their time and where they spend it. As a result, it can leave favorable first impressions on your campers right at the start of opening day. A structure like a multipurpose cabin is great because it can become whatever it needs to be for whoever is using it at the time. Dining halls give dedicated areas for mealtimes and camping cabins comfortably start and end your guests’ days.
Bathhouses are necessary on the property if the sleeping quarters you offer do not have their own restrooms. Facilities are also important for the events you decide to organize at the campground and can influence whether or not your campers choose to participate in them, even on opening day.
Good Communication with Residents
When residents step foot on your property, be sure that they receive all forms of contact information from the campground as well as you receive theirs. In the resources provided and the conversations had with them, they should always be under the impression that communication is encouraged from the moment opening season commences. If there are predominately youth summer camping there, having an organized system where parents can easily contact and be contacted is beneficial for everyone. Simply put, find ways to make good communication so engrained in your campground’s culture that it doesn’t even have to be a reminder.
Let’s make this opening season one your campers will always remember.
About the Author
Julia holds a BA degree in Communication Studies and is passionate about using words well to tell the stories that matter most in our world. When she’s not working on new ideas for Conestoga Log Cabins, you can find her decorating, baking, or looking at vintage typewriters while antique shopping – all done with a cup of coffee not too far away.