Parks That Fail To Join Industry Associations Are Excluding Themselves From Major Discounts On Products They Normally Use like Propane
PHOENIX Ariz., Feb. 20, 2018 – Arizona campgrounds, RV parks and resorts that are not members of state and national campground industry associations are unwittingly excluding themselves from thousands of dollars in discounts on propane, according to association officials.
“It just boggles my mind that so many park operators are not taking the time to find out how much money they could save on critical commodities like propane by joining our state and national associations,” said Jo Ann Mickelson, executive director of the Arizona Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (Arizona ARVC).
There are about 420 privately owned and operated campgrounds, RV parks and resorts in Arizona, but only about 100 of them are members of Arizona ARVC and national ARVC, Mickelson said.
“Many of these parks could be saving thousands of dollars each year on products and services they need for their businesses, but they’re not taking the time to inform themselves,” Mickelson said.
She added that parks that join the state and national campground industry associations can take advantage of discount programs that greatly exceed the membership dues they pay to both associations.
Rincon Country West RV Resort in Tucson, Ariz. is a case in point. The 1,100-site park pays a total of $1,595 in annual dues to Arizona ARVC, $823 of which goes to the national ARVC. But the park can save $4,000 – $5,000 a year in propane costs alone by taking advantage of ARVC discounts, said Wendy Bykofsky, accounting supervisor for Rincon Country West.
And this doesn’t even take into account other discounts ARVC offers for music licensing, office products, golf carts, and other equipment and services used in campground and RV park maintenance.
While it’s financially advantageous for parks to be members of Arizona ARVC and ARVC, some park operators note that state and national associations provide valuable educational and networking opportunities as well as significant marketing and government affairs resources that benefit the private park industry as a whole.
“There is value in the association memberships that goes way beyond the discounts,” said Clint Bell, whose family owns and operates three KOA campgrounds in Arizona, including two in Williams and one in Flagstaff.
“We believe very strongly in being part of the state and national organizations that help advocate for our industry. We also find it important to be a part of Arizona ARVC and ARVC to be able to maintain a positive influence in our industry.”
Bell added that the associations provide park operators with an expanded knowledge base as well as sounding boards for multiple topics to better understand the changes that are taking place in the industry. “They also give us an opportunity to look outside the KOA world,” he said.
Based in Phoenix, the Arizona Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds markets campgrounds, RV parks and resorts through GoCampingInArizona.com and its printed campground and RV Park directory, the 2017 RV and Camping Guide to Arizona, which is available free of charge online. The 36-page color guide contains a travel planning map as well as detailed descriptions of 99 campgrounds.