How do Public Campground Reservations Work? - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-26-2012, 10:09 PM   #15
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There are also many small privately owned campgrounds that are 'phone reservation' friendly (yay, and I get to speak to a real live person!). I've used the Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC) for Michigan parks. ARVC Michigan - Association of RVs and Campgrounds
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Old 06-26-2012, 10:46 PM   #16
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And then of course...

What happens if you don't have the foggiest notion how far you will get before you get tired and want to stop for the night? Reserving ahead and paying ahead means you HAVE TO be at Site X in Park A tonight!
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Old 06-26-2012, 10:47 PM   #17
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A couple of years ago I was in an Oregon SP in eastern Oregon. They had tags on the site posts that either said reserved or available. I pulled into an available site then went to pay for it and asked for 2 nights. They said I could only have 1 night and that I had to come back tomorrow for the second night or I could go online and if it's not reserved I could reserve it.

Not me I not going to move sites nor will I pay a reservation fee for a site I'm sitting in. So paid for the 1 night.

It seems even in this computer age the right hand doesn't speak to the left hand. Sure seems to me that there's a way to tie computers together and the Kiosk person could know whether the site is available and if so give it to you without the added reservation fee.

This entire setup across the country is to simply put money in Reserve America's coffers.


Now here's what also happened that very night. Along comes the ranger and tells me I have to move because the site was reserved. I said as you can see it has an available tag and I've paid or it. I'm not going anywhere. He was insistant and I said well, I'm all connected and I'm in the middle of cooking supper, you are more than welcome to go down to the Kiosk and get me my check. I'll finish dinner at my leisure, hook up and leave when you put my check in my hand.

He spoke with the people who presumably had the site reserved and they said let me stay. I stayed the night and I'll never stay there again. I'm betting they showed up a day early and wanted the site.
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Old 06-26-2012, 11:14 PM   #18
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And then of course...

What happens if you don't have the foggiest notion how far you will get before you get tired and want to stop for the night? Reserving ahead and paying ahead means you HAVE TO be at Site X in Park A tonight!
This is not a problem if you don't mind the dirt lot behind truck stops or Walmart parking lots.

I LOVE the freedom of traveling with a trailer. But I'll sleep anywhere I'm pretty sure I won't get robbed or killed. And isn't too darn loud. But idling semis put me to sleep.
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Old 06-26-2012, 11:23 PM   #19
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A couple of years ago I was in an Oregon SP in eastern Oregon. They had tags on the site posts that either said reserved or available. I pulled into an available site then went to pay for it and asked for 2 nights. ..........................SNIP.................... .....
He spoke with the people who presumably had the site reserved and they said let me stay. I stayed the night and I'll never stay there again. I'm betting they showed up a day early and wanted the site.

It can be a mess these days, complex. I just want a campsite! But generally I've found with a little diligence, and not arriving at 11pm, most campground issues can be worked out. Granted, a lot of my experiences at government parks are car camping before I got the Scamp. Hook ups are another thing entirely.

Sometimes reservations are awesome, I'm a late starter many days and if I had to cover many miles and get to the campsite in time to just claim a spot in person I'd be out of luck a lot I bet!
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Old 06-27-2012, 08:24 AM   #20
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Reservations

Last year My wife and I and my 2 daughters and their families were looking for a campsite in a Wisconsin state park . There was only one week in the summer where we could get 3 sites together for 3 days . That was the same story this year. You need to reserve a sight in January to get what you want in July and forget weekends and holidays. Wisconsin does leave some sites open for drive ins but that's a crap shoot especially if you have limited vacation time.
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Old 06-27-2012, 08:50 AM   #21
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Joy is correct !!! . Reserve America made more money last year off Wisconsin state parks than the State of Wisconsin. The state out sourced the reservation system under the guise of cost savings,. If you look at the wages saved by farming out the work , on paper the state saved money but when you factor in tax revenues lost on the wages and sales taxes lost on purchases that would have been made by the employees .THE STATE SAVED NOTHING AND LOST MONEY.
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Old 06-27-2012, 09:33 AM   #22
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Joy is correct !!! . Reserve America made more money last year off Wisconsin state parks than the State of Wisconsin. The state out sourced the reservation system under the guise of cost savings,. If you look at the wages saved by farming out the work , on paper the state saved money but when you factor in tax revenues lost on the wages and sales taxes lost on purchases that would have been made by the employees .THE STATE SAVED NOTHING AND LOST MONEY.
Sounds about typical these days. Our country is for sale to the highest bidder. If there's going to be commercial entities charged with this, there needs to be several in competition. If we're not going to go the not for profit, "let the government manage our public lands" route, there at least needs to be strong competition. One appointed company is the worst of either, government or commercial.
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Old 06-27-2012, 10:23 AM   #23
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We took our UHaul out for an overnighter nearby to do a shake down before we leave for a longer trip.

Surprisingly, the "ranger" told us that we couldn't stay in the site we chose, as it's for people that reserved on line only. He stated that if we had internet access we could go online and reserve that same site, then stay there, otherwise, we had to stay in a "walk in" site. He said he had no access to the reservation site. This was a Michigan state park.

I'm curious if the National Forest campground reservations are similarly run??

We've always stayed at SF or NF campgrounds and have never had to make a reservation. They are on first come basis. Never occurred to us that we would have to make a reservation, and we've never been turned away from any open sites.
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Old 06-27-2012, 10:51 AM   #24
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We have found many National Forest Campgrounds run by concessionaires and in the Reserve.gov system. Both add to the cost of a camp site for walk ins. More and more the Forest Service and the Park Service are farming things out.

For example.....
http://www.recreation.gov/marketing....eProvider.html
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Old 06-27-2012, 11:50 AM   #25
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If the goverment doesen't have to make a profit and a private co. does, how can they do it cheaper than the goverment.
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Old 06-27-2012, 12:08 PM   #26
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If the goverment doesen't have to make a profit and a private co. does, how can they do it cheaper than the goverment.

From the gov't viewpoint, its a no-brainer

As the Gov I can hire staff, pay them, put them on the benefits rolls etc and provide office space for them plus phone lines & computers

OR

I can have a Company called Reserve America PAY ME to take over the whole thing and I not only get $$$ income, but I save all the other costs!

What astonishes me is that the Gov't still issues drivers licenses, still admins toll bridges & roads still does so many of the tings that gov'ts do, instead of making $$ on them, thereby being in a position to reduce taxes.
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Old 06-27-2012, 12:20 PM   #27
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If the goverment doesen't have to make a profit and a private co. does, how can they do it cheaper than the goverment.
To be fair, sometime the government can be awful wasteful. But to me the solution is better government, not selling it off to one company trying to make a profit. There's times and places for both, but I'm not sure I'm seeing the value in these for profit companies running our parks when not so well paid ranger and park workers are being laid off, overworked and getting their benefits cut.

I'm not 100% opposed to private vendors as part of our public recreation areas. The vendor who runs a lot of the Grand Canyon amenities (Xanterra?) does a pretty decent job. The meal I had at the El Tovar was exquisite, far from some park service hot dog and burger stand. But it was also very expensive. And I do think there should be transparent accounting. They better not be making 20% profit unless they are demonstrating AMAZING efficiencies compared to the publicly run parks.

I think a proper ratio of government (non profit) and private (for profit) competing can be a good thing. I'd love to see a non-profit (but not subsidized either) government created health insurance option that would drive competition with the private insurers (as it is they collude more than compete I'm afraid).

Sorry if this is getting way off topic or too political, but it is in "General Chat".
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Old 06-30-2012, 05:56 AM   #28
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Hi: All... Here in Ontario the Provincial Parks always have a certain %age of sites that are non reservable...1st. come 1st. served basis. Too bad the rates are so high compared to the N.Y. State Pks. for instance.
Can't wait to qualify for the seniors(over 65) discount!!!
Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
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