How much profit does a campground make?

In this blog post, we will answer the following question: How much profit does a campground make? We will discuss other aspects such as who this business is ideal for and how to manage an RV campsite with success. 

How much profit does a campground make?

Yearly, a campground could make you between 10% to 20% profit. In numbers, that would be an average of $23,750 after you subtract all your upfront costs!

A camping business generates its income by renting small camping spaces, but it can also offer different services, such as electricity, selling food and any other item that customers may need. 

The amount of money to invest in a camping business will depend on whether or not you have the land. If we assume that you start from scratch, you will have to invest in the following:

  • Buy the land, where the price can vary according to the area and the number of square meters that are purchased. Therefore, its price can range from $1,000 per sq ft to $10,000 per sq ft if there are rivers or lakes nearby.
  • Now, if you want to buy an existing campsite, its prices can range from $100,000 to $2,000,000.
  • You will have to invest in licenses and permits for your business, in the design of the campsite, the realization of internal and local roads and the different locations for services. You will also have to invest in electrical installation, plumbing, bathrooms, etc. The costs for this could be from $2,000 to $10,000 depending on how many amenities you want the campground to have. 

The steps to set up a camping business

Once you have decided to start your camping business, it is time to plan your idea by following these steps:

  1. Plan your business: Something essential to be able to achieve success is to plan your business as well as possible. You must consider all the issues of your business such as startup costs, target market and other things that help you achieve your goals.
  1. Find more about the legal aspects: Remember that being a different business, because people will be inside a private property, but they may be exposed to different dangers. You must find out all the legal aspects so that your business is covered in the best possible way.
  1. Obtain the permits: For this business, you will need some licenses and permits to be able to provide all the services. Remember that if you do not have the proper permits, the fines can be very severe.
  1. Create an eye-catching name for your business: That’s right, try to find a name that is the most eye-catching and easy to learn. As well as try to solidify your brand, as it will help you stand out from your competitors.
  1. Create a website: A website will give you the possibility to grow even more, and get many customers.

Who is a campground business ideal for?

It is ideal for those people who love the outdoors and socialize with everyone. It is also an excellent business for those who have experience in administration, staffing and maintenance of all kinds.

The owner of the camping business has many activities a day, so we recommend that you hire someone to help you. But if you want to do it, you only have to do the following tasks:

– Check the entry and exit of the campers.

– Accounting.

– Empty garbage containers.

– Clean bathrooms, parks, offices, etc.

– Interact with your customers.

– Make reservations.

– Plan events.

Obviously, the target market will depend a lot on the type of camp you want to undertake. If the place where the place will be set up has rustic or primitive places, the most logical thing would be to point the business to customers with tents. On the other hand, if your place has public service sites around it, the ideal would be to point your business model to mobile homes.

How to manage a campground: tips

Please note, the services, both internal and external, must be the real spearhead of your campsite since usually a tent or a camper is less comfortable than an apartment or a room with a private bathroom.

Start with the basic internal services of a campground, which are often overlooked:

  • special areas for the discharge of sewage, also clearly marked and in accordance with the law
  • good signage to make it easy to move around the equipped area
  • practical showers that respect privacy as much as possible
  • electric sockets on the pitches
  • Wifi connection

Among the other internal services to offer, there are:

  • minimarket, perhaps at 0 km as suggested in the previous paragraph
  • restaurant when possible, or alternatively vending machines
  • shop with essential and useful products for travellers
  • organization of tours, activities and travel experiences
  • cafe bar
  • Bike rent
  • picnic areas
  • laundry
  • dance club
  • gym
  • pool

Among the services for families with children, to make the little ones independent and reduce stress for mom and dad:

  • play areas with slides, trampolines and swings
  • bathrooms with custom-made furnishings
  • dedicated restaurant menu
  • babysitting service
  • mini-pool

Unfortunately, it is not always feasible to implement all these facilities, amenities and services within a campsite!

Here external services become strategic. You will have to agree with the tour operators in your area, the business managers, the restaurateurs, to guarantee guests everything that you cannot offer yourself. For example bike, scooter and car rental; transfer from the station or airport; the restaurant service; sports equipment; travel experiences to do in the surroundings,

After so much effort, it is essential to monetize the investments made to offer a perfect camping experience. To do this, you need to offer services in the right way and at the best time. 

For example, the transfer must be offered immediately after booking when the customer is available to purchase the essential services to plan the holiday. While the experiences should be suggested a few hours before arrival or during the stay, as well as the laundry or the babysitter, only when the tourist enters vacation mode.

The bottom line

Obviously, a camping business can provide growth potential, but this will depend mainly on the size of the place. If your campground is big enough it can easily generate $1 million a year. Now, if your campsite is small, you can gradually buy the adjoining land to grow your business.

Another alternative to growing your camping business can be the creation of franchises. Franchises offer excellent potential to grow any business, as they can be offered across the country.

If you are thinking about opening a campground because you are financially cornered and it is your last resort, forget it. A service area is not profitable as the sole source of income. There will be days without a visitor. There will be some dissatisfaction. But in the end, it will certainly be a moral enrichment and the satisfaction of having been able to render a real service.

Please feel free to share your thoughts or tips on how to make the best of a campground business!

FAQ on How much profit does a campground make?

Is owning an RV park profitable?

Owning an RV park can be profitable in the long run, but it will all depend on what kind of parking facility you are providing, how many RVs/acre you have, and the amount of money and time you are willing to invest in this project. 

What is the average size of an RV lot?

The average size of an RV lot is usually nine feet wide by 18 feet long (the full size of a truck).

Are RV lots a good investment?

RV lots are a good long term investment. That is, you have to have patience and do not invest your last resources in this land. In time, it will pay off!

What exactly are RV parks?

RV parks or “trailer parks” in the United States are a flourishing business that uses a growing demand from low-income people, unable to access a home under normal conditions, to fatten the investment portfolio of some of America’s greatest fortunes. 


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