Rising Demand for Exploratory Travel Ignites Interest in Camping and Outdoor Hospitality, Report Finds

The landscape of camping and outdoor hospitality continues to evolve, driven by a rising demand for exploratory travel experiences.

According to Kampgrounds of America (KOA), more than 41 million North American households ventured into camping for the first time over the past decade. KOA’s annual Camping and Outdoor Hospitality Report sheds light on the transformation of outdoor travel preferences and emerging trends for 2024.

Key findings for the 2024 outdoor travel season include:

– Health and Wellness Focus: 79% of travelers plan to incorporate forest immersion, meditation, yoga and mindful strolls into their trips.

– Top Travel Goals: Priorities for 2024 include slowing down and enjoying experiences (57%), recharging (50%), having a variety of experiences (41%) and making spontaneous plans (34%).

– Interest in Natural Attractions: Campers express strong interest in natural events (50%), food tourism (31%), visiting small towns (29%) and combining work and leisure travel (25%).

– Emergence of Glamping: Glamping has attracted 15.7 million new entrants into outdoor hospitality in the past five years alone.

– Increased Camping Frequency: There has been a 98% increase in the number of households camping three or more times annually since 2014.

– Demographic Changes: The demographics of campers have become younger and more diverse, with close to half of campers in the last two years being under 35 years old, compared to 30% in 2014. Additionally, 39% of campers are non-white, representing a 54% increase in camping by people of color.

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“Through our decade of research, we’ve seen camping evolve from simply being considered an outdoor activity to becoming a formidable segment of the travel marketplace,” said Toby O’Rourke, president and CEO of Kampgrounds of America. “Despite all the changes over the last 10 years, one thing remains constant: even more people see the importance of connecting with nature. Heeding the call, outdoor hospitality offers countless ways for a broad range of travelers to have one-of-a-kind experiences with those who matter most.”

Editor’s Note: This article was generated by AI, based on a press release distributed by Kampgrounds for America. It was fact-checked and reviewed by a TravelAge West editor.