Motorhomes and caravans are booming

By | Category: Travel tips & opinions

Now that the big Caravan, Camping and Motorhome Show at the NEC is over for another year, it is possible to assess how influential this overlooked sector of the tourist market is.

Some motorhomes are luxurious

The Caravan and Camping Alliance says that holiday homes in mobile home or caravan parks make up 8% of the UK’s tourism sector, generate £3.9 billion in visitor spend, and support 170,000 jobs but this may not tell the whole story as camping van and caravan owners have a greater ability to go where they will and do not need to park in official areas. Many the time around where I live I have seen them parked in laybys overlooking the coast deliberately having parked there so  they can see the sun come up or go down. And campers ave even more flexibility.

Although there wasn’t a huge increase in the number of visitors attending the NEC – numbers rose by 1.4% – it still meant that over 91,000 made their way to the show and exhibitors reported strong business. But they would say that wouldn’t they?

Nonetheless in a year when tourism is dominated by Brexit, the motor home and caravan business may do very well given the nervousness of some people to travel abroad after the March 29th deadline. Despite what the EU, the British government and individual governments have been saying there is a reluctance by some people to venture abroad with worries about the need for international driving licences, visas and pet passports.

Indeed the two largest concentrations of caravans in Europe are both in the UK. Skegness in Lincolnshire has the highest concentration followed by Burnham-on-Sea in Somerset.

That nearly a hundred new motorhomes and campervans were judged at the show goes to demonstrate how buoyant the market must be for surely you wouldn’t launch so many new products if the industry was levelling off or declining?

One supplier – Baileys of Bristol -was quoted by the show organisers as saying that they had their best sales performance at the show for six years.

Despite the dislike of campervans and caravans suggested by people like Jeremy Clarkson, it looks as though 2019 will be a strong year for this section of the tourism industry.

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