Campgrounds

Risk Description

Campgrounds offer campsites, facilities and activities for recreational vehicles (RVs), camping trailers and tents. Some will be located on federal, state or county-owned land, some privately owned, some franchise operations. Usually located in rural, wooded areas, smaller campgrounds will have as few as 50 campsites for rent while larger properties may have as many as 250 spaces of varying types.

The majority of campgrounds in northern states will operate seasonally, from mid-April through mid-October (weather permitting) with peak season from Memorial Day through Labor Day. In southern states, campgrounds will be more likely to be year-round operations, with peak season during winter months. Peak season occupancy rates (2 - 4 guests per campsite) will average 50%, jumping to 100% on weekends and holidays. Off-season rates drop dramatically to 10% - 20%. Campgrounds are generally 24/7 operations, although offices are open at set times, with check-in procedures posted so late arrivals can pay via drop box and spend the night.

Campgrounds will generally include a main office building, several gender-specific restroom/shower facilities and various outbuildings. Campsites will offer electric, water and sewage hookups for RVs and trailers, outdoor grilles and picnic tables. Primitive camping areas may be available. Typically they will also have a self-service laundromat, snack bar, general store and picnic pavilions. Propane storage may be available to refill RV tanks. Many campgrounds have swimming pools with bathhouses.

Various sports facilities (baseball diamond, volleyball/badminton courts, shuffleboard, miniature golf, etc) may be available. If lakeside or near shorelines, watercraft rentals may be available. Other recreational rentals my include bicycles, ATVs, golf clubs, tennis racquets, sporting equipment, etc. Also popular are playgrounds (swings, slides, jungle gyms, etc.) and hiking trails. Larger facilities may offer activities including daycare, batting ages, golf driving range, paintball course, skateboard ramps, horseback riding and archery. Winter sports activities (cross country skiing, winter hiking, etc.) may be found in northern, year-round facilities.

A growing trend is daily, weekly, monthly or seasonal cabin rentals for families or groups. Such cabins are usually rustic, furnished with basic appliances and furniture as campers are expected to provide their own linens, kitchenware, etc. Such cabins may be in operation during off-season months when weather precludes outdoor campsite rentals. Season rentals of campsites for RV and trailer campers is also growing in popularity.

Work staff will be proportional to facility size and number of amenities. Franchises tend to employ larger staffs than private campgrounds. Six to ten part-time/seasonal employees are typical. Full-time positions will include manager (who may be the owner), groundskeepers/maintenance workers and office staff. Additional positions may include lifeguards, food service workers, store/arcade employees, equipment rental staff, recreational instructors, security guards, stable hands, etc. Many will be younger workers (HS and college students).

Campground licensing varies by state and locality, generally under the purview of local Departments of Health. They will be subject to restrictions on open flames and smoking in drought-affected areas. Some insureds may be licensed to sell beer/wine. Generally speaking, campgrounds set many of their own rules and procedures regarding campfires, hunting/fishing, noise levels, motor vehicle use, pets, smoking, etc.