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ToddF

Drop KOA Value club Membership

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11 hours ago, gjhunter01 said:

I can't remember ever staying at a KOA, every time I have checked their CG prices they are always at the higher end. 

I don't find that to be true. Must depend on where you travel. I'll give you an example. I can stay at military famcamps and do on occasion. When we travel through Abilene, TX we always stay at the KOA there even though there is a famcamp at Dyess AFB. Why? Dyess costs $35/night and then you have the hassle of getting on and off the base. The KOA is $38/night and it is easy  in and out right back on the highway. To say they are ALWAYS on the higher end is just not true in our experience. Some most definitely are but to say that they all are is like saying that all Good Sam parks are on the higher end. Some are, some are not. PA can save a ton of money when you find a park that does not place restrictions on its usage such as not on weekends or one night only, etc. 

So to the OP, if you do not find any value in it, then drop your KOA membership. We have not paid for a KOA membership since we bought our first one in 2013 as we use KOA parks just enough that they automatically extend our membership for free and we do not feel like we have ever been cheated on our stays. 

To each his own. 

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On August 21, 2017 at 8:34 AM, trailertraveler said:

This comes up on just about every discussion about KOA. Many RV Parks have sites at various prices based on various combinations of amenities/services. No hookup (tent) sites, water/electric only, full hookup, backin, pull through, etc. All at  different prices. Even many Passport America Parks charge more for a 50amp site, cable TV, Wifi, etc., if they have more than one type of site. Very few parks charge for only what you use. The price for the site is the price for the site whether you want or plan to use all of the amenities. We have stayed at about 30 different KOAs since 2004 (some more than once) and never been charged a pet fee. In over 250 different parks/campgrounds, the only place we have ever been charged a pet fee was a Virginia State Park. If you look at the KOA website, the prices for the various types of sites are clearly shown. They often do have more choices than many RV parks/campgrounds. Now if you just drive in, there is no guarantee that the cheapest type of site will be available, or that your rig will fit in it.

No membership or buyers club annual fee is worth the cost if you do not use it or value at least one or more of the services/benefits provided. KOA membership provides a discount on park rates and also a point system where like a credit card, the more you spend the larger the rebate. They also have special deals like stay 2 get one free. KOA also has agreements for special deals with various RV Service providers for things like Emergency Road Service. For years, Allstate provided a free KOA membership with their RV Help Plan. Now, there is a steep discount in the first year of the RV Help Plan and a $70 discount card good at KOA campgrounds.

Many Rvers also malign Good Sam. Again, it is only worth it if you use it. The 10% discount is not the only benefit. I have had two occasions to have the Good Sam "Action Line" help resolve warranty issues that were denied. One by an appliance manufacturer and one by the RV manufacturer. The nearly $1,000.00 they saved me will pay for a lot of years of membership.

I agree. Like everything else, there is good, bad, reasonable, expensive, etc. I have stayed at affordable KOA's which were clean and wonderful, with all of the amenities. I appreciated the discount. One I visit every year, a second has become a favorite campground, based on price cleanliness, customer service, etc. I have scheduled at another for next year. I don't stay at any expensive campground regardless of affiliation. As with everything in life, one size does not fit all. It seems that a search will reveal many KOA's that fit my budget and other criteria.

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We rarely use KOA's because in our experience they aren't good value for money. BUT sometimes there is no alternative such as when we wanted to stay near friends and relatives in Maryland and stopped at the hideously expensive Millersville "National Capital" park. We bought a 1 year membership at check in because the discount more than paid for the membership.

It was just "Location, location, location" for us as we used to live around the corner from there and still have lots of friends there. What surprised us was that after you spend so much with KOA they give you an annual membership FREE. 

That Millersville park was around $90 A NIGHT and we ended up with  2 year  membership which coincidentally we will use this weekend for a discount at a park in TX when we visit friends who live very close to that park.

So my advice is buy a membership at check in if it's going to pay for itself, but don't buy one is you aren't certain you will use it.

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The  first RV park we stayed at other than the free nights in Chanute was a KOA in Branson MO for three nights.  We stayed at another about six months later and another a year after that.  Our discount card had expired by then.  We have not renewed.  We do stop at KOA for an occasional overnight and always received friendly service but seldom used any amenities other than basic EWS.  We find that the prices vary depending on the area and the amenities provided.  

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Funny in that my wife was just asking whether we should join KOA as we stayed at two of them while in UT the last couple of weeks and a couple over this past summer. With them being in so many places around the US, and most in pretty convenient locations, it seems like a decent program.  To me they are kind of like the McDonalds of RV parks - held to a certain level of standards that you can usually count on.  Their prices were basically the same as what we paid in two other non-KOA parks and overall condition and service not much different.  With my veteran discount, joining offers no better nightly discount - only gathering reward points for later use. 

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We have stopped at four KOA parks in the last five years, with two being used multiple times due to one being close to a major highway we and the other one close to our son.

The visit to the close-to-highway park will probably BE the last one as we will use a private park down the road from them. Workamper who was at the desk this day instead of the owner who we are aquainted with decided we wouldn't fit in the open pull throughs which we had stayed in many times, and determined that 1, would have to disconnect truck if we used them or 2, park on north side in the open where no one was and extremely bad wind and rain was in forcast. This was Kansas. Or 3 we could upgrade to premium site in main park and pay 20.00 more. We had res's and it was starting to storm. Not wanting to argue at the desk we took the premium but we wrote the owners are still waiting an answer. 

Will keep value card as we will use it to stay near son and nights cover the cost of card when stay at that park.

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Kinda surprised to see fulltimers sticking up for KOA.  I think the campgrounds are more oriented toward vacationers and those with families. I have no use for a store,  gaming room, pool, playground or screaming kids. I mostly rely on RV Park Reviews and will only go to a KOA if it is clearly the best and at a good value.  Otherwise they are just not our bag.

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We do not go out of our way for KOA's to stay, or to avoid:)! 

We've found some of their parks to be top notch, and priced accordingly (But to be fair, everything in some area's of high demand are 'priced accordingly'.) For example, we spent two nice days at the KOA outside of West Glacier, as we were 'jockeying' for position to nab a site in Apgar. 

Anther two KOA's we've had good luck with, is the Richfield, UT location, where new owner's took over and opened many of the sites up gear specifically for ATV'er's. As well as added more cabins. And the on the I50 going thru Nevada, we found the Ely KOA to a good place to stay too. 

As with many parks, some are better then other's. And KOA's are no exception. 

We do not automatically renew our membership. We look at our planned travels for the year, and if we feel we'll stay in at least two parks that year, we'll renew as either go to the first park, or make our reservation for the first park. 

Best to all, travel safe,

Smitty

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Perhaps  the term staying at a KOA is a bit misunderstood. We only stay at a KOA  overnight when on the road to a destination we find them handy to interstates and  in general we  know what to expect  .We reserve pull  through, 50 amps , full hookups and that is exactly what we get. We stay at two KOA's and one Passport America   back and forth to Florida every year. We  do not find then overly expensive . We have stayed at a KOA or two on a Rally for a few days at a special rally rate. Unless we could find nothing else we would not stay a KOA for a long period of time. We prefer  PA for that.

 

 

Edited by richfaa

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Perhaps  the term staying at a KOA is a bit misunderstood. We only stay at a KOA  overnight when on the road to a destination we find them handy to interstates and  in general we  know what to expect  .We reserve pull  through, 50 amps , full hookups and that is exactly what we get. We stay at two KOA's and one Passport America   back and forth to Florida every year. We do do find then overly expensive . We have stayed at a KOA or two on a Rally for a few days at a special rally rate. Unless we could find nothing else we would not stay a KOA for a long period of time. We prefer  PA for that.

 

 

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We needed a park in the Salem Lisbon (OH) area enrout from MN to the East Coast. It was so handy to find and make a reservation at the KOA there and the park was so fantastic...decided can’t live without KOA membership for $30 it is worth it to us. I know we could have stayed there without the membership, but we like supporting all networks in our own small way.

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