To watch the broadcast of the following story by WDBJ-TV, Roanoke, Va., click here.
Puma, Sprinter, Mountaineer.
If these names sound familiar, you just might be one of the 8.3 million American families who own an RV.
“We turned to RVing ’cause we like to travel,” explains Marylanders Hampton and Sharon Conway.
According to a national RV association, Hampton and Sharon Conway are part of a movement.
The Conways explain, “Baby Boomers, retired, the kids are grown up and gone. What are we going to do with all this money now? We can actually spend it on us!”
Tracy Williford of Camping World agrees. He says buyers come in all shapes and sizes.
“When I first started in this industry, I thought I’d just be dealing with retired folks. (It’s) not the case at all; 45-year-old guys are coming in here (and) buying this stuff all the time,” explains Williford.
The industry was hard-hit in 2009 when the economy took a dive.
“It was really devastating to the RV industry period. A lot of manufacturers went out of business and the strong survived,” he says.
But, Williford says things are on an upswing. Already this year the store has sold more than 300 RVs, compared to 205 for all of 2009.
With state of the art appliances, big screen TVs and high-end fixtures, “roughing it” has evolved and creature comforts are offering something for everyone..
“They take ’em to the lake and camping at the lake with the kids and have a blast and come home and put it away for the weekend and the next weekend they’re out again,” Williford said.
WDBJ also contacted Snyder’s RVs in Salem which deals in a lot of used vehicles.
Scott Synder tells us business was booming heading into the summer season and most buyers were paying in cash.