How to Start a Campground Business

You need to own some landed property to open a campground. The size of the enterprise solely depends on your business plan.
You could start with tents, accommodate a few campers and expand as the business grows. Camping is a popular recreational activity that attracts families, youths and tourists.
That is why in the US, camp related products accounts for billions of dollars in sales annually. If you have huge landed property at home you could convert it into a campground.
The business is practicable as a franchise, commercial location and from home. The capital requirements are huge and you need investors or bank loans.
Determine the Campground Themes
You need to decide which kind of campground you are building. Every Campground has its own unique identity, business theme or niche.
Common themes are rafting/kayaking, swimming, sailing, fly-fishing campground. Others are extended stay, short stay, motor home only grounds, and senior only.
You could run a wheelchair camp, tenting campgrounds and RV campgrounds. More include nature watch themes, church camps, boys scout and girls guide camps.
  • Rafting
  • Kayaking
  • Swimming
  • Sailing
  • Fly-fishing
  • Extended stay
  • Short stay
  • Motor home
  • Senior only
  • Wheelchair
  • Tenting campgrounds
  • RV campgrounds
  • Nature watch themes
  • Church camps
  • Boys scout and girls guide camps.
boys scout
Write a Business Plan
Write a campground business plan and conduct a feasibility study. Study your competitors business structure, prices and promotional.
The next step is to find an ideal location and develop a marketing plan. Use the business plan to obtain loan facility. 
Apply to a commercial bank in your area for fixed interest loans. The loan should be long termed with low interest rate. Other funding sources are crowd funding, angel investors, speculators or friends and family.
  • Commercial bank
  • Target Saving
  • Crowd funding
  • Angel investors
  • Core investors
  • Speculators
  • Friends and family.
Campground Charges
When setting your prices study your competitor’s charges. Make sure your charges are reasonable and competitive.
Charges differ per ground and depend on the facility and services. An average campground startup costs about $10,000-$60,000.
They may charge per night or discount an extended stay. Single day charges range from $25-$150 per night. An average campground owner can make about $100,000 annually.
You need a permit to run a commercial camp site. There are other provisions such as fire safety, waste management and fist aid.
Make it a Limited Liability Company, partnership or proprietorship business. Obtain a business license, an approved plan and building permits. And the site should conform to zoning requirements.
Campground Design
Design your camp ground according to your theme. Make provision for recreational areas, swimming, fishing and night camping activities.
Provide sleeping accommodation such as tents, RVs or wood inns. Don’t forget to create a beautiful landscape, provide utilities, plumbing, and toilets.
You also have to ensure adequate security for your campers. Utilities include administrative building, bathrooms, games, laundry services and a gift shop.
Build a website and add images, site description and activities. Target the site to your preferred demography and offer group discounts.
Advertise in newspaper publications, radio and television. Place your advertisement in tourism publications and hotel destinations websites.


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