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Old 08-20-2017, 07:24 AM   #1
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I always leave disappointed

We received a flyer in the mail for that really big, nationwide Camping store. We decided to visit the local store to see what they had.

We did not buy our camper there for several reasons (price was the major reason) and we should have realized this before we drove the 35 miles to this store.

There were all sorts of neat things we wanted or could have used. I could have easily dropped $1,000 with all the stuff we saw. But the prices (Even with that GS club price for members) were way out of line.

I realize box stores have bills that internet stores do not have. Rent, utilities, employees, etc. I don't mind paying a little more for the benefit of being able to see and touch an item before I buy.

But these prices were way out of line AND were even much higher than their own internet web site. DW wanted a simple napkin holder. It was $8 for reg people, $7 for club members, and $5 on their own web site. That is a 60% markup at the box store from their own internet site. Shameful.

When I showed them their own internet price and asked for a discount they said they could not do it. They said if I wanted the lower price to go buy it online. I replied, if everyone starts doing that, then you are out of a job. I just got a blank stare.... Clueless.

So what are some of your favorite places to shop for for camping stuff either in a brick and mortar store or online?


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Old 08-20-2017, 07:30 AM   #2
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We haven't bought a huge amount of specific camping items... wait- on second thought I guess we have!
WalMart stores often have a decent selection of RV stuff. It totally varies from one store to the next. We have several around Louisville and often the ones out in the
blue collar fringe 'burbs have more RV stuff. I've got patio mats and a pretty good
sewer hose and some folding Coleman camp chars we like there. The also will match their website if you press the issue a little bit.

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Old 08-20-2017, 07:34 AM   #3
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I buy most of my stuff through Amazon Prime. It isn't always the lowest price, but the convenience and free 2 day shipping is worth it to me.

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Old 08-20-2017, 07:39 AM   #4
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Amazon for us.. I'll look at stores to check if it will work, try it on for clothes and shoes. Other wise unless it is really needed or the same price I buy it on Amazon and it shows up a day or two later for cheaper. Sometimes and some things do end up being cheaper at the store though like def and oil for my diesel. But they are heavy and not as cost effective to ship in two days I am sure.

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Old 08-20-2017, 07:46 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Ron045 View Post
So what are some of your favorite places to shop for for camping stuff either in a brick and mortar store or online?

Just a list off the top of my head:

Like Dan, I have gotten some things out of the Wal-Mart RV section (entrance mat, step mat, sewer hoses, electrical adapters, RV toilet paper, fresh water hose, 30 amp extension cord, sink/dish tray)

Gotten some good things off Amazon (plate caddys come to mind cause I see them sitting on my kitchen counter as I type this, but there has been more)

Ebay (awning lights, LED light bulbs)

My local RV dealer has a good selection of RV items, and I have purchased these as well as repair/maintenance parts from them.

Harbor Freight has solid rubber wheel chocks that are better than any I have found elsewhere. All of my camping buddies have ended up with these, as I am bad about giving them away, and going back for more.

I've bought other camping stuff, like grills from Academy Sports and Dick's Sporting Goods. Even gotten some things from Bass Pro Shops.
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Old 08-20-2017, 08:07 AM   #6
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I've used E-Trailer for many items, Walmart, other box stores, several of our hardware and lumber stores are stocking RV accessories.
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Old 08-20-2017, 08:15 AM   #7
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I get everything from Amazon
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Old 08-20-2017, 08:44 AM   #8
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I generally use Walmart or one of the big chain outdoors stores for camping and trailer gear. I only thing I use CW for is buying the sealants I need to trailer maintenance as the prices have always been similar to the online price and they usually have a good supply in stock.
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Old 08-20-2017, 08:53 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Ron045 View Post
When I showed them their own internet price and asked for a discount they said they could not do it. They said if I wanted the lower price to go buy it online. I replied, if everyone starts doing that, then you are out of a job. I just got a blank stare.... Clueless.

So what are some of your favorite places to shop for for camping stuff either in a brick and mortar store or online?

I recently bought an item at the Georgetown KY, Big Box camping store you speak of. They charged me $124.00 but I thought my Good Sam card would get me the online sale price of $74.00...I was wrong, BUT the cashier said if I would print out the online sale ad and bring it in I could get a refund of the difference. I don't know if the refund would actually be given because I returned the item for a full refund the next day.
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Old 08-20-2017, 08:59 AM   #10
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We get the sale flyers from C.W., but the store is over an hour drive for us ~ hardly ever go there unless just to spend the day out and combine with a drive and other things.
Just about everything I purchase is either from Walmart, through the RV section (delivered free to closest store), Lowe's, Home Depot, Job Lots (yes they have things there also), E-trailer, Harbor Freight, etc.
We do have a couple of camper sales (at a distance) but seldom do they have on hand the items we are looking for.
My pocket book isn't that deep to buy what everyone else has or think they need ~ we'd rather spend our $$ having fun and enjoying the few trips we get to take.
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Old 08-20-2017, 09:02 AM   #11
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Another Amazon prime buyer here. I've also made purchases from e-bay as well with good success, bought a power tongue jack.

As far as Walmart goes, our "super" store only has 1 aisle with camping stuff and it's only a half aisle at that!
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Old 08-20-2017, 09:15 AM   #12
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Seems like most folks in forums don't like CW, but I don't think that reflects accurately for the real world. Most folks I talk to enjoy CW, but like me, only buy there when they have real sales.

But I think all these conversations will be moot if CW doesn't keep up with Walmart in having ship to store, and aligning online prices with in-store. Walmart is giving Amazon heavy competition in allowing you to do all your shopping online and having options for shipping. Even on items that are never carried in-store. We buy most everything this way now, shipping to store.

I see the CW store going the way of Sears and KMart if things don't change soon. I, for one, will miss it.
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Old 08-20-2017, 09:22 AM   #13
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If you ever get out on the road for months at a time you will appreciate CW when you really need something now.

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Old 08-20-2017, 09:35 AM   #14
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We shop a little of everywhere except for Amazon the prime fee makes their prices way out of line..... compared even to Camping World is cheaper for us.


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Old 08-20-2017, 09:40 AM   #15
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I support local retail when/where I can afford to. If I can't or don't want to wait, local it is. But, I won't break the bank to shop local if I can wait or if the price difference is ridiculous.
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Old 08-20-2017, 10:00 AM   #16
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I try to shop only at stores that have free popcorn.

Our local CW recently removed their machine...
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Old 08-20-2017, 10:04 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by lbrjet View Post
If you ever get out on the road for months at a time you will appreciate CW when you really need something now.

agreed, Walmart is where it is in large part because of the shear number of stores and convenience to most folks. CW is trying the same approach and I appreciate it when I'm in an area of the country not familiar to me - and a CW is not far away.
I know what they have. I know what I need. It's not JUST a price issue, it's convenience when you need something.

Yes, we buy quite a bit online of course, but sometimes it's just the 'I need it now' that gets me into a store. Yes, the big box store also carries a few RV type items, but it's very limited unless you are wanting the typical few 'starter' items that most weekend campers look for.

We stayed a Saturday overnight in a parking area between a Walmart and a Home Depot... I needed a simple item, a 50a male plug to replace one from my Shore cord. Home Depot shows one on their website, but they did not have any type of RV items within the store next door. Walmart shows one on their website, but, again, none at the store next door. Both said that they don't carry many RV items because too many RV Dealers in the area kept them 'out' of the market with RV suppliers. (?) Hunh?
The Camping World down the road had anything and everything I could want, all in stock and on the shelf, and the price was in line with everyone else who 'didn't' have any in stock. They were also open on this Saturday afternoon.

By the way, NONE of the 'local' dealers were open, or they had closed much earlier.

I don't expect any physical store to have the same price in person that they might have for the same item online. The overhead of physical stores, and the personnel required to run them and provide your check out, is completely different and certainly much more costly than an online warehouse with much less overhead cost per order.
I certainly don't expect Wmt, CW, or any other physical store to just 'match' their online price - I should order it online if I want that price. In a store I am paying for convenience, for physical touch, and for 'I get it right now', plus easy returns. While we'd all 'like' the same low price no matter how we choose to buy it, but it doesn't make sense to blame a company for their pricing - they are giving you a choice.

I don't understand the CW bashing. We've full timed for over three years, traveling around this country, including Alaska, and Canada, and enjoy seeing a CW in many places we go. With 'local' dealers, you never know what they have in stock, even if they have a retail store at all. A few do a good job, but most just don't have the customer base to provide all the options that larger dealers and CW does.
I hope CW continues to open even more stores.
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Old 08-20-2017, 10:06 AM   #18
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I buy most of my RV stuff on Amazon but have also found good prices at etrailer and other online suppliers. I buy from local dealers if I need something now or if their price is less than the cost of something online with shipping. I haven't tried Walmart because I can't force myself to go back into my local store.

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Old 08-20-2017, 10:07 AM   #19
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Amazon Prime has worked good for us. Living out in the country it is a long drive to even limited selections yet the UPS man drives by each day. Plus we enjoy the streaming movies.

PS: If my memory is correct the CW store that I occasionally visit has offered to match their online prices if asked. Perhaps it varies by stord.
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Old 08-20-2017, 10:19 AM   #20
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I buy all over the place...too much truthfully. I use Amazon prime for most stuff. We have 3 people buying on my prime account so for me it's a good deal...I buy quite a bit for work. If you ain't never checked out CW's bargain are missing out. I have bought stuff for $.10 on the dollar and it was useful. I watch for 40% off or more and it's usually a pretty good deal then. I find very little at Walmart...mostly just everyday stuff I already have. I agree with lbrjet...if you need it then price moves aside. My "in case" stuff I buy on price. It's hard to beat 2 day shipping...including Saturday delivery...that's about $25 extra on UPS

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