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Old 05-17-2015, 10:49 AM   #1
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camping discounts

are the discounts out there worth the price of membership such as passport America great escape good sam do they honor discounts all year long or just off prime season some offer 50 percent off seem to good to be true
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Old 05-17-2015, 11:05 AM   #2
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Of course it depends on how often you camp and where you camp. We full time, so we get much more value out of discounts. My take:


Good Sam is definitely worth it as it's cheap to purchase and many, many campgrounds offer a 10% GS discount


Passport America -- might be worth it if there's a PA campground where you like to camp. I used to stay periodically at a PA campground in Illinois and I would save 50% ($375 a month as they allowed the discount every day). However, most PA discounts are only for certain days in a week and for a limited number of days. Some folks say that PA campgrounds tend to be the less desirable parks too. I have mixed feelings if this is true or not.


Military discount: This one is free if you qualify and is worth 10% at many parks


AAA or AARP discount: It's pretty rare but I do see some parks giving 10% for this


Escapees discount: It's worth 10-15% at some campgrounds. I dropped my membership because I didn't find enough CGs with an Escapees discount & I didn't need their other services.


Happy Camper: Another 50% off club like Passport America. In my travels, I have NEVER seen a "we accept Happy Camper" sign at a park. I'm sure they exist but ...


Thousand Trails & other prime memberships: You pay premium bucks to buy into these but stay for free or very low cost at member parks. Some are more like a time-share than a camping program. Do your research to make sure parks are located where you intend to camp. I have never joined these so can't fully evaluate


KOA discount: KOAs are generally the most expensive parks at $40+ a night. Their $20 discount card gives you 10% off plus. So if you stay at 5-6 KOAs a year, you will make money on the discount.


I currently save several hundred dollars a year on my Good Sam membership. I usually save some on my Passport America membership (although this one can save big sometimes), and I save on my KOA membership. That's all I keep.
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Old 05-17-2015, 11:11 AM   #3
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I use three different ones all together depending on what the campground will take. They are Good Sam's, KOA and AARP. They usually pay for themselves for each camping season; the only problem with all three is Good Sam's you get a lot of junk mail and I mean JUNK MAIL.
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Old 05-17-2015, 11:15 AM   #4
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We have found Good Sams had the most value really. Between GS and Veterans most campgrounds will give something.
We don't stay at KOA's all that often so never joined theirs.
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Old 05-17-2015, 11:16 AM   #5
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I looked at my records. In the past 1 year, I have saved:
$187 using Good Sam discounts
$147 using KOA discounts
$35 using Passport America discounts
$34 using military discount


The high amount from KOA is because they give you up to a $50 rebate after you earn so many points and I got two rebates this year.
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Old 05-17-2015, 11:20 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim34RL View Post
the only problem with all three is Good Sam's you get a lot of junk mail and I mean JUNK MAIL.
When I joined Good Sam, I wrote on my application that I wanted NO mailings from them whatsoever. I also wrote a separate note and put in the package saying the same thing. When I renewed, I repeated the note. I said something like "I know you send out a lot of junk mail. I want NO mail from you whatsoever and I will drop my membership if you send it to me."

As a result, I get nothing in the mail from Good Sam beyond like a quarterly sales brochure. So it does work!
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