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Old 11-22-2017, 08:39 PM   #1
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What RV membership is the best value?

I am scene several different annual memberships offering discounts for campgrounds and other types of benefits like roadside assistance. I was wondering if anyone has any opinions or recommendations for a specific one? The two most common I keep coming across are the Good Sam membership and the Thousand Trails annual membership. I know the Thousand Trails is basically for a select number of their privately owned RV campsites and the Good Sam offers discounts on a whole bunch of different campgrounds as well as select stores and sometimes roadside assistance, I wasn't sure if there was some others that are recommended or if anyone has experience with certain ones and either thinks they are well worth the money or they are a big waste of money, I would very much like to hear. To provide some detail, I will be living full-time out of a travel trailer and will most likely be trying to find a nice place for long-term stay but may be traveling a bit more in the future. Thanks in advance for any input or beneficial information.
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Old 11-22-2017, 09:22 PM   #2
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Old 11-22-2017, 09:32 PM   #3
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Unless you full-time, we think Good Sam has the most usable discounts, at the most places, for the membership fee.
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Old 11-22-2017, 09:41 PM   #4
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For campground discounts Passport America is very good http://passportamerica.com, like most there are restrictions on time of year, day of the week usage. Will pay for itself in 2 stays. Also check out Escapees membership http://escapees.com, much like Passport America. You are already aware of Good Sam which also has a good trip planner.

Thousand Trails can get pretty pricy so if you are interested in it make sure to check reviews for the pros and cons, a lot of discussion here on the forum on the subject also.

If you are 62 years old or older get an America the Beautiful pass https://www.nps.gov/planyourvisit/passes.htm a terrific bargain good for your lifetime, never expires. If you are not old enough for the senior pass you can purchase an annual America the Beautiful pass good for free entry to most National Parks and discounted campsites in parks that are not contractor operated, which is also a bargain. Also good at Corp of Engineer campgrounds and the pass will give you a 50% discount on campsites. Some states will honor it for state parks. In addition you can purchase from many states an annual discount pass to state parks, some restrict it to state residences so you may want to check that out.

And if you are not a FROG member be sure to sign up http://www.forestriverfrog.com, no cost, lots of fun events to attend. Over 70,000 members.
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Old 11-22-2017, 09:43 PM   #5
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I agree, GS works the best for the money. I love our TT but they are there to make money, they all are...
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Old 11-22-2017, 11:03 PM   #6
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Most places that I have seen don't give a membership discount for long term stays, just for short term stays. Good Sam gives discount at a lot of campgrounds plus the discount on gas at Flying J and Pilot. A KOA card also gives 10% off and you earn points that can be redeemed for discounts at KOA Kampgrounds. We have both Good Sam and KOA as we do a lot of short trips and get more than the cost back in the discounts we get, I also like the trip planner from Good Sam, it allows you to search for points of interest based on categories along your proposed route.
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Old 11-23-2017, 02:34 PM   #7
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For the price, Passport America is the best deal. If you travel around a lot and don't stay in one place too long. Yes you have to work around the restrictions but I've saved hundreds already and have only been using it since Sept of this year. Great bargain!
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Old 11-23-2017, 02:44 PM   #8
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No one has mentioned KOA which has tons of member parks and many are top of the line (many are also just so-so) ...but in general we tend to use them a lot because they are convenient and have all the amenities. Membership gives you 10% off and points for future free stays. If you use them enough...they waive he membership fee.
I keep Good Sam too.. but dropped TT and Passport as they rarely met our needs.
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Old 11-23-2017, 02:53 PM   #9
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A lot depends on how much you are traveling and where you are going. On east side of the USA, I find that GS and Passport America are good. With PA you have to read the times the discount are allowed for each campground. GS membership for roadside assistance is additional to GS membership (an additional fee). Since I haven't camped full time, I find PA works great for me as I mostly limit my visits to the the available discounts. But it has paid for itself plus for the last couple of years.
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Old 11-23-2017, 03:03 PM   #10
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Passport in a heartbeat. It pays for itself every trip I take. It takes a little work because of the weekend exclusions in certain areas but well worth the effort for half off.
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Old 11-23-2017, 03:41 PM   #11
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GS is the only one now. Tried PA but it turned into PIA. Used it going to/from a destination and paid for the year. Next CG was a rat hole. Then, no weekends, closed, this or that... not worth the aggravation .
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Old 11-23-2017, 05:51 PM   #12
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Passport America is great for 1or 2 nights but most camps exclude weekends and holidays. Read the fine print carefully when selecting a campground. Good Sam is usually good for 10% any time and for the entire stay excluding weekly, monthly and long term rates. Iím not sure there is a good discount program for long term stays. Iím satisfied with Good Sam roadside assistance but you will get as many opinions as you get answers on who offers the best service. Do your homework and make selections that look to best fit your lifestyle. You may find that no one club will be best and you will get more than one or even none are worth the money to you. Good Luck.
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Old 11-23-2017, 06:20 PM   #13
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Best deal out right now is Thousand Trails at 1/2 price for black Friday. Bar none.
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Old 11-23-2017, 06:22 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dpelaez View Post
Best deal out right now is Thousand Trails at 1/2 price for black Friday. Bar none.
I just got. That email.
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Old 11-23-2017, 07:10 PM   #15
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I have found in the southwest Escapees is the best. I'm in a park in NM right now for 225 a month
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Old 11-23-2017, 07:23 PM   #16
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We have been Good Sam members for a number of years, but may not be renewing. It seems that there are fewer benefits than in the past. (We do not care for Camping World, so those discounts are seldom used). Many campgrounds that offer discounts will offer several such as senior discounts, military, AAA, etc. Since you cannot use more than one, so we are finding the GS less beneficial. We have also found that many national fuel chains have their own discount programs for RVers so the fuel discounts become less of a benefit for GS as well.

We have had Passport America for several years and have saved the membership cost many times over. Passport works best for traveling long distances where you are stopping for a night or two here and there, since there are exclusions and limitations. Each campgrounds sets their own limitations. With Passport, you MUST use due diligence in checking out other reviews for any campgrounds on their list. Some are not great and that will usually be reflected in other reviews. We also found them quite responsive when we had an issue with one campground that was not honoring the rates. Not only did Passport investigate and dropped that campground from their list when they refused to honor the agreed-upon rate, but PA also gave us additional free months membership for our trouble and feedback.

We have never desired KOA membership since it seems their prices are higher to begin with and although the offer nice amenities, many are amenities that we would not use and therefore do not wish to pay for.

One of our camping partners has Thousand Trails and seems to have difficulty in finding the right place at the right time, so we have not felt led to look into that one any further.

We do have National Park Senior passes and that is a great deal!

We are fortunate that between national/state/local park systems, our PA, senior and military discounts, we have been able to continue to camp within a reasonable budget. However, that is becoming more difficult and we do spend more time on researching campgrounds than we ever have before.
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Old 11-23-2017, 08:44 PM   #17
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Yep, we wouldn't ever buy a KOA membership.
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Old 11-23-2017, 08:48 PM   #18
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How from a city are you and what ammenities ? Full HU? 225.00...sounds too good!
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Old 11-23-2017, 09:02 PM   #19
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As the rving keeps becoming more popular the campgrounds in some places are creeping towards the cost of the hotels.. Well maybe not yet, but I have encountered more and more in the plus 100$ ranges..
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Old 11-23-2017, 09:13 PM   #20
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What RV Membership Is The Best Value?

Before purchasing Passport make sure you check out the places they offer. I have had Passport for three years and maybe used it 6 times. The locations are either out of the way, or not even near my travel direction.
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