Camping at a record high: “The boom is still unbroken”

Camping at a record high: “The boom is still unbroken”
3. Camp MondSeeLand / Austria / Upper Austria / Tiefgraben near Mondsee / Europe No. 5
Image: Valentin Weinhaeupl

An increase of 23 percent compared to 2021 brought 7,853,392 overnight stays in the previous year and the pre-crisis value of 2019 was significantly exceeded after weaker intermediate years, said “camping.info” on Monday based on data from Statistics Austria. According to the booking portal, a further increase in demand is to be expected this year.

Carinthia is the camping land

“The camping boom is still unbroken,” says Portal Managing Director Maximilian Möhrle. “Meanwhile, popular campsites are no longer only well booked in the high season or during the holiday periods.” With 2.7 million overnight stays in a mobile home, caravan or tent, Carinthia accounted for more than a third of all camping overnight stays. After the southernmost federal state, Tyrol (2.1 million) and Salzburg (0.86 million) followed in terms of overnight stays.

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Also luxury tents on campsites

The stock of recreational vehicles has also grown steadily in recent years. There are currently a good 83,000 registered in Austria – more than 41,000 mobile homes and almost 42,000 caravans – almost 20,000 more than five years ago.

According to Möhrle, the increasing demand is leading to an expansion of the infrastructure on campsites. Many operators have invested in recent years and modernized and expanded their offerings. In the meantime, not only pitches for mobile homes and tents are offered, but also mobile homes or luxury tents.

Wellness, golf and sustainability

The offer on the campsites has also become more extensive with the needs of the campers. From pools and wellness facilities to the site’s own golf course, more and more is on offer. There is also a trend towards more sustainability, explained the Carinthian campsite operator Georg Mößler. He is a founding member of the greencampings.at association. “We are trying to deepen sustainability beyond the eco-label.”

Mößler is currently expanding the PV systems at its sites in Döbriach am Millstätter See (Spittal district) from a 60 kW peak to a 100 kW peak. “We are also renewing the electricity and network infrastructure to encourage guests to use less.” In addition, the entrepreneur has the CO2 footprint calculated for his campsites in order to take further measures in terms of sustainability.

Why do people love camping so much?

Basically, there has been a quality trend in camping for years. It is about the infrastructure on the squares, sanitary facilities, playgrounds, animation on the square and beyond, as well as the equipment. According to Mößler, the main reason for camping holidays is “nature, the green, is the most important thing. The service has to be right for this.”

The number of camping overnight stays has risen steadily over the past few years – except for 2020, when the corona crisis even left its mark there. While almost 7.15 million nights were spent camping in 2019, the following year it was only 6 million nights (minus 16 percent). In 2021 there was a plus again. However, 6.38 million overnight stays did not even quite match the 2017 value (6.4 million overnight stays). It was only last year that the pre-crisis value of 2019 was exceeded again – but it was decent.

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