Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 01-09-2009, 03:08 PM   #29
Moderator
 
jcanavera's Avatar

 
2004 30' Classic Slideout
Fenton , Missouri
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 9,002
Images: 143
Send a message via AIM to jcanavera Send a message via Skype™ to jcanavera
This might be a Florida perk but I do know that we reserved a site through RA for a spot at the state park in Destin a couple of years ago. We decided to leave a day early and got a refund check or a credit back to my credit card a few weeks later. I was surprised to get a refund.

Compare that to the Missouri state park system that uses some other processor. I forgot I had reserved a site from Friday through Monday. I showed up on Thursday and a site was available. I told them that was my error and what I wanted was a Thursday through Sunday site.

Unfortunately they said, because it was done through the Internet, there was no ability to swap my Monday payment for the Thursday charge. In essance I had to pay for Thursday, and lose my money that I had paid for Monday. Now that sucks.

Jack
__________________

__________________
Jack Canavera
STL Mo.
AIR #56
'04 Classic 30' S.O.,'03 GMC Savana 2500,'14 Honda CTX 700
jcanavera is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2009, 03:26 PM   #30
The Silver Schooner
 
Pudentane's Avatar
 
2007 28' Safari SE
Dover , New Hampshire
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 144
I resent the system and the fee - and they really don't always know what specific sites are available or what the electrical power avaiable is. Unless it will break my heart to find the CG full - the odds or which are small - I opt for showing up at the gate early in the day an usually can get what I want without an extra reservation charge.

Now I know where that subscription for PC Mag came from - I was wondering - it turned out to be useful as I'm about to buy a laptop - so it was worth it this time.
__________________

__________________
Louisa & Jasper Joy
Pudentane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2009, 03:38 PM   #31
Moderator
 
jcanavera's Avatar

 
2004 30' Classic Slideout
Fenton , Missouri
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 9,002
Images: 143
Send a message via AIM to jcanavera Send a message via Skype™ to jcanavera
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pudentane View Post
I resent the system and the fee - and they really don't always know what specific sites are available or what the electrical power avaiable is. Unless it will break my heart to find the CG full - the odds or which are small - I opt for showing up at the gate early in the day an usually can get what I want without an extra reservation charge.

Now I know where that subscription for PC Mag came from - I was wondering - it turned out to be useful as I'm about to buy a laptop - so it was worth it this time.
That's well and good if you have lots of choices but to drive the distances I drive and not get a site or the site I want....that's unacceptable. I've used them twice and was able to get the exact site I wanted. Maybe the variance deals with the information provided to them from the specific park system.

The fee is there because it's a business and in this day and age a lot of these governmental agencies can't afford the costs much less get the folks to staff a phone reservation system. If you can find someone to do it for you, I can certainly understand why they do it.

We quit camping in the governmental campgrounds at one point after driving hours to either find nothing available or early birds who would arrive and stake out sites for all their pals who got there later in the day.

Maybe when I'm retired I'll be able to be footloose and fancy free and have no time schedule. Until then, I just have to plan ahead, make my reservations and pay a fee. For me I'm $$ ahead knowing that spot is there.

Jack
__________________
Jack Canavera
STL Mo.
AIR #56
'04 Classic 30' S.O.,'03 GMC Savana 2500,'14 Honda CTX 700
jcanavera is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2009, 04:50 PM   #32
Rivet Master
 
Gene's Avatar
 
2008 25' Safari FB SE
Grand Junction , Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 10,840
I think refund and reservation fee policies are for the most part set by the state or federal park systems, not by RA or others. Of course, the private company will try to get the best deal for themselves. It seems to me in this system, the public, which often owns the land, is the voice not heard at the negotiating table. If a private company can make money at this, it seems the state or feds can make a modest profit by setting up a similar system. Then the public benefits and there's a better chance our voices will be heard.

Making reservations at national parks with concessionaires can sometimes be a challenge too. These guys are allowed to charge very high prices for lodging that ranges from clearly substandard to fairly fancy and food that ranges from pretty bad to pretty good.

I think the refund and reservation policies can be pretty rigid. I find the same at private lodgings in many places, and especially at destination motels, hotels and resorts. They know they can get away with it because of demand, though eventually it can bite them. Treat people badly enough, and hopefully, you lose the business. A few people posted the RA phone reservation system is not very good, but others report the online reservation system works well. As I said before, the online system is not good for everyone and no system can satisfy all of us. Part of the problem is that some parks do not leave spaces, or enough spaces, for drive-ins (like a walk-in, but with wheels; feet optional). Without reservations, early arrivals get all the spaces, a situation that can mean driving like a maniac to get there early, or delaying arrival so to get there the next morning. I've been in that situation too.

I think the best way to get what you want is to be internet savvy. A lot of people aren't and that they have to deal with bad telephone systems is unfair.

I have made reservations 4 to 6 months in advance when I had no choice. One time, with the Alaska state ferry system to make sure I could get all the different ferries on our odyssey from Haines to Pr. Rupert, BC; then I made reservations at a bunch of lodgings in the towns we would stay in (no Airstream then). While in Yukon Terr., I realized I'd better start driving to the ferry and made it with a day to spare. In the midst of the Inside Passage, we found out the ferry wasn't coming because of a fire, so we spend an extra 2 days in Petersburg waiting for another ferry, and had to cancel reservations in Wrangell—no problem, but this was a small lodging and I talked to the owner. Stuff happens. It poured every day in Petersburg and Juneau before that and rained everywhere else. I bought a book and spent time in the room being lazy.

It's pretty hard to design a system that works for everyone. I wish the states and the feds could do it themselves, though in recent years they haven't given the chance.

Gene
__________________
Gene is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 03:08 PM   #33
Rivet Master
 
StreamNTyme's Avatar
 
2007 25' Safari FB SE
Carolina Low Country , South Carolina
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 699
Images: 27
florida keys & reserve america

I have tried endlessly day in and day out to get a reservation at one of the state parks in the keys for just a week not a month in Jan or Feb next year and every single day all the sites are gone for the day 11 months later, the limit to get a site. So how are people doing this? How do they get enough days in a row to make it a visit, when all the sites for that day 11 months later is gone at 8AM. I can not even get 1 day when that would do me no good anyway. I am frustrated with the snowbirds hogging all the months and wish I could just get a week. If I could figure out how to get a week .
__________________
StreamNTyme
StreamNTyme is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 03:56 PM   #34
Rivet Master
 
Gene's Avatar
 
2008 25' Safari FB SE
Grand Junction , Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 10,840
kmtyme, have you tried calling the park directly and going around the RA system? In some states the parks will take reservations directly. At the least, you may be able to find out what's going on and how to solve your problem. it could be the RA system isn't working right. In Colorado (and I've heard in California too) if you try to make an RA reservation at a state park off season (the parks are always open, but I mean the cold months) the RA website will tell you all the spaces are booked. In Florida, the off season is at the other end of the year, but websites often have problems that make no sense. If you can't get through to the specific park, try the state park headquarters and tell them your problem.

While parks were once considered an important part of government services and a major benefit to society, more recently they have been required to pay their own way in terms of money only resulting in much higher fees. Privatization has occurred simultaneously and there's no proof that has resulted in any better service or reduction in costs. Since resources have been diverted from parks while population grows, competition for ever more limited spaces makes it necessary to book 6 months or 11 months or whatever ahead. Spontaneity is lost and those who know how to game the system do best. Our solution is to travel during Fall and Spring, but we are hardly the only ones, so that's getting crowded too. We would like to return to the Keys—I don't think we've been there for at least 15 years—but it sounds like it may not be worth the hassle.

I was checking the Superior National Forest website a couple of days ago. It's in northern Minnesota. It seems RA has lost the business and there's a new reservations system, perhaps a government one. I didn't spend a lot of time on it and never did bother with a new password, etc., but I did find out, at least for that NF, they hold back some spaces for drive-ins. Other park systems do the same. I just e-mailed the NF supervisor to find out a few things, so e-mail's another way to get information.

Gene
__________________
Gene is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 04:02 PM   #35
Rivet Master
 
Silverhobby's Avatar
 
1967 26' Overlander
1968 30' Sovereign
Vintage Kin Owner
Currently Looking...
Mosheim , Tennessee
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,301
Send a message via Yahoo to Silverhobby
I have been using Reserve America for several years now. I have stayed at the "full" campgrounds where there were "reserved" sites left vacant and unattainable for the whole weekend. The ranger said, as long as it is paid for, that's all that matters. The park is making money.
__________________
Kevin with Baity the Lab/Pointer
//------AIR # 7303------\\
WBCCI 17109
visit my restoration blog at:
Silverhobby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 04:37 PM   #36
Rivet Master
 
Jim Foster's Avatar
 
1965 17' Caravel
1983 27' Excella
Walnut Grove/Laguna Woods , California
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,615
Send a message via Yahoo to Jim Foster
We pulled into Huntington Beach State Park (California) with two other units. They had lots of spaces. When we asked "Can we have these spaces for three nights?" they said "maybe,,,,,,,,,,,we don't know until each morning which spaces are spoken for." We had to go back to the office at 8 each morning to see of we had to move or not.

There is no information shared between the campground office and Reserve America with regard to future reservations. Anyone driving down the highway and seeing empty spaces can not go in and reserve one for a time. They must contact Reserve America, or play the "go to the office each day" game.

Not too handy.........Pull into any privately owned campground with empty spaces and they are ready and willing to rent you one for as long as it is available. As for reservations in high use areas, the same thing. You can call any privately run campground and they will make you a reservation. I have never been charged a "reservation fee" at any privately owned campground. Have you?
__________________
Jim Foster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 04:49 PM   #37
Rivet Master
 
Gene's Avatar
 
2008 25' Safari FB SE
Grand Junction , Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 10,840
RA's reservation fee is $6 in Colorado. I think in other places it can be $10. Once they have the software in place, costs to them are small. You can phone them, and that costs them more, but why do internet users have to pay the same high fee?

I have been charged all sorts of nuisance fees at motels and hotels. Energy fee, safe fee, resort fee, BS fee, etc. Campgrounds more than motels will have wifi fees. Midrange motels have pretty much given up on internet fees, but fancy resorts and expensive motels still charge them. There's less competition in the RV campground world, so wifi fees will be around for a while. Our problem with reservations at private campgrounds is all too often no one answers the phone or we leave a message and no one returns the call; no return call, no business. Then there are excessive propane charges…

Gene
__________________
Gene is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 05:06 PM   #38
Moderator
Commercial Member
 
eubank's Avatar
 
1967 30' Sovereign
Bosque Farms , New Mexico
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 6,427
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Foster View Post
We pulled into Huntington Beach State Park (California) with two other units. They had lots of spaces. When we asked "Can we have these spaces for three nights?" they said "maybe,,,,,,,,,,,we don't know until each morning which spaces are spoken for." We had to go back to the office at 8 each morning to see of we had to move or not.

There is no information shared between the campground office and Reserve America with regard to future reservations. Anyone driving down the highway and seeing empty spaces can not go in and reserve one for a time. They must contact Reserve America, or play the "go to the office each day" game.

Not too handy.........Pull into any privately owned campground with empty spaces and they are ready and willing to rent you one for as long as it is available. As for reservations in high use areas, the same thing. You can call any privately run campground and they will make you a reservation. I have never been charged a "reservation fee" at any privately owned campground. Have you?
That's exactly the reason why we told the RA people (and the others) to stick it. We wanted complete control over our own campground.

Gene mentioned wifi at parks, too. It is a problem, I think. First of all, you've got a crowd of owners who often know nothing about setting up a wireless network, so they tend to hire somebody. They often turn to the rent-a-connection types who promise huge profits for the installation. (Duh.) And, of course, there's the geography problem: Many campgrounds are physically set up so that reaching all corners of the property with a signal requires a bunch of infrastructure, if it's done right.

Bottom line: It's the lousy combination of poor knowledge/expertise on the part of owners combined with sales-pitch outfits that can pull the wool over anybody's eyes.


Lynn
__________________
WBCCI 21043
eubank is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 05:20 PM   #39
Rivet Master
 
Jim Foster's Avatar
 
1965 17' Caravel
1983 27' Excella
Walnut Grove/Laguna Woods , California
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,615
Send a message via Yahoo to Jim Foster
Needs Reserve America

The city of Huntington Beach, Ca, operates an RV camping facility called Sunset Vista RV Park, located just south of the pier, right next to the beach. Great location.

Reservations may only be made by mail. No drive-in, or phone, or internet reservations. Very handy for those on the road.

You must pay for the entire reserved time when the reservation is made.

No changes in reservations allowed.

$60.00 per night, $50.00 for seniors (with ID) and disabled (with placard). Spaces have water and electric. There is a dump near the entrance.
Cancellation (with a $10.00 fee) must be made 30 days prior to scheduled entry.

No spaces available during the months of June and July. What's that?

Just makes a feller feel real welcome, Don't it?
__________________
Jim Foster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 08:06 PM   #40
Rivet Master
 
StreamNTyme's Avatar
 
2007 25' Safari FB SE
Carolina Low Country , South Carolina
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 699
Images: 27
Crawford Gene,
For instance, 8am today 18th of Mar. completely booked for the 18th of Feb. 2010 for all Keys State Parks. Not available yet for 19th of Feb. till tomorrow, but tomorrow morning at 8am. all sites will show booked and so on it goes.
__________________
StreamNTyme
StreamNTyme is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 08:16 PM   #41
LEV ZEPPELIN
 
crazylev's Avatar
 
2004 19' International CCD
Chicago , Illinois
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 930
Images: 10
I have always been a fan of first come first serve. During the summer months, at any popular campground, you won't find a site to be had because most people are looking for a weekend.

Our dilemma has been we want to stay at a place monday thru sunday, but most site for the weekend are taken, so you have to move to another campground.

You are also at the mercy of what sites are available and most descriptions are less than helpful. I like to drive around and pick and choose. Especially if I see/hear potentially bad neighbors.

Army Corp campgrounds

In general, we try and avoid campgrounds that have a reservation system. The two state parks in Door County, WI. are perfect examples. After the first week of being able to reserve (months in advance) they are still sold out.

Jonathan
__________________
Sometimes I wish I were living in the stone age. Then I would know I'm the smartest person in the world.
crazylev is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 08:29 PM   #42
3 Rivet Member
 
2006 28' International CCD
Nashville , Tennessee
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 115
I too feel the frustration of trying to get a site in the Keys. Since the second week of January I have attempted every morning to get a site. (I have probably missed only 5-6 days -- when I have not had internet access). I choose the site that I am going for and start hitting the "book these dates" button a few minutes before the reservations open. In less than a minute after reservations are open, all available sites are booked. I have called the campground directly and was told that this was the best way to get in. Unfortunately, the campground gods have not yet smiled upon me. But I keep trying . . . hope springs eternal . . .

My husband and friends keep telling me that something strange is going on. They think I'm wasting my time. If anyone has had any luck I'd love to hear about it!!

Thanks!
__________________

__________________
dmoore is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
America The Beautiful klattu On The Road... 92 07-24-2012 12:31 AM
Central America, anyone? liston Member Introductions 10 07-25-2010 09:02 PM
America, where are we headed? Inland RV Center, In Off Topic Forum 46 10-30-2007 06:37 AM
Mobile America.... Safari Tim Our Community 5 06-13-2005 08:56 AM
OOPS! battery not charging,water hook up spilling into reserve tank? outerbanksdeb Batteries, Univolts, Converters & Inverters 2 08-02-2004 01:40 PM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:51 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.