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Old 03-17-2011, 10:29 AM   #1
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Camping World - did I get snookered?

I got an ad in the mail for Camping World. I wanted one of their catalogs so I mailed it in. All I received was an application to the Presidents Club. I joined and sent it in. I never received a catalog but did get two cheezy LED watches with dead batteries. Yesterday I received a notice that I could re-up for two years for the price of one. Is this a joke? I think I fell for something here.
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Old 03-17-2011, 10:55 AM   #2
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Their web site is probably more accurate than anything printed. You're going to get asked to keep re-up'ing on the membership until they have you paid up for a good 20 years or more. If you think that's bad, god help you if you ever sign up for Good Sam.
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Old 03-17-2011, 10:56 AM   #3
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Yes you did. I have never seen a deal at CW. Almost everyone sells stuff for less then CW.
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:15 AM   #4
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If you plan on buying some high end stuff (fridge, ac, lots of little stuff) their instore discount can amount to quite a savings and it's all in one place for you to hold and touch and ask questions about. That is the only benifit I got from my one year membership. The mailings make great fire starters if your campsite has a fire ring. They will never stop sending applications to you. It's been five years since I had a membership.

They do allow overnight parking in their parking lots if you are on the road - no membership required.
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:20 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clancy_boy View Post
They do allow overnight parking in their parking lots if you are on the road - no membership required.
That right there is good to know!
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:22 AM   #6
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Have you been snookered? Not Necessarily. CW sometimes gets who is a member from when confused.

We have been members of CW's President's Club for years. Actually, if you know your prices, CW has some good deals. The big blue toilet "pills" taht we use are lower in price at CW than at Wal-Mart. Several years ago, we purchased an RV dish drainer at Wal-Mart only to find later that it was $2 cheaper at CW. CW was also the best price on Lucy's replacement steps and antenna enhancement.

CW also works well for us since we travel so much. Sometimes it is just better to be able to pick something up at CW than to order it from someone else and wait till we get home in two months to get it. I guess if you never go anywhere, there may be some better prices out there,

CW is not the end all for routine RV supplies, but we have found them useful over the years.

Brian
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:22 AM   #7
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I've found that I can find many things cheaper on-line than at CW. That being said there are occasional deals on larger items that are worth investigating or even offset the cost of the club. As a result I find myself joining once every 3-4 years to make a purchase.

The other advantage is that if you're on the road and pass one or of you need something today they tend to be the biggest supplier with the broadest assortment of things in stock in their showroom (at least near met). If I'm not in a hurry I tend to shop around on-line though.
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Old 03-17-2011, 01:16 PM   #8
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Camping world help

We have a CW close and have purchased several items referbing my 1976 . without the club membership I would go some where else as non member price is too high. They however have help me returning bad parts from the factory. I did not use them until their return date expired. I don't know why but I got hold of a bad sureflo water pump and a prodigy break control. They swapped them out with no questions. For me seeing and touching a part is important.
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Old 03-17-2011, 01:18 PM   #9
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We have followed pretty much the same process as Greg and Mary.

If you need big ticket items, or they have a great sale, it can be worth joining for one year. The price of membership varies a lot. Nominally it was $20 several years ago, now it is $25. Ten percent off for membership means buying $250 worth of stuff. The 1st time we joined it was because they had a great price on a generator display model without the box or manual (easy to get on the internet). We joined again a year ago because we needed a bunch of things. When it ran out this month, they offered to renew for $20, no great bargain. We didn't.

They have offers for discounted membership from time to time (I think it went down to $12 a year ago when we rejoined) and it's often best to wait for those if you need a bunch of items and can wait.

CW is owned by a conglomerate that owns all sorts of camping companies such as Woodalls, Trailer Life and I think, Good Sam. It's easy to see times have been tough for such companies with gas price spikes and the Great Recession, so they want to get as much cash up front as possible hoping that down the road they will make it up. A couple of years ago CW received two loans totally $20,000,000 from Thor Industries. The financial stability of the conglomerate was of some concern then, but I don't know how they are doing now.

I am no fan of CW, but it is correct they have a lot of stuff. The nearest RV store to us has prices just as inflated and has less stuff. There have been many posts on the Forum warning that CW's service for RV's is to be avoided, especially for Airstreams.

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Old 03-17-2011, 02:04 PM   #10
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I, also, belong to the Presdents Club,; and order some things from CW. You mentioned the catalog, their catalog is mainly on line, but they do issue catalogs about every 4 months. Sometimes it is just as easy to sit at the computer and order online as it is run around looking for certain items. Saves on gas. Also watch fro free delivery and discounts. I would like to shop locally, but sometimes $$$ is the answer.
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Old 03-17-2011, 03:20 PM   #11
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We belong to Good Sam only for the cg discounts. I have to keep a trash can next to the mail box for all the waisted mail they send. They must blow 10 times my dues in postage. Sal.
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Old 03-17-2011, 03:23 PM   #12
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I got the lifetime membership almost 15 years ago for around 300.00 just think how much junk mail I have gotten over the years. But I like the mag. and the discounts are nice...SAM
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Old 03-17-2011, 03:28 PM   #13
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In Georgia, CW is the only Airstream dealer in the State. Overall I have had good luck with routine maintenance at CW and for a few tricky repair items as well. They have stuff for RVers in there that are hard to find anywhere else. I plan to continue to visit CW for supplies plus routine and preventative maintenance.
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Old 03-17-2011, 04:26 PM   #14
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I also am a Presidents Club member. Every so often we have a major purchase and the discount makes the membership worthwhile. The catalogs make good reading material in the privy.
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Old 03-17-2011, 05:00 PM   #15
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Camping World and Good Sam seem to be favourite targets for these kinds of complaints - and I've never understood why.

We've always found Camping World to be a good choice for many purchases - maybe part of that is because RV Supplies often seem outrageously priced in Canada - so at least in relative terms Camping World is a real deal. The routine has been to wait till we're south of the border on a trip for our purchases - and it becomes a treat to walk the aisles - and stock up on whatever - at bargain basement prices (to us)!

We opted out of our CAA coverage in favour of Good Sam years ago - like others we initially got a lot of junk mail - but all it took was a phone call and the mail stopped - I believe you can change your mailing preferences on-line now (maybe we could have then - just didn't realize it). We get one set of mailings a year now - to renew our basic membership and our emergency road coverage - nothing else. I should add that we've used their services twice - no complaints either time.

Thanks,



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Old 03-17-2011, 06:07 PM   #16
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I have found good deals at the B&M store in fact you can wheel & deal on some items.

However; by the time you pay S&H for on line orders are not very competitive with the local RV stores even on most of their specials.

We are not close to any CW stores but I join from time to time when I visit one of their stores.
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Old 03-17-2011, 06:48 PM   #17
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My observation as a full-time RVer:
Camping World Presidents Club: well worth it
Good Sam: maybe not
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Old 03-17-2011, 07:31 PM   #18
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We are President's Club Members... My take on CW is that if it's convenient for you to get to and you watch the pricing and deals you can get your yearly membership back rather quickly. They have always done us right, and were very helpful to us when we first began RVing, so we have no complaints. (This doesn't mean we buy everything there, buy any means!)
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Old 03-17-2011, 07:34 PM   #19
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It is not true that all Camping Worlds allow overnight parking. I was run out of the Chattanooga, TN CG at mid-night this past summer. It seems that particular Camping World owns the campground next door. However, the Camping World at Bowling Green, KY does allow overnight parking, that is they did two years ago. It is best to call ahead. I now don't attempt to park at any Camp Worlds after the bad experience at Chattanooga. If you need a place to rest or park overnight, Walmart and Flying J are much more RV friendly in my view.
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Old 03-17-2011, 07:38 PM   #20
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I have been a member at CW for many years. There is a store about 40 minutes from my home and I usually keep a list of what I would like or need over the winter and make a visit in the spring before the camping season starts. Almost always, their prices beat the heck out of the other RV supply chain of stores in my area. However, just like anything else, it pays to do your homework before buying.
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