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> KOA, Good or Bad?
JDcamper
post Aug 11 2011, 04:40 PM
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My family has stayed at 3 different KOA campgrounds. One was okay friendly, clean, indoor pool needed some work but overall good. One was a basic campground pool, clean some activities but they staff/owners a little abrupt when dealing with kids. The third was amazing and we now camp there often, worth the little extra you pay.
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Hutch333id
post Aug 12 2011, 10:57 AM
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As I sit and write this I am at the Polson, MT, KOA. This is only the third KOA I have camped at and it is by far the best. We came here after checking straight out of a private site that we refused to stay at despite making a reservation based on positive reviews. This KOA was able to accommodate us and has provided us with a stunning site overlooking the Flathead Lake. While it is not the cheapest camp ground it is the best run and maintained. The facilities here a excellecnt and the staff so very friendly. The spaces are large and well cared for which is something I cannot say was true of the other KOA's I have camped at. I would recommend this KOA to family and friends without hesitation.


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2014 Cedar Creek 38fl
2008 F350 6.4 Diesel Dually
Retired MET Police and proud of it
2013. 28 nights camping and 4350 km
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chowhound
post Aug 12 2011, 12:15 PM
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I guess it should be clear by now that KOA is not McDonald's. My experiences with KOA are similar to others who have posted on this thread through the years; some are good some are bad and most just OK. There is little consistancy from one to the other. So if you are considering staying at a KOA you should utilize all your sources (including this website) just like you would any independent or affiliated campground. Heres hoping all your surprises are pleasant ones.
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Meyer Camping
post Aug 29 2011, 02:13 PM
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QUOTE(chowhound @ Aug 12 2011, 02:15 PM) *

I guess it should be clear by now that KOA is not McDonald's. My experiences with KOA are similar to others who have posted on this thread through the years; some are good some are bad and most just OK. There is little consistancy from one to the other. So if you are considering staying at a KOA you should utilize all your sources (including this website) just like you would any independent orf affiliated campground. Heres hoping all your surprises are pleasant ones.

Chowhound, the comparison to McDonalds is excellent. We tend to look for a KOA on travel days since there is one thing that we have found we can depend on (Most Of The Time) is the long pull through sites. This way we can pull in and not unhook, a huge timesaver for me. W have a Yukon XL and pull a 31' travel trailer. This means that we need at least 55' of level ground to accommodate the rig. This is almost always worth the extra cost of the KOA. I guess what matters most is what you are looking for.

I would also point out that we stay at way many more decent to nice parks overall than dumps. I guess that using this site and the reviews to determine where we stay has worked out very well for us cool.gif


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RFCN2
post Sep 1 2011, 10:55 PM
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KOA's in my humble opinion gear towards campers with kids. The facilities can be good, bad, or in the middle. Checking with this web site helps sort that out. They also tend to be expensive. On our last six week trip that just ended the most expensive RV Park by far was a KOA. The second most expensive park was a KOA.

I do like their on line reservation system. The best one by far that I have been able to find. I also tend to find their staff almost uniformly smiling and friendly.



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Bob & Barbara
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Desertthorn
post Sep 2 2011, 01:21 PM
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I quit going to KOAs because if you have to cancel they will happily take you down payment and even if they rent the space you won't get your money back. It happened to me twice, one we broke down and I gave them 2 days notice, and once a full month and and they said I never called them, even when I gave them the name of the person I'd spoken to. "Oh she doesn't work here any more so your screwed. If a KOA was the last place with a space, I will park elsewhere.
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jamarynn1
post Sep 2 2011, 04:28 PM
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On the whole, I don't care for KOA's. Some KOA's we've stayed at have figured out how to do it right and I have enjoyed those places. Some of them don't have any business using the name. KOA's are often overpriced for what you get. If you're looking for peace and quiet, then KOA isn't usually the place for you. I'm a mom and a grandma several times over and I love well-behaved kids, but sometimes things just get out of control at a family-oriented park. The last KOA I was in, I went to the swimming pool once and after a solid half hour of "MARCO....POLO....MARCO....POLO...." being shrieked at the top of the kids' lungs and constant cannonballs into the pool, I concluded that I wouldn't be swimming this time around. Also, I don't like pools that allow babies in swim diapers (I don't care WHAT they call those things, but they are essentially just diapers and stuff leaks out that I don't want to swim in). There's a good reason why most hotels and cruise ships don't allow babies in swim diapers into the pools.... e coli contamination.
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'Streamers
post Oct 1 2011, 11:02 AM
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I debated to add my thoughts on this one, but decided if the posting has been here for 7 years and still getting action, I might as well chime in. We travel with our Airstream TT a lot, both for business & pleasure, often combined.

On the whole, we have been very pleased with the KOAs we have visited. Most memorable are Bismark ND - where the owner cooks up fabulous BBQ on weekends. Even the townspeople come to eat there. Sites are separated by lilac bushes; they were in full bloom in June. Gorgeous. Buena Vista Colorado - with the 14000+ foot Collegiate Range as a backdrop and the most moving 4th of July tribute I have ever witnessed. Las Vegas was another good one, for its facilities & proximity to all the action, even if it was basically a parking lot. It worked for what we wanted it to do.

Usually we just do KOAs for an overnight; 2 max. If we have been on the road and looking for a "working" campground (where we can clean house, do laundry, etc) we go to a KOA. But we know there are usually lots of kids, and they are usually close to interstates (the campground, not the kids :-) So if we want a quiet, relaxing stay - we will usually go elsewhere. But when we need a quick stop to stay for a night or two, KOA is well worth it for us.
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bjazz66
post Oct 24 2011, 08:44 AM
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When we began camping KOA was our first choice because of the bathrooms and hot shower. We used a teardrop and tent and these items were important.

We now use a motor home and have found that most KOA's are over priced and have that many private campgrounds or Walmart's..offer the same features.

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Alessandro
post Oct 26 2011, 12:30 PM
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QUOTE(bjazz66 @ Oct 24 2011, 08:44 AM) *

When we began camping KOA was our first choice because of the bathrooms and hot shower. We used a teardrop and tent and these items were important.

We now use a motor home and have found that most KOA's are over priced and have that many private campgrounds or Walmart's..offer the same features.

We know KOA's with >$ 100 sites, what is ridiculous. The KOA Las Vegas is a parking lot with FHU for $ 90! For 1/4 of this cost you can "park" one's MH on Main Street Station. KOA West Yellowstone offers luxury but the pool (covered) is crowded with screaming kids! What is "free", is the stunning mountain view. Another example: the easy to approach KOA Barstow. Very expensive, but there is simply no alternative.

Most KOA's are best for families with teenagers or smaller childern, not for eldery MH travelers, who only look for a spacy quiet site and a place to relax and don't need the showers.
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browne07
post Nov 14 2011, 12:26 PM
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After reading the comments about KOA's I think many RVers have very high standards. Before our 5th wheel my wife and I did a lot of motorcycle camping traveling the country. Our first choice would be a state park but usually stayed in a campground along the route. KOA is on average better than a lot of private places we have stayed at. I realize there are many private cgs that are fantastic but the quality runs the whole spectrum. At least with KOA you have some sort of standard. My peeve about KOA is it is usually right next to a major highway and when you sleep in a tent, it is noisy.
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Texasrvers
post Nov 14 2011, 01:47 PM
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QUOTE(browne07 @ Nov 14 2011, 12:26 PM) *

My peeve about KOA is it is usually right next to a major highway and when you sleep in a tent, it is noisy.


This is true; however, the other side of that is because KOA's are usually along major highways it is easy to get off and back on the road quickly for just an an overnight stay.
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FranznHilga
post Dec 9 2011, 05:25 PM
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I have been RVing for ten years with over 50k on the road. We started out at KOA's because we got a discount card, but after traveling for awhile we discovered that they are older, more expensive, and not as nice as the independent campgrounds that are newer, and cheaper. The best bet is to get a Passport America subscription and use that. You will have access to some 1600 campgrounds around the US (and growing) that offer a discount for various lengths of stay and time of year. Sometimes if you call them up and ask, they will honor the 50% off rate even if it is out of season. These days they don't want revenue to "drive on by!" Hope that helps!


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corinnelogan
post Dec 9 2011, 07:11 PM
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Having been full timers now for almost 7 months, I have seen the differences in the KOA's - although I will admit we haven't stayed at one in years. We still drive through from time to time to see "what we're missing" and sometimes, we're not the ones missing anything. :-)

I truly wish more people would use (actually post their own reviews) on the RVParkReview.com website...I go there EVERY TIME I look at a campground. 90% of the time, using the "average" reviews is so very helpful. BUT, I think too, that reviews are based on personal preference. We're pretty simple people so some of the extras are not nearly as important as a quiet, safe location. Still, totally run down places with wild dogs and owners who don't care certainly are rated as such and we've crossed out places we thought we were going to stay at and ended up not because of the reviews of great people - LIKE YOU! rolleyes.gif

OK, that's all from me. For now.

From Tyler, TX (for a couple days),

Corinne Logan
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mikel
post Dec 21 2011, 02:24 PM
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We've stayed at a few KOAs some are better than others, like anything else. I guess personal preference has a little to do with it as well. They are independently owned so they can hike up prices to unreasonable costs on a whim. I recently experienced it at a KOA in TX, they charged :$15.00 per child over age of 3. Lot's of them have been around for a while and what you see on their website is not exactly what you get when you arrive. Play it safe do you investigations first. This is just about the best site I've found for somewhat honest reviews.


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"Are we lost, again...?"
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