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> Is It Ok To Charge For Wifi, Should Campgrounds charge for Internet access?
Should Campgrounds Charge for WiFi?
Campground WiFi should:
be Free to entice more campers to the c/g [ 322 ] ** [78.54%]
be Free in the more "deluxe" sites [ 23 ] ** [5.61%]
be charged for on a per usage basis (recieve an access code at check in if paid for) [ 44 ] ** [10.73%]
be Charged for by an outside agency when loggin on [ 9 ] ** [2.20%]
not be a part of the camping experience (leave your technology at home) [ 12 ] ** [2.93%]
Total Votes: 410
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wpr
post May 29 2013, 12:32 PM
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QUOTE(Lindsay Richards @ May 29 2013, 09:53 AM) *

It would make check out a hassle though. Now we just dump, pack up and leave without having to pay again.



When I camped in Europe in the nineteeneighties quite a few campgrounds had coin-operated electric hook-ups. On arrival, you fed the beast some coins and before going to sleep you estimated if there was enough juice left to last the night. This way you payed only what you used, even though it was a hassle.
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docj
post May 29 2013, 07:31 PM
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Since this thread about WiFi has gotten hijacked to be about charging for electricity, you could minimize everyone's frustration if you used an approach similar to how rental car companies deal with the issue of a tank of gas. You can either return the car with a full tank or you can buy the full tank upfront and return it as close to empty as you wish.

To stretch the analogy a bit, if a CG wanted to charge for electricity it could offer customers a choice of either a flat $$/day charge (calculated on their electric rate and an average expected usage) or a xx cents/kw-hr rate if they wish to settle up when they leave. If you are only staying for one night and want to be off early in the morning you might find a $2-4 charge for electricity to be acceptable. If you were staying for a week and think you are very frugal you could opt to pay the actual cost based on usage.

The CG could insist on a credit card authorization or a cash deposit to ensure that customers who wanted to pay as they left didn't leave without paying. That would be no different than giving a credit card to a hotel when you checked in to cover any charges to your room.


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WrongWayRandall
post May 30 2013, 01:17 PM
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While we have zero interest in technology when camping, I can appreciate any park's need to charge for wireless access. Among other things in my professional capacity, I manage a centralized wireless network with over 500 access points and I can tell you that it is no small (or inexpensive) task to give good wireless coverage and capacity in a high density setting. There are a number of substantial costs associated with providing wireless service when you are doing anything more than dropping a personal wireless router in your living room for your sole use, especially when you consider that the equipment the park must use has to be able to withstand prolonged exposure to the elements. There are equipment costs, technical support costs, costs for service from a service provider, etc. that occur on a regular basis which must all be accounted for somehow. Since most businesses are in business to make money rather than give it away, they need to pass along all costs to their customers (with some overhead for profit of course) I would have no problem with a site offering wireless service with a daily cost.

That said, I would greatly prefer that a park charge a separate fee for this service rather than roll it into the already significant overnight charge. I think that it is probably a nice convenience for those interested in using it when 'camping', but I don't think that either the park or those who wish to spend time away from all that type of distraction when camping should have to pay for it.


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docj
post May 30 2013, 07:56 PM
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QUOTE(WrongWayRandall @ May 30 2013, 03:17 PM) *


That said, I would greatly prefer that a park charge a separate fee for this service rather than roll it into the already significant overnight charge. I think that it is probably a nice convenience for those interested in using it when 'camping', but I don't think that either the park or those who wish to spend time away from all that type of distraction when camping should have to pay for it.


I sense that the quotes around the word "camping" in your post denote a pejorative associated in your mind with people who go camping but are interested in maintaining contact with the rest of the world. I would like to point out that there are many people who use or live in RVs who in no way view themselves as "campers" by your definition.

My wife and I enjoy sitting outside if the weather is pleasant and we use our (propane) grill if it is appropriate for the food we are preparing. But we don't make campfires unless the grandkids are with us and we surely don't cook anything over a fire other than marshmallows. Our cooking appliances include a Gaggenau rangetop, a Circulon induction burner, a GE Profile microwave/convection oven and a Breville toaster/convection oven.

Our onboard computer network consists of 2 laptops, an iPad, a Nexus, two smart phones, a Roku and a wireless printer. Maintaining internet connectivity is just as essential to our lives as is the ability to cook gourmet meals.

We're sorry if this isn't "camping" as you expect it to be. We are RVers, not campers and never claimed otherwise.


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HappiestCamper
post May 31 2013, 07:01 AM
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QUOTE(docj @ May 30 2013, 09:56 PM) *

Our onboard computer network consists of 2 laptops, an iPad, a Nexus, two smart phones, a Roku and a wireless printer.


Just a quick question - I looked up the wifiranger stuff in your signature, and I see that their products range from routers that use 3/4G, and routers that use wifi hotspots. Do you use the Roku on the CG's wifi, or through 3/4G?
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WrongWayRandall
post May 31 2013, 07:03 AM
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QUOTE(docj @ May 30 2013, 09:56 PM) *

I sense that the quotes around the word "camping" in your post denote a pejorative associated in your mind with people who go camping but are interested in maintaining contact with the rest of the world. I would like to point out that there are many people who use or live in RVs who in no way view themselves as "campers" by your definition.

My wife and I enjoy sitting outside if the weather is pleasant and we use our (propane) grill if it is appropriate for the food we are preparing. But we don't make campfires unless the grandkids are with us and we surely don't cook anything over a fire other than marshmallows. Our cooking appliances include a Gaggenau rangetop, a Circulon induction burner, a GE Profile microwave/convection oven and a Breville toaster/convection oven.

Our onboard computer network consists of 2 laptops, an iPad, a Nexus, two smart phones, a Roku and a wireless printer. Maintaining internet connectivity is just as essential to our lives as is the ability to cook gourmet meals.

We're sorry if this isn't "camping" as you expect it to be. We are RVers, not campers and never claimed otherwise.


I'm sorry that you read so much hostility into my response - that is, unfortunately, one of the downsides inherent to impersonal methods of communication such as this. My quote merely meant to acknowledge in advance that my idea of camping does not often match the definition that many people who participate in online forums related to this topic have for the word 'camping', and that not everyone needs, or wants, to be connected at all times, hence my comment that the charge for Internet service would be more equitable if it were applied only to those who use it.

For what it's worth, maintaining a regular disconnect from technology is essential to our lives as much as it appears maintaining a connection to it is essential to yours. I do not expect others to feel the way I do about any aspect of life, nor do I judge them harshly when their opinions differ from my own (which is the case far more often than not.) The Internet is full of people venting their bile and I have no interest in adding to (or participating in) such behavior. Please accept my apologies for any implied slight, I assure you that that was not my intent.


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Florida Native
post May 31 2013, 08:01 AM
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For those of us who RV months at a time, WiFi is a necessity. This is how we stay connected with family and the world. We have over 10,000 photos on our website and family loves to look at them and discuss. I is so much more effective than verbal communications. I believe the modern campground has to understand that and tailor it's services for the RVers that frequent it's business. You don't know how many times I have been told, you are out here in nature and should leave all that "stuff" at home. Well, I want my family to enjoy that "stuff" with my family and want to keep up with what is going on in the world


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sjsaxt
post May 31 2013, 09:53 AM
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It Should be Free, you have it installed for the business that a fixed cost now all you have to do is install a router and the rest of the park works off the WIFI. the only cost is the router $80.00 and your park is now ready.

If needed you add entender to expand the wifi.
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NYDutch
post May 31 2013, 01:43 PM
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QUOTE(sjsaxt @ May 31 2013, 11:53 AM) *

It Should be Free, you have it installed for the business that a fixed cost now all you have to do is install a router and the rest of the park works off the WIFI. the only cost is the router $80.00 and your park is now ready.

If needed you add entender to expand the wifi.

Apparently you've never spec'ed an effective campground WiFi system. An $80 router would only serve the basic needs of the handful of sites that are closest to it. The back haul Internet service needed to support a busy 100 site system alone can run hundreds of dollars a month.


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Texasrvers
post Jun 1 2013, 12:21 PM
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QUOTE(WrongWayRandall @ May 30 2013, 02:17 PM) *

I would greatly prefer that a park charge a separate fee for this service rather than roll it into the already significant overnight charge. I think that it is probably a nice convenience for those interested in using it when 'camping', but I don't think that either the park or those who wish to spend time away from all that type of distraction when camping should have to pay for it.


First, a belated welcome to the forum. It sounds like you will have a lot to offer to the discussions.

Second, I think I understand what you are saying, and there have been several discussions on this website about this. Personally I think there are many different ways to enjoy using an RV—everything from boondocking at a secluded spot without any contact with the rest of the world to parking at a 5 star resort with every amenity and activity you can possibly want being available. One is not better than the other –just different, and what you choose depends on your individual likes, wants, and needs.

That said, I believe that the term “camping” leans toward referring to a more rustic atmosphere usually with campfires, tents, no concrete in sight, few, if any, utilities, and no technology. I am not saying all “campgrounds” are (or have to be) this way, but for me, the terms “campground” and “camping” conjure up this vision.

Many people like to have this type of experience. So I think all WrongWayRandall is saying is he is a person who likes to unplug every now and then, and if he will not be using the technology that is available at the campground, why should he have to pay for it. Unfortunately this has been asked many times before, and it is still being debated.
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roygbell
post Jun 20 2013, 11:01 AM
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Of course they should provide free or a reasonably priced option for wifi. If a site has cable then providing wifi is really cheap for them to provide. All it takes is a couple of routers and a little bit of knowledge to keep them in working order.

One of my pet peeves is RV Parks that advertise, and tell you that they have free TV and wifi only to find out that the wifi signal is worthless and the TV is just a few cable/dish channels that are so far out of the mainstream that they aren't viewed. I have a long memory and won't stay, assuming there are options, that don't provide good TV and wifi connections.
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NYDutch
post Jun 20 2013, 04:24 PM
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QUOTE(roygbell @ Jun 20 2013, 01:01 PM) *

Of course they should provide free or a reasonably priced option for wifi. If a site has cable then providing wifi is really cheap for them to provide. All it takes is a couple of routers and a little bit of knowledge to keep them in working order.


I'm guessing you've never priced out a high bandwidth commercial account with Comcast or Time Warner. "...really cheap..." doesn't even cover the taxes. I'm also guessing you've never priced or configured the routers and antennas needed to properly blanket a hundred or more campsites with a good quality WiFi signal. The cheap residential stuff we use at home won't begin hold up to the use and abuse RV'ers can and do heap on it. Think about 50-75 users all trying to stream video at the same time. I just left an RV park where the new owners have recently installed a pretty good system that was giving us speeds in the 8-10 meg down/2 meg up area, with good strength, but the park was only filled to about 25% of its capacity. I don't know how well the speeds will hold up when the place fills up. And no, the WiFi was not free, although I did think the $5 daily/$15 per week charge was reasonable. The manager said the bill for the complete installation was just over $20K, but he didn't have a final total yet from Comcast, to know exactly what the ongoing monthly charges would be, as some of it includes leased equipment for the cable TV system as well.


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Galli
post Jun 20 2013, 06:58 PM
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QUOTE(Dutch_12078 @ Jun 20 2013, 03:24 PM) *

I'm guessing you've never priced out a high bandwidth commercial account with Comcast or Time Warner. "...really cheap..." doesn't even cover the taxes. I'm also guessing you've never priced or configured the routers and antennas needed to properly blanket a hundred or more campsites with a good quality WiFi signal. The cheap residential stuff we use at home won't begin hold up to the use and abuse RV'ers can and do heap on it. Think about 50-75 users all trying to stream video at the same time. I just left an RV park where the new owners have recently installed a pretty good system that was giving us speeds in the 8-10 meg down/2 meg up area, with good strength, but the park was only filled to about 25% of its capacity. I don't know how well the speeds will hold up when the place fills up. And no, the WiFi was not free, although I did think the $5 daily/$15 per week charge was reasonable. The manager said the bill for the complete installation was just over $20K, but he didn't have a final total yet from Comcast, to know exactly what the ongoing monthly charges would be, as some of it includes leased equipment for the cable TV system as well.

I am not an expert in internet facility but I need my internet when I am camping.
I cannot debate the difficulty and cost to implement the system at the campground, my issue is: if you do advertise the internet at your campground, it should be functional.
This facility should be there but separate from the camp price and should the RVer’s decision whether to accept or forfeit this facility .
What really upsets me is the misleading information, namely, yes, it is advertised the Internet facility but, when there it doesn't work or unreliable.
It is my opinion but, today, internet the facilities are important as the telephone and I know people that uses this facility to work while in vacation.
I was perusing through the recent comments and noted that the emphasis of the issue is more based on the difficulties for the camp owners to provide the service but there is not much comments of the right of the consumer to have what’s advertised and paid for it.
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NYDutch
post Jun 20 2013, 08:41 PM
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I do agree that you should get what the campground advertises. I also think there has to be a reasonable balance between truthful advertising and reasonable expectations on the part of the consumer as well. If a campground simply advertises that "WiFi is available" for instance, then in my opinion, it is up to the consumer to question whether the advertised WiFi is available at all sites or just at the office, are the speeds fast enough to meet your needs, etc. I think we all make assumptions at times, based on our personal preferences, that don't necessarily match the realities of the marketplace. Asking ahead of time is probably the easiest way to avoid disappointment, if fast, reliable Internet access is critical to your stay, and you don't care to provide the service for yourself.


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kcmoedoe
post Jun 23 2013, 09:20 PM
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QUOTE(Galli @ Jun 20 2013, 06:58 PM) *

I am not an expert in internet facility but I need my internet when I am camping.
I cannot debate the difficulty and cost to implement the system at the campground, my issue is: if you do advertise the internet at your campground, it should be functional.
This facility should be there but separate from the camp price and should the RVer’s decision whether to accept or forfeit this facility .
What really upsets me is the misleading information, namely, yes, it is advertised the Internet facility but, when there it doesn't work or unreliable.
It is my opinion but, today, internet the facilities are important as the telephone and I know people that uses this facility to work while in vacation.
I was perusing through the recent comments and noted that the emphasis of the issue is more based on the difficulties for the camp owners to provide the service but there is not much comments of the right of the consumer to have what’s advertised and paid for it.

The internet may be just as important as a phone, but when was the last time you saw an rv park provide phone hookups at each site? With the proliferation of cellphone based internet connections, I would think that campground wifi will soon go the way of the instant phone and the dodo bird.
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