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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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drmcleod
post Jul 18 2008, 05:18 PM
Post #1


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Should Campgrounds charge for Internet access?

I would like to get other opinions on this.

My opinion is no! I have two reasons for this.

First, as a consumer. Having free internet access is actually one of the things I look for in a campground. It's a 'perk' if you will. If I have the choice between two, somewhat comparable, c/g's then I will choose the one with free WiFi. Heck, I'll even choose the one with free WiFi over one that is slightly nicer with fee for service.

Second, as a business owner (of which I am one). It does not cost more to allow the whole campground access to your broadband service. The only additional expense is the addition of the hardware. In some cases this might be more expensive if additional antennas are required and installation requires an expert. Also, a higher than basic internet subscription is needed. However, if the c/g is going to charge for its WiFi service, then all of this has to be done anyway. Therefore, consider it a marketing expense to drive more people to your c/g. Why do you think that places like Panera Bread and even McDonald's are offering free WiFi? I know I choose to eat there when I need a place to surf while I eat. In my case, I want more people to come to my place of business, so I make my wireless service available to all. It costs me no more, but brings more people to me.

What do you think?


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RV Camper
post Aug 23 2008, 06:04 PM
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pianotuna,

I don't understand why a different view is agressive? huh.gif I have no problem with truely free wifi, but I don't see the need for me to help to pay for yours. It is a fact that more and more people are going to services from the cellular phone carriers so the demand could be effected. It may not, but only time will tell.

I really do understand that those who rely on RV parks or other open wifi links for internet clearly would prefer to find it free. But it very seldom is actually free. I read an article in an RV magazine recently in which the author claimed that his survey showed that the average cost for "pay to use" wifi was $4/day and that the average increase in nightly fees for parks that claim to have it for free(actually it is built into the price of a stay) is more like $5/night.

By way of example, two years ago we were in Nashville and stayed in an RV park which had wifi but was charging $3/night to use it. I used it as the lazy way since my dish is a portable and it was easier than putting up mine for one night. We ran into folks who we knew that were next door in a park that supplies wifi for free and they chose that park because of that added benefit. But they were paying just over $6/night more than we, so our cost after paying for wifi was $3 less than they paid.

My point is that it generally is not free. And there is added cost to the RV park even when it is included in the cost per night. Good equipment which will cover all sites in a park is expensive to buy and far from free to keep working well. In addition, the links that such places use to supply this service do cost extra because the contract always limits the number of users unless you pay extra for services and they need a much wider bandwidth in order to supply a large customer base than to use for just themselves. One of the reasons that so many parks have such poor service is that RV park wifi use is mostly in a very limited time period and sits idle or near idle the rest of the day. A large RV park with more than 100 sites, must have many access points because you can't have more than 15 to 20 users per access point.

Add to that the fact that while there are theoretically 16 channels, they all over lap and to have totally clear channels with no overlap, there are only three. All of this means that there is additional cost to a quality service and it is far from free. Now add to that the cost of antennas that cover the park, even with trees fully leafed out you then complicate the problem even more.

It may well be that the parks with the most amenities will do best over the long term, but the bargain parks are also doing pretty well. If I were to build a new park I would either go with the full service park which had things like swimming pool, game room and wifi. On the other hand, if budget is limited I would go with the bare bones park that has little more than full hook-ups and perhaps a restroom/shower. There is a good market for both.

The survey was about which you would choose to use. I'm not the only RVer who will choose the bare necessities type of park.

On the other hand, if you park near me and take the time to introduce yourself, I often share the password with a neighbor or two who need access to the internet. Many dish users do this.


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Posts in this topic
drmcleod   Is It Ok To Charge For Wifi   Jul 18 2008, 05:18 PM
Lindsay Richards   We had another long debate about this a few months...   Jul 21 2008, 02:11 PM
jperera   We had another long debate about this a few month...   Jul 22 2008, 08:13 AM
tandiee   We have just returned from a 3+ month trip also. ...   Jul 22 2008, 08:51 AM
DXSMac   Free WiFi. YES! If you want the "campin...   Jul 21 2008, 02:34 PM
pianotuna   Hi JJ, Yes some State Parks do--for example Lewis...   Jul 21 2008, 09:24 PM
RLM   Yes, we've had this discussion. It is one of t...   Jul 21 2008, 07:43 PM
DXSMac   What I found interesting in the poll questions is...   Jul 21 2008, 10:06 PM
drmcleod   What I found interesting in the poll questions i...   Aug 21 2008, 10:16 AM
tandiee   Should Campgrounds charge for Internet access? I...   Jul 22 2008, 09:03 AM
kcmoedoe   "Free" WiFi is great, but remember it is...   Jul 22 2008, 11:03 AM
Lindsay Richards   The most expensive rate for Wi Fi was $15/day...   Jul 22 2008, 07:27 PM
pianotuna   Hi Lindsay, I decided I'd look at British Col...   Jul 22 2008, 10:14 PM
gilda   deleted   Jul 23 2008, 01:20 PM
Jon Juan   When I'm looking for RV Parks in a area if the...   Jul 23 2008, 02:40 PM
Lindsay Richards   We noticed that many campgrounds listed did not ...   Jul 23 2008, 08:43 PM
Lee and Fran   Heck all a park has to do is raise it rates a doll...   Jul 23 2008, 08:51 PM
kcmoedoe   Heck all a park has to do is raise it rates a dol...   Jul 27 2008, 10:20 AM
Kirk   The fact is that not all customers of the RV park ...   Aug 16 2008, 04:41 PM
pianotuna   Hi Kirk, So are you suggesting that toilets have ...   Aug 17 2008, 01:05 AM
BJMA   to provide WiFi access is dirt cheap and has a hig...   Jul 30 2008, 11:03 PM
Lindsay Richards   The buzzword I keep seeing is “WiFi available” mea...   Jul 31 2008, 02:26 PM
hypogi   As a former park owner I can tell you one thing fo...   Aug 2 2008, 04:05 PM
Lindsay Richards   Getting a good WiFi antenna is a must.   Aug 3 2008, 09:04 AM
pianotuna   Hi Lindsay, Any results with range testing on you...   Aug 3 2008, 09:39 AM
Lindsay Richards   I have not tested it in campgounds yet, but have...   Aug 4 2008, 11:55 AM
pianotuna   Hi, I just found another site that maps wifi eith...   Aug 9 2008, 08:50 AM
BigDadDogg   I can't leave the technology at home....my who...   Aug 14 2008, 12:57 PM
Texasrvers   I really can see both sides of this issue, and I d...   Aug 17 2008, 12:05 PM
Kirk   Hi Kirk, So are you suggesting that toilets have...   Aug 17 2008, 03:42 PM
pianotuna   Hi Kirk, I have traveled a bit as you may see fro...   Aug 17 2008, 07:28 PM
kcmoedoe   I agree McDonalds is a bad example. Very few peop...   Aug 22 2008, 03:30 PM
pianotuna   Hi, A $75.00 omni directional antenna would ...   Aug 22 2008, 06:25 PM
Lindsay Richards   I usually try to talk with the owners or staff abo...   Aug 23 2008, 12:56 PM
Kirk   pianotuna, I don't understand why a different...   Aug 23 2008, 06:04 PM
pianotuna   Hi Kirk, I believe there are not 16 channels in u...   Aug 23 2008, 08:00 PM
Lindsay Richards   On the other hand, if you park near me and take th...   Aug 24 2008, 05:19 PM
Kirk   On the other hand, if you park near me and take t...   Aug 26 2008, 05:13 PM
Lindsay Richards   Sorry, I misread you statement about sharing the...   Aug 26 2008, 08:38 PM
kcmoedoe   Sharing a password that you obtained for a fee is ...   Aug 25 2008, 03:12 PM
pianotuna   Hi kcmoedoe, Kirk has his own internet system and...   Aug 25 2008, 03:17 PM
Texasrvers   kcmoedoe, You are absolutely right about someone ...   Aug 25 2008, 03:29 PM
kcmoedoe   My apologies, I completely missed the fact that it...   Aug 25 2008, 03:31 PM
Joe-n-Doe   While I think it makes good business sense to offe...   Aug 25 2008, 04:21 PM
Just Jack   I am a owner of a RV park and have read through mo...   Aug 30 2008, 02:24 PM
pianotuna   Hi Jack, Which costs the campground owner more? ...   Aug 31 2008, 01:24 AM
Lindsay Richards   That was me. The owner had a cable modem and a ...   Aug 31 2008, 10:02 PM
kcmoedoe   Internet security is much more complicated than a ...   Sep 1 2008, 10:49 AM
Lindsay Richards   I have an attached keyboard (not wireless), Norton...   Sep 1 2008, 03:09 PM
DXSMac   Just a note about Norton. A friend of mine has No...   Sep 1 2008, 05:12 PM
kcmoedoe   Lindsay, what I am talking about is security can b...   Sep 2 2008, 10:35 PM
Lindsay Richards   So does the average campground out there that we a...   Sep 3 2008, 03:51 PM
kcmoedoe   You are much more likely to be robbed by a mugger ...   Sep 3 2008, 06:19 PM
Texasrvers   This is for kcmoedoe and Lindsay: KC, I have real...   Sep 3 2008, 09:25 PM
Lindsay Richards   We too use the automatic debit, but many don't...   Sep 4 2008, 03:44 PM
Texasrvers   Lindsay, Your banking procedures--auto debit, two ...   Sep 4 2008, 06:14 PM
kcmoedoe   Texasrvers, It is technically possible for your co...   Sep 4 2008, 06:19 PM
Texasrvers   kcmoedoe, Thanks for the info. We already follow ...   Sep 4 2008, 06:33 PM
DXSMac   Actually, after thinking again..... I would be wil...   Sep 4 2008, 10:25 PM
Lindsay Richards   Actually. my wife's credit card was stolen las...   Sep 6 2008, 10:53 AM
DXSMac   Actually. my wife's credit card was stolen la...   Sep 6 2008, 10:56 AM
Lindsay Richards   Well, you are only responsible for the first ...   Sep 8 2008, 07:57 AM
DXSMac   I was trying to be funny there. SORRY! I g...   Sep 8 2008, 01:47 PM
Doraville   I think that WiFi has become as important as power...   Sep 16 2008, 06:03 AM
DXSMac   The best way to encourage the campgrounds to upg...   Sep 16 2008, 11:38 AM
bikemanb   I have no problem with a $1 per day fee, many...   Sep 21 2008, 09:01 PM
DXSMac   I have no problem with a $1 per day fee, man...   Sep 21 2008, 09:37 PM
westernrvparkowner   I own a medium sized RV park and include wifi acce...   Sep 16 2008, 11:28 AM
FosterImposters   [quote name='westernrvparkowner' post='13217' date...   Oct 2 2008, 12:19 PM
westernrvparkowner   Got a real eye-opener on this topic when helpin...   Oct 2 2008, 03:13 PM
Just Jack   [quote name='westernrvparkowner' date=...   Oct 4 2008, 02:15 PM
Kirk   westernrvparkowner, Thanks for posting your exper...   Oct 2 2008, 06:17 PM
DXSMac   Kirk, asking to use YOUR satellite signal is just ...   Oct 2 2008, 07:09 PM
pianotuna   Hi JJ, I might offer to pay for bandwidth--but I...   Oct 4 2008, 11:10 AM
pianotuna   Hi Just Jack, Welcome to the forum--it is very va...   Oct 4 2008, 10:46 PM
taj4256   Clearly there is expense to the campground to prov...   Oct 5 2008, 12:03 AM
kcmoedoe   Hi Pianotuna, Just a couple of thoughts. I would ...   Oct 5 2008, 12:14 PM
pianotuna   Hi kcmoedoe, Having had an "almost" son...   Oct 5 2008, 12:46 PM
lbacon   We believe that wifi should be FREE. We also are d...   Oct 7 2008, 12:09 PM
Parkview   We believe that wifi should be FREE. We also are ...   Oct 8 2008, 05:57 PM
DXSMac   We believe that wifi should be FREE. We also are ...   Oct 8 2008, 07:03 PM
drmcleod   We use the Sprint Novatel S720 broadband card (E...   Nov 24 2008, 12:46 PM
pianotuna   Hi, Look at cradlepoint routers: http://www.crad...   Nov 25 2008, 11:12 PM
Lindsay Richards   How do you handle getting the cable from the ext...   Oct 7 2008, 03:15 PM
pianotuna   Hi JJ, They are just campers with an unlimited ai...   Oct 21 2008, 10:04 PM
Spinsister1   Sprint does not offer an UNLIMITED Bandwidth produ...   Oct 22 2008, 11:05 AM
pianotuna   Hi Spinsister1, Sasktel does offer unlimited data...   Oct 23 2008, 10:17 PM
DXSMac   I think, for air cards, Sprint and Verizon are the...   Oct 22 2008, 12:52 PM
KevinBurns   I'm not a park owner, but if I was I would con...   Oct 23 2008, 12:44 AM
Lindsay Richards   We are sitting right now in a very nice water fron...   Oct 23 2008, 01:36 PM
Doug un Bermuda   I do not have access to the internet through Veriz...   Oct 23 2008, 09:57 PM
westernrvparkowner   Just a minor note, if you use a wireless router in...   Nov 26 2008, 03:17 PM
FosterImposters   Well, well...that explains a couple snafus we...   Nov 26 2008, 03:50 PM
pianotuna   Hi Western, Well why not change your campground w...   Nov 29 2008, 10:40 PM
westernrvparkowner   Hi Western, Well why not change your campground ...   Nov 30 2008, 01:08 AM
pianotuna   Hi Western, Why not run the site survey before ha...   Nov 30 2008, 02:41 AM
westernrvparkowner   Hi Western, Why not run the site survey before h...   Nov 30 2008, 02:47 PM
HappiestCamper   Buy about 10 cheap used laptops. Advertise that fr...   Dec 3 2008, 11:01 AM
BootStrap   I have stayed at parks with free Wifi and horrible...   Nov 29 2008, 05:26 PM
Pinegrove1   Hello, we just installed satellite Wifi system in ...   Jan 9 2009, 04:45 PM
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