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Hutch333id
Hi all,

It never ceases to amaze me that some campgrounds have a raft of negative reviews yet subscribers to this forum, many with a significant number of reviews to their name, stay at these poorly rated places and then moan like a drain. Do they not read the reviews of others before staying and consider this place may not be as good as the sites brochure or website? Understandably after having stayed at the place, they then proceed to give another negative review. But honestly, what were they expecting when the bulk of earlier reviews are all negative anyway? I know some campgrounds do change ownership and management but when other recent reviews are mainly bad, perhaps it's time to look elsewhere to stay. Just my thoughts!
dalsgal
Sorry but all I have seen from is whining complaints. If you noticed in most park reviews there are people that post good reviews and some that post negative reviews. We all have to take them and average them out. What someone like you would see as a bad campground many of us would not expect perfection and take our chances. Our CG has had some of both and, most of the bad ones, are made by someone that thought that once they rented that spot it was theirs and they didn't have to follow the rules and they expected resort amenities at cheap rates and don't like it when management doesn't kiss their feet for their lack of courtesy. Not all people that give reviews like that but quite a few are.
Fitzjohnfan
QUOTE(dalsgal @ Jun 1 2014, 05:57 PM) *

Sorry but all I have seen from is whining complaints. If you noticed in most park reviews there are people that post good reviews and some that post negative reviews. We all have to take them and average them out. What someone like you would see as a bad campground many of us would not expect perfection and take our chances. Our CG has had some of both and, most of the bad ones, are made by someone that thought that once they rented that spot it was theirs and they didn't have to follow the rules and they expected resort amenities at cheap rates and don't like it when management doesn't kiss their feet for their lack of courtesy. Not all people that give reviews like that but quite a few are.

Actually, I think the original poster was describing campgrounds that get consistently bad reviews, yet people who use this site and should know better, still stay at the" bad" campgrounds, even with the forewarning. My guess is, those reviews are caused by one of these situations:

A. All other campgrounds in the area were full, so they were forced to stay there.
B. They were too tired to drive and chose "any port in a storm" rather than continue to drive.
C. They are adventurous souls who are willing to take chances and hope the last 10 bad reviews were just a mistake.
D. They used a different directory/review site first, which gave glowing reviews for the place, but reality was different.

Personally, I've wondered the same thing. Why stay at a place that consistently gets bad reviews.
Texasrvers
QUOTE(Fitzjohnfan @ Jun 2 2014, 01:40 AM) *

Actually, I think the original poster was describing campgrounds that get consistently bad reviews, yet people who use this site and should know better, still stay at the" bad" campgrounds, even with the forewarning. My guess is, those reviews are caused by one of these situations:

A. All other campgrounds in the area were full, so they were forced to stay there.
B. They were too tired to drive and chose "any port in a storm" rather than continue to drive.
C. They are adventurous souls who are willing to take chances and hope the last 10 bad reviews were just a mistake.
D. They used a different directory/review site first, which gave glowing reviews for the place, but reality was different.

Personally, I've wondered the same thing. Why stay at a place that consistently gets bad reviews.


I would also bet that cost is a factor sometimes. The surrounding parks are more expensive than the one with bad reviews, and the reviewer wanted to save a buck or two.
kcmoedoe
QUOTE(Texasrvers @ Jun 2 2014, 09:43 AM) *

I would also bet that cost is a factor sometimes. The surrounding parks are more expensive than the one with bad reviews, and the reviewer wanted to save a buck or two.

I think you are probably on to something. I really like to read all the train wreck reviews and often we find out that park scoring low is a Passport America park. As much as we wish it wasn't true, cost is often an indicator of quality. Higher cost often correlates to higher quality and vice versa.
NYDutch
QUOTE(kcmoedoe @ Jun 2 2014, 06:40 PM) *

I think you are probably on to something. I really like to read all the train wreck reviews and often we find out that park scoring low is a Passport America park. As much as we wish it wasn't true, cost is often an indicator of quality. Higher cost often correlates to higher quality and vice versa.

I hope no one takes PA participation as a measure of park quality. There are many good parks that get excellent reviews that are PA members.
mdcamping
What has my head shaking is when I read a review where they give the campground a very low score because of a extra charge, go figure they spend 15 to 100K on an RV but the campground will get a poor review because of an extra $4 per night charge. dry.gif

This all said about 12 yrs ago we were at a campground in VT, well short story we found out the hard way how bad a campground can get. This unfortunate experience has given us an understanding of what a truly 1 score is.

Mike
Florida Native
We are probably getting near to several hundred Pass Port America campground stays and I can say that their quality level is about the same as the non PPA campgrounds we have stayed in. The whole theory with them is to fill sites that would otherwise be vacant that night. Owners have the options of blocking out nights they expect to be full. This is just good business sense. The variable costs of a campground such as water, sewage, electricity, and wear and tear are less than half of the fixed costs like mortgage, taxes, ETC. If an owner can get additional income, then a lot of it goes right to bottom line. We have stayed in some very nice PPA campgrounds and we have stayed at some dumps that were not. You can go directly from the PPA site to these reviews. I look at them as staying with a savvy owner. If one stay anywhere that isn't full and has no expectation of being full and asks for a discount for the second night, they will almost always say yes (if talking to a decision maker).

As to staying at parks that have poor reviews, we read them and then decide. We have our own requirements which are pretty lax, We use our own bathroom, can easily use our water, don't hook up to sewer, don't do pot lucks, don't square dance. What we really are looking for is them having what they say they have. WiFi and 4 G are important. Easy in and easy out is important. Nice employees are important also. If some of the unnecessary to us are blasted in a review, doesn't matter. Last night I wrote a review of a place that most would have given a low score, but I rated it a 7 because it was as advertised and the people were very nice. It suited our need perfectly, but it was not a "resort".
Hutch333id
I am sorry if my post offended of caused some confusion. As Fitzjohnfan correctly identified, this was more for the sites that continually receive bad reviews. There are several I see appear on a fairly regular basis that catch my eye because they are near some of the sites I frequent. When I look at the number of reviews submitted by some people who the post a negative review about the site they have just visited it does make me wonder why they went there in the first place when, based on previous recent reviews, you get the distinct feeling the site has issues because these are reported time and time again.

The odd negative review can often be down to an individual's personal experience or perception but when a campground repeatedly gets poor reviews from a cross section of the subscribers to this site I have to wonder what they were expecting or why they did stay there. I know that if I go to a campground/resort with continually high scores (8, 9 or 10) it is probably going to be a very good place and I would look forward to staying there. Equally, if the place is frequently scoring 5 or lower I wouldn't make a reservation or, in the advent of me having to stay there overnight, I wouldn't expect it to be too great.
docj
QUOTE(Hutch333id @ Jun 2 2014, 09:19 PM) *

I know that if I go to a campground/resort with continually high scores (8, 9 or 10) it is probably going to be a very good place and I would look forward to staying there. Equally, if the place is frequently scoring 5 or lower I wouldn't make a reservation or, in the advent of me having to stay there overnight, I wouldn't expect it to be too great.


I'm with you on this. We use RVPR as a guide and pretty much try to only stay at places that have an average score of "7" or higher. Although these aren't always resorts, we do find that, on the whole, we are usually satisfied with our choices.

As for Passport America, I do agree that there are some nice parks on the PA list, but I would contend that the average score for PA parks is ~5 which is below the score level at which we like to stay. That's pretty much why we didn't renew PA last year; we'd look up park ratings on RVPR and often decide "we wouldn't normally stay in a place rated this poorly, why are we considering staying there just because we might save $15?"
grim509
QUOTE(kcmoedoe @ Jun 2 2014, 06:40 PM) *

I think you are probably on to something. I really like to read all the train wreck reviews and often we find out that park scoring low is a Passport America park. As much as we wish it wasn't true, cost is often an indicator of quality. Higher cost often correlates to higher quality and vice versa.


Absolutely, positively not true. At least IMHO and where we've stayed. I've done drive-by's of campgrounds that are expensive and they are dumps. They have bad reviews. I've looked at cheaper campgrounds, they look nicer, better reviews etc.

I think a lot of it comes down to what people want.

Some want amenities, some just want somewhere to sleep. I'm happy with somewhere to park my rig and sleep. I don't need amenities. Amenities raise the price (cable, WiFi, paved roads, etc).

So I fully disagree with higher cost being higher quality. Quite a few of the campgrounds with bad reviews are quite pricey.
wshfulthnkin123
QUOTE(Hutch333id @ May 31 2014, 06:37 PM) *

Hi all,

It never ceases to amaze me that some campgrounds have a raft of negative reviews yet subscribers to this forum, many with a significant number of reviews to their name, stay at these poorly rated places and then moan like a drain. Do they not read the reviews of others before staying and consider this place may not be as good as the sites brochure or website? Understandably after having stayed at the place, they then proceed to give another negative review. But honestly, what were they expecting when the bulk of earlier reviews are all negative anyway? I know some campgrounds do change ownership and management but when other recent reviews are mainly bad, perhaps it's time to look elsewhere to stay. Just my thoughts!




Sometimes there are parks who get the bad reviewers. The people who just aren't happy with anything. Those are the people who love to place reviews as soon as they can to get their "revenge" It's the happy campers who rave about you who don't get online and post. I know because I work at a great campground that has awful reviews from the crabby people. when most of the people checking out are telling us how much they loved their stay
loves to camp w/dogs
We are thankful for RVPR, it's been a VERY BIG help in picking parks ahead of time. All people take the ratings the way they want and it's at everyone's choice to make their decision on where to stay and for whatever reason. I don't even hardly bother with Good Sam or books any longer (it is interesting to see the differences), but RVPR is pretty on point! So people keep leaving those reviews smile.gif
Luvtheroad
We rely exclusively on RVPR. I've given up on the books and other sites. It's pretty easy to throw out the obvious "ringers" and the "can't-be-pleased" and read between the lines. We've stayed in over 80 parks now and I have to say that my impressions of the parks were pretty dead-on with the prevailing reviews.

Tiffinman
Does anyone else do an aerial view of a campground before deciding ?

I like to use this site......woodalls **** system and also do a search on showmystreet.com ...to get an idea of how the c/g is laid out.... before we decide.
Texasrvers
Yes, I look at the aerial views all the time. And do you know you can get a street view on our maps. Look for the little yellow/orange man in the upper left hand corner of the map. Click and drag him to the place you want to see. If the street line turns blue on the map, a street level view is available.
Tiffinman
QUOTE(Texasrvers @ Jun 20 2014, 12:24 PM) *

Yes, I look at the aerial views all the time. And do you know you can get a street view on our maps. Look for the little yellow/orange man in the upper left hand corner of the map. Click and drag him to the place you want to see. If the street line turns blue on the map, a street level view is available.



Really ??.....Wasn't aware of that . I'll try that next time . Thanks.
BC Wanderer
QUOTE(tiffinman @ Jun 20 2014, 11:15 AM) *

Does anyone else do an aerial view of a campground before deciding ?


I use Google Earth which has Street View built in. There are some parks where Street View goes right into the park. I can also download the coordinates right into my GPS.

Darrell
plowboy
QUOTE(mdcamping @ Jun 2 2014, 08:03 PM) *

What has my head shaking is when I read a review where they give the campground a very low score because of a extra charge, go figure they spend 15 to 100K on an RV but the campground will get a poor review because of an extra $4 per night charge. dry.gif

Mike


I am a park owner and we try to keep our rates as low as possible so we base our rates on two persons, and charge for extra 2 bucks for more then two and guest. You would not believe how often we get complaints about the extra charge. Our rate for a full hookup the cable and wifi is only 36.00 dollars. We have good reviews thru out the web community. They act like you are taking candy from a baby

Bob
kcmoedoe
QUOTE(plowboy @ Aug 27 2014, 04:05 PM) *

I am a park owner and we try to keep our rates as low as possible so we base our rates on two persons, and charge for extra 2 bucks for more then two and guest. You would not believe how often we get complaints about the extra charge. Our rate for a full hookup the cable and wifi is only 36.00 dollars. We have good reviews thru out the web community. They act like you are taking candy from a baby

Bob

A very, very successful businessman once to me the last thing you want to do is be the low cost provider. Your clients will reflect your business plan and will be focused on cost, not value. They will not stop with a low price for your primary product (in your case an RV site), but will extend that low price mentality to every product you offer, be it items in your store, other services and everything else. There is more profit to be made by being the highest quality service, not the lowest price.
Also, price often projects perceived value. Most people believe higher prices mean better quality. That isn't always the case, but the perception is there.
BankShot
Ever since we found the RV Park Reviews site and joined, we've been using it as a guide when we make our trips. I check out the various parks along the routes we will be taking and read the reviews. My take on them is I add them up all the ratings and the divide by the number of reviews to get an "average" rating overall. Then after looking over the park's website I go to Google Earth and try to see as much of it as possible from both overhead and at street level, which unfortunately is not available for many of the" off the main path" parks. But at least I can get a fairly good look at the layout of the park and the nearby businesses like cafes, Walmart, hardware stores and even Camping World if one is nearby. What I get a kick out of, is when there are 12 reviews of which 11 give the park an average rating of 8, but there is one reviewer who gives it a 2 because he can't back his 22 foot camper into a space. And yet several of the other reviewers who have much longer motorhomes and 5th wheels all say how easy and convenient it was to back into the back in spaces........... blink.gif Perhaps that one reviewer needs a refresher course in backing up....? Anyway, we have found RV Park Reviews and this forum to be most helpful and we will continue to use both and post on both in the future...................

Good Rv'ing ahead to everyone...............BankShot
nedmtnman
QUOTE(BankShot @ Aug 27 2014, 03:47 PM) *

Ever since we found the RV Park Reviews site and joined, we've been using it as a guide when we make our trips. I check out the various parks along the routes we will be taking and read the reviews. My take on them is I add them all up and the divide the by the number of reviews to get an "average" rating overall. Then after looking over the park's website I go to Google Earth and try to see as much of is as possible from both overhead and at street level, which unfortunately is not available for many of the" off the main path" parks. But at least I can get a fairly good look at the layout of the park and the nearby businesses like cafes, Walmart, hardware stores and even Camping World if one is nearby. What I get a kick out of, is when there are 12 reviews of which 11 give the park an average rating of 8, but there is one reviewer who gives it a 2 because he can't back his 22 foot camper into a space. And yet several of the other reviewers who have much longer motorhomes and 5th wheels all say how easy and convenient it was to back into the back in spaces........... blink.gif Perhaps that one reviewer needs a refresher course in backing up....? Anyway, we have found RV Park Reviews and this forum to be most helpful and we will continue to use both and post on both in the future...................

Good Rv'ing ahead to everyone...............BankShot



Good post. That is the way we used to do it. I would look and someone would give it a low rating because they didn't like somethi8ng in the bathroom and we never used a park bathroom. I have stayed in parks with a 5 rating that were just fine for us.
Tiffinman
" What I get a kick out of, is when there are 12 reviews of which 11 give the park an average rating of 8, but there is one reviewer who gives it a 2 because he can't back his 22 foot camper into a space. And yet several of the other reviewers who have much longer motorhomes and 5th wheels all say how easy and convenient it was to back into the back in spaces.........."




There could be 2 sides to that coin.... It may not always be the guy with the 22' camper who can't back in. It could be a wrong size site assignment and maybe the customer doesn't try to get a site re-assignment .....but just complains about it ?
RTA
I can understand the discrepancies that are bound to happen when 10 different people review the same campground. The reasons for this could be attributed to:

1) people look at and attach various degrees of importance to the rating criteria. Some folks don't place much importance on the washrooms because they never use them. Others, like myself, think of the washrooms as very important and will downgrade a park if the washrooms aren't up to scratch.
Others, who use pull-throughs, will assign a lower value to the park if they aren't long enough or harder to get into. The list goes on.

2) a person who has had a long, tiring and "bad" day may come into the park in a grumpy mood and to him/her, the park was no good - no matter how good it really is.

3) the fact that some people are more fussy than others. Intolerant folks will not give a park a decent rating because a dog barked, the grass was too long, the water wasn't hot enough, the check in person wasn't at all friendly, the neighbour's kids were too noisy, etc.

4) people just look at things differently - some like classical music, others like western. Our tastes vary.

If a park is an excellent one in all areas, usually there will be agreement and will receive high marks. If it is a "dump", it will receive low marks. It's the ones in the middle that differences exist and you will find some low ratings mixed in with the highs.
John S.
Well,I will say have stayed in campgrounds that get poor reviews. Fishing bridge is an example. It works for us when we stayed there but now I am too big. But the weak reviews were spot on. I think if you stay somewhere and agree that in comparison to other places it is weak you should say so. Liberty harbor us another place that gets mixed reviews. If you have a cheaper unit without double paine windows you might be bothered by the canvas nightclub next door. It is super close to NYC though but I would rate it down as it is a parking lot. I think that letting the person make up their kind but being accurate is still important. I would not rate either of these places highly and will point out the negatives and benefits in the writeup. I know of one small park who will not let in big rigs since they are oddly shaped so they do not get bad reviews. If you tell then you can drive and it s not a big deal then you can get in. Oh they are almost always booked and no kids around either. Great adult park that people book in by the month. So that us on the other side for me. Good review number and writeup but notification that it is tight.
ttg
QUOTE(RTA @ Aug 29 2014, 12:31 AM) *

I can understand the discrepancies that are bound to happen when 10 different people review the same campground. The reasons for this could be attributed to:

1) people look at and attach various degrees of importance to the rating criteria. Some folks don't place much importance on the washrooms because they never use them. Others, like myself, think of the washrooms as very important and will downgrade a park if the washrooms aren't up to scratch.
Others, who use pull-throughs, will assign a lower value to the park if they aren't long enough or harder to get into. The list goes on.

2) a person who has had a long, tiring and "bad" day may come into the park in a grumpy mood and to him/her, the park was no good - no matter how good it really is.

3) the fact that some people are more fussy than others. Intolerant folks will not give a park a decent rating because a dog barked, the grass was too long, the water wasn't hot enough, the check in person wasn't at all friendly, the neighbour's kids were too noisy, etc.

4) people just look at things differently - some like classical music, others like western. Our tastes vary.

If a park is an excellent one in all areas, usually there will be agreement and will receive high marks. If it is a "dump", it will receive low marks. It's the ones in the middle that differences exist and you will find some low ratings mixed in with the highs.


If someone gives a park the highest rating or the lowest rating, I check out their other reviews. If they consistently rate 10's or 1's, then I pretty much discount the review of the particular park I'm interested in and go on to the next reviewer. I prefer reviews that simply state what they found on their visit, not their opinion of what they found because, like you said, sometimes it's just a bad day or sometimes what's important to others may or may not be important to me. For example, I'd rather a reviewer simply say a park is close to the highway and there is road noise rather than it's a bad park because of road noise.
BankShot
One more comment for this thread. It was mentioned a few reviews up that a few parks have Google Earth street views available within the park itself. For those that have never tried this, JGW RV Park in Redding, CA has this feature. You can "drive right in the main entrance" and then follow the roads thru the park and check out any site you wish to. We did that the first time we used that park and found we could stop right at each of the river front sites and check each one out for its own view as well as width, length and amenities, etc. Great feature! It's too bad more parks don't subscribe to this as it sure makes selecting a space easy and convenient. When you arrive you almost feel like you've been there before and know right where to go to get to your space plus you are able to find out where everything is located within the park. If anyone knows of other parks where this can be done, let this forum know so the rest of us can use this feature should we ever be in that area.....................

Regards, BankShot
MaineDon
Sometimes you just don't have a choice, Hutch. We are not big on sleeping at Wal-Marts or Rest Areas and, doing two cross-country Maine-Arizona trips each year, there are locations along the way at which we are yet to find decent parks. This happens most to us in New England, where some states (e.g., Connecticut) have surprisingly few parks to begin with; and NE parks often close early in the fall or open late in the spring. If you travel at these times, we have found choices to be rather limited. It was under these circumstances that we stayed at a truly dreadful park south of Worcester. We had read the reviews and had an idea of what was ahead, but it was October 15th and there was nothing else available. Likewise, we often hit an area in PA where we have yet to find a park we like (and we are not THAT fussy....just like clean restrooms, services that work, and quiet sleeping conditions). So we have stayed at a KOA there (more than once) that we don't really like, but after surviving the traffic around Boston, through Hartford. and across lower New York, we are usually too stressed and exhausted to drive on an extra hour or two. I have reviewed these parks on this forum, and have tried to note in my reviews that I was forewarned about conditions, but wanted to add my voice to those of others that these are parks to avoid, if possible.
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