I truly believe the best way to experience NASCAR is camping at the race track. There is something about the atmosphere created at the campground that makes the race experience much more exciting. It’s often one very long tailgate party. You can’t create the same “tailgate” atmosphere staying in a hotel located 45 to 90 minutes from the track.
However, most people I talk to are shocked to learn that a NASCAR RV camping package is more expensive then staying at a hotel (excluding meals). I will outline why this is the case.
Not all, but most RV dealers charge a premium for NASCAR races and other sporting events, and require a minimum rental period ranging from 4 to 7 nights. A luxury motorhome can cost upwards of $700 per night and your standard Class C motorhome can cost about $400. RVs can be 3 to 5 times more expensive than most hotel rooms.
Now let’s get into the “hidden” costs. There is the cost of fuel, mileage, propane usage, generator usage, pump outs, and the campsite. Campsites can run anywhere from $200 to $400 depending on the facilities offered and hook-ups (e.g., water, sewage and electricity).
If you are flying to the race or a novice camper, there are other expenses that you may incur such as bedding sets, kitchen sets and personal care packages (e.g., towels, etc.). In most cases these are all additional charges which can range anywhere from $50 to $100 per person.
The apparent cost differential is reduced when you compare apples to apples. Most hotel packages are based on a two night stay whereas RV packages are based on a 4 night minimum. Then add in the amount of money you’ll spend on meals and beer or other alcoholic beverages at restaurants and at the track. This could be $60 per day, if not more. If you are camping, you can prepare meals at the campsite. This is where the savings add up.
When it is all said and done, the RV camping might cost a few dollars more, but when you compare the benefits of staying at the track versus a hotel THERE IS NO COMPARISON. Camping wins hands down.
Many of my friends ask me why I camp if it’s more expensive. For me, there are two options: 1) spend a substantial amount of money to see a race; or 2) spend a little more and turn a NASCAR race into an action-packed vacation that is simply fun, fun, fun! I like to maximize my entertainment value for the money invested and for this reason I always chose the RV camping route.
In other words, why not spend a few dollars more and turn a NASCAR race into a week long NASCAR vacation. Tailgating for an entire week with 1,000s of other NASCAR fans is simply the best. It beats all other sporting events including football (College and the NFL).
Camping is guaranteed to turn what is “going to a race”, into a week long, action-packed NASCAR race experience. If you’re not at the track, you’re playing redneck games (e.g., hillbilly golf, corn-hole [what Canadians called bean bag toss], touring the campground, going to tailgate parties and experiencing some of the best culture in the world; and that is the “redneck” culture.
One of the greatest barriers to RV camping is experience. There is a lot to learn and this is why I think a lot of fans stay at a hotel. As a novice RV camper I found an easier way. Pay a little extra and book through a tour company that offers a NASCAR camping package. They will provide you with a worry-free and no hassle approach to experience all that NASCAR has to offer. You can also get “all inclusive” packages where meals are prepared for you. They have on-site staff to ensure your camping experience is pleasurable and importantly maintain the RV for you.
If you are thinking about a NASCAR vacation, explore all your options. Trust me; camping is the better way to go. It’s the ultimate NASCAR experience and with Tour Companies offering a NASCAR camping, it’s the only way to go if you don’t own an RV. You may think it may cost a little more, but when you factor in the cost of meals, camping can end up being cheaper and it’s so much better. You can also go a less expensive route by camping in a trailer or Class C motorhome, but the Class A motorhomes is beautiful.
Enter NASCAR vacation in Google and you will find travel agents or tour companies that offer camping vacation packages or go to http://www.garnertravel.ca/nascar.shtml