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Coronavirus concerns fueling huge spike in demand for RVs in Coachella Valley

TIFFIN BUS

One couple purchased their RV before the pandemic hit but clearly appreciate how coronavirus is motivating buyers now.

“If you think about it, you have ideal social distancing,” said RV owner Iona Hoeppner.

Social distancing is a motivating factor for customers at Mike Thompson’s RV Superstores in Cathedral City, according to General Manager Sher Lyckman, who says so far this month the sales board shows a tally three times what it was a year ago. 

“Our sales in the RV industry are skyrocketing.  It’s like a phenomena I have never seen in my 24 year sales career,” said Lyckman.

All types are selling, from $16,000 trailers to high-end luxury motorhomes. 

A year ago, Lyckman says they were selling about 10 to 12 RV’s a month.  

This month she expects to “deliver 60”.

The GM says more than half of her customers are talking about coronavirus concerns and wanting to avoid hotels and airplanes while cancelling cruises and other summer travel plans made before the pandemic hit.

“They’re thinking that they’re just not feeling comfortable with traveling as we did in the past,” said Lyckman.

For those who want to social distance in a first class kind of way, one option is the Tiffin Allegro Bus which is like a luxury condo on wheels.  

The price tag is $506,000. 

“Your home is where you park it and you can park it where the least infection is,” said Hoeppner.

A representative for the Recreational Vehicle Industry Association tells us they’re still collecting sales data for the month of May, but preliminary numbers are extremely bullish.

At Holland RV in Palm Desert a sales rep says last month was their “best May ever” and “at least double last year”.

A June poll by Ipsos shows 46 million Americans plan to take an RV trip in the next 12 months. 

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Tom Tucker

Tom Tucker is a veteran broadcast journalist with nearly 20 years of experience. Learn more about Tom here.

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