Boat and RV deals are back this year

If you’ve dreamed of buying a boat or a camper the past couple of years, you know prices have been high and there’s been little room for haggling. 

High demand during the pandemic, combined with low supplies, meant there were few bargains. But for 2024, the picture is changing.

Mindy Rath and her 4-year-old son hope this is the year they buy a new boat.

“We are always looking to cash in on the deals, and there are some really good deals right now,” she said.

With pandemic shortages over, boat show organizer Mitch Renfro says boat dealers are willing to deal once again.

“Inventory-wise, the boats are back,” he said,

Recreational boating has been growing in popularity, with almost 12 million boats currently registered in the U.S., according to the National Marine Manufacturer’s Association.

Meanwhile, the RV Industry Association reports that 11.2 million households own an RV, with more than 1.4 million sold in the last three years.

Smaller options appeal to more buyers

Nick Raymond of Blue Compass RV says one reason for the surge is the new smaller options that don’t require a full-size pickup truck to tow.

“Some of these are only 3,000 pounds, and can be towed by a standard SUV or minivan,” he said.

Small towables start around $15,000, and larger motorhomes go for $200,000 or more.

Cheap campsites at parks

Dave Barak of the National Parks Service says you can save money and create fun memories for the whole family by bringing your rig to a national park.

In state and national parks, it cost as little as $25 a night,

“In 2022, we had about 2.5 million overnight RV stays in the national parks,” he said,


Barak says to go to the NPS website, look up “find your park,” and you can search for parks with RV and boat accessibility near you.

Whether you own an RV or a boat or just dream of buying one, you can save money this way.

“There are about 430 national parks,” Barak said. “Only a quarter of them charge an entrance fee.”

So, with a better selection of both boats and RVs and more deals available, you can make sure you don’t waste your money.