An ever-increasing number of New Zealanders are acting on their attraction to the motor caravan lifestyle. To put it into perspective in terms of association numbers, it took the NZMCA 40 years to reach 10,000 while the leap from 50,000 to 60,000 has taken just two years.
The 2014 NZMCA National Easter Rally was held in Mosgiel and generated more than $1.1 million for the local economy.
In addition to the annual Easter rally, numerous rallies are organised throughout the year by individual Areas. Members’ expenditure at these rallies is tallied and provides an excellent indication of the economic contribution of this industry. The total contribution to New Zealand’s economy from the 225 area rallies held in 2012 was $4.2 million.
Our records show the average member spends 75 nights away from home per year and $78.00 a day (based on 2007 NZMCA membership survey and rally reports) whilst travelling in their motor caravan, over and above any camp site fees. Money is spent on food, fuel, medicines, vehicle repairs/maintenance, tourist attractions and activities.
According to the 2011 NZMCA membership survey, independent overnight parking (freedom camping), holiday parks and staying with family and friends were the top three choices when travelling in a motor caravan at 60.6%, 64.5% and 62.8% respectively.
Independent overnight parking provides, as its name suggests, independence and flexibility when touring large areas or districts. Motor caravanners in self contained vehicles are able to stop off wherever interest is piqued by local attractions without the hassle of advance bookings and rigid scheduling. It also allows for those travelling with pets and those who seek out remote parts of our beautiful country. Independent overnight parking frees motor caravanners from paying for ablution conveniences they already have. It does however, come with restrictions. The most notable is that overnight parking is limited in the majority of cases, to 2 nights in any calendar month at a particular spot for self contained vehicles only.
Holiday parks and camping grounds on the other hand, cater for longer holidays at a single destination. They offer our members added security for their vehicles and possessions as well as amenities such as laundries and playgrounds.
The domestic motor caravanning market comprises mostly of private motor home ownership. In addition to private owners, it is reported that 3% of domestic tourists camping at holiday parks, hire either a campervan or caravan for the duration of the stay. Based on spending details in the Murchison Survey, NZMCA members collectively spend $211 million annually. The rental industry is well established with an estimated 5500 campervans and motor homes available for hire from over 60 rental companies. The NZMCA is working alongside the industry to certify rental vehicles to the NZ Standard for Self Containment. Covec's* research into the expenditure of campervan occupants showed $447M per annum
*Understanding the Value Created by Campervan Tourists in NZ (October 2012) - Covec