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Virus pandemic spurring rise in RV sales in northern Indiana

Dealerships in northern Indiana that sell recreational vehicles are seeing a surge in demand for RVs as people eye summer road trips with their families in place of air travel and cruise ships amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Posted: Jun 29, 2020 8:09 AM

MUNSTER, Ind. (AP) — Dealerships in northern Indiana that sell recreational vehicles are seeing a surge in demand for RVs as people eye summer road trips with their families in place of air travel and cruise ships amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Darryl Searer, president of the RV Museum and Hall of Fame, said RV manufacturers in Elkhart and southern Michigan have worked extensively to fulfill orders for customers tired of being stuck at home. He said RV industry saw record sales last month at dealerships in Wisconsin, Missouri, Colorado and Arizona.

“Millennials and young people with families are buying RVs,” Searer told The (Northwest Indiana) Times. “We’ve been cooped up for 60 days and people want to travel with their own food and bed and schedule and be their own boss. You can take a RV to national parks or to tailgate at football games, whatever your passions are.”

Inquiries have doubled and sales have increased by at least 50% at Recreation Plantation Inc. in Lynwood, just across the state line in Illinois. The RV dealership, family-owned for the past 33 years, is currently run by Ray, Leann and Brandon Benninger.

With the COVID-19 crisis, people see us as the only way to safely travel,” Ray Benninger said.

Pam Argostino, president of Camp-World in Burns Harbor, said business has jumped by at least 10% to 15% from 2019.

“We’re seeing a ton of traffic, a ton of people buying, and a ton of people making appointments, which we’re doing now for safety,” she said. “People are looking to get out to the campgrounds. It’s crazy. We can’t keep up.”

An RV Industry Association survey projects that 46 million Americans will take an RV trip over the next year. About 51% of the survey’s participants attributed their heightened interest in RV camping to health concerns.

“As states across America continue to open up, more and more consumers are looking for ways to get outdoors and recreate responsibly,” RV Industry Association President Craig Kirby said. “RVs provide a great way for consumers to enjoy vacations with their families, while still adhering to social distancing policies that are likely to remain in place in some fashion moving forward.”

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Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 664446

Reported Deaths: 12663
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion909511650
Lake48568884
Allen36004640
Hamilton32182398
St. Joseph30166513
Elkhart25453419
Vanderburgh21300382
Tippecanoe20143203
Johnson16407361
Porter16042276
Hendricks15877300
Clark12018181
Madison11776319
Vigo11660231
Monroe10379163
Delaware9870179
LaPorte9802198
Howard9083199
Kosciusko8582111
Bartholomew7488147
Warrick7438151
Hancock7428133
Floyd7243170
Wayne6648192
Grant6446157
Boone610989
Morgan6106126
Dubois5925112
Dearborn549969
Cass547299
Marshall5439105
Henry542594
Noble510578
Jackson465167
Shelby461991
Lawrence4193113
Harrison402564
Gibson402083
Clinton396753
Montgomery389683
DeKalb387178
Knox357885
Miami357863
Whitley350237
Huntington347377
Steuben339555
Wabash332676
Putnam331260
Ripley327862
Adams324749
Jasper318143
White297952
Jefferson295874
Daviess285696
Fayette272156
Decatur271188
Greene262080
Posey261431
Wells258675
Scott251350
LaGrange241870
Clay241444
Randolph225676
Spencer218930
Jennings216344
Washington212827
Sullivan203639
Fountain202142
Starke189051
Owen183253
Fulton179837
Jay178528
Carroll176619
Perry173736
Orange171250
Rush165322
Vermillion161442
Franklin159635
Tipton148441
Parke140016
Pike128233
Blackford120727
Pulaski107344
Newton96632
Brown95140
Benton92213
Crawford91713
Martin80314
Warren75914
Switzerland7558
Union67510
Ohio54011
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