Boondocking with Hipcamps is like Airbnb for RVers!
**Note: we are NOT affiliated with Hipcamps. This is just helpful info and our honest thoughts for our readers!**
There’s no doubt that the pandemic has changed the lodging landscape in terms of competition.
With all the scare of catching the virus, folks are much more careful in selecting their getaways.
RVing is a great alternative to hotels, peer to peer condo rentals and traditional vacation spots, but campgrounds and RV resorts are booking up and raising prices with increased demand.
There's another option for RVers, though: Hipcamps!
You can forego campgrounds and resorts, and can rent land from some who own a Hipcamp instead. Boondocking with Hipcamps is especially popular.
What are Hipcamps?
Hipcamp is an app for campers that’s much like Airbnb. Rather than renting out a physical house, property owners use Hipcamp to rent out land used for camping.
Most sites come with electricity and water, while some even come with bathhouses for campers to use.
How Did Hipcamps Become a Thing?
The story behind this idea came to founder and CEO Alyssa Ravasio as she watched the beautiful waves barreling onto California’s Central Coast inside Andrew Molera State Park.
While she should’ve been enjoying the view, she was frustrated, to say the least.
Alyssa had spent many hours searching the internet for a perfect spot to park with a beach set up so that she could watch the first sunrise of 2013. She ended up finding the state park as a result of her struggles, but she didn’t know any details about it until she arrived.
For all her research, nothing explained how it was a great place to surf, so she had left her board at home. Much to her disappointment!
Alyssa realized there needed to be a better way to find great campsites.
When she was developing the solution, roughly 30% of California’s state parks were facing the threat of closure due to a lack of funds. So she began putting her energy into a form of technology to help people like herself.
In comes Hipcamp.
Alyssa attended a boot camp for developers that included a 10-week coding class which taught her to build the first, very basic version of her site.
In late 2013, Eric Bach, co-founder, joined her team and helped develop Hipcamp into what it is today.
What Types of Camps are Available on the App?
Hipcamps has a collection of unique sites for rent. Some feature yurts, RVs, tents, cabins, and vans. Others offer no physical accommodations, but that's why boondocking with Hipcamps is a great option.
So, remember to look at the amenities because some sites do not offer full hookups.
You’ll also notice that some listings are actual RV parks, but this isn’t the norm, as most property owners have many private acres available.
What is Boondocking?
I suppose we should clarify what boondocking is too!
Boondocking is also known as ‘wild camping’ or ‘dry camping.’ It consists of two components: where you camp and how you camp.
When you boondock, you usually don’t have access to sewer, electricity, or water as you would at an RV park. So, in most cases, don’t expect to find bathrooms, picnic tables, or even water spigots.
Full-time RVers love to boondock because it’s just you, your camper, and the open land on which you park.
We’ve found lots of free boondocking sites in the past, but boondocking with Hipcamps makes it possible to easily find them (and legally).
We have a lot of great articles and podcasts on boondocking if you'd like to learn more!
How Much Does Camping and Boondocking with Hipcamp Cost?
Prices vary based on the dates and amenities available.
You may find simple sites available as low as $20 to $30 per night and cabins for as much as $120 per night.
For the most part, the prices are competitive with the nearby lodges and RV parks.
Boondocking with Hipcamps tends to be on the low end of the price scale. That makes sense, of course, since you don't require hookups and additional amenities.
Benefits of Boondocking with Hipcamps
Perhaps the best thing about using Hipcamp is it can help you ease into boondocking.
Dry camping is also not for everyone, but it's worth trying out! Boondocking with Hipcamp is a great way to test the waters.
The best part about using Hipcamp is that you can rest assured knowing you are on the land legally. In some cases, the host lives nearby.
You may also find that the land already has a bathroom for you to use rather than having to rely on your RV’s bathroom.
This is a great idea for beginners. Boondocking with Hipcamps saves you time and many headaches that can come along with dry camping.
Rather than spending hours searching for multiple places where you can park (having backups in case the first one doesn’t work), canvassing the area, and worrying about if a police officer will come knocking on your door, simply use the app.
All you have to do is choose the area you wish you to stay, see what’s available, and reserve the location. Hipcamps recently raised $25 million in investments from high-profile stars such as Will Smith and Jay-Z, so this is a trend that’s around to stay.
My wife and I have used the site several times, and wouldn’t think twice about using it again. Sometimes you just want to get to your destination and start relaxing.
Have You Ever Been Boondocking with Hipcamps?
What did you think? Comment and let us know!
Do you want to save money by avoiding RV parks and campgrounds?
Our Beginner's Guide to Boondocking eBook gives you a detailed look into our preferred way of RVing and traveling.
Boondocking is camping totally self-contained with no commercial power, water, sewer, or any other on-the-grid service.
We get questions every day from other RVers wondering “How do you do that?” In this step-by-step guide, we show you exactly how to boondock in your RV!
CLICK HERE for information.