Have you ever wanted to sell everything you own and just "take off?" Travel the country's back roads, paddle down a meandering stream, experience breath-taking mountain views, walk among 100-year old trees, and just marvel at America's beauty? That is the dream that my partner, Betsy, and I decided to make a reality. This blog describes our adventure. The food we eat, people we meet, sights we see, and the enjoyment we find in traveling.

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Navigating the 2020 Tampa RV Supershow

We just finished up five days enjoying the RV super show in Tampa and, whew, what a time we had.  This is the self-acclaimed largest RV show in the country and is a great place to spend time if you are an RV enthusiast or wannabe.  RV’s fill the Florida State Fairgrounds and are tightly packed together for maximum viewing and ease of slipping into one unit and into the one next to it.  You will find pop-ups and Prevost, Airstream and Aliners, park models to truck campers and everything in between. 


Once you are done looking at all of the RVs head into the huge exhibit halls that are filled with vendors exhibiting the latest accessories and gadgets.  There are the necessities like light bulbs and water filters, the bizarre, like portable hot tubs and massaging chairs, and the fun, like electric bikes.  Speaking of vendors, now is the time we give our RVing friends Pat and Debbie a plug.  They were invited by Camping World to sell their PotHeadz® steam diverter (for Instant Pots) at the show and had a great time.  For you Instant Pot users, this is a must-have item that will protect you and your cabinets from hot steam.  Check their invention out on Amazon or follow their PotHeadz® Facebookpage.  You will also find booths representing campgrounds and RV parks across the country trying to entice you to visit.  As if that is not enough, there are free seminars, evening entertainment, food vendors, and morning socials with free coffee and donuts.  The seminars are a way to get new updates, and information about maintenance on your coach as well as travel information destinations. 


This show can be overwhelming and exhausting!  If you are a serious buyer this is a great place to look at RVs without having to drive from one dealer to the next racking up lots of miles and forgetting what you saw.  Here you can compare different brands, models, floorplans, and color options right next to each other.  Beware: having so many units to view can be distracting.  If your time at the show is short, keep in mind what you want, need and your price range.  We love to look at the $1 million+ coaches but don’t really need to spend much time discussing our favorite floorplan and colors because we are not calling one of those home at those prices.  It's still fun to look.
  

Past years when we visited the show we stayed in hotels or Air B and B’s but this year we camped at the fairgrounds with the Entegra Owners Coach Association as part of a rally.  This was a great way to meet and talk to other owners at the nightly happy hours and dinners.  The added bonus for us was that Entegra had service technicians present that would perform minor repairs for free. 


Camping at the fairgrounds means you are tightly packed in with a 30 amp connection but the advantage is that you are within walking distance to the show.  It was nice to walk around the show for a few hours, come back home and have lunch and cool off in the AC before heading back in the afternoon.  We definitely liked staying in our RV on the grounds and since we were there from Tuesday thru Sunday we could take our time looking around and revisiting those units we liked.  Attending the show during the week is the best way to avoid the hordes of people and families that descend on the show Saturday and Sunday.  During the week you will also find that it is easier to interact with manufacturer reps and salespeople so you can get all of your questions answered.  Weekends get so busy that you typically have to wait in line just to get inside an RV and then you may find yourself in there with ten other people which makes it hard to see how comfortable the couch is and check out cabinet space, etc.   

After nine years of living full-time in an RV we still love the lifestyle and these big shows generate a lot of excitement and energy for us.  We love seeing the new products and how this industry has changed over the years.  It’s also a great way for us to connect with old friends and meet new people that share a love for RVing.

4 comments:

  1. Glad you enjoyed the RV show. Hope you took in the nightly shows. The Two years we attended it Rained the entire time.
    Be Safe and Enjoy the Lifestyle.

    It's about time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We missed the nightly shows. Entegra put on a couple of dinners and parties so we hit those. Had a great time all around.

      Delete
  2. Hi, it's Rich the bicycle rider that said Hi to both of you in the Topsail shuttle truck early January 2020. So, who won out on a new MH? LOL, take care hope to say hi again down the road

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nope. We did not pull the trigger. Still looking though!

      Delete

We love hearing from you, so please drop us a comment