How to Conquer Your Next RV Show [9 Tips]

March 21, 2016

How to Conquer Your Next RV Show [9 Tips]

Updated June 2021

If you’re interested in outdoor recreation, it’s worth your while to visit an RV show. RV shows are some of the best places to compare and purchase an RV. You get to see a lot of floorplans, options and brands all in one place. You also have the chance to connect personally with your nearest dealer—an invaluable resource—and learn about the RV lifestyle.

Whether you’re shopping intently or just exploring, you’ll discover that RVers and campers are very communal. They share a rare and unique comradery. Our first piece of advice is to engage with other attendees. You’re sure to hear some great stories, learn about interesting destinations and pick up some travel tricks along the way. Here are some questions to get you started:

  • How/why did you start RVing?
  • Where should I stop while I’m here?
  • What are your favorite campgrounds or destinations around here?
  • What’s the favorite piece of RV advice you’ve heard?
  • Do you have a favorite RV brand?

Learn the brands

You’ll save time at the show if you have a basic understanding of what differentiates brands from each other, e.g. lightweight trailers and/or family-friendly floorplans. Also, not all manufacturers list their MSRPs on their website, but if they do, you can use MSRPs to compare units and any deals you see at the show. All this narrowing down will help you create a plan of attack, so you can walk past the units you already know won’t work and see as many “potentials” as possible.

Find the best time to attend

If crowds aren’t your thing, go early in the day or, if possible, on a weekday. Also, keep an eye out for deals on admission. Events may have discounted twilight rates or on certain days for veterans, seniors or children.

Bring your travel companions

If you typically travel with friends or family, consider bringing them along so you can bolster your knowledge and explore features and floorplans together. You’ll quickly learn what works and doesn’t work, what you ‘need’ and what you ‘want’. And don’t forget about the furry friends; many shows are pet friendly as well.

Plan your route and dress comfortably

It’s a lot easier to take in all an event has to offer when you’re not distracted by achy feet or the warm sun. Many shows take place outdoors, so check the forecast, dress and pack accordingly. Some shows are rather large, so wear comfortable shoes and get ready to walk! Preplanning a path will help you see everything you wanted to see. Print out a map from the event website, plan a route through the different brand’s displays and bring it with you. Find out which nearby dealer will be onsite and be sure to include them in your route.

Attend educational seminars

You’ll discover insights into the lifestyle, unique trip ideas and innovations that make life on the road a little easier, especially for newer RVers. Often delivered by industry veterans or full- and long-time RVers, you’ll get a strong sense of what the community is like instead of feeling like you’re getting the hard sell from a campground or technology pitch man.

Meet your dealer

Shows are a great opportunity to establish or build on an existing relationship with your Jayco dealer representatives. Exchange information and keep in touch. You’ll find they’re a willing resource for you no matter your familiarity with the lifestyle or different RVs.

Check out the other vendors

These shows are more than just an opportunity to see RVs. These events are a great way to find a new campground to visit, toys for the grandkids to play with on your next trip, new décor for your campsite and handy tools for making on-the-road chores easier. Hopefully some of your fellow attendees have already helped guide you to the very best stops!

Document what you learn

Take notes, pictures or videos and collect product brochures. You’ll see so much in a day at an RV show that it’s smart to take measures to help remember things. Also, ask the dealers you talk with for a business card so you can follow up. Compile a list of must-haves or what you liked best. This will help you remember your non-negotiables and save you time as you walk the rows of units.

If you’re planning to buy…

Know what to expect and how your dealer handles the show purchasing process. When you decide on a unit at the show or decide to order a unit with your specified options, the negotiation begins. This could include the asking price, financing terms, trade-in value – whatever financial aspects that are involved. Have a firm idea before you get to the show what your budget is, whether you’re looking for the right monthly payment or are planning to pay it in full.

Our product experts and dealers would love to see you at one of our upcoming events and show you the latest Jayco lineup. Here’s where you can see us. You can also follow us on FacebookInstagram and YouTube to stay up-to-date on events we attend.

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