RV Buyers Cruise the Information Highway

It's no secret. You only have to drive a few miles on the interstate to recognize that RV sales are on the rise. A lesser-known fact is that a growing number of RVs on the road are now purchased on the internet.

Clint Ethington, manager of Pedata RV in Tucson, Arizona, reports a significant spike in online sales. "We now do 85 percent of our business via the internet," he says. "Our website allows customers to review our inventory and pricing as though they were on our lot in Tucson - even if they live in Taiwan. The internet makes our local business a global business.

" Pedata ships RVs to buyers in Asia and Europe, and offers door-to-door delivery across the U.S. and Canada.With the help of the internet, Ethington is maximizing his share of a growing RV market. The Recreational Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) reports that consumer demand for recreational vehicles continues to increase.

In fact, factory-to-dealer shipments increased 20 percent during the first half of 2004 over the same time period in 2003, breaking a twenty-five-year-old record. An unprecedented 7.2 million RVs are on American highways, and that number is expected to increase by 15 percent in the next five years.Several factors are believed responsible for surging sales. Growing numbers of baby boomers are choosing to enjoy the freedom of retirement in comfortable, even luxurious, recreational vehicles.

At the same time, young families with children are discovering the convenience and adventure of RV travel. Overall, one in six Americans reports that he or she plans to purchase an RV at some time in the future.For many, it seems the future is now.

To keep up with demand, RV manufacturers are expanding their facilities and hiring more workers. Meanwhile, RV dealers like Clint Ethington are updating their servers and adding programmers to their payroll.

.About the Author: Julie Jacobs is an avid RVer and reports from the road about rvs and rv travel.

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By: Julie Jacobs


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