THE QUESTION: My partner and I are planning to do some traveling in our van this summer. Would we be able to camp in your park- ing lot after going on the tour? PARK SPY
Van life is a growing movement. With RV sales through the roof, we expect more people will be out and about this summer looking for stuff to do and, of course, places to park for the night. So, we decided to test a few operations by calling to ask about van camping. Not all parks are equipped for—or allow—camping, which is OK. As always, some handled the question well, and others did not. Send us a question for the Spy to ask! Seriously, do it. We won’t tell anyone it came from you. Reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org with your Spy-worthy question, and your adventure park will be immune for that issue if we use it.
PARK #1, CA First contact: Male. API: Stated question.
Staff: Sorry! API: No worries, thanks so much. Score: 8
API: We don’t have one yet. We’re still trying to figure out dates based on where we have places to stay. Staff: Sounds good! Score: 9 Comment: Don’t have the answer? Ask a co-worker! Nice work on this one, but minus a point because she missed an opportunity to encourage me to book online. This operation has an impressive online booking tool!
Comment: She said no. She said it po- litely and gave a very good reason why. Nice work!
Staff: You want to park here while you do the tour? I mean, yeah, it’s not like you can bring your car zipping! (laughs) API: (laughs) No, I mean, we’d want to camp overnight in the parking lot. We have a van that we are traveling and camping in. Staff: Oooooohhhh! Van life, very nice. Ummm, I’m not sure. API: OK. Is there someone I can ask? Staff: Oh, yeah! Let me grab a manager. API: Thanks! (on hold…) Second contact: Female. API: Re-stated question. Staff: Unfortunately, no. We close our parking lot at night since we can’t have people on-site with no staff members present. It’s a liability issue. API: Totally understand. Staff: There are some campgrounds locally if you prefer. API: Thanks! I’ll check it out.
PARK #2, OH First contact: Female. API: Stated question. Staff: Ummmm, I don’t know, let me check. (on hold for about two minutes) Staff: Sorry for the wait. I had to ask my man- ager. Unfortunately, we can’t have you park in the lot overnight, but there’s a few campgrounds nearby and I think Walmart will let you park overnight in their lots. (Lists campgrounds and nearby town with a Walmart.) API: Great, thanks so much. Staff: Did you want to make a reservation for a tour? Or did you already have one?
PARK #3, TX First contact: Male. API: Stated question.
Staff: Sure! I mean, you can definitely park in the lot and stay, but obviously we wouldn’t have any hookups for you. API: Not a problem. We’re pretty self-sufficient. Staff: Cool, do you know when you think you’d like to come? Have you made reservations for the
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