How important the natural and sustainable dimension has become in everyone’s existence is now a fact that has become inescapable after the Covid period. It is no longer just a consideration on a theoretical basis, but a trend that is changing the economic balance in favour of the outdoor recreation industry. Government data published by the US Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) proves this. In 2021, travel, trips, and any experience related to the outdoors generated an economic return of $862 billion and an increase of 4.5 million jobs.
These positive numbers highlight the need, experienced as a priority, to spend as much time as possible outdoors, preferring, especially when travelling, situations in contact with nature. “The motorhome industry has seen record numbers of younger and more diverse customers who have chosen this vehicle to satisfy their desire to be outdoors, because it gives them the opportunity to enjoy activities such as fishing, hiking, cycling, and climbing. These new figures prove that outdoor activities are not only good for people’s physical and mental health, but are also an important economic driver for the entire country,” said RV Industry Association President and CEO Craig Kirby.
It is a new lifestyle that has been emerging for the past couple of years. “Since 2020, the boating and fishing industries, and the outdoor economy more generally, have driven the national recovery, welcoming millions of families who wanted to experience the health benefits while at the same time contributing vitally to the economy and job creation,” commented Frank Hugelmeyer, president of the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) and current chairman of the Outdoor Recreation Roundtable (ORR) board of directors.
This data is important and reflects an industry on a positive trend despite the historic moment of enormous uncertainty, but for growth to continue, continued investment is needed. “The record economic impact of the BEA data demonstrates the collective power of our industry in helping people discover and experience the enormous benefits of the outdoor lifestyle. We continue to welcome an increasingly diverse group of new participants, so we look forward to maintaining this momentum by developing recreational infrastructure and increasing access for all.”, said Michael Happe, President and CEO of Winnebago Industries.