AutoCamp is betting that you want to camp in an Airstream. They also think you might like to skip the towing and setup part. You might not have a tow vehicle available right now anyway. So why should that prevent you from enjoying a quintessential Airstream camping experience? It doesn’t have to. When you book with AutoCamp, you get the Instagrammable Airstream RV trip to an awesome destination without all the pre-work and costs involved with RV ownership. Sound good to you?
Let’s take a closer look at what AutoCamp is and what it provides. It might just be your answer!
What Is AutoCamp?
AutoCamp is a company that provides camping in awe-inspiring locations in America. Their goal is to break down barriers that would keep people from enjoying the outdoors due to a lack of proper equipment. No RV, tow vehicle, or RV sewer hose is required.
Whether you’re a seasoned camper or trying it for the first time, AutoCamp provides everything you need to enjoy your camping experience. You can book a reservation at Joshua Tree, Yosemite, Russian River, or Cape Cod. AutoCamp Zion and AutoCamp Catskills are coming in spring 2022.
Accommodations include either an Airstream suite or a luxurious glamping tent, depending on location. For example, AutoCamp Joshua Tree provides Airstream suites only, whereas AutoCamp Yosemite provides both suites and tents as well as cabins. Inside each suite, you’ll find all the basics — cookware, towels, linens, a fire pit, etc.
Each AutoCamp location includes Wi-Fi. AutoCamp also welcomes all ages (including children) as well as pets. There’s a pet fee of $75.
Want a romantic escape? You can book a few nights at AutoCamp Russian River and drive about 20 minutes to visit Iron Horse Vineyard. Looking for a family adventure? Check out AutoCamp Cape Cod, which is less than 15 minutes from the Woods Hole Science Aquarium.
Pro Tip: Pets are welcome in AutoCamp for a small fee, but if you’re looking elsewhere this is How to Find Pet-Friendly RV Rentals.
The Benefits of AutoCamp
The main benefit of AutoCamp is the convenience. You don’t have to spend money on an expensive Airstream to enjoy an Airstream suite experience. Just show up with your suitcase and personal items. You can pack light because they provide all of the basic supplies, like towels, cookware, fire pits, and grills.
Also, for travelers who like to plan, you can make reservations 12 months in advance. If you’re considering a special event or planning a wedding, you can book even further out.
The locations are stunning. You can enjoy an ocean view as you sip coffee or wine from the Cape Cod Clubhouse or relax by your own campfire surrounded by Joshua Tree National Park. Sometimes it’s difficult to find campgrounds in these locations because of how full area campgrounds are. AutoCamp makes it easy to find, book, and enjoy a stay in one of these beautiful locations.
Pro Tip: Spend a day exploring Joshua Tree with our ultimate guide on all things Joshua Tree National Park.
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The Disadvantages of AutoCamp
You’re limited to their accommodations and amenities. If you like vacationing with your things in your own space, you’d be better off with an RV.
The Airstreams offered at AutoCamp also have been modified for a mid-century modern look and feel. They’ve also removed some of the typical RV perks, like a stove and oven, forcing guests to opt for a food package or dine out during their stay.
It’s also more on the pricey side. You could spend $299 per night or more, depending on the season and location. You’re paying for luxury accommodations, but it might be more than you’re willing to spend on a camping vacation. At this price you do not get daily housekeeping as you would at a hotel, but mid-stay services are available for an additional fee.
While pet-friendly, AutoCamp does not allow you to leave your dog unattended in the accommodation at any time during your stay – no exceptions. This means they’ll be coming with you whether you go to dinner or to a National Park (which typically don’t allow pets on trails).
Availability is also limited. This is true for any campground, but it’s especially true for AutoCamp locations because of their popularity. Because of this, they offer two club packages that offer “first access” for additional fees on top of your stay.
AutoCamp does not let you bring your own RV or tent to one of their locations, so the accommodations are limited to the space you rent.
What Do You Need for AutoCamp
If you plan on cooking, you’ll need to provide your own food. You may even want to bring your own cooler just to make sure you have enough food storage. Small spaces mean tiny refrigerators. Most Airstream suites also don’t have a stovetop, so you’ll want to bring a camping stove.
Beyond that, pack clothes for the weather and your planned activities. Don’t forget the bug spray and sunscreen as well.
Is AutoCamp Just Glamping?
AutoCamp is glamping. With luxury accommodations in Airstream suites or tents as well as access to beautiful clubhouses, this isn’t primitive camping. Glamping offers resort-style amenities not associated with traditional camping, and AutoCamp certainly offers these accommodations.
Is AutoCamp Worth It?
If you can afford the pricey rates, AutoCamp can be worth it. It eliminates the setup and teardown that come with RV travel but provides a similar experience. And you don’t get much nicer than vacationing in an Airstream if you enjoy the camper lifestyle.
For people who want to experience camping in an Airstream but won’t ever be able to afford one, AutoCamp can let them live the dream for a few nights. So, is it for you?
Where do you want to book your next glamping adventure? Drop a comment below!
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Wednesday 20th of October 2021
AutoCamp. What an intriguing idea.
As I read your post I was thinking this might be perfect for our next family reunion. Kathy & I in our 45'DP while the kids and grandkids could share 3 Airstream trailers. We could do four days of touring JTNP like never before. Our last family reunion was at a RV lake resort that also had a few cabins. (Fantastic.)Now we're looking to next year for a new location.
The first 'flag' was when you wrote "They’ve also removed some of the typical RV perks, like a stove and oven. . . . . . " Hmm, means bringing their own cooking gear. Hmm, means flying is complicated.
The second was "AutoCamp does not let you bring your own RV or tent to one of their locations. . . . . . " What? Really?
Okay, so that dimmed the prospects somewhat but since our place in Coachella is only 30 minutes from the south entrance to JTNP perhaps we could stay home and just drive to meet the kids/grandkids at the AutoCamp location. Then we could hike and climb all day long.
So I went to the AutoCamp website and hard reality set in. The costs are higher than you suggested plus there are fees plus taxes. But that is still not a show stopper as just getting the family from BC to CA is also a large expense.
What caused me to really pause planning was when I discovered where the Joshua Tree NP AutoCamp is actually located. Verbena Rd in Joshua Tree, CA is a longish drive (1:10) from our place in Coachella. If we could actually park our motorhome near the Airstreams and 'camp' with the whole family then I'd consider this for a family reunion.
However right now I can see that AutoCamp is focusing on a different market. Booking family-reunion groupings are not what they have in mind.
Thanks for posting this. Something new to read and consider.
Mortons on the Move
Saturday 23rd of October 2021
We can understand how this might not be a good fit for a family reunion. But we hope you find a place that works out for your event!