Buying camping equipment in the winter is not something that most of us even consider doing – as the likelihood is we won’t be using our purchases for another 3-6 months until the spring weather (hopefully!) appears.
However, the COVID 19 pandemic has brought about significant challenges to the world. Other than the enormous health aspects; our industry has been impacted in a big way, resulting in major price rises for 2022 and a lack of production space in the factories.
How Camping Production Costs Have Been Affected By COVID-19
In all honesty, the major camping manufacturers such as Outwell, Vango, Outdoor Revolution, Coleman and so on have endured significant increases in costs over the last 18 months. And although some have passed on minor price increases during this time, it is nowhere near the levels that have been applied from the manufacturers in China and Shipping Agents.
In the last year alone, container prices have gone from an average of £2300 per shipment from China to Europe to around £16,500 – a rise of over 600%! To put this into perspective, if you had a container of 500 toilets that normally retailed at £20, they would have to increase by almost £30 each just to cover the additional transport costs. When you then add increases in raw material costs due to shortages, lack of staff in the factories due to COVID restrictions, more protocols and health and safety requirements and increased worldwide demand – you end up with the perfect storm for prices spiralling out of control.
The monster that is the USA has also made life difficult for the European brands. Following Joe Biden coming into office and replacing Trump, the relationship between China and the USA has improved and more trade is happening once again. The power that a nation like this has provides a huge incentive for the factories. Getting an order from Walmart for 100,000 chairs is much more attractive than producing 2,000 of 50 different chairs for various smaller companies.
In fact, production space is so full that if a company went to a Chinese factory today to get something made, then the earliest production space is November 2022. Obviously, all the major brands have been aware of this situation and booked production slots throughout next year, but the ability to supply more than is planned is impossible. Moreover, any issues with raw materials, further COVID outbreaks or factory shutdowns will create a massive snowball effect on production delays. We are by no means scaremongering – just purely trying to give you, the camping enthusiast, information to allow you to make the best decisions and plans regarding any items you may require for next year.
How The Family Tent Shop Are Counteracting This
As a result, we have been actively seeking to buy as much equipment as we can this late in the season which, quite frankly, is not something we would normally do. Our rationale for this decision is:
- It means we will hopefully be in a strong position to be able to offer a good choice to our customers throughout the winter and next season.
- We will have several products and particularly some large family tents, that will be available at competitive prices especially when they are compared to 2022 prices for either the same or similar specification of the tent.
- Hopefully, we will not endure the difficulties we had this year of waiting for stock and having to keep informing customers of delays and disappointing them in the process.
Our Recommendations for Our Customers
So, if you are thinking of upgrading your tent or barbecue, looking for some comfortable chairs, or a better night’s sleep on a luxury self-inflating mat – then now could be the time to consider that purchase! In the meantime, this will save you a few quid to pay for your next camping holiday, or at least buy the ice creams when you are away!
Given the time of year, we have a fair selection of family tents in stock including pole tents, air tents and polycotton tents. The higher the value, the more the price increase in value will be next year.
A number of these tents are not changing for 2022 so if you like the look of the Outwell Parkdale, Winwood or Sundale, the Vango Joro 450 or 600, the Outdoor Revolution Airedale 7SE or Campstar range or the Coleman Weathermaster or Castle Pines ranges then buying one now will result in a saving against next year and the product will be identical!
Some other models are being discontinued or replaced with newer versions, but, again on a like for like basis, the current models end up being great value for money. The same will apply for many other products, with another area seeing noticeable price rises being camping furniture. So upgrading your chairs now makes good economic sense, and they could even come in handy at Christmas as we all try to make up for missing out on seeing our families in 2020.
How You Can Buy From The Family Tent Shop This Winter
From October our hours change to 10am-4.30pm Monday- Saturday and 10.30am-4.30pm on a Sunday and we will remain closed on a Tuesday.
We look forward to seeing you in-store or feel free to order online where we will be attempting to maintain the high standards of quick and efficient delivery service for all orders.
Thank you for your business this year and for helping to keep our family business progressing during the difficulties of the COVID 19 pandemic. We will always be grateful.