For many people, their first traditional camping experience often becomes their last, due to insects and other creepy-crawlies, wild animals, sudden storms, leaking tents, smelly sleeping bags, and questionable food. Unlike traditional camping, Glamping is a way of getting closer to nature and enjoying the great outdoors while still experiencing a luxurious break.
The idea of roughing it out during a camping trip is now only an option thanks to glamping. Glamping is, to put it lightly, experiencing the best of both worlds. It is the perfect combination of camping in luxury and comfort, with the amenities found at the campsite - and in the tents themselves - exceeding expectations of campers.
Glamping is not an ancient concept. It is a conceptualization from the 21st century where a need for camping experience with a hotel twist came about in the United Kingdom. Initially known as 'luxury camping' or 'comfortable camping', the authentic experience soon rose to fame as “Glamping”.
Due to its rapid popular growth, glamping covers a huge array of accommodation options including yurts, teepees, treehouses, Shepherd huts and much more.
Traditional Camping usually involves packing your own tent, setting it up in the middle of nowhere and hoping it doesn’t leak. Glamping, on the other hand, is travelling to your accommodation ready and waiting; usually a framed shelter with amenities such as electricity and running water.
Depending on how experienced you are at Camping, bedtime can involve anything from a sleeping bag to a camp bed, allowing you to snuggle down under the stars. Glampers meanwhile enjoy a comfortable bed with a real mattress and linen bedding.
Whilst most traditional Camping sites have a communal toilet and shower block to share with your neighbours, it also means sometimes you have to make do with a tree in the woods.
Glamping facilities are equipped with real bathrooms and warm running water in the tent, meaning you can wash away the debris of the day in comfort.
Traditional Camping calls for an outdoor makeshift kitchen; while Glamping means a traditional fire or fire pit, with the option of cooking on a butane hob or a wood burning stove.
Keeping warm during traditional Camping is mostly down to layering and plenty of jumpers and vests. The temperature by opening and closing the tent flap or changing the thickness of your sleeping bag. Glamping accommodations on the other hand include a wood burning stove or an alternative to keep you warm at night.
Those who opt for a Glamping holiday choose an environmentally friendly holiday without sacrificing the niceties of a more traditional hotel as Glamping accommodations are ideally ecologically friendly and food provisions are sourced locally.
Those who prefer a Glamping experience over an average holiday are nature lovers who wish to experience life closer to nature, without actually becoming a part of it. This authentic experience can rejuvenate the mind, body and soul.
A Glamping holiday provides the opportunity to explore adventurously in a safe environment. It is perfect for those traveling with children who wish to explore their surroundings, single travellers who love their hikes and treks.
As a Property Manager, Glamping is a fabulous way of staying on top of business by renting out luxury tents. If this idea has crossed your mind, which is probably why you’re here, below is a step by step guide on just how to get started.
The success of your glamping business entirely depends on a solid business plan. It is important to develop a long-term vision that takes into account various factors, such as future expansion and cultural trends. Other vital aspects include identifying the target group, the range and quantity of tents, level of service and the business model that works best for your location, capital and timeframe.
Remember that various regulations, rules and jurisdiction differ from one region to another. Do not fail to consider this, along with return on investment and tactics to attract your guests.
Guest experience is king, and it is important to know what type of tents, facilities and natural built amenities best suit your target audiences. For example, if you decide to attract families to your site, it is beneficial to include playful elements inside the tents, such as a play corner, slide or box bed. Pet-friendly is also a great family orientated marketing strategy!
If your target group differs seasonally, it would be a wise decision to choose various tents that are suitable for multiple target groups in order to capture multiple audiences. For example, if your travellers are groups of friends travelling during summer or if its a family travelling during autumn or a couple taking a romantic holiday in the winter.
Your location will also decide the type of clients you can service. For instance, couples and empty-nesters might like to have more privacy, while parents of young children often prefer to have other families with children around them and may coordinate trips with other families to sites that can accommodate this.
A play-space for yard-games or a simple grassy area in front of the tent is an extra plus for them. This way they can keep an eye on the children playing, while reading a book or relaxing on the veranda.
The next step is to go online, purchase and configure your domes. Choose the sizes (each unit has a floor area between 20 sqm to 75 sqm) and add accessories: stove, chimney, insulation panels, solar-powered fan system, etc to complete the order. The domes are usually shipped to your location in 2 weeks in normal circumstances, so you have enough time for other preparations. However, important to note that there may be shipping delays in exceptional circumstances such as shortage of supply or a global pandemic.
Once your dome kits are on their way and your location is sorted, sketch out the services and facilities that you will offer at your Glamping facility. Plan and arrange a field kitchen, toilets, bathrooms, onsite facilities (if any): reception area, laundry room, game room, hot tub, swimming pool, etc.
Enlist and organize items that are necessary for creating the actual Glamping site, including electrical installation, waste disposal facilities, fire safety, gas storage, sanitary facilities and glamping amenities including furniture, lighting and heating.
Permissions are sometimes required but when you consider using semi-permanent tents for your accommodations, the paperwork should be much lighter than in the case of permanent structures. Contact your local authority and apply for any planning permissions you might need in order to start.
It is important to note that each country may review sites using a different set of criteria. These may include: type of accommodation, your location, road accessibility, traffic flow, topography, the economy, size of site, impact on infrastructure, etc.
Apply for site license which will depend on the number and type of units, spacing between the units, washing and sanitary facilities, drainage, water and waste systems, gas storage and fire safety, access roads and footpaths, electrical installations.
You need to have obtained planning permission for the luxury campsite prior to applying for a license.
If you already have your unique structures with Glamping accessories on their way and a finalized land as the location, they will stand to your advantage.
If you can afford to, you could also add a unique flavor to your glamping site, by upscaling services, offering attractive discounts, adding exotic cuisine, spa/yoga treatments, side events or festivals, etc.
Assemble all the structures on platforms and onsite facilities. Add furnishing, insulation and heating. Install electricity, waste disposal units, fire safety, gas storage and sanitary facilities; and you are ready to welcome your first guests!
Now it’s just a matter of spreading the word. Use all the power of social media (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram) to promote your Glamping site and don't forget to ask your first guests to leave recommendations and reviews. For the first few months, you might want to consider giving attractive discounts people can’t say NO to, in order to lure them.
Hostaway lets you create and manage accounts to make good use of online listing sites such as Glamping Hub, Booking, Airbnb where you can list and promote your property as a Glamping Site.
Speak to the friendly team at Hostaway.com to find out more!