Campers: ‘personal bubble on wheels’ is booming
Now that there finally seems to be some perspective on the summer, motor home sellers hope to do great business, because customers can travel perfectly safely in their own ‘bubble’. At Dicar, Belgium’s largest reseller and renter of motor homes, sales are booming like never before, since shops re-opened. And it many cases it is going to replace the airplane for the holidays.
Personal bubble on wheels
“You buy your personal bubble on wheels. You can perfectly control the hygiene, and it offers the flexibility to go wherever you want and when you want. In addition, the classic adagio applies: the comfort of a holiday home with the freedom and adventure of a tent,” says Dirk Van Eyck, CEO of Dicar.
Camper customers pay an average of 3 500 euros per year, the investment (about 50 000 euros), the relatively high residual value, and the taxes and insurances included, except fuel. Motor homes also did very well pre-corona.
According to Febiac (Belgian automobile federation), in 2019, 8% more motor homes were sold compared to 2018. There is also an increased demand for rental cars, although this remains limited to 5% of Dicar’s turnover.
A lot of new customers see the purchase of a motor home as an investment, and most cars are bought on loan. Van Eyck notices that the increased demand mainly comes from what he calls ‘Zaventem customers’: people who normally take the plane to a destination that cannot be reached by car. This is once again bad news for the aviation sector because anyone who invests a lot in a motorhome is likely to fly less in the future.
At Dicar the doors remained closed during the lockdown, but today business is going well, because the company sells twice as many cars compared to 2019. If you want to order a car, you have to take into account longer delivery times due to the Covid-19 crisis.
However, Dicar has a large stock of 1 100 cars, spread over the two Belgian stores. The company expects a price increase of 2% in 2021 due to corona prevention.