Many new RVers are surprised to discover the abundance of RV membership clubs. One especially popular one is the Family Motor Coach Association (FMCA). Not all who have chosen to become members have been happy campers, though. Let’s look at five common FMCA regrets.
What Does an FMCA Membership Include?
Like many other RV clubs, FMCA membership includes access to exclusive perks. These include savings programs, RV lifestyle resources, a monthly RV living magazine, and more.
Plus, you get access to RV rallies. FMCA is often the one putting on these members-only events. Large rallies will feature speakers, educational opportunities, and also adventures with other members. They’re wildly popular and help build relationships with other RVers.
The Top 5 Regrets of Buying an FMCA Membership
If you’ve been RVing long, you’ve probably made a purchase or two that you’ve regretted. Let’s look at five of the most common regrets of buying an FMCA membership.
#1. Elitist Attitudes at Rallies
Many members have complained over the years about there being a supposed elitist attitude at rallies. The larger and more expensive your RV is, the higher you supposedly are in the social pecking order.
Previously, FMCA focused on motorhomes only, but in July 2017, their Governing Board voted to allow towable RVs. This vote seemed to cause a significant divide among the FMCA community and possibly upset many of their long-time members. The apparently upset members felt adding towable RVs cheapened their club and made it appear less luxurious.
A quick look through the FMCA community group, and you’ll probably see divisive attitudes among members. The RV community is very inclusive and accepting, but some do still feel like outsiders in the FMCA. Feeling like an outsider in any group will make you regret joining.
#2. Increasing Prices
In September 2019, the FMCA increased their annual dues by $25, going from $60 to $85. This was roughly a 42% increase.
While many members were able to overlook the $25 increase, not all could. Plus, in February 2020, FMCA raised the price of their emergency roadside assistance. The price went from $74 to $129 for towables and $159 for motorized RVs. While FMCA was adjusting its prices to remain competitive, many members didn’t like another price increase.
#3. Focused on Older Demographic
It seems many motorhomes have floor plans that aren’t family-friendly. A limited number of motorhomes include a bunkhouse, and those that do often are little more than a sleeping space. Many families tend toward the towable market, and since FMCA was previously a motorhome-only club, membership skewed heavily toward an older demographic.
Having a large demographic of older RVers makes FMCA unattractive to younger RVing families. The RVing industry has seen a massive boom in recent years among families. Young families getting into RVing often find many resources and incentives lend themselves to an older demographic. It’s easy for them to regret signing up for this membership rather than searching for a more family-friendly option.
#4. Discounts Are Limited
A significant incentive to join an RV club is exclusive access to discounts. Many members regret purchasing their FMCA membership because the discounts are limited. The major deals and discounts aren’t much more than access to sign up for their roadside assistance program, a members-only RV insurance plan, and a discount on Michelin and Continental tires. In terms of discounts, FMCA lacks significant incentives.
#5. Mid-Week Rallies
FMCA often hosts its rallies during the middle of the week. This schedule is great for retired people and those who travel full-time but isn’t ideal for working adults. This decision is another instance where FMCA shows a bias for older members.
When Should You Consider an FMCA Membership?
Joining FMCA may be a good option if you’re in an older demographic. Being a part of the majority means the RV club will cater to many of your needs. It also means many of the original members will readily accept you into the community. If you own a motorhome and want to be a part of a relatively exclusive motorhome community, this may be an excellent option for you.
Joining an RV membership program isn’t for everyone. Many RVers never join a club and have an incredible RVing experience. Whatever you decide, we highly recommend researching and speaking with other RVers you trust to hear what clubs they belong to and why. What clubs do you belong to, and what do you look for in a club before joining?