What You Need to Know About Gander RV Before Shopping There

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If you’re in the market for a new RV, you might have a Gander RV dealership near you. You’ll likely spend hours upon hours researching different models, floorplans, and options.

However, a mistake many shoppers make is not investigating the RV dealership. Before you go shopping at a Gander RV, we think there are a few things you need to know. 

Let’s get started!

What Is Gander RV? 

You may know Gander RV by their previous names, Gander Mountain, Inc. and Gander Outdoors, Inc. They’re a chain of RV dealerships that primarily focuses on high-volume sales of RVs. They’re notorious for selling overpriced camping gear to inexperienced RVers.

You can typically spot their dealerships from several miles away as they often have massive flags that have caused them legal troubles. However, while we appreciate their patriotism and love for their country, this is where the positive characteristics end when much of the RV community describes Gander RV. 

Gander RV building at sunset with their giant US flag waving in the parking lot
Source: Facebook

How Many Gander RVs Are There? 

There are currently 35 Gander RV locations across the country. When a new owner acquired them in 2017, there were 126 stores. However, the new owner planned only to keep stores open with “a clear path to profitability.” The early indication was to keep approximately 70 Gander RV locations open.

What Types of RVs Does Gander RV Sell? 

One advantage to shopping at Gander RV is that they sell a variety of RVs. You can find travel trailers, fifth wheels, and motorhomes. Whether you’re new to RVing or have been full-timing for years, they offer something for everyone.

They also often have a limited supply of clearance and used RVs available. Their lots are a great place to go and walk through RVs while shopping to compare models and the various features. However, you’ll likely want to save signing paperwork for another dealership.

What Other Products Does Gander RV Sell?

Like most RV dealerships, they typically have a store with various RV and camping products available for purchase. If you need something specific to RVing in a hurry and can’t wait for shipping, these can be great places to shop. 

You’re going to pay a premium price on gear here. You can typically expect to pay 20% to 30% more than shopping online. So if you can wait, we highly suggest that. RVing gear is already expensive enough. There’s no need to pay anymore than necessary.

Pro Tip: If you’re looking for our favorite RV products that you can get online, check out our Ultimate List of RV Accessories (Over 150 Items!)

Is Gander RV Owned By Camping World? 

Yes, Camping World purchased Gander RV in 2017. Marcus Lemonis, CEO of Camping World,  had a plan to prune away any stores that had no obvious sign of profit. Early estimates were that approximately 70 stores would remain. However, there are currently 35 stores with the Gander RV name.

About Camping World 

Camping World has 154 locations across the country and is one of the most recognized RV dealership names. Their dealerships and sales team can sell you the RV and practically anything you’ll need while using your new RV. They also often have service centers that perform routine maintenance and repairs on your RV.

While they have many convenient locations, they’re often treated as stores that “must not be named.” In recent years, the company has received some rather negative attention and earned itself a pretty lousy reputation amongst the RV community. 

A display of tents at a camping store, something you could find at Gander RV.

Why People Don’t Like Camping World

As the CEO of Camping World, Lemonis has not done a great job of winning public approval. In recent years he’s said some pretty controversial things and inserted himself into political discussions. Politics are typically a hot-button topic, and most people shopping for camping gear are looking to escape the chaos those types of conversations often create.

A lot of people find their prices to be incredibly high. You can typically find the same items online for a fraction of the price. However, if you’re in a pinch or aren’t aware, you may find yourself paying way more than necessary for camping gear.

Camping World owns Good Sam Club and so spending the $29 to join Good Sam Club can help you save some money on your purchase in the store.

You don’t have to search online RV groups or reviews long to see a trend in customer service. Both the retail and service sides of Camping World have a negative reputation.

Many former customers felt unappreciated during the sales process and left hanging once they put pen to paper on their new RV. Some RVers share how having their RV serviced by Camping World was a complete nightmare.

An aerial shot of tons of RVs parked in a dirt field around Gander RV

What Should I Be Aware of When Buying an RV at Gander?

Before you step on the Gander RV sales lot, you need to make sure you lower your expectations. Many former customers share how the sales staff was attentive and helpful but unresponsive once completing the deal. If a salesperson promises anything, make sure you get it in writing before signing anything.

Many people shopping for RVs will use dealers like Gander RV and Camping World as nothing more than showrooms. They’ll walk through the RVs and ask a few questions but have no intentions of closing the deal with them. They’ll take their business to another dealer with a better reputation for customer service.

Now You Know About Gander RV

Knowledge is power, and you want to have as much knowledge when making a large purchase, such as an RV. Gander RV sells plenty of RVs each year to stay in business. However, unless you have zero expectations of the dealer once you complete the sale, we suggest that your next RV not be one of them. 

Would you consider purchasing your next RV from Gander RV?

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5 comments
  1. All very true. Service is horrible. I bought a trailer at one of these Gamder mountain stores. It was a very good rv dealership when I had bought here before. They were in the transition to camping world but did not let me know. Returned for Service a week later. All new people, my sales man was gone, and the Service department did not know how to fix anything. Stay away from these places. You can buy RV parts on Amazon for 1/3 of that these places want.

  2. I had read online several years ago that if you were planning on buying an RV to go somewhere else than Camping World or Gander Outdoors. They have a lot of trailers on their lots to choose from but I would never buy from them. For one his political rant towards President Trump let me see what a contemptuous type of person he was.

  3. Never!! They are horrible to deal with just as soon as you leave the lot. General managers will lie to you in a heartbeat all while pretending to care. They’re only interested in sales.

  4. I bought my first RV last summer (not from them) and went shopping for accessories. I went to Gander and found that they were running a special for veterans on the Good Sam card and promo book. They were sold out so they called Camping World and told them to hold one for me and I would be right over. When I got there a super nice cashier had the coupon book and 3 yr Good Sam special at the desk with my name on it. Her Asst Manager came up and forbid her to sell it to me. She said the special ended that day and they weren’t selling them anymore. The woman explained that it was on hold from Gander. The manager refused to allow her to sell it to me… the day the special ended. She was rude, condescending, and made my first time in their store my absolute last. The cashier took a risk and said she believes in doing what’s right especially for Veterans, and sold me the items. She was a sweetheart. The manager can go kick rocks. I will never stop food in Camping World ever again.

  5. We did not purchase our RV from them but are forced to use them for service and it has been a horrible nightmare. We dropped off our rig at a Gander RV in upstate NY in October with a list of repairs to be done. Mind you this was a brand new Forest River that came off of the floor with issues. All repairs were to be done under extended warranty. When we went back to pick it up in April for our first trip not a single thing had been touched in six months. Apparently one incompetent manager had just replaced another so he shifted the blame. However now in July we are still dealing with trying to get something done. DO NOT go to Gander RV in Coxsackie NY.

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