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10 Tips on How to Book a Last-Minute Campsite in BC This Summer

As of June 1, camping has reopened to BC residents, making it possible to enjoy an overnight trip outdoors within the province. This resulted in many eager campers waiting to confirm summer sites through online booking, and while many may have reserved a spot, last-minute decision makers are worried that their camping dreams will come to a halt with few spots left to book. Well don’t worry, you can still find a site that suits your camping needs, thanks to this great list of tips shared by the Camping & RVing BC Coalition.

Joss Penny, Chair of the Camping & RVing BC Coalition shared, “typically we see an increase of campers during summer weekends and it can be challenging to secure a spot at your favourite campground on those days. I always  recommend planning ahead and making a reservation, however, I understand  human nature.” For those of us who took the risk and waited until the last minute to book summer plans, Joss has got us covered.

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Super Last-minute Camping Trip Plans

For campers  who are looking to book a spot at the eleventh hour, Joss and her team have compiled a comprehensive list of campsites around the province, as well as this list of 10 tips to help you find a campground and site that meets your needs:

1) Determine how far you want to drive and the direction you wish to go in.
2) Determine what activities you want to do and campground amenities you are looking for (example: lakefront, boating, hiking, washrooms, or a playground).
3) Visit the Where to Camp page which plots over 1,500 campgrounds (BC Parks, Parks Canada, private RV parks/campgrounds, and front country recreational camping sites) across the province.
4) If there are less than 7 days to plan your summer trip, be prepared  to contact multiple campgrounds to secure your spot and the likelihood that you may have to drive a bit further to get what you want.
5) Finding sites four or less hours from major urban centres is difficult on summer weekends so look to travel 6 – 8 hours out of town.
6) Wet summers create availability so last-minute travellers can often find spaces.
7) Consider camping on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday in high demand areas.
8) Travel through the North Cariboo region or Northern BC as many sites are available on a nightly drop-in basis.
9) Arrive at campgrounds mid-week to secure first come, first served sites for the weekend.
10) Piggyback with friends as many campgrounds allow up to four adults per site.

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To book your campsite for the summer, visit the Discover Camping website.

NOTE: Before you head out on your summer camping trip, be sure to visit the Know Before You Go section on the Destination BC website, as restrictions, openings and closures are constantly changing. For a list of which campgrounds are closed, and safety changes due to COVID-19, check out this page. For more great resources on where to camp and RV in and around BC, visit Camping & RV in BC.

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