This Thursday is Thanksgiving, and it’s got us thinking about what we are thankful for. It’s also encouraged us to reflect on our summer, and what we think we did right and what we might need to change for next year.
First, we’d like to extend a big, heartfelt Thank You to everyone who took a chance on a new company and gave our vans a try. This was our first year in business, and, though we did our research before we started this whole venture, there were still plenty of unknowns—like, will anyone actually come? And you did! We met so many adventurous travelers this summer, from all over the world. Most came from the Lower 48: California represented really well this summer, but we also had multiple guests from Washington, Texas, Minnesota and Hawaii(!), and, of course, fellow Alaskans. Internationally, our guests ranged from Australia to Spain, Singapore to Poland, and quite a few places in between. Our longest rental was 26 days, and 3,900 miles, and our average rental was 7 days and just over 1,000 miles.
My favorite part of the whole summer turned out to be giving the orientations on how to use the camper vans. I would watch as your eyes lit up envisioning all of the possibilities and adventures you were going to be able to have. My second favorite part, of course, was greeting you on your return and hearing about all that you did and experienced. I love Alaska and love sharing it with fellow travelers, and I often felt privileged to have been a part of something so special.
We got great feedback on the camper vans, too. Thank you! We’re proud of our design—we worked hard to put something together that was functional and comfortable—so it was gratifying (and a relief!) to see that it worked as well as we had hoped. We also received some good suggestions for improvement, and we think it’s awesome that you cared enough to help us improve.
We’re now turning our focus to next year. We’ll spend the winter working on those suggestions and on things that needed improvement this summer, and updating the things that didn’t last as long as we had hoped. They’re minor things, thankfully, but they’ll take some time, so be ready for a new and improved camper van next summer.
We’re also expanding our fleet! We had so much interest this summer that we had to turn a few people away because we were already fully booked. Next summer, we’ll have more vans and therefore more room to accommodate potential guests. Scheduling will be a little bit easier with more vans to work with, and we won’t be quite as frazzled since our turnarounds won’t be so tight. (Whew!)
We’re still planning on a season opening day of May 1 next year, and we’ll be running our Shoulder Season rates for the first part of the month, until Memorial Day weekend (as well as in September after Labor Day). If you’re local, or find a good deal on a flight, click here to get in on the action!
And don’t forget, our Black Friday sale is under way! All rentals are $189 per night (plus tax) for any trip length, plus we still include Unlimited Mileage with all of our rentals. Check it out—it’s available through Monday, November 26, and you must use promo code NOVEMBER when you book.
We have updated to our 2019 rates, but if you take advantage of the Black Friday sale or the Shoulder Season specials, your deal could amount to even less than our 2018 rates. We continue to offer Unlimited Mileage, as well as including all of the basic bedding and kitchen items, and all of our add-ons are still available.
We are also still affiliated with Tour Green, so don’t forget to check the box to make a $2.00 (or more) donation with your reservation. Tour Green is supported by Renewable Energy Alaska Project and proceeds go toward research and grant funding for renewable energy programs across the state. We will shortly be sending in all the funds we collected this summer as well a donation of our own, because we are excited to be a part of this project as well.
So to all of our guests from Summer 2018 and to all who helped us spread the word, THANK YOU! We truly appreciate your willingness to give our brand new company a try! You helped make it successful this summer, and with your help, we’ll do even better next summer! Happy Thanksgiving, and here’s to another great year!