Saturday, June 14, 2014

Rally Reflection

Our summer travel centered around coming to Sevierville, Tennessee, for a DRV Suites rally. The 5th wheel trailer we purchased in October is a DRV Mobile Suite. We had attended two RV rallies in the past, one for owners of Montana 5th wheel trailers and another the Good Sam Rally, a massive gathering of RVers of all sorts. We learned so much at each of the rallies that we were looking forward to presentations by manufacturers of RV products, explaining how the various parts of our RV work. We also had seen seminars ranging from software to manage photos on the computer to showing new water pressure reducers and hook and loop tape that can be used to hold storage compartment items in place during travel. Both previous rallies also had large areas for vendor booths, where we could purchase merchandise.

The DRV rally wasn't nearly as large as the previous two, but there were over 125 RVs here. A number of manufacturers were scheduled to make presentations. And there was one vendor display. Early in the week, we enjoyed learning about new products to clean the inside of the RV and lots of information on weight issues with our tow vehicles and RVs. There was the opportunity rally participants to give feedback to the manufacturer of our RVs and learn how they address quality issues. Having our RV weighed and meeting with the manufacturer reps were perhaps the most valuable parts of the week.

One of the sponsors for the rally was RVs for Less, a Knoxville RV dealer who is a top DRV seller. They gave discounts on CoachNet roadside assistance and road and tire hazard insurance and provided a one year 1000 Trails Member Campgrounds zone pass to rally participants. In addition, we had the opportunity to talk to one of the owners, Butch, and he gave lots of good information about our slides and leveling system.

Unfortunately, many of the scheduled presenters never showed up. Since we are having issues with our refrigerator, I was really disappointed not being able to meet with the Dometic factory rep. And the presentation by Lippert, the manufacturer or our RV slides and leveling system, also did not happen. We learned a lot from a seminar given by the manufacturer of Winegard TV antennas. Overall, the number of seminars was really disappointing.

Many RV clubs schedule rallies for the sole purpose of socializing and meeting new people. We had expected a quality learning event. We didn't come here just to spend time with other people, no matter how nice they are. The rally didn't meet our expectations and we will probably not attend another DRV Suites rally. In fact, if we do attend another RV rally, it will only be one focused on learning.

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