International Caravan & Motorhome Show, NEC Birmingham, 12-17 October 2010

Here’s an extract from what the organisers of the International Caravan & Motorhome Show claim for their event, starting this Tuesday in NEC Birmingham:

“If you want to see what’s new– this is your first opportunity to see the very latest 2011 models of caravans and motorhomes with the latest designs, layouts and innovations.

“If you’re thinking of buying, you will find every major manufacturer represented, meaning you can compare all the options in one place. There will be lots of great show offers and discounts you will benefit from too.

“If you’re looking for inspiration– there will be a great selection of campsites and destinations to see, so you can start planning your 2011 adventures at the show.

“If you’re looking for a great day out for all the family, there are more features and attractions than ever before this year, with great new additions including a Cookery Theatre, Farmers’ Market, Expert Talks Theatre and Real Ale Bar!”

So there was no Real Ale Bar in the NEC Birmingham before? Anyway, moving on…

The organisers boldly claim that “all the leading motorhome manufacturers will be represented, including Swift, Auto-Trail, Auto-Sleepers, Chausson, Rapido, Pilote, Burstner, Niesmann & Bischoff, Romahome, Frankia and Dethleffs.” I note however that neither Hymer nor Hobby are on that list, and I for one consider them to be major motorhome manufacturers too.

They also say on their website that the leading motorhome dealerships from up and down the country will be exhibiting, including Brownhills; Hobby; Lowdham Leisureworld and RS Motorhomes. If you work for a motorhome dealership that they’ve omitted, for example Marquis that I thought were pretty big, feel free to give yourself a free ‘plug’ using the comments box below this post.

The organisers also point out that there will be “hundreds of touring caravans for you to explore and compare; with all of the leading caravan manufacturers represented, including Swift, Bailey, Elddis, Lunar and Coachman.” Again, I’d argue that the likes of Eriba are major caravan manufacturers too, but the organisers don’t make any mention of them being present.

Oh, as well as touring caravans, there will also be a selection of trailer tents, folding campers and 5th wheels. “Whatever your taste and budget,” they claim, “there is sure to be something to suit.”

I’ll leave that up to you, the reader, to decide. And if you’d care to leave your thoughts in the comments box below this post you’ll be very welcome to do so.

It is however probably fair to say that there will be lots of special show offers and deals that you won’t find anywhere else. At last year’s show the dealers were offering deals such as “1 years free insurance” when you bought at the show. As incentives for a major impulse purchase go that doesn’t quite cut it for me personally, especially as with the season now over there’s little doubt they’ll mostly be equally happy to repeat (or better!) that offer in 2 weeks time, after you’ve had the opportunity to shop around!

OK, hands up here, I found the official website for the International Caravan & Motorhome Show to be more marketing hype than substance and it didn’t impress me at all. I suspect you’ve realised that by now though…

However, if what you’re looking for is campsites, then (at least according to the organisers) the International Caravan & Motorhome 2010 will have more campsites, holiday parks, destinations and tourist boards than ever before. Pedantically, that’s more hype of course, because the claim would be true if the show had one site last year and two this!

They claim that, “whether you are a new-comer to the hobby or have been caravanning or motorhoming for years, all outdoor enthusiasts want to find out more about where they can enjoy their next adventures.” That’s why they aim to provide a great selection of sites and destinations from around the UK and Europe, to give you some great inspiration for where to take your next get-away breaks.

Naturally both The Camping and Caravanning Club and The Caravan Club will both be at the show as well, to answer any questions you might have about their campsites around the UK. You can speak to them about the savings you can make on park bookings by becoming a member. Do speak to the other exhibitors too though, because their campsites may well offer you many things that the “Clubs” can’t (bigger pitches and less rules, for example). Personally I’d like to see these “Clubs” campaigning to allow responsible wild camping in the UK, and free motorhome stopovers (just like the Europeans all enjoy) but that would potentially diminish their own “Club” revenues so I can’t really see it happening.

Anyway, the (hype-ridden) official website for the show is at:

http://birmingham.caravanshows.com

If you’d like to share your thoughts, either on this blog post or the show itself, please use the comments box below. You can of course share the post itself with your friends using the various multi-media icons.

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