Editor’s Note: The following Q&A examining the growing glamping trend was conducted by Forbe’s contributor Lois Alter Mark.
Although glamping continues to be a popular travel trend, the word itself has been used to refer to everything from camping out in a tent on a king-sized bed to sleeping in a vintage trailer on a farm.
To bring clarity to this fast-growing industry, Under Canvas CEO Sarah Dusek and co-founder and CSO of GlampingHub Ruben Martinez just launched the American Glamping Association with the goal of establishing and creating professional standards and ratings across this increasingly-important travel segment.
Here’s what Dusek and Martinez had to say about glamping and the reasons they spearheaded its first professional association.
Glamping has become the “it” word in travel lately. Can you give us an official definition for it?
SD: Glamping – short for glamorous camping – is an upscale and comfortable camping experience in a tent. It is about capturing the essence of camping while trading in the hassle of setup and sleeping on the ground for luxury amenities that are accentuated by taking them outdoors.
How did glamping start? What is its history?
SD: The word “glamping,” as we know it today, first appeared in the U.K. in 2005. However, lavish camping has been around for hundreds of years when royalty would set up palatial campsites for summits between leaders, celebrations of the state or for explorers on intrepid adventures across continents. I have even seen photos of Teddy Roosevelt glamping in Yellowstone National Park at the turn of the century in tents filled with beautiful furniture. The idea of glamping is really not new, but our rediscovery of it has made it currently a thing.
Why do you think glamping has become so popular in the past few years?
SD: I think the primary reason is that people want to connect in the outdoors and discover the beauty in those simple moments. As our culture becomes more and more attached to technology, glamping gives people a way to get back to nature and create unforgettable moments with their friends and family.
Glamping is easy, accessible and doesn’t require travelers to own gear or spend time packing, setting up, unpacking etc. Under Canvas glamping resorts provide king size beds with plush mattresses, luxury linens, morning coffee crate delivery as well as in-tent bathrooms and showers.
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