April 18, 2021 - California State Parks and Hipcamp (www.hipcamp.com) have announced a partnership to provide real-time information about camping availability directly on the Hipcamp platform. Together, they are laying the foundation to further advocate for open data standards in public campsite reservation systems with future integrations to come nationwide.
"California State Parks is proud to partner with Hipcamp in supporting the open data movement,” said California State Parks Director Armando Quintero. “This partnership supports ongoing efforts to promote transparency, progress through innovation, and increased opportunities for community engagement."
Through this first of its kind API integration pilot, information about California State Parks’ camping inventory will be available on Hipcamp’s website, letting visitors explore details about sites and their availability before directing them back to State Parks’ reservations system, ReserveCalifornia, to complete their reservation. This data integration is an important step in California State Parks’ ongoing commitment to increasing equitable access to the state’s public lands.
Open data, including Hipcamp’s existing inventory of 475,000+ private and public sites on its platform, is key to inspiring current and future generations of outdoor enthusiasts. The integration is made possible through Conduent Incorporated (NASDAQ: CNDT), a business process services and solutions company, and US eDirect, a provider of recreation management systems, who are proud partners that share the critical mission of getting more people outdoors.
This initiative will also help unlock access to public land to a greater, more diverse group of people, support overall public health by expanding access to nature, boost park revenue, and secure the ongoing relevance and sustainability of our public lands.
The demand for public campsites has skyrocketed in recent months as more people are heading to the outdoors for their well-being and mental health. Hipcamp's bookings increased three times as much in 2020 compared to 2019 with its Hosts earning three times more as well. According to the 2020 North American Camping Report, 46% of all leisure travelers said they considered camping the safest way to travel once restrictions were lifted. The new integration will help Hipcampers better gauge risk and plan based on availability, all while supporting California State Parks.
“As the pandemic continues, people are craving a deeper connection to the outdoors and the need to be outside has never been more important,” said Hipcamp founder and CEO Alyssa Ravasio. “Open data unlocks access to public land to a greater, more diverse group of people and helps Hipcampers avoid overcrowding. This integration comes at a transformative time and we’re so excited to have California State Parks as a part of the Hipcamp community.”
The COVID-19 public health crisis is demonstrating just how profoundly helpful outdoor experiences can be for many Americans. A record number of Americans are seeking opportunities for outdoor recreation, including visits to the nation’s public lands, waterways and public spaces like parks and trails.
As the nation continues to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, Californians are reminded to recreate safely when recreating in the State Park System. Visitors are advised to stay local, wear a face covering, practice physical distancing and avoid gatherings with people outside the immediate household. Also, they should plan ahead as some park units and campgrounds remain temporarily closed due to the pandemic, and wildfire and weather-related impacts.
Hipcamp also proudly helped launch the California Recreate Responsibly Coalition as part of its land stewardship efforts. The Recreate Responsibly Coalition comprises hundreds of government agencies, nonprofits, and outdoor recreation businesses working to keep communities safe and public lands open during COVID-19. California State Parks and Hipcamp’s historical partnership of closely working together in this growing coalition serves to educate on how to enjoy the wild world safely and responsibly - for first time campers to seasoned adventurers.
Source: CA. State Parks