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How Does Work Camping Work?

LaRayne Jeffries
(Rocklin, CA)

How does this work ... RVer's working and getting free space?


I am a NEW camp owner and am interested in more information on the work camper program. How does this work? How is income reported? How is the free space reflected, or is it, in wages? We have need of seasonal employees and this program seems like it would be of great value to us.

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RV Workamping


Hi LaRayne,

Non-profit and government agencies use volunteer workampers. The RVer donates his time and talents. The agency, often a campground, fish hatchery, or church building program gives the RV worker a free place to park, sometimes utilities, and sometimes other benefits.

Private employers sometimes barter with the RVer. The RVer or camper works in exchange for an RV or campsite and use of the facilities. Arrangements vary greatly. Sometimes, all the work is done on a barter or exchange basis. Most of time, the exchange is only for some of the hours, and the rest of the work time is paid in hourly wages.

I am not a lawyer, an accountant, or a tax expert, so I cannot give you professional tax or legal advice. However, based on what I've read, the fair value of the site is reportable income. I interpret that to mean that if you charge a camper customer $300 to stay at your campground and use the facilities for a month, then $300 is what you would report as income value for the working camper getting the same.

If the work requires that the RVer live at your campground, that might fall into a different category.

Your accountant or tax expert should be able to guide you.


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