|Eastern Area Motorhome Association
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THE VOTE IS IN!
Results are in for the recent
membership vote. Members have voted
to welcome owners of self-contained
Total votes: 9,801
In favor: 6,820
Per FMCA's governing documents, the
paperwork is being filed to make the
vote official. Until the paperwork is
finalized, we cannot accept
membership applications from owners
of self-contained RVs.
So feel free to tell the news to your
friends who own travel trailers and fifth
wheels, but please let them know we
are working on the details! We will tell
you as soon as we are ready.
In the meantime, we have gathered a
list of questions you may have:
Read FAQs below
I want to reassure everyone, regardless
of how you voted, that the things you
know and love about FMCA aren’t
going to change! This is a chance for
our RVing family to grow.
Jon Walker, F268778
FMCA National President
With the recent vote of the FMCA membership to invite owners of all types of self-contained,
wheeled recreation vehicles (with permanently installed cooking, sleeping, and sanitary
facilities) to join the association, we understand that members may be concerned about what
this means for them and may have questions. The following should answer most of them, but if
you have a question that’s not addressed here, please feel free to contact the FMCA national
office (firstname.lastname@example.org; 800-543-3622 or 513-474-3622).
Remember: FMCA is and will continue to be the organization you’ve known and loved. We’re
just broadening our horizons a bit and sharing all of the good things FMCA has to offer with
more RVers. The best thing FMCA has to offer, of course, is you – the members! We’re excited
to begin this new journey and are glad you are along for the ride!
1) Will FMCA chapters be required to allow owners of towable RVs to join their chapter? No.
Chapters still control their own bylaws. Your chapter will not be required to allow owners of
towable RVs to join the chapter if your chapter members do not wish to do so. The scope of the
chapter will continue to be the chapter members’ decision, and bylaws can be amended at any
time (to include – or exclude – based on non-discriminatory factors). Many chapters already
have restrictions or special interests in terms of the brand of vehicle, engine manufacturer,
2) Are we going to change the name of the association? Why would someone join an
organization called Family Motor Coach Association if they own a fifth-wheel travel trailer?
“FMCA” is how most of us refer to the organization today, so our recommendation is to keep
the name but move to using only the acronym, much like AARP did when it opened its doors to
pre-retirees. The association will still legally be known as Family Motor Coach Association, but
we will just refer to it as FMCA.
3) How will the rallies be affected? Our goal is to keep delivering a great experience to current
members while also appealing to the younger crowd. We will re-evaluate our convention
structure to provide new and different activities. For example, we may have multiple
entertainment options presented at different times of the day to accommodate various ages
4) Will FMCA be parking all vehicle types together at events? Yes. FMCA leaders have
consulted with our layout and staging experts to achieve an optimum experience for everyone.
5) Will we need to retrain our parkers? It’s just a different type of vehicle, driven by equally
skilled drivers. The same parking method will be used.
6) What parking differences are there in terms of parking towables next to motorhomes?
Because we do pull-through parking in most cases, we do not expect to have any problems with
parking at the conventions. Other RV organizations successfully park different types of vehicles
together at their events.
7) What about generator usage at conventions? On-board generators tend to be quieter than
portable generators. FMCA will continue to offer various parking options as we do now,
including “full generator” areas where generators can be run 24 hours a day and “no
generator” areas where they can’t be operated. Owners of all RVs will have the option to
purchase electricity. We will require that only manufacturer-installed on-board generators be
used in general and full-generator lots. Portable generators will not be permitted.
8) Will all RV owner members have full benefits? Yes.
9) Will all members be able to hold national office? Yes, all full (family or life) members will be
able to hold national office. Associate members are not eligible to vote or hold an office.
10) What is the willingness of our current members to accept all vehicle types? As
demonstrated by the recent vote, most current members are very much in favor of this
change. We know many members who started out with towable RVs before purchasing a
motorhome. Our hope is that current members will welcome all new members, regardless of the
equipment they travel with.
11) Towable owners’ educational needs may differ. Will FMCA focus on their needs? We don’t
anticipate dropping any of our motorhome educational programs and will continue in our
historic role as the authoritative resource for motorhome information; however, over time our
content and seminars will naturally expand to include helpful and educational information about
all RVs as members with other equipment join us.
12) Does FMCA offer seminars regarding starting new chapters? We don’t have such a
seminar currently but we certainly can, if members are interested!
13) Will we keep the FMCAssist Medical Emergency and Travel Assistance Program? Yes.
Opening FMCA to more RV owners will help the organization and spread out the cost of this
expensive benefit over a larger pool of members.
14) Some people look at FMCA as an elitist organization. Will opening up the membership to all
RV owners help with that? It’s easy for people to think that way based on the previous
motorhome requirement, but we know that FMCA members are warm, wonderful people. With
the recent vote, we will welcome all RVers so they can experience our exclusive benefits without
feeling “excluded” because they don’t own a motorhome! Many of us started with an RV other
than a motorhome, and we strongly believe it’s not about the equipment; it’s about the people
who chose the RV lifestyle.
15) How do we keep younger kids active in FMCA? This presents an opportunity to revisit our
Youth Program. We don’t want to just have an on-site babysitting service. Our goal is to
provide meaningful activities for the children and young adults, too. With an infusion of new
and perhaps younger members, we’ll have new ideas and new energy for our “family” members
16) Why should I continue to be a member? FMCA is unique. It is a not-for-profit RV
association, the largest in the world. Our mission is education (and fun) and, with that in mind,
we continue to develop the offerings of the FMCA Academy. FMCA also provides great
benefits, such as the tire buying program, the FMCAssist Medical Emergency and Travel
Assistance Program, and the Connect-on-the Go and the Tech Connect+ Benefit Package.
FMCA will continue to be unique among the major clubs because it is the only one owned and
governed by its membership.
17) How will FMCA fulfil the vision that the founders had that FMCA would be an exclusive club
for motorized RVs? We recognize your concern about this issue. However, to continue to exist
as an association, we also recognize that we need to avoid stagnation. The RV marketplace
has changed and evolved over time. We’ve looked around and seen that our families and
friends – those we want to welcome as new FMCA members – have many choices of RVs that
are not motorized. We want to make sure FMCA flourishes well into the future, and broadening
our focus is a way to help ensure this.
18) What happened to cause us to change our minds about non-motorized RVs? This isn’t the
first time this idea has come up. Members have repeatedly asked FMCA leadership why the
association didn’t welcome all RV owners. After all, it’s not about the equipment; it’s about the
people who choose the RV lifestyle. Our goal is to make sure FMCA is around for the next
generation. So, we need to continue to welcome younger RVers to ensure continued growth of
19) Did FMCA do this just because of the money? No. It’s about the family! Motorhomes don’t
go to conventions; people do. We want dues to stay affordable for everyone while providing
top-notch benefits. With more members over whom to spread the cost of the member benefits,
FMCA can serve more RV owners.
20) Younger people are known for not being interested in joining organizations, and they may
not want to volunteer. How will we handle that? It’s true that younger people with families may
be busy working, raising their children, and have other day-to-day demands that can make time
for volunteering difficult. But we won’t know until we ask. By talking with them, welcoming them,
and inviting their participation as volunteers, we may find they bring a higher level of energy to
our volunteer efforts, even if they can’t participate as often as current members. Extend a
greeting the next time you see a younger RVer, and you may find those who would be
interested in FMCA membership aren’t so different from you! After all, millennials and Gen-Xers
are the future of the RV industry.
21) How will we adjust our methods of communication as we welcome owners of towables, many
of whom are likely to be younger than today’s FMCA members? We don’t have any plans in
place to eliminate publications or current communications tools. We are already using email
and social media effectively, and this will continue to evolve as we gain experience with these
22) Will our benefits change? They may – but only for the better! Even today, benefits evolve
to serve our members. As we see an increase in membership, we’ll just have a wider audience
of member needs and interests. FMCA will never stop delivering value (and fun) to our
23) Why couldn’t we have just grown the organization by getting more motorhome owners to
join? FMCA has an active member recruitment program and has been signing up thousands of
new members every year. However, we also have been losing thousands of members every
year due to age-related factors. The new members who are joining today aren’t new to RVing –
they have built friendships and memories with other RVers. Instead of feeling as though they
were turning their backs on those friendships, we’d rather they just bring their friends along for
the fun with FMCA!
Please keep in mind – these changes won’t happen overnight. We’ll always be the FMCA
family. The people who choose to join us going forward will be just like us: friendly, welcoming,
helpful – and FUN. The only difference is they might pull up in a different kind of RV.