A few afternoons ago, I saw a young Peruvian boy grin at a camera, and the whole world saw it with me. I’m talking about the FIFA World Cup, but I’m not talking about soccer.
There’s no doubt that soccer less popular in the U.S. then American football, and with the United States and Canada failing to qualify for this World Cup, some Americans and Canadians feel there’s no reason to watch or promote it.
But out of all tournaments and sports, the FIFA World Cup offers the most reasons to watch. It displays culture, friendship, and one unified global interest. It creates and displays unity, something campground owners can share and encourage at their parks this summer.
If you’re unsure of how powerful this tournament is, consider a few facts from the tournament so far: Mexican fans registered a false earthquake on the Richter Scale from jumping in excitement after Mexico beat defending champion Germany. Croatian players climbed into the stands after beating defending runner-up Argentina, and Portuguese players comforted and reassured devastated Iranian players after Portugal barely advanced to the next stage over Iran.
On top of all that, people from all parts of the world are watching one event. It’s unifying the world’s attention in a way that politics, war, and disaster can never do. The best part: it’s positive. This isn’t dirty laundry; it’s passion, competition, and global attention.
But why is that important to campground owners and guests, especially when many people don’t care? Because you can promote that unity and excitement and increase the camaraderie at your park this summer in a few ways.
Chat with Guests about the Games
If the World Cup gives you nothing else, it should at least give you some small-talk material. It’s like talking about the weather, just more universal and longer lasting. And even though it’s just small talk, it can help you create relationships with your guests and lead to deeper and more meaningful conversations. You don’t even have to watch the games! Just ask guests at check-in if they’ve been watching and mention highlights and score updates you’ve seen. You don’t even have to care about soccer; it’s so much bigger than that!
Keep the Games and Coverage Playing
If you have an office with a TV, the games should be on it, especially if guests come into that office. You probably don’t want them hanging around there all the time, but if you have the games on, you’ve given guests something to get excited and talk about. That means you’ve made a new way for people to relate.
Let Your Employees Watch
The games might be happening in the middle of the work day, but you should consider letting your employees watch if they can multi-task. People like working where they have freedom and fun every day, so letting your employees watch the games can increase team morale and fun in your office.
Host a Watch Party
People on vacation like to share excitement, even if they don’t know what’s going on. Capitalize on this by hosting watch parties with refreshments and food for sale or at least a space where you keep the games and coverage running for guests to watch. You may not have anyone gather there, but chances are there are at least two people not excited about missing the games while on vacation, even if they’re only watching casually.
You can even advertise your watch parties or watching station on your website so guests know they can stay connected while they’re camping.
If you’re using Sunrise or CampersApp, you can send notifications to guests or display public messages on your website. With Sunrise, you can even display messages on Sunrise Reservations, where guests make their online reservations.
Prepare for 2026!
Lastly, you need to know about 2026. In 2026, the United States, Mexico, and Canada will host the FIFA World Cup, meaning your parks will be getting a lot of business. Not only can you make a lot of money, but North America has the chance to show the world our beautiful camping.
We need to make a good impression.
So prepare to advertise, accommodate, and share the excitement. 2026 may be eight years from now, but you can start preparing today to make sure everyone knows North America has the best camping in the world.
Also consider investing in a high-quality reservation and management system if you haven’t already. The right system will automate many of the time-consuming tasks of campground management, meaning the World Cup will be less stressful and more profitable for you and your park. You can click here to learn everything you need to know about the best system available.
More than anything else, I would just encourage you to enjoy the excitement. You may not be a soccer fan but give the World Cup a chance. You might just find a new hobby or passion. And if not, you’ve still taken the time to participate in and experience one of the world’s largest gatherings.