90,000 mobile homes are redeemed in Switzerland. In the search for parking spaces, they found what they were looking for in the village center of Heiden (AR).
Camping is trendy. Traveling alone and flexibly – this also convinced younger and urban people during the Corona pandemic. Heiden (AR) is therefore one of the first municipalities in Switzerland to provide mobile home sites in a prime, central location. From now on.
Pitches for female campers are often close to nature, isolated or by lakes. But “Büssli” increasingly need parking spaces and infrastructure in central locations. Rolf Järmann also recognized this. The former professional cyclist and mobile home blogger from Arbon (TG) wrote over 2,000 emails to communities throughout Switzerland in search of attractive new parking spaces.
The return was sparse. He received a negative or no answer from most of them, says Järmann, who is also president of the Swiss mobile home association. “Many tourist regions still believe that campers cannot afford hotels. The regions must be aware that campers leave a lot of money in the village. For dinner, for example.”
Start small, wait for development
Heiden’s positive response is the exception. Up to nine mobile homes or campers can now be parked there in the middle of the village. There are two smaller squares by the church, two larger squares by the central park and five by the Schwendi train station.
The effort for the community is limited. There are already public toilets, the Kurverein is looking after things. The places are – still – simple parking lots. Depending on requirements, however, this can be adjusted, says the responsible municipal councilor Stefan Züst: “We’ll start small and see how it develops. The more campers come, the more infrastructure we will provide.”
Reservation not possible
The municipality of Heiden hopes that the campers in the center will also leave some money behind. However, Stefan Züst does not expect any problems with residents: “We will see. But I believe that campers are civilized people and know how to behave in a village.”
The nine parking spaces cannot be reserved. The principle is: “The faster the faster the faster.” A camping “Büssli” can only stay in one place for a maximum of three nights, for CHF 12 plus visitor’s tax per night.