AUSTIN — As the temperature starts to rise and we get closer to summer, people across Texas will be looking to find new and exciting ways to experience the outdoors. There's one company looking to provide a new outlet for this demand.
Outdoorsy is the world's largest marketplace for renting RVs, motorhomes and similar vehicles for an outdoor experience. It is a business that allows people to offer their RVs to the company and other people to rent them out. Jeff Cavins is the CEO and co-founder of the company and said this is a dual-sided marketplace that provides a unique form of vacation.
"One of the things about Outdoorsy is if you think about where people want to go today, it used to be that marbled lobbies were enough for vacations," Cavins said. "That's not what people want anymore. People want outdoor experiences, and we're taking them where Airbnb, Hyatt, Hilton and Marriott can't take them. And that is the great outdoors."
Cavins said his company did some research and found out 18 million RVs are currently in North America that are used less than two weeks out of the year. So Outdoorsy can help people rent out these vehicles. On the other side of the market, according to Cavins' research, 40 million people in the world every year try to rent a recreational vehicle -- and Outdoorsy wants to provide an outlet for this demand.
Cavins started the company in San Francisco in 2015 but decided to move it to Austin about six months ago. Outdoorsy officially moved its headquarters to Central Texas in early March.
"Austin is widely known as probably the most popular city for young people to live, work and play," Cavins said. "The outdoor culture is rich and vibrant here. There's tens of thousands of green space for hiking, biking, camping and outdoor experiences. And importantly, there's no winterization of these type of vehicles in Austin."
Along with the actual RV, Outdoorsy asks the people providing these RVs to also include other camping materials.
"We encourage our owners to create add-ons in their listings that provide everything from the kitchen kit to coffee makers to linens and to telescopes as well as bikes, canoes, kayaks and paddle boards for the renter to have a great outdoor experience," Cavins said.
If you want to learn more about these services, you can visit the company's website at outdoorsy.com.