Copyright © 2023 Albuquerque Journal
If you were hoping to reserve an on-site recreational vehicle space for the 2023 Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, then you’re a day late and a dollar short, as the saying goes.
The website to reserve one of 1,785 spaces opened at 9 a.m. sharp on Wednesday, and 70 minutes later a record was set as all spaces were gone and a waiting list was activated. The website received 2.5 million requests per second involving 60,436 different users, according to Staylist, the fiesta’s RV reservation vendor and a sponsor.
The reason for the heavy traffic was because people were trying to claim a spot by going online with multiple devices and with multiple individuals from the same IP (Internet Protocol) address, said fiesta spokeswoman Amanda Molina.
While competition for RV spaces (including 11 for tent camping) at the seven overnight sites around Balloon Fiesta Park has always been stiff, it has gotten more intense in recent years as the fiesta transitioned from a combination of online and mail-in reservations to online only, Molina said. This year was the fastest yet that reservation spaces were grabbed. In years past, reaching the booking limit averaged about two hours, she said.
The 2023 fiesta will be held Oct. 7-15, and a minimum three-day rental is required, although the average number of days for which a space is booked is six, Molina said. Nearly half of all the spaces – 885 of them – have been reserved for the entirety of the nine-day event, including those who set up early and reserved a space for up to 14 days.
Depending on the location and amenities at the overnight areas, reservations cost from $50 to $250 a night, she said.
Of course, there are other places where RV spaces can be rented, though not so conveniently located adjacent to Balloon Fiesta Park. Many of these RV parks also get booked quickly for Balloon Fiesta, some don’t open reservations until later in the year, and others don’t take reservations, operating on a first-come, first-served basis. Among the choices are:
• Expo New Mexico, 300 San Pedro NE, 505-222-9715
• Isleta Lakes & RV Park, 4051 Highway 47 SE, 505-244-8102
• Route 66 RV Resort, Exit 140 off Interstate 40, 505-352-8000
• American RV Resort, 13500 Central SW, 505-831-3545
• High Desert RV Park, 13000 Frontage Road SW, 505-839-9035
• Enchanted Trails RV Park & Trading Post, 14305 Central Ave NW, 505-831-6317
• Coronado Village RV Park, 8401 Pan American Freeway NE, 505-823-2515
• Balloon View RV Park, 500 Tyler Road NE, 505-345-3716
• Albuquerque Central KOA, 12400 Skyline NE, 800-562-7781
• Albuquerque North KOA, 555 S. Hill Road, Bernalillo, 505-867-5227
• Coronado Campground, 106 Kuaua Road, Bernalillo, 505-980-8256
• Stagecoach Stop RV Resort, 3650 Highway 528, Rio Rancho, 505-867-1000