Vito & Karen founded Go Overland Canada shortly after getting into the world of Overlanding. They both have travelled the world (50+ countries), and lived in different continents during their adult life. While Globetrotting, two things always remained constant - a passion for exploring the outdoors, and that home / Canada was their favourite place to be. When it came time to purchase a Rooftop tent, they immediately knew they wanted a hardshell due to the setup speed, and durability. Like many of us, they searched and searched but found the RTT market to be a monopoly, with huge brands charging $4,000-$5,000 and up just for the tent. No extras were included and most of the time shipping wasn’t included. They also didn’t want to ship a tent in from the US as the prices weren’t much better.
They very quickly identified a large gap in the market to provide well made tents that could be shipped directly to consumers, and that would include much needed extras. Vito lived in China for over a year and had established connections with businesses in the manufacturing space. As we all know, the majority of rooftop tents are manufactured in China. It also helped having Vito’s Dad Frank as a mechanical engineer for 30+ years, with a main focus of purchasing tools to build vehicle parts for large automotive brands that we know today. Frank would travel to China every other month, spending 2-4 weeks at a time. After several in person meetings with different rooftop tent manufacturers, Vito & Karen pulled the trigger, ordering several prototypes over the course of six months. Iterations came quickly while user testing was underway. A couple of years later, and after trying four different manufacturers, they finally landed in a good spot.
In terms of the business model, it was simple…how could Go Overland Canada provide the same quality tents that you can find on the market but at a fraction of the price? It was simple, reduce overhead expenses, manufacture in bulk (100+ units at a time) and say no to retailers that want $1,000+ margin per tent sold. This allowed for a lean business model, where the price of the RTT includes extras that retailers sell for hundreds of dollars, while still being able to provide free shipping! Many retailers in the Overlanding space want to see 30% margin on the retail price of the tent, and we’ve been approached asking for as much as 50% of the retail price. This explains the high costs of RTTs you see today. Go Overland Canada will continue to improve on the product suite of tents provided and will be sure to always remain the best priced RTT package in Canada.