ADAC Classification: Services & Criteria 

What is the ADAC classification?

The ADAC classification, which is uniform throughout Europe and has five possible stars, reflects the level of facilities offered by campsites in Europe and enables a fair comparison in the areas of sanitary, grounds, campsite stores, recreation and bathing . It takes into account equipment and quality features, is based on standardised criteria and is highly regarded by campsites and campers.

The basis for the classification of a campsite is the results of annual inspections carried out by independent inspectors during the summer peak season. Due to limited capacity, campsites are prioritised. Campsites that are interested in an inspection can contact us by
Email: Campsites with classifications that have made major changes from one season to the next can also contact Campsites with 5 stars will be awarded the rating “ADAC Superplatz”, campsites with 4 to 4.5 stars will be awarded “ADAC TIPP”. This system helps campers find their ideal destination and select campsites according to their preferences.

Learn more in the ADAC Classification Webinar

ADAC Classifikation

Everything you need to know: Ilka Heyke, Lead of Inspection at ADAC Camping, explains the ADAC classification and gives an outlook on the future direction of the camping industry's most important classification.

Ilka Heyke

The weighting of the performance criteria

Not all criteria are equally important to campers. That´s why the different campsite characteristics weigh differently on the ADAC Classification.

ADAC Classification Reports

Get a detailed overview of the results of your classification criteria

Rating sanitary 

The rating of the sanitary facilities has the greatest influence on the ADAC classification, accounting for 39%. Both the quantity and quality of the sanitary facilities play an important role.

In terms of quality, the architecture and design of the buildings, maintenance and cleanliness are assessed. Buildings with a high relevance for tourist campers also have a greater influence than sanitary facilities that are partly or mainly used by permanent campers. In relation to the number of guests at full occupancy of the campsite, the following sanitary facilities pay off quantitatively in the ADAC classification:

  • toilets
  • washbasins
  • showers
  • single and combined cabins
  • dishwashing sinks and dishwashers
  • laundry sinks, washing machines and dryers
  • sinks for cassette toilets

Requirements per 100 pitches* to achieve the highest rating:

  • 9 washbasins with hot water
  • 10 shower cubicles with hot water
  • 7 women’s toilets
  • 6 men’s toilets or urinals
  • 1 wash basin or 1 washing machine
  • 1 sink
  • 1 spout for cassette toilets

We use the following weighting: Pitches for tourists = 100%. Pitches for permanent campers without own sanitary facilities = 60%. Rental accommodation without own sanitary facilities 100%.

Requirements for structure, design and equipment of sanitary buildings to achieve the highest rating:

  • Solid building in masonry, concrete or wood (no sanitary container)
  • Architecturally appealing construction and attractive exterior design
  • High-quality construction and installation materials
  • Spatial separation of the toilet areas from other sanitary facilities
  • Sufficient aeration and ventilation
  • Adequate lighting (each installation has individual lighting)
  • Flush-mounted installation of all pipes and lines
  • Suitable floor slope in wet rooms for optimal water drainage
  • Partition walls for toilets and showers are closed at the bottom
  • Adequate tiling of walls: minimum height of showers = 2m, for toilets and washbasins = 1.50 m. Instead of tiles, other high-quality materials (e.g. natural stone) can also be used.
  • All cubicles are lockable from the inside
  • Sufficient passage widths, especially for cubicle doors that open outwards
  • Sufficient amount of waste containers
  • Minimum distance from washbasin center to washbasin center = 1m.
  • For washbasins with side partitions, minimum distance from partition to partition = 1m.
  • Single wash cabins and showers: Minimum area of 1.80 sqm; minimum width of 90 cm.
  • Toilets: minimum area of 1.60 sqm, minimum width = 90 cm. Minimum distance from the toilet to the cabin door = 65 cm.
  • Washbasins and wash cabins: each with a mirror and a power socket
  • Showers: vestibule with seating, separated from the shower area by a splashback wall
  • Washbasins, wash cabins and showers: sufficient storage space and equipped with coat hooks
  • Toilets: equipped with seats, toilet paper, toilet brush and coat hooks
  • Hand basins at toilets: have sufficient soap dispensers as well as towels or electric hand dryers.
  • Urinals with privacy screens

Rating grounds

The rating of the pitches category accounts for 26% of the ADAC classification. It is made up equally of the evaluation of the pitches and the so-called public areas of the campsite. Both quantity and quality are taken into account.

The following factors play a role in the evaluation of the pitches:

  • The size and layout of the pitches
  • Maintenance and design of the pitches
  • Direct electricity connections and their amperage
  • Fresh and waste water connections
  • Gas connections
  • WLAN at the stand

Public areas include:

  • Reception area
  • Site signage
  • Parking on arrival and departure
  • Overall impression of the site (including planting, structure, layout)
  • Cleanliness of the campsite

Rating the campsite stores

The supply category has a 10% influence on the ADAC classification of a camp site. Shopping facilities such as bread service, kiosk, grocery store and supermarket are taken into account, as well as camping and leisure articles available and cafés, bistros, snack bars and restaurants. Shopping and catering each contribute equally to the overall score and are assessed qualitatively in addition to “available on site or not”.

Type and equipment of the pitches for a best rating:

  • Stands almost completely parceled out
  • average pitch size of 120 sqm
  • each pitch with electricity connection
  • fuse protection of the power connections with 16 ampere
  • pitches almost completely equipped with WLAN
  • at least 50% of the pitches with fresh water/sewage connections
  • Stands predominantly level
  • Design, maintenance and cleanliness of the pitches meet the highest standards

Reception and its equipment

  • Size and ambiance of the reception desk in relation to the size of the campsite
  • waiting area with seating
  • nearby toilet facilities
  • clearly visible indication of opening hours
  • selection of guest information about the square and its surroundings

Parking facilities

  • size of the parking lot in relation to the size of the square
  • clear marking
  • arriving guests do not interfere with normal operations
  • maneuvering of carriages not required


  • Signage of all facilities as well as the exit in relation to the campsite size
  • Signs of sufficient size and in good condition
  • Signs also understandable for children by additional indication of symbols

Roadways, accessibility of the stands

  • Main driveways are well paved and easy to drive on in all weather conditions, even for caravan
  • Roadways are without defects
  • Stands are mostly accessible without assistance

Maintenance, design and cleanliness of the campsite

  • Site free of garbage
  • Garbage containers with visual protection to the stands
  • The site is attractively designed
  • Division of the site into tourist, permanent campers, rental accommodation and supply areas
  • Central location of sanitary facilities – no pitch more than 100 m away

Kiosk / Grocery / Supermarket

The ADAC classification distinguishes between a kiosk, which sells fresh rolls and usually also newspapers, sweets, ice-cream and drinks, a grocery store, which offers a wider range of products and where you can buy various types of fruit and vegetables, cheese, dairy products, basic meals and the like, and a supermarket, which is mainly characterised by fresh produce, independent departments and a very wide range of products.

  • Only facilities located on the campsite will be judged
  • Only the best shopping facilities will be judged
  • The grocery store and the supermarket will be rated Standard or Exceptional, depending on the range of products offered
  • Camping and recreational equipment

The range of camping and leisure products may be in a standalone store or in a section within the supermarket. The range is also rated as Standard or Exceptionally Good.

Accordingly, the best results within this sub-category may be achieved by locations with an exceptionally good supermarket and an exceptionally good range of camping and leisure articles.

Snack Bar / Restaurant

A snack bar is characterised by simple (fast food) meals such as chips or pizza to go or a short stay to eat. Restaurants are divided into three categories:

  • Basic restaurant, such as a creperie or bistro
  • Standard restaurant, which is functionally furnished and offers a certain variety of food and drinks, such as a pizzeria or schnitzel house
  • Exceptional restaurant with an upmarket menu, a very coherent ambience and a very varied or high quality menu, and long opening hours during the high summer season

Rating the recreation

Leisure activities account for 12.5% of the ADAC classification. A distinction is made here between entertainment facilities for children, sports enthusiasts and adults, and all permanent facilities relating to games, sport and wellness. The scores for each of these two areas contribute equally to the leisure category score.

Games, sports and wellness are assessed both quantitatively and qualitatively. This means that it depends on how many different types of play equipment, sports fields and wellness facilities are available and how well maintained and up-to-date they are. The size of the playgrounds also affects the score. Bad weather facilities such as a recreation room and indoor play areas are also taken into account. Recreation is assessed on the number of days in the peak summer season and the number of hours of guided activities.

Rating the Bathing

Bathing facilities account for 12.5% of the ADAC classification. Points can be awarded for access to natural waters such as the sea, lake and river, as well as for swimming pools and paddling areas.

When assessing natural facilities, the ADAC classification focuses on the size of beaches and sunbathing areas and their facilities, such as umbrellas and showers, as well as the cleanliness and maintenance of the recreational areas. Outdoor and indoor swimming pools are judged on cleanliness, maintenance, pool design and the size of all areas for swimming and splashing about.

When evaluating playgrounds, all play areas that a campground offers are considered. These include outdoor play areas, indoor play areas, adventure play areas, and water play areas. The following factors are evaluated:

  • The total area of all playgrounds in relation to the total number of possible guests (best values are possible from 5 square meters per stand).
  • The number and variety of playground equipment (the minimum number of different playground equipment for a best rating is six for small sites, the requirement increases proportionally to the size of the site)
  • The quality, state of maintenance and cleanliness of the individual pieces of equipment and of the entire playground according to a scale from as good as new or very good to insufficient

Sports fields and exercise facilities are one of the top topics for vacation-happy campers. For all travel constellations, from families with children and sports-minded couples to solo travelers and groups, sports activities are high on the list of expectations for campsites. Sports facilities are rated qualitatively from new or very good to insufficient and quantitatively according to their degree of specialness.

Examples of normal sports offers

  • Soccer
  • Basketball
  • Volleyball
  • Mini golf
  • Fitness
  • Paddle tennis
  • Bouldering wall
  • Skater course
  • SUP and kitesurfing

Examples of extraordinary sport offers

  • High-rope climbing course
  • Water ski or wakeboard facility
  • Summer ski slope
  • BMX trail
  • Golf course

Relaxing and places to unwind are part of a successful stay at a campsite for many campers. Wellness offers are qualitatively evaluated from as good as new or very good to insufficient. Among other things are recorded:

  • Saunas
  • Steam bath
  • Hamam
  • Infrared cabins
  • Massage
  • Beauty salon
  • Physiotherapy

In addition, reading rooms, lounges and discos are included in the ADAC classification.

Animation will consider offers that take place under the guidance of competent personnel. The activities must be offered for at least one hour per week in at least four weeks of the summer peak season.

A distinction is made between children’s animation, sports animation and entertainment animation.

  • Children (program for children up to 12 years, miniclub is included)
  • Sports such as guided hikes and bike tours, aqua gymnastics, organized canoe and kayak tours or tournaments.
  • Entertainment such as movie nights, cooking and language courses, city tours organized from the campsite.

For a maximum rating, there should be a program at the campsite for at least six days a week for at least four weeks in each of the three categories during the peak season. In total, there should be at least 50 hours of program per week.

Only waters that are located directly at the campsite and that can be reached from the pitches without crossing a public road will be evaluated. The evaluation is based on the quantity (area) of the beach and the quality (condition and equipment). Best values can be achieved from 20 square meters of beach per pitch and when the beach is evaluated as very good in quality.

For this, the beach must be clean, slope rather shallowly into the water, there must be a lifeguard and there should be enough well-maintained showers, sunbeds, umbrellas and other equipment available.

Outdoor pools, indoor pools, children’s pools and paddling pools are evaluated. Here, too, the evaluation is made up of the quantity (surface area) of the pools and the quality (architectural design, maintenance and cleanliness). For a quantitative best rating, a water surface of 2.5 square meters per stand is necessary. Qualitatively, it depends on the following:

  • Use of high-quality building materials for the pool walls
  • Swimming pool edges with non-slip covering
  • Architecturally attractive design
  • In the indoor swimming pool additional changing rooms, lockers, showers, toilets and a sufficient number of deckchairs
  • In the outdoor pool additionally foot disinfection pool, sufficiently large meadow with an appropriate number of deckchairs as well as nearby showers and toilets
  • Walls and floors are undamaged
  • Deck chairs and playground equipment are in perfect condition
  • Fences and other demarcations are in perfect condition
  • Clean pool walls and floors
  • Water is free from dirt and algae deposits
  • Foot disinfection pools with running water
  • Clean changing rooms and sanitary facilities


Despite all the explanations, sometimes something remains unclear. We have summarized the most frequently asked questions and their answers here. Should you also have individual concerns regarding the ADAC classification of your campsite, please feel free to contact us, stating your campsite name and location or your ADAC search number. Send your email to:

The inspection season ends in October of each year at the latest. This is also the time when you will be informed by e-mail about your ADAC classification. And this is regardless of whether an inspection has taken place at your campsite in the current year or in a previous year.

The ADAC classifications valid for the coming season are published for the first time in the ADAC Camping Guide, which appears annually in December. On, on and in the ADAC Camping and Pitch Guide App, the current classification results can be seen from January of the new year.

Example: In August 2022, an inspection will be carried out on your pitch. You will receive the resulting classification result by e-mail in October 2022. It will appear in print for the first time in the ADAC Camping Guide 2023, which will be launched in December 2022. On, and in the ADAC Camping and Pitch Guide App, the latest results will be available from January 2023.

An ADAC classification that you are not satisfied with does not necessarily mean that you have been rated poorly. Basically, the star rating represents an overall value from the five categories of sanitary facilities, grounds, supply, leisure and bathing.

So it may well be that you have scored very highly in the category or categories that are particularly important to you and your target audience, and that an area you don’t necessarily target puts the overall result into perspective. All categories are displayed to campers with your individual results, so that your target group is informed in the best possible way.

We inform you about the ADAC evaluation criteria on this page. If you still have doubts about a fair evaluation even after comparing the evaluation criteria with your campsite offer, please feel free to contact us with your specific request:

It depends. The rule is that an inspector visits your place every 1 – 3 years. If you find that this has not been the case for you and you would like to push for an inspection, simply notify us of your inspection request, including specific details of changes made and new offers by sending an email to

You are also welcome to send us photos. We will then check whether we can prioritize your campsite for an upcoming inspection.

An ADAC classification is given to campsites that have been inspected by an independent inspector on behalf of ADAC. The results of this inspection will be calculated and displayed as the ADAC classification in stars.

In order to be scheduled for an inspection, we depend on the support of the campsites. The more promptly and comprehensively we are informed about developments such as investments or redesigns, the faster and more accurately we can prioritize for inspection. Whether this is a first inspection or a re-inspection does not matter. It is important to know that classifications can only change based on an inspection.

Feel free to contact us if you are interested in an inspection, providing as much detail as possible about any new additions to your campsite. Send your email to:

Reaching for the stars: Online ratings and ADAC classification

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