RV Fun Time – Are You Ready?

RV fun grows more every year in the Northwest!  Are you and your family ready?  Now is the time to get started and learn more.

The best time is almost anytime!   Here’s some tips so you can enjoy and relax when on the road scene.

When is the best time to go on vacation in your RV?  Now, now and now!  It doesn’t matter if you’re a casual camper or a full-on hard core RV enthusiast, you can find an RV to fit your lifestyle.

The age of baby boomer retirement has reached us which means a lot more people are hitting the road in their motor homes and travel trailers.  The RV Industry Association says that almost eight million families in the U.S. have some type of RV and there are some thirty million RV users in America.

Traveling by RV is a fun way for people to affordably realize a great quality vacation and have good quality time with the family.  One study shows that an average family of four will only spend about 26% by RV traveling compared to the dollar figure of other methods of travel and lodging. 

In addition, there are approximately sixteen thousand campgrounds in the United States which means there’s a site for every type of scenery you would like to enjoy, whether it’s rustic forest camping or urban downtown visits.

Now that you’re all excited to hook up the trailer let’s take a look at some helpful hints to make this trip a no-brainer:

Plan your route and travel destinations.

While it’s great to feel that sense of freedom that RV traveling brings, still it’s best to have a destination in mind.  It’s nice to pull into a safe campground at the end of the day and if you have a good travel plan it’s a lot easier to do just that.

Travel brochures and RV trip guides are helpful as well as tourism websites. 

Don’t forget to bring road maps; the good old Rand McNally has gone digital by the way with an iPad app in addition to the standard paper version. 

A mobile GPS is handy and you might want to consider On-Star Navigation services and smart phone mapping apps to keep you oriented.

Before you head out on the road you’ll want to make sure you pack all the appropriate stuff in your RV.  Besides the toilet paper, also consider making a checklist of RV setup items such as finding all hookups and well, hooking them up. Leveling the vehicle.  Testing water, gas and electric.

It’s easy to forget things while you are engrossed in the pretty scenery so a checklist makes it very simple to do things right. Another consideration is a camp break-down checklist for when you get ready to go will make that chore go quicker and easier.

Keep an RV Only First Aid Kit.  Keep it in a place that’s easily accessible, like an outside storage compartment and keep it’s contents fresh. And don’t rob from it while you’re at home.  You’re smart and you know what goes in a first aid kit, like band-aids, bandages, gauze, triple antibiotic ointment, aspirin, bug repellant, scissors, etc.  You can just buy a first aid kit if you like.  

Also consider an emergency kit as well that could have items like flashlights, road flares, paper and pencil, an emergency cell phone (they can call 9-1-1 even without a phone service plan).  How about a can of Fix-a-Flat?  Also an emergency contact name and phone number is helpful as well as letting friends know where you are going and where you are. Hey, that’s what Facebook is for!

Now if you are traveling with children and pets make sure to spend some time outdoors with them because RV traveling can get stuffy and make for grumpy days on the road.  Everyone needs to get out and stretch their legs during the trip.  When you find a campground, do a fun walkabout with the kids and pets so they get a feel for the place and they may also find other children to play with in common playground areas.

Sometimes the best and most accessible source of information when you have a question is to ask the person camping next to you. There are usually seasoned RV people where you are staying that have experienced and solved the same problem you are having (for free). They can also be a source of knowledge for the local area sights that you might want to check out.

More importantly, being neighborly can enhance your travel experience and sometimes make friends for life or even gain you travel buddies.

So enjoy the places you go.  This is a great year for RV travel!

 -Colin “Hittin’ The Road” Ryder

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