Americans love their RVs. Nearly nine million American households own an RV. This is according to the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association. Campers who stay in RVs take longer camping vacations than people who stay in tents or cabins. Approximately 13% of people camping in RVs spend at least seven nights camping. RV campers make up about 16% of all campers. RV camping can be for anyone who likes to camp. Whether you are an RV beginner or an expert with your own equipment such as aground protection mat, here are some tips to get you started.
- Do you want to rent or own an RV? Do you expect to take a lot of trips in your RV? Do you have a place to store it? It is not enough to have some land where you can park it, you need to put down at least a ground protection mat to protect the tires from damage from concrete or from sinking into the ground. If you are not sure if you want to make the plunge into buying a RV, consider renting one and seeing how you like it.
- Take some time to become acquainted with your RV. Even if you just rent one for a single trip, you need to know what to do if it breaks down. You should be very familiar with the electrical system. Know how much it can handle. Learn about what kind of ground protection mat you need to stay out of the mud. There may be times when you need a mechanic but you should know enough about your vehicle to be able to fix minor things on your own. This will save you money but also time.
- Practice driving it! It may not be possible to simulate all of the conditions that you will face on the road but if you have an idea of what the roads will be like on your trip and know of roads near you that are similar, take your RV out and get used to driving it. This is a different kind of driving than when you drive your car or truck. Your RV has a lot more moving parts than your car or truck so get used to having things happen like drawers that open. This is a much bigger vehicle and will take some getting used to.
- Have all the parts you will need. This means you should have the right tools and parts. You will need flashlights, light bulbs, batteries, spare cables, connectors, nuts and bolts. Bring a basic took kit. Have extra RV jack pads, ground mats and whatever tools or parts are unique to your vehicle. The last thing you want is to break down somewhere and then have to wait for the part to be shipped to you where you are.
- Plan your spontaneous trips. There is a real sense of freedom that comes with owning an RV. You can literally go wherever you want, whenever you want to do. You will do yourself a favor by planning some of your trips in advance. Look at where you want to go and how you want to get there. You can make the most of your road trips by mapping them out so you do not miss the cool sights that make them fun. Plan your meals.
- Write up a checklist for each site. When you arrive at your campsite, check the water, electrical and sewage hookups. Take care when you connect your vehicle to the site hookups. Wear protective gloves. Find a good spot to park away from low hanging branches and ground obstacles. Level your RV with RV jack pads or a ground protection mat.
RVs can offer families a great way to see the country and have a great time doing it. They offer a lot of freedom in terms of where you stay and how long you stay there. If you like the idea of getting out to see the country but are not excited by sleeping in a tent, this can be a great alternative to that kind of camping. Follow these tips and you and your family will have some great camping trips together.