5 Tips for planning an RV vacation

Hitting the road for an RV vacation is quintessential American dream. Prior to 2020, many Americans opted for travel by air, but as the Coronavirus pandemic puts safety in perspective, those same Americans are realizing the benefits and joys of traveling by RV. Whether you’re an age old RVer or brand new to RVing, this article will help you prepare for an RV vacation helping you have you make the most of your trip.

Make a plan
Planning an RV vacation is an exciting but somewhat daunting task. For those new to planning a big road trip, it can feel overwhelming to know where to go, what spots to visit, or where to camp. Establishing a solid plan ahead of time is key to a successful trip. A good place to start is by identifying the big destinations you want to visit. Whether that’s a historic route, national park, or big city figure out the main attractions you’re going to visit and plug them into a map to determine the optimal route to get there. You can learn more about how we  plan our RV trips here.
We like to use the Dyrt Pro’s trip planner, which allows you to enter your destinations, the type of vehicle you’re driving, how long you like to travel in a given day, and it maps out the best route with gas stations tops and camping spots for the entire way! It makes planning an RV trip super easy and removes the hassle of going to dozen websites to plan your trip. If you’re new to the Dyrt, it’s the #1 rated camping app for both Apple and Android and has the most campgrounds out of any online platform with over 1 million user submitted campground reviews and tips making it a must have app for planning an RV trip. If you’re interested in signing up, get 10% off the Dyrt Pro by using the code ESRV.
But don’t over plan
It’s super easy to over plan an RV trip. If you only have a limited amount of time to take a vacation it’s understandable that you want to pack as much in as possible. You can fit a lot in an itinerary in just a short period of time, but that can lead to you getting burnt out or end up needing a vacation from the vacation you just took. I suggest researching your big destinations and figuring out how much time should be allotted to the place to see all you want. Certain destinations like Yellowstone National Park will warrant several days. Rushing through it in one or two days won’t do the park justice. While other parks, like White Sands National Park or Carlsbad Caverns are just a day excursion. Also keep in mind that traveling by RV can take longer than traveling by car because RVs are bigger in size and slower in nature. It can also be a bit more fatiguing, especially if you aren’t used to driving a vehicle of that size.

Get to know the rv

You don’t need to own an RV to take an RV vacation. Many choose to rent an RV, which can be a great option for those looking for a little getaway. However, it’s important to take the time to get to know the vehicle and how it works before hitting the road. All too often we see new RVers make some very unsafe decisions unbeknownst to them.

If you’re renting an RV make sure the company leasing the RV gives you a thorough walkthrough of how to operate things in and around the RV and if necessary watch a few videos on Youtube to help you understand the intricacies of a make and model similar to the one you own or rent. It also doesn’t hurt to give a test drive, going on a few smaller trips locally to the grocery store, highway, or park to get practice turning the RV, parking it, or backing it up. The last thing you want on your RV vacation is to break a part of the RV or have a major malfunction because you didn’t know what you were doing. As eager as you may be to get on the road, don’t skip this step!

save money by cooking in
One of the biggest benefits to RVing is that you have all of the creature comforts of home with you no matter where you go including a kitchen to cook in. A huge part of any vacation is enjoying tasty meals at great new restaurants, but eating out non-stop, especially in remote areas (like near national parks) can get tiring after a while. While RV kitchens may not be the same size you’re used to in your home, they are more than sufficient for cooking quick and tasty meals. Try to pre-plan what meals you will make in the RV before hand so you can grab the proper ingredients before hitting the road. This cuts down on the number of stops you need to make and ensures you have snacks and food on hand for when the family gets hungry.
Be flexible
A huge part of taking an RV vacation is being flexible. While it’s a good idea to have reservations for where you will be staying booked pretty far in advance, especially if you plan to visit during peak season it’s also important to be flexible with your route and trip as a whole. You may pass a cool town, unique attraction, or end up spending more time in one place than you originally expected to. By having flexibility (and not over planning) you have the ability to re-route, pull over when you see something cool to explore or just have more time to enjoy with the family.
Hopefully this article has helped you feel more prepared and excited for your next RV vacation. Get ready to hit the road with your family in tow, exploring the incredible sights, food, and wonders our country has to offer! 

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Liz & Dennis

Liz & Dennis

ESRV Team

We’re two travel-loving, real estate investing, foodies exploring North America as full-time RV’ers. This blog is where we share our lessons learned, tips and tricks, and favorite places to eat, see, and RV across North America! We hope it helps you find your wanderlust, plan and prepare for RV life, and get out on the road!

 

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