1. RVing on a budget and on your schedule.
Working in the I.T. industry for my entire career has required ( or allowed ) me to travel a lot. Either way I look at it, I have traveled all I care to via airports and rental cars. This is great if you are on a tight schedule and don’t care to see anything between point A and point B. I found this was not a relaxing way to travel, and quite the contrary, was sometimes unsettling and stressful. Especially if you forgot and accidentally tried to carry your pocket knife through security. You will be treated as a terrorist and paraded around in front of all other people in airport as an example of how terrible you are !
I find that having my own RV and towable vehicle gives me the freedom to enjoy the country’s natural beauty and travel at my own pace without having to worry about my pocket knife being taken away. We can also control our expenses by selecting a short route and eating meals in the RV as opposed to taking the long route and eating out every meal.
Our expenses are easier to control because traveling in our own home allows us to decide if we want to (or not) go out to eat, or pay for the entry fee to a museum, concert, or not. It is easier to adjust your entertainment, food, and other expenses when there is a whole world of natural beauty to see. Waterfalls, parks, giant redwood trees, canyons, mountains, wildlife, monuments, historic buildings, etc. All of this is available for basically the cost of driving there.
Many of my friends and co-club members control their camping fees and nightly rental costs by mixing up boon-docking or dry docking along with the luxury of a campground with a pool and concrete pads. You can easily stay overnight for free at most Wal-Marts (except in California where there are local and state ordinances preventing that), or super truck stops, or you can easily pay $80 per night at an RV resort. Either way it is your choice.
2. RVing – Always packed and ready:
Take your stuff and sleep in your bed
When traveling via airports, hotels, and rental cars. There is always the worry of planning and squeezing in everything you need into one bag, and one carry on. This can be a stressful job and can limit what you can take with you. When you RV, you keep the RV loaded with your toiletries, blow dryer, linens, clothing, and pretty much everything you need other than daily meds, c-pap machines, and perishable food items.
Norma and I have found that staying in a hotel is nice, but there is always the question of cleanliness and sanitation and who knows what the people in the elevator are up to. watch this video to see our concern reported by NBC and Rossen Reports.
There is satisfaction, comfort and security in sleeping in our own bed and using our own facilities to eat, drink, shower, nap, watch TV, read, or work on our blog and check Facebook. We also found that keeping the RV stocked with our favorite brands of shampoo, soap, razors, and other personal items provides a sense of comfort. With everything already loaded in the RV except our prescriptions and perishable foods makes it easier and less stressful to make those quick get-a-ways.
We no longer have to worry about the 2 bag limit, and 50 pound per bag rule. We have everything we need from our Kurig coffee pot, to slow cookers for food prep. We save time and stress of deciding what we need or don’t need and what we may have forgotten. Packing is pretty much a non issue for the RV lifestyle if you keep your camper, RV, motorhome packed and ready to go at all times.
3. RVing – There is less upkeep
Our brick and stick house is nice and roomy and comfortable, BUT, it takes an enormous amount of time and money to maintain, repair, clean, paint, rake, trim, wash, mow, sweep…. you get the idea. We have considered selling our house or letting our children take over since their family is growing and ours is reduced to the “empty nesters”. We have not come to a final decision on that because the one that owns 51% of the vote won’t give in 🙂
Our RV is 492 square feet and a lot of that is efficiently using space for sinks, storage, cabinets, stove, sofa, etc. Housekeeping takes maybe 5 minutes. We find that having less to fix, mow, repair, etc leaves us more time for enjoying life’s adventures instead of being to busy and tired.
With cell phones and internet pretty much everywhere in the U.S. there is no need for worry about keeping in touch with friends and family. There are also plenty of service providers out there who offer mail forwarding to your temporary address where ever you are.
4. RVing – Stay Active and Stay Healthy
Believe it or not, we found that we are much more active in the RV lifestyle than we were before. If you live a sedentary life style like we did in our careers, sitting at a desk or in a car or airplane seat, you will benefit from retreating to live in an RV. We find that we have more time for walks, hikes, and even a bike ride or two. We also have grown children now, but when they travelled with us it allowed us all to spend much more valuable, quality time together that we would have been to busy at home. Even grilling out on the grill means going in and out and up and down steps to perform even simple tasks.
Fresh air has its benefits, and the smaller living space makes us get out for a walk or just sit outside more. We find that we eat healthier too since we make our own meals and room in the fridge is limited so we don’t keep things long. The turn over helps us keep fresher produce and less meats. We also don’t have pantries full of snacks, although there is room for some.
We also find that driving long distances requires a minimum of 15 minutes every two hours to get out of the seat and get coffee, or just move around. This helps with circulation and prevents being as tired after a 10 day driving. We also drink a lot of water which forces us to stop frequently anyway, and since we are stopped, we usually get out and walk around a bit.
5. RVing – Cost of living is manageable
We found that you can park overnight at several places when travelling across country for free if you ask. Several good truck stop franchises allow this along with Wal-Mart. We don’t stay there unless we are just passing through but it still saves a night in a hotel or other lodge rental.
We also enjoy eating more simple menus and better quality foods prepared in the RV than going out for every meal. This saves us a ton considering that we used to be too busy or tired to cook at home. We do salads, crock-pot meals, sandwiches, and the like. We also use throw away plates or napkins as plates to cut down on the work of cleaning pots and pans and plates.
There are as many options for campgrounds as there are hotels in most areas we visit. We are not big on RVing in New York City or San Francisco, etc. Mostly we stay at state or national parks which are very reasonably priced and offer sites to see and things to do. Otherwise we use KOA, or Good Sams where we get a discount by being a member. The point here is that you can pick and choose what rates you want to pay to control your costs. RVPARKY.COM is one really good app or web-site to help you find the perfect spot for your needs. We found the user reviews to be actual customers and we find the opinions and reviews to be pretty much spot-on.
We hope this was insightful and thought provoking to help you justify the RVing lifestyle that you want to enjoy.