Carolina: Cruising Past 70: THE 10 COMMANDMENTS OF RV CRUISING

Thursday, June 7, 2018


In the past nine weeks, I have published eight posts on RVing. Each was culled from our eight years of roaming around North America in an RV. The epic journey gave us lots of lessons learned.  Here are the 10 Commandments of RVing, updated from the original 10 I first wrote about (go to this post). The list summarizes our experience so whenever I can, I linked to a specific post discussing the guideline in greater detail. 

1. Follow the sun; maximize the fun.                      
Because you can move, you don’t need to shiver in the cold nor blister in the sun. Commandment One is the most important. It is the main benefit of RVing!  Spend summers in the North and winters, go South!

2. Plan and document your trips well.
Enjoying the places and activities is only one-third of the fun. Another third is planning and visualizing the fun. The last third is reliving the fun. Thus, plan and document well. Utilizing technology is a must. For more, please see this.

3. Don’t move from one area to another before you really get to know an area. Explore it well before moving on. You wouldn’t want your fuel expenses will increase unnecessarily.

4. Stay healthy; build healthcare needs into your plan.
This commandment was not part of the original 10. It was a big lesson we learned. If we were given the chance to do it all again, we would make sure we had some months a year with a regular family doctor. For the details, please go here.

5. Choose an RV (and dinghy) that meets basic needs, not wants.
The RV must meet basic needs but because fuel is expensive, it also must be as small as possible. MPG rules. We did not opt for a fifth wheel because they are towed by a pick-up truck, meaning low MPG. You may click this for more details.

6. Always travel light.
Travel light was also our motto when we had to take business trips. In RVing, this is the golden rule. Remember that you are always moving your home or hotel room, so live with the barest minimum. Click this for the secret to traveling light.

7. Become a member of a network.
You can reduce camping expenses. If you camp a lot in a year, be a member of a network of campgrounds and enjoy highly discounted rates. The task of looking for campgrounds is also eliminated. This idea is included in this discussion.

8. Look for work or payback opportunities that blend with the lifestyle.
Many of those we met on the road work with seasonal job opportunities in different parts of the country. Amazon’s fulfillment centers and others listed in offer such opportunities.  For payback work, Habitat for Humanity enjoins RVers in Care-a-Vanners by providing the campsite.

9. Use nationwide services but also buy locally.
When you have something to fix in your RV or dinghy, it is best to use nationwide chains that honor the quality of their service or product anywhere. Doing this is not contradictory to buying locally. For higher-value products and services, it is best to go with nationwide chains, but for simpler jobs and lower-value goods, it is an excellent practice to contribute to the local economy. Besides, flea and farmers’ markets sell the season’s best produce and the community’s best crafts at the lowest prices.

10. Stay connected to friends and family.
Don’t be afraid; use technology! The hardest part of the RVing life is being far from your loved ones. Technology helps to bridge the gap.  And camping in their driveways is a neat thing to do!

If and when you choose to RV full-time, there are two additional tips:
* Don’t trade your home for a vehicle. What if something happens and you have to go back to staying put? Choose an RV that you can pay for in cash, so you don’t have to sell a home or incur new debt. If you can, rent out your home(s) to finance your RVing.
b.      *You may want to take advantage of lower tax rates and use mail forwarding services in states such as South and North Dakota or Montana, etc. We used a family member’s home address because we were told mailed-in voting is limited to those with actual home addresses.

That’s it. In one post, I have spilled all my RVing guts. If you are really serious about cruising in an RV,  you may want to put these 10 guidelines to heart.  Ask me questions in the Comments Section below. You may also want to read my book: Carolina: Cruising to an American Dream, a travel book of our years of RVing. Not only will it give you a feel for this other way of cruising but also entertain you with the ups and downs of my immigrating and Bill’s and my love Opus.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Leave a Comment