You learn as much as you can before buying an RV, but some things you can only learn by experience. Or, by reading this article…
There was a question posed recently about what our RV Lifestyle members wish they had known about RVing before hitting the road!
And, guess what? There was a LOT RVers wish they had known. The post received nearly 300 comments sharing the wisdom RVers gained from the road.
What RVers Wish They Had Known
The following are all the things our RV Lifestyle members wish they had known about RVing before getting on the road. Their mistakes and discoveries can help you be prepared if RVing is new to you!
1. Fluctuating Gas Prices
The first item on our list is the fluctuating gas prices. Of course, this should no longer come as a surprise to most since we have all been hit hard by the soaring gas prices these past few months.
Many RVers wished they had known How to Get Better Gas Mileage in Your RV.
Our RV Lifestyle member, Kari, was the first to comment on the thread. It was not that she mentioned fluctuating gas prices that stood out, but the large red exclamation point at the end.
Gas is one of the largest ongoing RVing expenses you can incur depending on how far you are traveling and the type of rig you own.
It can absolutely influence your travel plans because what once was an affordable destination for you may not be any longer. Many people will end up staying closer to home.
Consider the size and gas mileage of any rig that you are looking to purchase.
Another RVer, Connie, also shared how she learned that fuel treatment can help battle this challenge. She said it’s “getting me 7 more miles to the gallon.”
Tires, tires, tires. This is another very important part of RVing. That’s because tires are the only thing separating your rig from the road you are traveling on.
Many of our members mentioned tires as an important thing to understand before becoming an RVer.
John L. commented simply, “Chinese tire bombs.” He later explained this to mean that cheap tires made in China can burst on you and to be careful with what you purchase.
Another member agreed since he had experienced a major tire blowout himself.
Be sure that you always have solid tires on your rig, but be prepared for the cost. Getting good tires is not cheap in the short run but can save you money (and a lot of hassle) in the long run.
Having good tires also falls under the Preventative Maintenance Every RVer Should Do.
3. Unpredictable Expenses
Another member, Caroyln, commented on rising overall expenses. She cited the rising gas prices and the cost of RV parks.
Just like all of us, RV park owners are experiencing the pinch of inflation. That means they are passing on those costs to you.
Carolyn said that they became full-time RVers to be able to save one-third of their income. They found that rising RV park costs prevented them from saving what they wanted to.
In addition, she said that the places she stayed in Florida cost about $1,200 per month last year, but that’s jumping to $2,000 per month next year. That is a roughly 66% increase in pricing over the course of one year. Ouch!
Mike and Jennifer’s Summer T-Shirts for your next adventure
4. Do Not Overpack
Hank commented, “Leave all that STUFF at home!!” He was not alone in this sentiment.
Susan M. went further to say, “Take half of what you think you will use (stuff wise).”
Both of our members make a great point. Most of us overpack our RVs. Yes, there is good reason to have some items you may need but won’t always use.
But pack carefully. Ask yourself if you think you will truly use something. And don’t forget these Little Things to Remember to Pack for Your Big RV Trip
If you discover that you do not use an item after several trips, consider taking it out of your RV. That can free up valuable room in the rig.
It can also make the vehicle lighter overall which can save you gas money in the long run!
5. Know Your Water System!
Another important item mentioned by Julia is to understand how your valve system works. She said that understanding the grey and black tanks is valuable info, and she is right!
It is a good idea to go through a trial run of these systems before your first trip. That way, you don’t get to your destination and waste valuable water or damage your delicate system.
6. When and Where to Purchase Liquor
This was a funny message that came through, but might be important for some of you.
Not all states sell liquor in regular grocery stores. Some states sell beer and wine at the grocery store, but not hard liquor.
Furthermore, many states do not allow liquor sales on Sundays, and sometimes it’s on a county-by-county basis.
If you plan on picking up any alcohol on the road, be sure to pay attention to the state and county laws around liquor.
7. Rent It Out
Another idea that popped up in the comment thread is an idea to make money when not using your RV by renting it out!
Renting out your Rv may not be for everyone. It takes work to clean and deliver it between rentals. It can also cost you money for repairs and wear and tear in the long run. So, you may want to read 5 Things to Know Before Renting Out Your RV first.
But some people love renting their rigs out and make good money doing it!
RV Lifestyle member, Kelly, says that they “are using ours as a rental so we always have a fallback and we stay diversified in our investments.”
More Things RVers Wish They Had Known…
You can read even more responses from the Facebook post. Trust me, there are plenty of things RVers wish they had known and I bet the FB thread is still growing. You can share your wisdom, too!
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Mike and Jennifer’s Official Travel Guide – Michigan’s Lower Peninsula is now available!
You are in for a HUGE adventure. While some of our guides are designed to explore an area in 7 days, this one can take an entire summer to see it all. We chose to start in Detroit and travel north up the “Thumb” region, but you can pick and choose any section you want to begin your adventure.
Each Stop in our Guide gives you at least 3 places to camp while exploring the area! The state is particularly well suited for RV adventurers and the Michigan State Park system is one of the nation’s best. But don’t forget the beauty of boondocking. State forests abound, most offering rustic and dispersed off-the-grid camping. We hope you pick this up and enjoy one of our favorite places in the US to RV!