Fantastic Tips for RVing Alone
Striking out onto the open road to set up your home wherever the mood strikes takes an adventurous and often independent spirit. For this reason, there are a surprising number of people who choose to RV alone, setting their own destinations, making their own schedule, and enjoying the beauty of the great outdoors.
However, any person traveling alone, especially full time and over long distances, should be prepared to take care of themselves and quickly leave situations that seem untrustworthy. There are many communities of independent RVers sharing their experiences and wisdom on camping alone.
The Best Tips for RVing on Your Own:
1) Start at the Mechanic’s
In order to reduce the chances that you’ll have to make roadside repairs, make sure to get your RV fully checked out while you’re making travel plans. Let your mechanic know that you plan to take a long trip and ask for a detailed inspection of anything that might cause a problem over more than a few hundred miles of constant use.
Doing so will prevent issues like worn out belts or damage caused by built-up corrosion. Get your engine, undercarriage, and wheel mechanisms certifiably safe before you head out on the open road.
2) Carry Extra Lawn Chairs
Though your journey is starting and may end alone, this is still one of the best tips for RVing! You never know who you will meet when you’re out and about.
While it can be tempting to pack for one, make sure to have a few friendly accommodations for any welcome visitors. If you end up staying in parks with other RVers, a shady chat on your ‘patio’ will be benefitted by more than one lawn chair, as well as a multi-person supply of things like cups and dishes.
Being able to furnish a small party also allows you to visit friends and invite them over for a fun evening out at your camping spot. Folding patio furniture is great because it can be tucked away while you’re on the road and leaving the second lawn chair out is an excellent way to suggest that you aren’t traveling alone.
3) Learn to Love the GPS
If you’re the kind of person who likes to print out maps and directions, remember that travel plans and road conditions often change! When you’re on an adventure, you must be able to adapt.
Learn to use and enjoy a satellite GPS that can route you around construction and bad traffic snarls and offer guidance if you get lost. Should you decide to add a tour of historical sites or rock climbing opportunities to the agenda halfway through the trip, your GPS can help you find them and navigate you without error.
Having a GPS is one of the best tips for RVing we have to offer!
4) Share Your Plans
Whether you stick to the original route or decide to make detours, let a friend or family member know where you’re going and where you plan to be. By sharing your plans and checking in every day or two, you can effectively create a safety net and an area to look for you in if something unfortunate does happen.
Often, simply going through the safety procedures will help you keep a clear head about potentially sketchy locations. If someplace makes you think ‘I should tell my friend before parking here’, you might just want to move along.
5) Bring a Dog
One of the best possible road companions for those with an independent spirit is a big, friendly dog. They never want to change the radio and will love to play almost anywhere you choose to park. A dog can provide quiet company, constant love, and an extra layer of safety against potentially menacing neighbors and locals. People are less likely to mess with a lone traveler when there’s a chance of upsetting their large toothy protectors.
Want to have a tail-wagging time on your trip? We think this is one of the best tips for RVing there is!
6) Park for Quick Departure
Being ready to leave quickly is an important safety step when camping, alone or with a partner. There are a number of reasons why you might want to leave an area promptly, from noisy neighbors to stern local authorities.
Especially if you’re not 100% sure of a camping location, make sure to park your rig in a way that will be easy to pull out when the time comes. This will make your morning routine much easier, as you won’t have to worry about getting turned around! At the same time, it allows you to sleep peacefully knowing you could bug out if the area gets dangerous or someone takes exception to your parking spot.
7) Pretend to Have a Partner
It may sound silly tip for RVing for those new to solo-RVing, but pretending not to be traveling alone is one of the tried and true methods in the camping community.
While most people you meet will be perfectly friendly, it’s not a good idea to advertise that you are both strange to the area and on your own. Women often bring a pair of large used boots or sneakers to leave by the door next to their own to suggest that they have a protective male companion, but even guys should consider pretending to say goodbye to an imaginary partner when leaving their vehicle alone. It just helps to keep questionable people from getting ideas!
8) Lock Up and Black Out
Our tip for RVing when you’re looking to avoid any opportunistic harassment is to close up completely in the evening. When you go into your RV for the night, lock all the doors and windows just to be secure.
This keeps hungry raccoons and birds out of your rig as effectively as it deters petty thieves from trying to jack your laptop while you sleep. It can also help not to advertise your evening movements, which can reveal that you’re traveling alone. Many lone RVers invest in blackout curtains for evening parking to keep their bedtime rituals private.
9) Carry a Device Charging Battery
This might be one of the most important tips for RVing there is. Excluding truly extreme circumstances, the worst thing that can happen to you on a solo RV trip is a damaged vehicle and a dead cell phone battery at the same time. For the modern traveler, keeping your devices charged can be the difference between comfortably waiting for a tow truck and walking to town hoping another driver will stop and let you use their phone.
Instead of relying on your phone to not run down its battery (as they are wont to do at the most inconvenient times), carry an extra charging station instead. There are a variety of mobile batteries on the market you can hook your cellphone charger to that will charge up off the engine when you drive. With a topped-up battery, your only inconvenience will be waiting an hour or two for your phone to charge back up enough to call for help, and hey, you have a comfy RV to wait in!
Solo RV travel can be an incredible amount of fun. The sensation of going where you want to and relying only on yourself is very freeing for many members of the RV community. If you’re planning a lone RV adventure in the near future or are in the middle of one right now, remember to keep your rig well maintained, research camping spots before you park, watch out for your own safety, and follow these tips for RVing. By simply covering your bases, you can set yourself up for an amazing full-time RV trip.
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