Have you recently purchased your first RV? Congratulations! RV ownership can be a ton of fun, especially once you learn how to use your rig properly. In order to help you get off to the best possible start with your RVing experience, we have listed ten helpful ‘newbie’ tips below. Keep these tips in mind as you plan and embark on your inaugural trip in the new RV.
#1 – RVs Take a Long Time to Stop
Forgive us if this should go in the ‘obvious’ category, but it is a point which needs to be made anyway. Most people are used to driving around town in cars or pickup trucks, but piloting an RV is a different kind of experience altogether. Make sure you give yourself as much room to stop as possible, since the weight of these vehicles means they need far more runway than the average sedan.
#2 – You Don’t Need to Pack Your Entire House
It is tempting to pack a ton of gear for an RV camping trip, as you will have quite a bit of space available in the rig. Don’t fall victim to that temptation. Only bring what you need, just as you would when camping in a tent. It is no fun to have to squeeze yourself into tight corners of your RV because you have packed a whole bunch of gear which will never be used.
#3 – Pack from Bottom to Top
Speaking of packing, make it a habit to keep heavier items down low while moving the lighter stuff into higher spaces. Remember, you are going to be driving your RV on the open road, so you want to be logical about weight distribution. Moving heavy stuff up high is going to make the rig less stable overall.
#4 – Buy Food Close to Camp
When possible, plan a stop at a grocery store close to your destination in order to pick up most of your items. You don’t need to haul all of your food the whole way if there is a store near the campground, and it will be easier to keep your food fresh this way.
#5 – Happiness is Being Level
You are only going to be able to enjoy your RV to the fullest if you are able to get it level once in your campsite. Bring along the right equipment for leveling, such as jacks and leveling blocks, and take time to get this task right.
#6 – Master the Sewer
One of the best things about owning an RV is the fact that you have a bathroom on board. One of the worst things about owning an RV is the fact that you are responsible for emptying the tanks associated with that bathroom. Learn how to handle this chore like a pro so you don’t have any smelly problems later on.
#7 – Not Every Road is an RV Road
Just because a road shows up on your GPS as a viable option for your trip does not mean it’s a good choice for your RV. Be smart, avoid narrow, windy roads, and always do your research before setting out.
#8 – Your Checklist is Crucial
Every RV owner should have a checklist of things to pack and review before hitting the road. This list should be a constant companion at the start and end of every trip. There is a lot to remember when traveling by RV, and a good checklist can take the stress out of the process.
#9 – Other RV Owners Are Usually Friendly – But Give Them Space
You should expect to make plenty of friends along the way when travelling by RV. You should also expect to meet some people who would rather be left alone. Be sure to give others the space they request, and enjoy chatting with those who want to make new friends.
#10 – Patience Goes a Long Way
Don’t rush when you are traveling by RV. You shouldn’t be trying to make record time getting to your destination, and you shouldn’t be in a hurry when packing either. This is supposed to be your recreational time, so enjoy it and make the most of the opportunity.