Monday, December 4, 2023


Adults-only and other RV park restrictions. What do you think about these?

Are RV park restrictions getting tighter? It sure feels that way!

We recently received an email from reader Sheryl H., who said, “I’m trying to make summer travel plans to New Mexico. I keep running into parks that do not allow anyone under 21. Anyone else having these problems?”

I’ll let our readers comment on your question, Sheryl. Perhaps there is an increase in age restrictions. I know that New Mexico, as well as Arizona and Florida, are all senior winter hotspots. Could it be that these campgrounds bar younger campers in order to retain their winter “snowbirds”? Do you have any experience or know anything about this? Please leave a comment below, if you do.

More RV park restrictions

It seems that more and more RV parks are restricting usage. Some parks do not permit older RVs. Other parks limit or exclude pets. Still others enforce age restrictions. Why so many limitations? Why now?

Newfound power

With the uptick in RV ownership (or, should I say, tsunami of new RVers), campgrounds are “feeling the power.” Campgrounds have discovered that they can eliminate some of their “headaches” by instituting and enforcing certain restrictions. When I say “headaches,” I don’t mean that I have a problem with pets, children, or older RVs. What I’m saying is that campgrounds can keep their managers and some of their guests happier with specific restrictions in place.

RV park restrictions eliminate problems

For example, if campers constantly complain about pet owners who refuse to pick up their pet’s “poo,” it may be easier for the campground to simply disallow pets. If the campground manager is frequently contacted about noisy kids, s/he may just decide to restrict the campground to those over 21. Wait! Aren’t the campgrounds in danger of losing profits by eliminating families with pets or children? Not in today’s RV reality. Many campgrounds are booked full, even with such restrictions in place.

Cost-cutting RV park restrictions

Another reason why campgrounds may have age restrictions is to cut costs. A small, local campground near our home needed to replace its playground. It was old and, frankly, unsafe. What did they do? Removed the playground altogether. Gone are the swings and slide. The teeter-totters and sandbox are history, too. It just costs too much to purchase and install new equipment. So, the campground opted out. When I asked about it, the manager said, “We can’t afford the amenities that families have come to expect. It’s cheaper for us to become an adults-only RV park.”

Eliminate derelict RVs

The 10-year rule is another frequent RV park restriction. This rule says that any RV older than ten years of age must be approved by a campground manager before being granted a site location. (Some campgrounds outlaw these older units completely.) One park owner said, “The 10-year rule isn’t there to discriminate against older rigs. It’s just the easiest way to prevent junk RVs from becoming permanent eyesores.” I get that.

A large, rusted RV sits in a prime spot in a park we frequent. When I asked about it, the manager said, “The owner died. The heirs want nothing to do with it. They refuse to pay for the RV to be removed from the park. So, do we take them to court or pay to have it hauled off ourselves? Either way, it’ll cost us.” That’s not fair. The RV park is on the hook one way or the other. In the meantime, they’re also losing revenue from the spot where the derelict RV continues to squat.

Image maintenance

Many upscale RV parks institute a 10-year rule in order to retain their “image.” However, I’ve seen many older RVs that have been well-maintained throughout the years and look great. For them, this restriction just doesn’t make sense—at least to me. And what about vintage RVs? When fully remodeled, they not only look cool but they also help remind us all of a simpler life and time. I don’t see why they should be excluded based on their age.

What do you think? What RV park restrictions have you encountered? Do you agree or disagree with the restrictions? Tell us in the comments below, please.



Gail Marsh
Gail Marsh
Gail Marsh is an avid RVer and occasional work camper. Retired from 30+ years in the field of education as an author and educator, she now enjoys sharing tips and tricks that make RVing easier and more enjoyable.



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Bryan (@guest_251145)
3 months ago

As far as 55 or older only, just as there are many apartment complexes and condos that are 55 or older only, there should be certain rv parks like this as well.

As far as the no pets rule, they cannot legally deny fully trained service dogs for people with disabilities according to Title 3 of the Americans With Disabilities Act. They can only ask if the dog is a service dog and what tasks is it trained to perform.

And the rule I hate the most, the ten year rule. I believe this rule is so unfair because I cannot afford to pay six figures every so many years for a new motorhome. In fact, I do regular maintenance, repairs, and inspections on my motorhome to make sure it is in pristine condition free of any leaks and to keep it clean and in ship shape. The more appropriate rule should be as long as it is in very good condition and repair, drivable or towable, and as long as it is kept neat and clean, and free of any leaks, then it should be allowed. I often steer clear of any RV parks that enforce a ten year rule.

Timothy Stitzel (@guest_246581)
4 months ago

I’m all for campgrounds that are for adults only (21-64). I would love to see more for the 65+ crowd. Of course, these would need lower costs, as we don’t need all the bells and whistles that the younger ones want.

Bill Byerly (@guest_245990)
4 months ago

If you don’t like the rules, you’re free to look elsewhere.

KellyR (@guest_245977)
4 months ago

It appears that this world would be better without dogs, kids, old people and paid for RVs. We need to nip this problem right at the start. RV dealers should be required to screen these thing out before the sale. Problem solved.

Steve H (@guest_245964)
4 months ago

Why does anyone going to New Mexico stay in a private RV park? NM has the most reasonably priced state park system in the nation. $14-18/night for a W/E campsite with a dump, flush toilets, hot showers, and the park day pass all included! Plus a lake with boating and fishing, hiking and biking paths, and gorgeous blue skies and great scenery. After a stay at City of Rocks with its bouldering, Sugarite Canyon with its coal camp tour, Rockhound with its free rock collecting, or Clayton Lake with its dinosaur track spillway, most RVers are hooked on NM state parks. NM has our favorite state parks of the 33 states and 6 Canadian provinces where we have RVed!

Parker (@guest_245962)
4 months ago

As a childfree couple, we seek out 21+ campgrounds. They are few and far between.

Dan (@guest_245953)
4 months ago

There are plenty of rv parks out there….just a little more work to find the right one for your wants….just like the no shoes, no shirt, no service concept…their store or rv park they are saying we don’t want your money if their criteria is not met….buy your own park and try to run it….you learn or go broke….

Terry (@guest_245946)
4 months ago

I work at a campground and my opinion is the rules are there because of what campers have done. I don’t agree with some rules but think some campers should be banned regardless of age of RV. Rules are there because of people’s actions in the past. People in older RVs do cause more problems, sad but true from my point of view as a campground worker.

Thomas D (@guest_245938)
4 months ago

I’m in a 55+ park. We have a 10 day stay limit on younger folks( grandchildren). Ive never heard of problems with noise. We don’t have playgrounds so no yelling etc. The one thing that gets me is the plunk, plunk of the basketball dribbled and then hitting the park model siding. But thankfully it only lasts a short time. We do restrict pool time to all day but out at 4pm. Happy hour!

Bob P (@guest_245937)
4 months ago

It’s their property and as long as they meet local zoning codes they are free to do as they please. If their rules offend you, you are free to go somewhere else, it’s their bottom line in finances. Our society today is oriented to the “ME” way of thinking, “ I’m the only one that counts, the rest of you can go to he**. Face it WE have brought this on ourselves in the facts we don’t raise our children to respect others, we don’t maintain our personal vehicles. We simply exist in society, I’m old enough to remember even if you were poor you still had enough pride in yourself to do the best you could. Not anymore, I’ve seen many people who could afford to take better care of their RV but don’t.

Dana D. (@guest_245941)
4 months ago
Reply to  Bob P

I agree. For example I was at the Grizzly and Wolf Habitat yesterday. Everywhere in the park are Quiet Zone signs. What did I see, children yelling and adults speaking loudly. Dam the signs, it’s about ME.

Also it’s not my job to pickup my dogs poop. It’s about ME.

I don’t blame park owners for restrictions.

Primo Rudy's Roadhouse (@guest_245935)
4 months ago

For every rule created by an RV Park, an exception can be found. A park manager/owner who is looking for a great retirement income will make rules to make their life easier, as long as it does not affect their revenue, too much. Or they perceive their revenue is not affected. Until we create our own RV park, complete with our rules, we will have to live with their rules or find someplace else, perhaps with noisy children, loud dogs and junk trailers.

Bob (@guest_245933)
4 months ago

I like restrictions and age limits on both people and rv’s!!!!

Jim Johnson (@guest_245930)
4 months ago

The new small corporate owners of our seasonal RV park had to go through a couple rough patches before they truly listened to their winter (including a few full-time) guests. What came through was new paint color didn’t matter, the lack of a playground didn’t matter (there is a large creek side green space with easily climbable trees). What mattered was good maintenance and not restricting access to the community center for rally groups. The grandkids are welcome to visit, but the guests ARE required to keep an eye on them and provide (quiet) entertainment and pick up after them. Dogs are treated the same as kids – leash and pickup. The RV park occupancy rate jumped.

Betty D (@guest_245927)
4 months ago

I once encountered a question about the age of my camper. At the time, in 2002, it was 27 yo. Suspecting that they had an age restriction, and really needing to stop for the night, I told them it was a “1999 reproduction of the classic” Safari. They never asked for proof or questioned. The camper was in excellent condition and we stayed the night.

Cancelproof (@guest_245976)
4 months ago
Reply to  Betty D

Your my hero Betty. Great answer. A new 1999 era reproduction. That’s beautiful. Best post of the week. 😂🤣😂🤣
Safe travels.

Dave Johnston (@guest_245920)
4 months ago

I will say this… sometimes the kids are better behaved than some of the 21+ crowd that have been drinking all day!!
I can see a day coming that there will be “seniors only” parks and the property owners will fill them.

Tree (@guest_245913)
4 months ago



Joe Allen (@guest_245910)
4 months ago

Having been a work camper and dealing with the normal issues at RV parks, everyone ought to walk in our shoes! Parents nowadays want to be a pal to their kids instead of a parent! Dogs run loose, people party till the sun rises again the next day! Food is dumped into the fire pits and I could go on and on. Work Yellowstone and see the people drop trash on the side of the road or throw stuff in the pools. You would think, wow, who does this? I wouldn’t want to own or manage an RV park for any amount of money and deal with the entitled crybaby idiots that roam our earth! Flame suit on!

Tom (@guest_245908)
4 months ago

10 year age restriction on a RV with a 20 year loan. How does that work?

Tom H. (@guest_245903)
4 months ago

I get the restrictions. I get that a restriction can make managing your campground or RV Park easier. At the end of the day it’s your property and you get to decide who can use it.
To those who don’t like or agree with the restrictions, go somewhere else (just saying).

bull (@guest_241476)
5 months ago


The RV park owner should automatically know WHAT I WANT!

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