By Julie Chickery
Embarking on a full-time RV adventure is exciting! In fact, it is so exciting that many new full-time travelers make the same error, which is rushing to see and do it all! This leads to several problems, including putting a big dent in the wallet. By taking your time and avoiding this full-time RVing mistake, you’ll enjoy the journey so much more and will also save a few bucks along the way.
Living like you are on vacation
The most common mistake that new full-time RVers make is living like you are on vacation. What I mean by this is racing across the country in an effort to check everything off the bucket list. This also often includes dining out regularly. Now add every tour and activity along the way. While it may sound like fun, these behaviors can actually diminish your full-time RV joy. It also can drain funds and cause serious travel fatigue.
In the video below, my husband and I discuss how we fell into this trap, as well as how we turned things around during our six years on the road.
The first drawback to living like you are on vacation as a full-time RV traveler is that you can quickly get travel fatigue. Hitting several national parks in a year may sound like a dream, but packing up and moving the RV every few days can start to wear on you. Not to mention that the miles may literally start to wear on your RV.
You remember Murphy’s Law? Things will go wrong at the worst possible time. Now think about what happens when you plan to move every few days and something breaks on the RV (as it inevitably will). Most new RVers aren’t aware that the dealership will typically have to order parts from the manufacturer. If you are on a tight schedule this will put a serious wrench in your travel itinerary (pun intended). Avoid this full-time RVing mistake, by allowing additional time for the unexpected.
Living like you are on vacation is a sure way to bust the budget. The great thing about exploring the country in an RV is that you can often save money, but that means using your RV kitchen instead of dining out every night. You can avoid this full-time RVing mistake and save quite a bit of cash by taking advantage of length-of-stay discounts like weekly or monthly rates at campgrounds.
My advice: Take time to smell the roses
My husband and I have found so much more joy by taking time to smell the roses. After our first exhausting six months on the road, we slowed down and started staying a month per location. With this new pace, we were able to enjoy each destination fully and even find the hidden gems that you don’t often hear about.
This also allowed for those problems that sometimes occur such as pesky weather or maintenance and repairs. Just think how disappointed you would be if you only allowed yourself a week at a destination and it happened to rain five of those days!