Saturday, September 30, 2023


Casino Camping: Reader tips about free or affordable casino camping

If you’ve been around here for a while, you may remember our Casino Camping column, which we last published regularly back in April of this year (read the most recent installment). Well, it’s time we bring back that popular column but we need your help! If you have a favorite or not-so-favorite casino that offers RV parking or camping, please let us know on the form at the bottom of this article. Tell us about your experiences there too.

Casino camping can be a great alternative to crowded campgrounds

Casino camping can be a great alternative to private and state campgrounds, many of which are experiencing severe crowding. “Camping” at casinos can range from basic pavement parking to full-fledged RV resorts. My husband and I seldom find casino parking lots or even the casino RV parks full.

When planning travel routes it is helpful to have an arsenal of places to camp, including at casinos. Almost all the casinos are open again after long COVID closures, with some restrictions still in place like mask-wearing and social distancing, depending on the local and state guidelines.

If planning to stop for the night or even a few days at a casino, it is always advisable to contact the casino ahead of time to make sure that they allow overnight RV parking. Find out where to park and if you need a permit or must sign up for a players card. It is always good, though not required, to spend a little money at the casino, even if not gambling. Casinos usually have some great buffets and restaurants. If the casino has an RV park, call ahead to check availability and reserve a spot.

Here’s what our readers have to say about Casino Camping…

A big “Thank you” to all our readers that wrote about their favorite casinos in the last week. Our readers and Facebook friends have some great advice about casino camping.

Wild Horse Casino. Pendleton, Oregon

Ron H. told us about Wild Horse Casino near the infamous Cabbage Hill. “A good stop for anyone traveling between Boise and Seattle is the Wild Horse Casino near Pendleton, Oregon. A portion of their large parking lot is reserved for “free” RV parking and they also have a very nice reasonably-priced RV park with shuttle service or a short walk to the casino. Very nice facility. Wild Horse Casino is located a couple of miles east of Pendleton, Oregon, on I-84. It’s near the base of infamous Cabbage Hill.”

Editors note: I had no idea what the “infamous Cabbage Hill” was so I looked it up. Emigrant Hill is also known as “Cabbage Hill” because of the smell of sauerkraut making by residents of German descent in the area. It is also one of the most hazardous roads along I-84 with a seven-mile downgrade and the most severe and changeable weather conditions in the Northwest. 

Address: 46510 Wildhorse Blvd, Pendleton, OR 97801. Phone: 800-654-9453. Website.

Pechanga Resort Casino. Temecula, California

Mike A. sent us this info on a casino resort that accepts Passport America. “Pechanga Casino RV Resort with Passport America discount, our back-in site with full hook-ups was $32 per night. Beautiful grounds and pool, clean bathhouses and laundry, and a large casino that was virtually smoke-free. Masks are required. Restaurants in the casino and there is a free shuttle from your site to the casino. Located in Temecula, CA. Off of I-15.”

Address: 45000 Pechanga Parkway, Temecula, CA 92592. Phone: 800-Pechanga. Website.

Downstream Casino. Quapaw, Oklahoma

Donna B told us about Downstream Casino. “You didn’t mention Downstream Casino, near Joplin, Missouri. The casino sits in Oklahoma but the RV park is in Missouri. There are also some hookup sites in the parking lot at the casino. You’ll need a player’s club card and the last time we stayed up to three nights was free. It’s located right on I-44.”

Bill S. also mentioned Downstream Casino. “Casino camping includes electric and water for $30 a night. Pull in, find a site and park your rig. Check-in at the Q Store and the gas station afterward to pay. TIP if you go to the casino after you set up: Get “loyalty” cards for all adult occupants. You will get one free night per card per stay. We swing by here every time on the way out west and on our way home and stay two nights.”

Address: 69300 East Nee Road, Quapaw, OK 74363. Phone: 918-919-6000. Website.

Ute Mountain Casino/Sleeping Ute RV Park. Towaoc, Colorado

John M. told us about a regular stop they make on their way to Arizona. John writes, “The Sleeping Ute RV Park at Towaoc, CO, has been a regular stop for a number of years on our travels between Arizona and Colorado. It is adjacent to the Ute Mountain Casino and about 10 miles south of Cortez, CO. It makes for a good overnight stop just before or after crossing the Navajo reservation between Colorado and Flagstaff, AZ. They accept Passport America and have a restaurant and fuel station. There is also a swimming pool in the summer months.”

Address: 3 Weeminuche Drive, Towaoc, CO 81334. Phone: 970-565-6544. Website.

Mohegan Sun Pocono Casino. Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania

Dale M. likes this casino enough to stay twice this summer. “Have stayed twice this summer at Mohegan Sun Pocono Casino in Wilkes-Barre, PA. It is a mile off I-81 and a very quiet spot. The RV parking lot is a spacious and quiet parking lot but it is sloped and there are no level spots.”

Address: 280 PA-315, Wilkes-Barre, PA 18702. Phone: 570-831-2100. Website.

Stopping at a casino or are you a casino camping newbie?

The American Casino Guide provides not only information on casinos, it has a gambling primer on slots, video poker, blackjack, craps and other popular casino games and RV, hotel, restaurant information. It also comes with a whole bunch of coupons!

Casino Camping Guide to RV-Friendly Casinos is also a great guide and provides a lot of information, particularly for RVers.

Tell us about casinos you like that other RVers might like. If you have any tips or secrets about casino “camping,” tell us those too, please!
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Nanci Dixon
Nanci Dixon
Nanci Dixon has been a full-time RVer living “The Dream” for the last six years and an avid RVer for decades more! She works and travels across the country in a 40’ motorhome with her husband. Having been a professional food photographer for many years, she enjoys snapping photos of food, landscapes and an occasional person. They winter in Arizona and love boondocking in the desert. They also enjoy work camping in a regional park. Most of all, she loves to travel.


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Charlie Burke
1 year ago

Be aware that the Wild Casino RV Park. They charge a sliding scale for camping fees. The busier they are and the later in the day the more they charge. Also do not let them put you on the back row. That’s the long term section. Beyond that it is a nice break from Interstate travel. No smoking casino.

Kathy Niemeyer
1 year ago

Another great casino to stay is Indigo Sky Casino next to Seneca, Missouri. The casino is in Oklahoma and one mile from Seneca which is 13 miles south of Joplin. This is a real RV campground with water, electric and dump at exit. When you check in at the hotel desk you get a key to the fitness room and the pool as you are considered a guest. You can order room service delivered to your RV, also free laundry. $15.00 a night.

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