Tuesday, May 23, 2023


7 tips for keeping a happy marriage while RVing

Imagine that you and your partner just got married. You dated for three years, got married, and have now decided to buy an RV and travel the country. Wonderful, right? Absolutely! Until you’re three months in and 300 square feet suddenly seems small… very small.

Do most marriages survive RV living? Well, of course it depends on the couple, but once couples learn how to maneuver around the small space, and the country, together, married RV life is a wonderful life!

Here are seven things to do for a happy marriage in an RV.

1. Be flexible

Things aren’t always going to go as planned. Sometimes the RV park will have lost your reservation, sometimes there’s an accident up ahead on the highway that may delay you for hours, sometimes the place you drove two hours to will be closed, sometimes it will rain, pour… and sometimes the roof may leak… the list goes on. Remember, you’re in this together. If both partners remain flexible, if you can come up with a good backup plan together, you’ll have smooth travels ahead.

2. Respect personal space

Folks, 300 square feet is small. What happens when your partner is watching TV in the “living room” and you’re trying to read in the bedroom? Well, you’ll probably give up reading and go join them because you can’t concentrate on your book with the noise.

What happens if you’re trying to sleep in but your partner is up at 5 a.m., the coffee pot is gurgling, the bacon is sizzling, the microwave is beeping… yeah. Good luck.

The point being, respect each other’s personal space. Maybe the TV volume can be a bit lower, maybe the bacon can wait… If someone needs some alone time, make sure they have it.

3. Don’t eat beans…

On the subject of personal space, have you ever shared 300 square feet with someone who ate a can of baked beans for dinner? Or Brussels sprouts? Broccoli? Folks, if you want your marriage to last your RV trip, know what magical fruits make you… well, you know… and hold off on those.

4. Packing light… or not…

If you know your wife wants to bring her favorite pair of slippers even though she’s already bringing seven other pairs of shoes… let her. You’re going to have to pick your battles. If she says, “No, no, honey, you’re right. I should leave them behind,” do her a favor and sneak them into her bag. She’ll be so happy when she learns you’ve brought them along anyway. Just because you’re on the road doesn’t mean doing special things for one another stops.

5. Backing up

If you’ve never gotten into an argument while backing up the rig, you’ve never been RVing with a significant other. It’s bound to happen. Practice your techniques when your RV is parked (whatever those techniques are) and know exactly what your partner is doing back there when they’re waving their arms one way or the other. If you know exactly what your partner means when they’re yelling at you to turn the wheel right but back up left (and watch out for that tree!), you’ll avoid the arguments. You can thank us later.

6. Listen to the GPS

You know how they say men don’t ask for directions? Well, sometimes men don’t listen to the GPS either. Men, if your partner tells you to go one way, just listen and go that darn way. “Backseat drivers” may be annoying, but they’re the ones studying the map, aren’t they? Not to mention the fact that the GPS could be wrong.

7. Watch the gas tank

One sure way to get into an argument? Run out of gas. Again, that “backseat” or “passenger” driver knows if you’re leaving town soon and the next town isn’t for 100 miles (they’ve got the map, remember?). If they say, “How’s the gas tank? The next gas station isn’t for a while,” you’d be smart to fill up if you want to keep the peace.

There are, of course, a hundred and one other things you can do to help your marriage survive your RV trip, or, if you’re extremely brave, full-time RV life. Do you have any suggestions for those just getting started with their partner in an RV? Leave them in the comments below.


Marriage advice from a hand-signalin’, RV backer-upper



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1 month ago

Married 58 years, RVing 22 years, full time 12. We each have our own preferred space. Our TV is blue tooth to our hearing aids. We drive equal hours each travel day (about 2 hours Backing into spaces ground guide uses full arm signals and walk up to driver window to discuss disagreements – no yelling. We do a lot together, but have separate activities. I play bridge and “run things” and she does art and runs different things. She likes it much warmer than I prefer, the temperature is set to her needs, I’ve learned to like it. When on the road the person in the Nav seat is navigator and second pair of eyes – not back seat driver. We do run Audio books on the open road. This requires agreement on selection. We stream various shows and this requires agreement as we prefer to do things together. Ultimately we would rather be with each other than anyone else, even our very best friends.

1 month ago

Seriously? These were clearly written by someone’s wife. Go back and read them again from a wife’s perspective. I agree with them all. I’m just sayin 6 of 7 for sure of these are clearly written by the wife, possibly with the husband nearby nodding like the bobblehead he is. Gosh my neck is sore.

Jesse Crouse
1 month ago

I am refusing to comment based on my 5th amendment protections. There I said it!

TJ Miller
1 month ago

#5 (modified) – get a backup camera bolted onto the back of your rig, practice using it, and then just use that instead.

Or, get clear with each other on -how- you relay instructions (that is, “…always stand where you can see my face in the side view mirror, then you can tell me where you want the back of the trailer to go. Oh, and point in that direction. Forget anything else.”

Bill Richardson
1 month ago

We have been RVing for 50 years. Still love it. She drives, but I do most of it. She is a great map reader and enjoys navigating. Listening to the TV with headphones will solve the issue of one spouse reading while the other watches TV.

Kim Windsor
1 month ago

#1 is the most important especially when it comes to #3. Cannot give those up. We have been together 43 years and travel on and off in our RV and still loving it. We are living in our 24 footer for 6 weeks currently for medical reasons and are glad for our years of experience.

1 month ago

#6…have you been spying on us?
Our gazebo/screen tent outdoor “living room” is a lifesaver.

Bill Tucker
1 month ago
Reply to  Rebecca

Could you please share the brand/model of the screen tent you like?

1 month ago

Get a sleep mask. It will help at nap time.

TJ Miller
1 month ago
Reply to  tom

…and earplugs.

Tommy Molnar
1 month ago

Wifey sits with the Gazetteer on her lap most of the time, pointing out mountain names, upcoming towns, and points of interest either nearby or off in the distance. We have a GPS on the dash of our p/u but I prefer my Tom Tom. Wifey prefers the built-in one so guess which one we use . . . Tom Tom sits in the center console. We get along unbelievably well, in almost all of life’s goings on.

Larry H Lee
1 month ago

Pray together often.
Hug and kiss “for no reason”.
Remember that your spouse’s family is just as important to them as yours is to you (maybe more).
Say “Thank you” a little more often than you think is necessary.
Buy her some flowers once in a while. Remember that men and women have brains that are literally wired differently which means they literally do think differently and that has to be OK.
Sit together and watch the sunset as often as possible.
Be aware that foreplay consists of everything you have said and done since the last time.

1 month ago
Reply to  Larry H Lee

Great advice, Larry

Gary G
1 month ago
Reply to  Larry H Lee

Sounds like great advice for any marriage, in an rv or sticks and bricks. Going on 53 years.

Sandi Pearson
1 month ago
Reply to  Larry H Lee

Wise man!

Larry H Lee
1 month ago

Plan out the day’s travel (lunch stop, fuel stop, sight-seeing stops, etc.) before leaving camp. It is amazing how many headaches this has avoided for us especially considering we travel in a 40 foot motorhome towing a vehicle which can make turning around or re-routing because of a missed turned into a major ordeal. Many/most such difficulties are avoidable with daily morning detailed planning. Also, if you must change the plan during that day’s drive, then pull off the roadway to a safe parking place to replan. This process makes loving each other so much easier!

Bob p
1 month ago

I’ll agree with most of the suggestions, 5 6 and 7 I disagree, we’ve all got cell phones use them, #6 DW is not looking at the map she’s playing her word game on her iPad, she is a total passenger, requesting her to check ahead for something may or may not work depending on where she’s at in the game. 7 I am in charge of everything that’s happening on the road she’s on her iPad.

Larry H Lee
1 month ago

Having Walkie-Talkies and using them for giving backing directions PLUS we always (no exceptions) use them whenever we are traveling unhitched, no matter how short the distance. We also use our cell phones to communicate if we get beyond Walkie-Talkie range. Promoting communication this way has been critical to avoiding disagreements and general unhappiness.

1 month ago
Reply to  Larry H Lee

We call each other on our cell phone for this, works great as well!

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