Wednesday, September 27, 2023


Beginner’s Guide to RVing Newsletter Volume 3, Issue 84

Welcome to the Beginner’s Guide to RVing from The information we present here every Monday through Friday is for brand-new RVers – those in the market to buy their first RV and those who just purchased theirs. If you are an experienced RVer, this material may be too basic for you.

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Thursday, September 29, 2022

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DID YOU MISS reading this morning’s RV Daily Tips Newsletter? Good stuff there.

RVing Basics

Where can I camp for free?

In the foreground, La Posa LTVA, Quartzsite, AZ

You can camp for up to two weeks at no charge on U.S. government land (Bureau of Land Management or National Forest) unless camping is specifically prohibited. After the two weeks, you’ll need to move to another location, where you can spend another two weeks for free. In the Southwest deserts, an option is to pay $180 to stay up to seven months in a Long-Term Visitation Area (LTVA). Several LTVAs are located in Arizona and Southern California (the most popular are in the Quartzsite, Ariz., area). Many have primitive toilets (few and far between), sewage dump facilities and dumpsters. Some are even serviced by water trucks and a “honey wagon,” which, for a modest fee, will drive right up to your RV and pump out your waste tanks.

RVers on a very, very tight budget find many ways to camp elsewhere for free — holing up in discount store and casino parking lots, roadside rest areas, truck stops, or anywhere else they figure they won’t be bothered. Many Walmarts will allow overnight stays in their parking lots. While it’s possible to “camp” like this forever, most RVers find the hassle too much trouble, at least on a regular basis. An excellent guidebook to camping on these and other government lands is available from Roundabout Publications.

Quick Tips

Avoid “distractions” when moving into the campground
Don’t have any distractions when you are directing the parking of your home into the RV campsite. Mistakes can be quite expensive. Friendly people will come up to you while you are parking and try to help. You must figure out how to tactfully tell them that you would rather do it the way you have practiced. These same people will be there when you are unhooking your car from a motorhome, or your truck from your trailer. If you let them, they will distract you to the point that you will forget a step and pay the price later. Tell them you will be happy to talk with them after you are parked and hooked up. —From So, you want to be an RVer? And Enjoy the RV Lifestyle? [Revised]. Available on

“If you could tell someone new to RVing just one thing, what would it be?”

From the editors: We asked our readers this question. Here is one response: 

“It will be the most frustrating and aggravating experience of your life, but the most rewarding and fun-filled and worthwhile one also. Go with the flow.” —Jesse Crouse

Random RV Thought

An excellent thing about traveling in your RV is that you know who slept in your bed the night before. And the night before that. You don’t know that in a hotel, and really, you may not want to know.

“What’s the best modification you’ve made to your RV?”

From the editors: We asked our readers this question. Here is one response: 

“Replaced all interior incandescent and fluorescent tubes with LED bulbs. They light instantly and brightly, even in cool weather. I bought 4500-5000K, and I like the whiter light they produce than typical 3000K incandescent and fluorescent.” —Paul Bernander

• If you’re a member of Facebook, be sure to sign up for our groups RV Buying Advice, RV Advice and Budget RV Travel. For a list of all our groups and newsletters, visit here.

• If you buy a defective RV and are unable to get it fixed or its warranty honored, here is where to turn for help.

• If you need an RV Lemon Law Lawyer, Ron Burdge is your man.

Why you should never finance an RV for 20 years!

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Editor: Emily Woodbury

Editorial (all but news)
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Help desk:
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Everything in this newsletter is true to the best of our knowledge. But we occasionally get something wrong. We’re just human! So don’t go spending $10,000 on something we said was good simply because we said so, or fixing something according to what we suggested (check with your own technician first). Maybe we made a mistake. Tips and/or comments in this newsletter are those of the authors and may not reflect the views of or this newsletter. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases. Regardless of this potential revenue, unless stated otherwise, we only recommend products or services we believe provide value to our readers.

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This newsletter is copyright 2022 by RV Travel LLC.


  1. An excellent thing about traveling in your RV is that you know who slept in your bed the night before. And the night before that. You don’t know that in a hotel, and really, you may not want to know.”

    You know what they say…..when the camper is a rockin….you must be driving in South Carolina (the worst roads anywhere, except for RI)!

    In all seriousness, the bed in our coach is more comfortable than in our home. And this rule also applies to the bathroom. Public rest rooms and hotel rest rooms, some are really clean, but most are nasty.

  2. Rereading this old issue and thought I would share something I saw recently. An RV pulled in and the first thing the driver did was place a sign in his window that said, “CAUTION PLEASE WEAR MASK BEWARE OF COVID”
    Later I noticed the sign was gone. I saw him out walking, mask on, and asked about the sign. He told me he got tired of being interrupted while setting up and the sign saved him from wannabe helpers and gave helpful and important health information.

  3. What I do when a new RVer pulls up to the spot next to me is say a friendly hello and tell them “if you need a helping hand with anything just give a holler”, then go back to my camper. (don’t stand outside to watch their every move) This way you’re not distracting them and they know you’re there if they need you. Make sure your kids stay away from their area too. There will be plenty of time for conversation after they get all hooked up and settled in.
    Apply the same rules for them leaving


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