Would you drive 10 miles to save $15 on a campsite?


The full question is this: For one night, would you drive 10 miles out of your way to save $15 on a campsite?

So assume you can stay at one RV park for a certain amount, but if you drive another 10 miles, which just so happens to be out of your way, you could stay in a similar park for $15 less for a night’s stay?

What would you do? Stay and pay the extra $15 or drive the 10 miles and put the $15 you saved into your pocket (or gas tank)?


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Paul G. Meinke

For us the savings would just slightly out weigh the cost. At current gas prices of $3.50 (average for this area) to drive 10 extra miles at 5.5mpg I would spend save only half of the $15.00. Now if I had to return the same way or travel that extra 10 miles when I left, then there would be no savings at all.

Douglas L Roberts

Not necessarily to park at a paying camp, but we have driven as far several times to stay for free at a Harvest Host site

Billy Bob Thorton

Let’s do the math. 10 miles x 2= 20 miles. Let’s say 2 gals. of gas = $6. $15 – 6 = $9.00 savings give or take. Not much wear and tear for 20 miles, but all in cost, call it $9.00 cheaper. Now time, 20 miles will take a half hour of your time, so what’s that worth at the end of the day.

Then, there is the uncertainty factor. Let’s assume your on vacation and you saved up for this excursion. My vote is nope, relax a half hour earlier.


I said yes, but it more depends on location more than cost savings. I’ll go out of my way to stay at a park with more shade and better spacing, usually a public property.

Einar Hansen

No I would not just to save $15.00. I am tried of driving at the end of a long on the road day. I just want to get set up and unwind and relax.


I think this is normal for anyone with membership discounts, like Passport America. We look at their maps and if there is a member RV park in the area we drive to it.

Sink Jaxon

Depends on if the campsite was prettier/more welcoming…because we might end up staying longer!


I would drive 10 miles to get to a nicer campground, but not to save $15.00. $30.00, yes.


Depends on how tired we were and how late in the day it was.


No. Because I can spend the nite at a rest stop and stay on our chosen path.


No because you not only have to drive the 10 miles to the campsite you also have to drive the 10 miles back to you route. so with the price of gas or diesel now a day it would probably cost you more than just to pay the extra 15 dollars.


I agree , makes the most sense .

Phil Smith

Not for a “similar” campground, but if it’s a step up in some way, sure!

Jeff Craig

Depends if it is 10 miles off the road or 10 miles further down a road I’m taking in the morning.


Emily’s going to have fun summarizing this one, with all the comments! 😉


Ha! Yes, this is a difficult one. –Emily


I hit “other.” I wouldn’t drive 10 miles — one way, mind you — to save $15 for one night, but my husband probably would! 🙂 For several nights, I’d be OK with it. The question is mostly moot for us, though. In transit from Point A to Point B we usually stay at Walmart, Sam’s Club, or another free place for one-night stops.

Joel and Betty Hagler

We get 7.5 MPG….10 miles is about 1 & 1/2 gallons. At $3.80 per that is about $6 extra gas.
So only save $9 less the return trip of $6……..Forget about it. Even in less expensive gas states
than CA it is a no go. $15. in CA is chicken feed when some RV parks are as much as $100. a night.


10 miles out of my way equates to 20 miles round trip (if I actually had a destination that couldn’t change. At $3.10 per gallon of diesel and about 7 miles per gallon, that’s almost $9 I would have to spend to save $15. I would need something more than that.

Charles Ketchum

It would depend greatly on the amenities offered or perhaps the view as to whether I would consider this as an option. More than likely if we were traveling from point A to Point B and this was a stop on the way, I probably would not do it.


It would probably depend on what I could find out about the park 10 miles away, compared to what is available where I am. The gas may be worth the drive….

Thomas Becher

10 miles each way would cost me $ 2.50 or $5 rd trip about..wear and tear,unknown site vs one you could look at right now? Not worth the time.

Dick and Sandy near Buffalo, NY

With our 40 foot Class A and toad in tow, we have learned that most lower cost campsites do not have pull thru sites and/or smaller back in sites requiring the unhooking of our toad. Most lower cost sites are difficult to navigate in and out when considering one night or overnight stays. So for us it is an easy decision to say NO. However for TT’s and most normal size 5th wheels, navigating those smaller size facilities is a better possibility but still not a sure thing. Some times paying the extra $15 is worth not having to experience… Read more »


We don’t stay at any RV Parks or Campgrounds while traveling from point A to B so we get to save the extra fuel it would cost us to get there PLUS the cost of the site. Now when we are planning to stay someplace for an extended amount of time then YES we will travel an extra 10 miles to save $15 for every night on the site.


The question implies driving “out of your way’ which likely means an unplanned ‘over-night’. No, normally I would not drive an extra 20 miles (there & back). However, if nothing else was available (within 20 miles along my route) and I wanted a campsite (not a parking lot) for the night, I would consider it. It would still be no if I couldn’t call in advance to determine if a site is available, the price and all important – check out the satellite view of location on google.

Dick Carlson

If I had a nickel for every time we drove extra to get a discount — and then found the bargain place closed, or with no sites, or loud angry permanent residents — I’d have over $15. Bird in the hand. And, BTW, we get about 6 mpg. If it’s 30 miles total (out and back) we’re betting $12.50 on saving $15.00.

James E O'Briant

If we’re staying someplace for multiple nights, I’d gladly drive 20 miles round-trip to save $15. But that won’t happen because for multiple night stays we always make reservations ahead of time. For one night stays we’re almost always at an Elks or Moose Lodge, or we’re “blacktop boondocking” at a location we find through http://www.OvernightRVParking.com.


The choice of driving additional miles to a campground also depends on the type of campground it is and the time we have. If it is in a more rural setting with sites farther apart from each other and we save money- absolutely!
For a more spacious, better campground site we have gone 20 miles out of the way and paid $20 more.


NO. We boondock and save about $25 every day.

Tommy Molnar

Or even more, eh Robbie? I can’t remember the last time we made reservations. We’re diehard boondockers.


I interpret the question to mean just passing through and needing a place to spend the night. In that scenario, I would just stay in a parking lot somewhere and save about 50 bucks. No extra fuel used and no campground fee.


Fifteen bucks is fifteen bucks. Penny saved is penny earned – and ten miles out of the way is nothing. It’s all about the money at this time in my 74 year old body.

John Hartmangruber

10 miles out of the way equals 20 miles round trip. At 7 mpg and $3.50/Gal that is only a net savings of about $5. For $5 I’ll stay at the place that’s most convenient to getting back on the road in the AM.

Diane Mc

What he said.


If the gist of the question is, all things being equal, would I mind driving a few miles to save a few dollars, then of course I would. Some people are taking this simple question to a whole level of complexity…, Setting up their white boards, configuring the formulas for their excel spreadsheets, running outside to weigh their rigs, checking wind direction and topology, positioning of the stars… ??

Tommy Molnar

Spot on, Steven! Hahahaha.


Way over thinking a simple question.

RV Staff

We like to give our readers something to do, and to keep their minds agile. 😆 😆 —Diane at RVtravel.com


The way we travel, 10 miles is not out of the way, it is just another way to get there. I whole-hartedly agree with Steven.


I selected “other”. The survey question was much too simplistic. While I would not drive 10 miles out of the way just to spend $15 less for a place to park overnight. I would drive 10 or even 15 miles out of the way to spend $15 less to stay in scenic state park, National Forest CG, BLM area, or anywhere I wouldn’t have to be crammed into side by side RV parking in a typical RV Park. On the other hand, since this is just a place to park overnight I would opt to park overnight at a Walmart… Read more »


It would all depend on the situation and circumstances, where we are headed and why we are headed there, etc. It would merit some serious consideration.

Bill T.

How would you know you could save the $15 unless you researched it first. If I planned to stay there and save the money, would it really be out of my way in the first place?

Fernwegh Ric

The motorhome gets 8 mpg. It’s 10 miles = 1 US gal + Cost savings if in Florida (2.49 US gal), Cost to detour = $3+ then factor in maintenance per mile. If it where a really nice place to stay it could be worth it, however $5 dosen’t equate to much of a cost savings.


Not at the end of a long day

Gigi R

It would depend on my gas mileage and the price of gas. If I would save $15 I would. But if the gas would cost me half that then probably not.

Marilyn M

Parents taught me to pick up that penny because after awhile you had a nickel etc. (The CDN military tried for 29 years to yell it out of me as I was always looking down for that dang penny!) So yes, I’d drive the extra few miles forth and back to save a few dollars. – especially American dollars vs. Canadian!

Captn John

Maybe if early in the day and had a pull through long enough I did not have to unhook a 41′ 5er. 20 miles RT burns 2 gallons of diesel so the savings is less than $10.

Judy G

However, the rising prices for RV spots in recent months/years have encouraged me NOT to sweeten their pot.

Rory R

hey, what Wolfe said


Financially, a typical 10mpg rig burns an extra $5 in gas each way, so you only save $5 net most likely.

This was stacked towards only staying a single night — many of the sites I stay at are $18-20/night, so almost doubling the daily charge, if staying more than a single night I’d drive a hair further if it really is a similar site.


Most of the campgrounds in the upper part of the state (Pa.) are $40 to $60 a night. As long as the less expensive site was not a “dump”, I would go to it. There are plenty of “dumps” in the state which cater to transient oil and gas workers. They shoehorn them in making them look like old trailer parks. They’re more trailer parks than RV campgrounds.