We know size does matter when it comes to what campgrounds we want to get into. Or, if we want to boondock or stay in national and state parks. But have you had someone say to you, “How can you live or camp in an RV that small?” What if you have a 40-foot rig? Do you get comments like, “You probably can’t get that rig in many places.” (And you know it’s not someone trying to provide helpful input.) What happens if you extend your RV size by pulling out a ramp and unloading toys? Are they extravagant?
We have no idea why the RVers around us have picked their recreational vehicle. It might help each of us to stand back and not make snap judgments on other RVers’ rig choices. Here are some thoughts that should run through your mind when you start to question someone else’s RV choice. Maybe they…
- Have a disability and need an extra-large RV for space to be mobile
- Live and work full-time from their rig
- Used their life’s savings to buy the best for one last hoorah
- Love the challenge of economic lifestyles
- Won it in a lottery
It’s not just about size either. What if someone is RVing in a 20-year-old rig? Maybe they…
- Inherited it from their much-missed grandparents
- Renovated it themselves and the inside would blow your mind
- Are a billionaire into adventure
- Are hardworking and putting a roof over their head
- Doing a cross-country photojournalist job for national parks
I could go on and on with the endless reasons you shouldn’t judge what others are traveling in. Size, age, color, etc., just don’t matter if it isn’t your RV. We haven’t ridden in their seats and have no idea what their life is like. Also, we are not living in an HOA, so we shouldn’t be thinking about what our RV neighbors should be camping in.
I’ve also heard a little judgment going on between boondockers, moochdockers, full-timers, weekenders, etc. We should find unity in our “get out there and camp” philosophy. Be open about how we RV. We recently discovered boondocking after sticking with campgrounds for several years full-time. I think I’m addicted! But, still, some people prefer full amenities. Enjoy it all.
Even if the RVer is just filthy rich and bought the most expensive thing out there and it is a fly-by-night hobby, we shouldn’t care. At least they are out experimenting in some way with the RV lifestyle. Thank goodness we are not all the same person with the same wants and needs. This world would be a very boring place. RVing is about freedom, so give your neighbors the freedom to be themselves.
Even though it doesn’t matter what size your RV is, it does matter how you treat your neighbors, and it does matter how well you take care of your area and space in your campground. So, before you start judging your neighbor, make sure you are doing everything to be neighborly yourself—starting with not pre-judging someone else’s RV.
Our Fleetwood Flair is 26 years old now, and she has been in-the-family since day one. My. step-dad kept her in great condition. We have travelled in her since 2017, and always get compliments on how good she looks for her age.
A part of me would like a Newmar, but Magie the RV does everything we have asked of her. We are happy that we kept her on the road.
I’ve seen the same attitude with motorcycle riders. To me, if you ride, that’s good enough and I don’t care what you ride. But some folks seem to think that “their” brand is the only brand that matters, and if you ride some thing else, you are beneath them. Same as the size of your camper/motorhome/trailer/whatever. I have an old late ’80’s RV, that I am slowly upgrading the appliances on, and anything else that needs it. The last step of importance to me is the looks, so I get some “looks” from people. So what…
If we were all the same, we would never grow. We are all different for a reason. We need to be! Someone has to come up with ideas, someone has to implement them. How can we come up with anything new if we are all the same? vive la dif·fé·rence
I’m a stealth camper. I don’t want to have to make reservations, or be next to noisy kids or barky dogs in a crowded campground. My camper is a micro utility van outfitted to be a camper van – it’s TINY! But has a bed, solar, sink, water, tiny stove and refrigerator – that’s all my Border Collie and I need. I can park on any street anywhere, or out in the forest by the lake. Could I afford a fancy $150,000 camper van? Yes, but I chose this and couldn’t be happier.
👍 DW, particularly while her parents had a fifth wheel (now retired from RVing), always wanted me to ONLY refer to our motorhome as an RV when speaking with her Dad. Apparently, if I did not pay close attention to what and how I said something RV-related, her Dad would become offended by my perceived air of superiority because we had a motorhome and he ONLY had a fifth wheel. I hope that I’ve gotten more diplomatic, but we may know soon. We are going on a trip with a cousin in a couple of weeks. She and her husband “only” 😉 have a travel trailer.
Well written article. I love seeing all of the different kinds of rigs out there, big, small, old, new. It doesn’t matter to me what you’re camping in. I just love the fact that you’re out and about doing it. I love seeing families outdoors without their kids’ faces being buried in a phone screen. Don’t judge, you have no idea what it took for someone to be able to afford their rig. I love the fact that they’re out traveling this great country and enjoying everything that it offers!
There are as many different ways to travel as there are travelers, and thus there are many different RVs to accommodate them.
Nice article and couldn’t agree more. Met a gentleman in our storage facility that owns an old and weathered Wanderlodge. He could purchase anything he wants but simply likes the challenge of restoring an older motor home. And he gave me some great advice for planning longer trips. The common bond of exploring the great outdoors is quite strong!
There are plenty of small trailers. Teardrops, square-drops, vans, car campers, etc. I never did care what someone else has and am not going to start now. But I have received rude comments. I am not polluting the air and using up gas or diesel in order to camp. I simply wanted a small thing to have a safe place to sleep for short trips to photograph and see some places I wouldn’t have otherwise. I prefer being outside which is why I have no neighbors at home. I spent a lot of years working and paying property taxes to support other people’s kids, and I’m still paying for them in my old age. So I cannot afford a behemoth and wouldn’t want one. The idea for me is to camp with my dog and cook outside and hike around. I have many messy trees in the country, the trailer has to have cover, my little rig fits in the garage. It doesn’t take much upkeep, and I can fit most anywhere and go off-road, overlanding, wherever. I have no idea why anyone would care how I camp.
Really!!! It is kind of like living in a housing subdivision with crabby neighbors… life is too short to
mind someone else’s business.
Well said! Thank you!