Saturday, September 30, 2023


RV Travel Newsletter Issue 1108

Welcome to, America’s longest continuously published RVing newsletter. Be sure to check out all our other RV-related newsletters.

This is the abbreviated free edition of this newsletter. For the ad-free, full edition, please become a voluntary subscriber for a one-time donation of your choice. Your support means a lot to us!

June 11, 2023
Free, abbreviated edition

 Cover story 

RV industry again falsely claims RVing is cheapest way to travel

By Chuck Woodbury


he RV Industry Association (RVIA) issued its annual press release recently that claims, again, that yet another study confirms traveling by RV is the most affordable way to take a vacation.

The headline on its recent press release was:
Families save money by vacationing in RVs 

The release begins:
“A new study conducted by an outside, independent firm has found that RV vacations cost much less than other types of vacation travel, even when factoring in fuel prices and the cost of RV ownership.”

EditorialI say that’s a lie! The sad part, and this is why I get so upset when I read about this, is that many people (including those in the media) will believe it.

One of my favorite classes in college (way back when) was Advertising 101. One subject we discussed at length was “Lying with Statistics.” What I learned is that you can prove just about anything you want by twisting the data in a way that proves your point. Advertisers and politicians do it routinely.

In its most recent press release, to prove its point that traveling by RV was cheaper than other means, the RVIA compared a vacation with a Class A motorhome to a vacation of luxury without an RV.

I asked Monica Geraci, the Director of PR and Communications for the RVIA, this: “Is the following statement regarding your latest study correct?”

“The class A motorhome, typically the largest and most luxurious RV, was compared to travel options such as flying first class, renting a premium car, staying in upscale hotels/resorts, and eating meals in restaurants.”

She responded: “Yes, Class A [vacation] is compared to a luxury vacation.”

I own a Class A motorhome but I do not fly first class when I take a vacation without my RV. Do you? And how does the RVIA define a “Class A” motorhome? Is it one that someone buys used for $10,000, or a half-million-dollar diesel pusher purchased brand-new?

I asked her if camping with a tent was included in the study. I mean, wouldn’t that be a cheaper way to take a vacation than with an RV? Her response was no. “We were comparing ‘comparable vacations’,” she said.

So camping with a pop-up trailer, for example, can’t be compared to traveling with a tent, but camping with a Class A motorhome can be compared to flying first class, renting a premium car, and staying in luxury hotels? Huh?

Read more


Current Wildfire Report. (Includes map and details of fires.)
Current smoke and fire report for where you live or where you’re traveling.
Canadian Wildland Fire Information.

RV Service Centers and Repairs Report

‘Your headline made me choke on my coffee! Social media IS for experts!’

In this column, we summarize some of your emails and comments regarding RV service centers and repairs. This week, Nanci Dixon continues to share your comments about poor RV service and poorly built RVs, but also rave reviews of great service at RV service centers. And Frank D. explains why he choked when he read our headline: “Reading the owner’s manual, NOT trusting social media, will solve many RV problems.” See if you agree with him.

Click here to read

The RV industry scrambles to survive: Are camping’s glory days over?

By Andy Zipser
Heading into the Memorial Day weekend, camping and RV industry cheerleaders were cranking out comparisons and forecasts to support their contention that the industry’s best days still lie ahead. But coming on the heels of some truly astonishing declines in factory shipments of new RVs, the chorus had a distinctly plaintive tone. Continue reading this no holds barred report.

Absolutely outrageous campground rules!

Nanci Dixon is currently traveling from Arizona to Minnesota and staying in a variety of RV parks. She notes that she has never seen the sheer number of rules at campgrounds before! She wonders: When RV parks charge more, do they print out more pages of rules? You won’t believe some of these rules—they’re insane! … Or are they? Read more then add your comments.

You caused a freak accident at the campground. Are you covered?

By Russ and Tiña De Maris
It’s another relaxing trip to the campground. This time you brought the grandkids. As the sun sets over the horizon, you break out the marshmallows by the fireside. The youngest grandchild ignites a marshmallow, and in their excitement, springs the burning goody off the stick and onto a guest across the fireside. The flaming projectile ignites the guest’s coat on fire, and the rest is summed up in a lawsuit. You have homeowner’s insurance—are you covered? Hang on, you have liability insurance on the motorhome—are you covered? Continue reading this important message.

Highlights from this week’s RV Daily Tips Newsletter

DID YOU KNOW? Our RV Daily Tips newsletter is packed with helpful tips and advice every Monday through Friday. Click here to subscribe.

The one thing you absolutely MUST pack when RVing

By Gail Marsh
A credit card’s famous tagline used to be, “Don’t leave home without it.” These same words might well be used when it comes to RVing. No matter where you plan to go, no matter what you plan to do, no matter who is traveling with you, there is one thing that every RVer absolutely must pack for every, single trip: … Find out what it is here. [Sorry, folks. Chuck made me do it. —Diane]

Monument Valley. View from Goulding’s RV Park

Incredible campground, sightseeing and history in Monument Valley

By Nanci Dixon
As we meander our way up north, we had an amazing short stop at Monument Valley in the Navajo Nation, Utah. I was awed well beyond my expectations. While the drive on US 160 from Flagstaff, Arizona, was winding and a little bumpy, it was so worth it. For years I have seen spectacular, otherworldly photos and postcards of Monument Valley and longed to go in person. For those of you who have been there, you know. Read more, see the incredible campground she stayed at, and check out Nanci’s beautiful pictures!

Reader Poll

If you’re making RV payments, how much are they per month?

Please let us know. After you click your response, you’ll see how others have responded. Feel free to leave a comment.

Tell us here

Do you think most other RVers eat dinner before 5 p.m.? Or is between 5-6 p.m. the most common time they eat? Or is it between 6-7 p.m.? Take a guess and see if you’re right, and see how nearly 1,900 other RVers answered.

RANDOM THOUGHT: If you are having a bad day at home and your RV is close by, escape to it for a while. Close the door and just sit quietly. The change of scenery plus the “good feeling” of the RV might improve your spirits.

RVing the Midwest

By Gail Marsh

Not-to-miss small-town Midwest (and more) 4th of July celebrations

Small town, America. You’ve gotta love their celebrations! Midwest small towns proudly show the world their patriotic spirit. If you haven’t already, put one of the following small-town Midwest 4th of July celebrations on your RV summer camping list. As you’ll soon discover, I stretched the boundaries of the Midwest a bit here and there. I couldn’t seem to help myself! It’s just that so many small communities are huge when it comes to patriotism! Continue reading, then start planning.

Your guide to every Midwest drive-in theater to visit this summer

Remember watching movies from your car? Or seeing your favorite Hollywood stars on a huge outdoor screen? Or listening to the movie’s audio via a speaker that fastened onto your car window? You can relive those cherished moments this summer—or perhaps introduce your kids or grandkids to this unique experience. There are many Midwest drive-in theaters for you to visit this summer, so be sure to plan a night or two for a drive-in theater experience. Learn all about drive-in theaters here.

Ohhh, say can you seeeeeee… Come on, sing along, you know the tune! You’ll be singing it every day if you have this around!

Ask Dave

Dave Solberg is a leading expert in the RV industry and author of the “RV Handbook”.

This past week’s questions that Dave answered:

Click here to see more questions for Dave.

Have a question for Dave? Click any Ask Dave article and scroll down to fill out the form. He’ll get back to you!

In the RV shop with Dustin

Prevent water heater explosions by knowing the signs

By Dustin Simpson
Water heater explosions are rare but when they do happen, they can be devastating. Do not wait for a catastrophe. Here are a few signs your water heater will give before bursting.

This is important

DID YOU KNOW? Dustin writes three other articles each week, posted in the Monday, Wednesday and Friday editions of our RV Daily Tips Newsletter. Make sure you’re signed up.

 NEW! Mystery article

This memorial to one of our most famous and beloved American singers is found at the most unsuspecting place (truly). Leave it up to Chuck Woodbury to ask, “Why the heck is this here?!” See who we’re talking about and learn the fascinating story of this memorial. (And hold your breath—it’ll stink after this!)

Click here

RV Gadgets and Gizmos

By Cheri Sicard

Rophor RV Levelers: Streamlined solution for double-axle trailers

Ever since I bought my current travel trailer a few years back, I have been looking for a better way to level side to side than stacking boards. Not that stacking boards don’t work, but it’s not always easy or convenient. Along the way, I found out the hard way that some RV levelers on the market leave a lot to be desired. Continue reading.

Most used accessory: Camco’s flat-folding step stool for RVs

This little gadget is one of my most used RV accessories. The Camco folding step stool folds flat to be neatly tucked away into almost any closet or cubby and instantly unfolds into a sturdy step stool. When it’s time to put it away, just press in the hinged sides, which causes the hinged top to fold up. Couldn’t be easier. Read about many of its uses here.

DO YOU ENJOY READING ABOUT GADGETS? Then you absolutely must read the latest edition of our Great RV Accessories Newsletter! Read it here, and if you like what you see, sign up for it (delivered to your inbox every other Thursday).

What is it?

Now what do you suppose this is? We’ll give you a few hints: It’s not a 1940s Jell-O mold. It’s not a helmet. It’s not a toy. It’s not for chips and dip. It’s highly unlikely you could buy it on Amazon, but you might find it at an antique shop. It could hold a liquid at times, but you wouldn’t want to drink it. Finally, we found this item in a museum in Massachusetts. Give up? We’ll have the answer in tomorrow’s RV Daily Tips Newsletter. (Sign up for an email reminder of the issue.)

RV Tire Safety

Tire ‘safety margin’ versus ‘durability margin’ – What’s the difference?

By Roger Marble
The term “safety margin” is used for many “structures” like bridges or sometimes in individual components like bolts or steel cables. However, I bet you have never used the term “durability margin.” When it comes to tires, this might be a better term to use.

Learn why here

Ask Roger anything about RV tires on his RV Tires Forum.

Did you miss yesterday’s Latest News for RVers?

If so, stories you missed:
RV manufacturer touts new 7-year extended warranty – Is it for real?
New BLM rule would lack congressional oversight and limit recreational access
Court rules in favor of ‘Corner Crossers’ on public lands in federal lawsuit
Camping World stock shoots upward. What it means for RVers
Time running out to visit gas station that pumps Cheez-Its
Lippert launches revolutionary flexible solar awning
and much more

Read it here | Back issues

Recipe of the Day

Apricot Barbecue Sauce for Grilling

by Amy Jajliardo from Mt. Vernon, ME

Enhance your summer grilling with this homemade apricot barbecue sauce. Sweet with a slight tang, it caramelizes while grilling and browns the meat perfectly. We loved it on chicken breasts, but any cut of chicken would work. Pork would be great. If you use this sauce with bone-in chicken, we recommend waiting until the end to baste the chicken or it will burn.

Get the recipe here

Readers’ Pets of the Day

“Lola and Lukas. Relaxing after a tough day at the campground.” —John McKinnon

RVing with Dogs group on Facebook. You’ll love it.


When you order decaffeinated coffee at a restaurant, the pot will usually have an orange top and handle. The reason? When decaffeinated coffee was the hot new thing, Sanka, with its distinctive orange packaging, was THE brand. In a big promotion, the company sent thousands of orange coffee pots with orange spouts to coffee shops across the USA. To this day, when you order decaf coffee, the pot it’s poured from will most often be “Sanka” orange, no matter what the brand.

Sunday funny

You may not find yourself laughing at this one, but you’ll surely find yourself saying, “Yikes!” Can you believe this?? We’ll say it for you… Yikes! Watch it more than once and you might let out a chuckle…

Click here to see… and get ready!

Give the most patriotic RVing gift of all time 
If you’re going to be patriotic, why not do so with an American flag made out of motorhomes? How cool is this shirt? It comes in men’s, women’s and children’s sizes, so you can match with the whole family. And it’s 100% cotton so you know it will be soft! This is so neat! Get one for yourself here.

Did you miss last week’s RV Travel?

Read it here | Back issues All Star Team

rv travel logo

Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Editor: Emily Woodbury. Associate editor: Diane McGovern. Senior editors: Russ and Tiña De Maris. Senior writers: Nanci Dixon, Gail Marsh, Dave Solberg. Contributors: Roger Marble, Dave Helgeson, Janet Groene, J.R. Montigel, Randall Brink, Karel Carnohan DVM, Cheri Sicard, Dustin Simpson, Dale Wade and Paul Lacitinola. Moderator: Gary Gilmore. Financial affairs director: Gail Meyring. IT wrangler: Kim Christiansen. Artificial (AI) contributors: Johnny Robot and Milly MacWilly. Canine Mascots: Archie and Astor “the Disaster”

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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Help desk:
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Mail us at 9792 Edmonds Way, #265, Edmonds, WA 98020.

This newsletter is copyright 2023 by RV Travel LLC.


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3 months ago

I don’t know about studies, but from almost 40 years of personal experience I know for a fact that rving and camping is by far cheaper than other forms of vacationing. Our family vacationed tons of fantastic places that we never would have been able to afford if we had to stay in motels/hotels. This was true with our two pop-ups, and with our 28′ TT, and certainly true now in retirement full time rving with our new 34′ 5th wheel. We still go places and do things we couldn’t afford otherwise. It’s great!

3 months ago

Flying marshmallow and it starts Canada a blaze. Progressive will cover that. When we found out Liberty Mutual would not cover road side rv flat tire issue we left them for Progressive when they explained the RV policy in detail. When I heard something that caught my attention I had to ask. The person told me for example if little Billy from across the way trips over god knows what on our campsite, they will and believe you me I took a double take on this one, will ambulance little Billy to the hospital and take care of his needs. Parents are taken care of. Sold me on Progressive and been with them for like almost ten years now. They are very detailed in any thing accident can happen RV. So yes Progressive will cover the flying marshmallow sending Auntie Flo ablaze. I wonder if that is what happened to start the wildfires of Canada. I just renewed our policies and am saving hundreds. Another time I will explain what happened when I drove over a fire ring. Yeah they covered that one too

3 months ago

“you can prove just about anything you want by twisting the data in a way that proves your point.” I learned that in Psychology 101, about how results can be skewed in surveys and polls.

3 months ago

About the mystery product of the day, are we really being patriotic when we decorate with products and flags made in China? Why do we even buy patriotic merchandise made in China? May as well buy a Chinese flag and pledge allegiance to it.
It’s not easy to find flags and patriotic merchandise made in the USA but I believe it shows more patriotism to not buy anything than to decorate with foreign stuff.
Just my 5 cents.

3 months ago
Reply to  L B

I will NOT buy a US flag made anyplace except the US. There are several flag companies here in the US making and selling flags, however they are more expensive than China made.

3 months ago

“There are two kinds of data, good and bad. Bad data destroys the value of good data, therefore making all data worthless.”

3 months ago

We have seen many of those “fines” under rules for many years. The issue is, many of the places don’t enforce the rules, if any, and depending on who you are. We workamped at a park where I was an office manager. One of the rules when renting their “barn” for weddings and such was it was to be cleaned before you get your cleaning refund back. Well I was told by our cleaning person that the wedding people didn’t clean up after they came back to pickup their stuff. So I explained the rule to them and told them they had to wait till owner and I was able to talk. Well I got a phone call the next day, the owner said it was ok, they could get their refund and I can’t be like that. I said “go by the rules.”This is at an RV park in TX where they only have those they want to leave obey the rules. Yes, you heard me, they pick and chose who has to follow the rules, we stopped working and staying there after that.

3 months ago
Reply to  Brenda

I agree with you. It seems some campgrounds bend the rules for certain people. We’ve stayed in campgrounds with rules that are not enforced for seasonal people. Golf carts speeding, bicycles and junk laying all over the site, dogs constantly barking, ones that think they own the campground, plus almost every other rule broken. If the campground caters to seasonals , they should be put in their own area. Not scattered among the ones who want to enjoy a short stay.

3 months ago
Reply to  Bob

I agree!

3 months ago

“Sunday funny” only viewable if you have instagram, I do not. -very funny.

3 months ago
Reply to  gene


Diane McGovern
3 months ago
Reply to  gene

Sorry you can’t view it, Gene. I don’t have Instagram and never have, but I can still view the video. I don’t know why some folks can’t view it, although the majority can. Have a good afternoon/evening. 😀 –Diane at

3 months ago

“One subject we discussed at length was “Lying with Statistics.” What I learned is that you can prove just about anything you want by twisting the data in a way that proves your point. Advertisers and politicians do it routinely.”
Something the folks in D.C. do very well to support their gaslighting.

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