Saturday, September 30, 2023


RV Travel Newsletter Issue 980

Welcome to, the newsletter for intelligent, open-minded RVers. Learn about RV camping, RV travel, RV news and much more. This newsletter, now in its 20th year of continuous publication, is made possible in large part by the voluntary subscription contributions from our readers.

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Breaking News

Have you seen this RV used in the Nashville bombing?
The Federal Bureau of Investigation wants to hear from anyone who may have information regarding this Class C motorhome. They say it was used in the massive explosion in Nashville, Tennessee, Friday morning. We’ll have more on this in tomorrow’s issue. For now, read our developing story.

Page Contents

December 26, 2020
Non-Members (advertising supported) edition

This free edition of the newsletter is posted at 9 a.m. (Pacific) every Saturday (that’s noon in the East). The member edition is published seven hours earlier, at 2 a.m. (Pacific). Readers who make even a one-time financial contribution to this website and newsletter automatically receive a permanent subscription to the member edition, ready for reading first thing with their morning coffee (or other beverage).

Editor’s corner

With Chuck Woodbury

Merry (belated) Christmas! I hope you had a wonderful day! Our staff took a little time off this week for our own celebrations. It’s been a long year and I know I speak for all of my staff saying we are very happy to see it end. Let’s hope that with the vaccine our lives can return to normal again in 2021. Oh, wouldn’t that be wonderful!

Thanks for being a part of our extended RVing family. We look forward to serving you with great news and information in the year ahead … and beyond.

Be safe. Wear your mask. We’re headed to the pandemic finish line. Be patient. We’ll arrive there soon.


Stories in tomorrow’s newsletter

• More on the Breaking News story of the “intentional” RV explosion Christmas Day in Nashville
• RV shipments sizzling, best November in history!
• Thor Industries buys Tiffin Motorhomes for $300 million
• Big recall on GM, Chevy pickup trucks for seat belt failure issue
• What’s up in Quartzsite?
• Tiffin sold out – Will reliability crash under Thor ownership?
PLUS: Campground updates • Latest fuel prices • Latest RV recalls • Free and bargain camping locations • Reader survey • and much more …

Last week’s Tip of the Day in RV Daily Tips Newsletters

Cables in a tangle? Try this!
Dumping your tanks without moving your rig
Use wireless thermometers to track important areas of your RV
Caution: RV ladders and roofs are slippery when wet (and a bonus tip: Lube, Lube, Lube!)

Today’s RV review…

Today, industry insider Tony Barthel reviews the Winnebago Inspire 34AE Motorhome. This wheelchair-accessible RV has many well-thought-out features. Tony says, “Winnebago is to be commended for creating a coach that brings the joy of RV living to a group of people who might be overcoming challenges.” Read about it here.

Last week’s reviews
2021 Coachmen Freedom Express Ultra Lite 252RBS Travel Trailer2021 Aliner Ascape Plus Travel Trailer2021 Flagstaff E-Pro 20FBS Travel TrailerSanta’s Sleigh (Yes, you read that right…)

Last year at this time, these were the most popular articles

Truck camper “recipe for disaster” folds down on the street
Another super long RV. Don’t take this around a tight curve
We do not want to own this RV. Nope. 
Reader letter: Days of RVing without reservations are gone

Brain Teaser

What day would yesterday be if Thursday was four days before the day after tomorrow?

(Answer in tomorrow’s Sunday newsletter)

Campground Crowding: ReserveAmerica – Love it or hate it?

More people than ever are taking up RVing. The result is campground crowding like never before. This week our readers shared some thoughts on the following topics: How about more businesses opening up part of their parking lots for overnight stays? What about public campgrounds allowing same-day reservations? How do you feel about ReserveAmerica? Find out what others said, and then let us know what you think about it. All that and more, here.

Jeep Reviews: Which is best to flat tow?

By Nanci Dixon
“Last week I reviewed a few cars for flat towing and it was wonderful to read such helpful comments from so many of you. If you read the article, you know I’m in the market for a new car, so your comments helped me find a few more options to look at.” Read Nanci’s reviews of several Jeeps for flat towing here.

There is something really fishy going on here! Yikes! How do people come up with products like this? Find out what we’re talking about.

Reader Poll

Did you accomplish the New Year’s resolution you made at the beginning of 2020?

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

The most popular poll in this past week’s RV Daily Tips newsletters:
Have you made a campground reservation for this summer?
See how nearly 1,900 other RVers responded. 

Is this your RV?

If it’s yours and you can prove it to us (send a photo for comparison), tell us here by 9 p.m. Pacific Standard time today, Dec. 26, 2020. If it’s yours you’ll win a $25 Amazon gift certificate.

If this isn’t your RV, send us a photo of your RV (if you haven’t already) for a chance to win in future issues.

This past week two people claimed their $25 gift card: Richard G. of Ventura, CA, and Jane F. of Fort Meyers, FL.

We’ll have another photo in tomorrow’s newsletter (sign up to receive an email alert so you don’t miss the issue or those that follow). Some of these photos are submitted by readers while others were taken by our editors and writers on their travels around the USA.

What kind of toilet paper is best for your RV?

Do you really need to use “RV” toilet paper? Perhaps those that have first tried “non-RV paper” are tossing and turning on their beds, visions of seven-headed wild beast-like clogs churning under their bed. Well, we have some news for them … and others. It’s here.

Did someone say comfort food? This chicken veggie curry does the trick!

By Nanci Dixon
My new favorite flavor is curry and this Indian-inspired curry chicken and veggies prepared quickly in an Instant Pot™ is a great way to spice up a cool fall or winter day. You can serve it over rice or slurp it up as a soup. Get the recipe.

Michigan’s latest craze? Mobile bowling in a semi-truck

Terence Jackson Jr. has endured the COVID-19 pandemic with innovation – the world’s first mobile bowling alley and lounge. It’s built inside a 53-foot semi-truck trailer. Jackson, 34, spent two years working on the project and despite further delays because of the virus launched Luxury Strike Bowling on June 15. Read more, then book your (safe) bowling party here.

Don’t toss away good batteries!

Most RVers rely on battery-powered devices while on the road, whether flashlights, radios or cameras. But sometimes you just can’t tell how much life a battery has remaining so you toss it to “be sure.” This small, inexpensive tester will alert you in an instant to the condition of a battery, saving you money from needlessly tossing ones with plenty of remaining life! Works on AA, AAA, C, D, 9V and button-type batteries. Learn more or order.

Popular articles from last week

New RVs sitting in manufacturers’ fields. No parts to finish them!
Three RV parks where you can fish without a state license
• Directory of RV Reviews (too many popular posts to list individually).
What are the best cars to flat tow? We review some options
New RVer turns his fifth wheel into an RVer’s technology dream
Campground Chatter with Janet Groene, December 19, 2020
Get an electric truck – or RV – from Camping World?
Campground Crowding: Should some reservations be reserved for state residents?
This bizarre accommodation on wheels welcome RVers, others
Can you back up a trailer at 50 mph? This guy can!
Pickup truck weighs 30,000 pounds. See what it’s made of!
These RVs are merry AND bright! Check out our readers’ decorated RVs
Good News: Things to smile about this week, December 20, 2020

Saturday Giveaway!

The Prize: Byakov 1080p Dash Cam

How to win

We’ll select a winner at random out of all entries we receive today (December 26, 2020) by 7:00 p.m. Pacific time. Remember, you can only enter once and after we notify you by email via that you won, you have 24 hours to respond or we’ll give the prize to someone else.

Click here to enter and see last week’s winner!

The cutest salt and pepper shakers!
You can’t deny how cute this is – it would be perfect on any RV dinette! This vintage gas station filling pump salt and paper set is so unique! This would make a great gift for anyone who loves classic cars or Route 66! We want one! Check it out here.


Stolen RVs — Help us recover these stolen RVs. The more eyes we have searching for them, the better chance of getting them back to their rightful owners, and maybe putting the crooks who stole them in the slammer! See the stolen RVs.

NEW: Check out all our favorite websites of the day! We compiled a list of (almost) all the websites we’ve ever posted, and we’ll continue to update it.

Where to complain about bad RVs, dealers, service, RV parks. This is an ever-expanding list of resources where you can report, share or discuss your problems with RV manufacturers or dealers.

Best Club for RVers: Escapees. Click here to learn more or join. Endorsed by

Directory of RV parks with storm shelters
In case you’re on the road with your RV and the weather report is showing a tornado headed your way, have this list handy.

RV Clubs
Check out our Directory of RV Clubs and Organizations.

What does financing an RV for 20 years REALLY mean?
In case you missed this article the first time around, here it is again. Important! Click here.

Stuck with a lemon RV? Contact Ron Burdge, America’s premier RV lemon law attorney.

Guys! Picture your special lady wearing these!
Face it guys. When it comes to sexy nighties, it would be hard to top these casual pajama bottoms! And, ladies — if your man seems a little disinterested in cuddling these days, wait until he sees you enter the room wearing these! Wowwie! What a great gift these would make. Learn more or order.


Are there 150-amp pedestals?

Hi Mike,
Love your newsletters and thank you so much for your hard work! My wife and I have been full-timing in our 5th wheel since retiring a couple of years ago. We have a “home base” in Wesley Chapel, Florida. Our neighbor was telling me that a 50-amp service barely powers his 45-ft. Essex motorhome. He told me about this new park here in Florida that provides 100- and 150-amp service. …

Read the rest of the question and Mike’s response.

This week’s J.A.M. (Just Ask Mike) Session

Drop-in Lithium battery update

Dear Readers,
Just a quick update on last week’s JAM Session about the problems associated with dropping in a Lithium battery without checking if your battery charger (be it part of your converter or inverter) can provide the higher charging voltage needed, and higher charging current possible, by Lithium Iron Phosphate batteries. Continue reading.

Sign up for Mike’s popular and informative RV Electricity group on Facebook.

RV Tire Safety

How are tires “designed”?

By Roger Marble
First off, let’s be clear on the word “design.” For this post I am not talking just about the exterior “look” of the tread or sidewall but about the complete structure. … Read more on how tires are designed and why there is always a compromise.

Join Passport America and get 50% off at 1,600 RV parks.

RV Short Stop

State parks’ First Day Hikes = healthy, fun family outings

Say good riddance to 2020 and a healthy hello to 2021 by heading outdoors for one of the “First Day Hikes” across America. This national initiative is coordinated by America’s State Parks to get people and their families out into fresh air and connecting with nature on New Year’s Day. Learn more here, and let us know in the comments if you’ll be participating.

RV Fire Safety

An emergency fire plan that can save your life – Part 6 of 13

Having a solid fire escape plan may help you replace panic with logical, life-saving actions if a fire occurs. Knowing exactly what to do and doing it quickly can make a big difference in an emergency situation.

To begin your fire drill, start with everyone seated with seat belts on. From this position, discuss the different ways you could exit the coach without using the main entrance door.  Next, have everyone get into their sleeping quarters. Sound the “alarm” using the test button on a detector, a safety whistle or a shout.

Courtesy: Mac “The Fire Guy” McCoy

Museum of the Week

A Christmas Story House & Museum

Cleveland, OH

If you’ve ever watched the 1983 Christmas classic, “A Christmas Story,” you’re going to want to visit this museum! The Christmas Story Museum features original props from the movie, as well as costumes, memorabilia and behind-the-scenes photos. And, if you’re tired of sleeping in your RV, you can stay in the actual house, which is located directly across the street from the museum! How fun is that? Visit the museum website here to plan your visit… or stay!

RV inline tank sanitizerDevice keeps fresh water tank clean
Tony Barthel writes: “The RV Inline Sanitizer is the simplest of solutions. It’s essentially a reservoir in which you put bleach and then use a source hose and a delivery hose to fill your fresh water tank. The sanitizer effectively adds the bleach as you fill the tank. It is truly that simple.” Read more about this nifty device here.

Readers’ Pet of the Day

“Recently lost a loving member of our family. Our pug, Hank, doesn’t do well by himself when we leave him in the RV alone. So we took a trip to Temple, TX, and picked him up a new sister, Poppy.” —Gary Kaiser

Pets featured in this past week’s RV Daily Tips:
• Monday: Moxie • Tuesday: Krystal • Wednesday: Ruby • Thursday: Bernadette, “Bernie”


If you’re planning a surgery, try avoiding it on the surgeon’s birthday. According to research published this month in the British Medical Journal, there’s a noticeable increase in patient deaths after surgeons perform an operation on their birthday. The scientists tracked how many Medicare beneficiaries died within 30 days of an emergency surgery. When the surgery was performed on a surgeon’s birthday, 6.9 percent of the patients died. On any other day, only 5.6 percent died.

Joke of the Week

My friend Joe recently went on the Dolly Parton diet…
It really made Joe lean, Joe lean, Joe lean, Joe leannnnn….

Did you miss last week’s RV Travel?

Read it here | Back issues

RV Travel staff

Editor and Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Editor: Emily Woodbury. Managing editor: Diane McGovern. Senior editors: Russ and Tiña De Maris. Senior writers: Nanci Dixon, Tony Barthel. Contributors: Mike Sokol, Roger Marble, Dave Helgeson, Janet Groene, Julianne Crane, Chris Guld, Machelle James, James Raia, Barry and Monique Zander, J.M. Montigel, Clint Norrell, and Andrew Robinson. Social media and special projects director: Jessica Sarvis. Moderators: Gary Gilmore, Linda Brady. Financial affairs director: Gail Meyring. IT wrangler: Kim Christiansen.

FOREVER IN OUR MEMORIES — OUR STAFF MEMBER IN HEAVEN, Gary Bunzer, the RV Doctor, who was taken from us by the coronavirus.

Honorary Correspondents: Loyal readers who regularly email us leads about news stories and other information and resources that aid our own news-gathering efforts.
• Mike Sherman • George Bliss • Tom and Lois Speirs • Steve Barnes • Tom Hart + others who we will add later. 

REGIONAL AND LOCAL ADVERTISING: We can now run banners on in your town or in a designated area near you, for example to readers within 100, 200, etc., miles of your business. For information contact .

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.

Need help? Contact us.

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

This newsletter is copyright 2020 by


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Steve flippo
2 years ago

A guy named Barney won the dinosaur toy? 🤣🤣🤣

Cheryl Bacon
2 years ago

I’m glad to hear you had a Merry Christmas and took the day off to enjoy it! You all should take holidays off. I cannot say I share your same enthusiasm over 2021 and the vaccine. There are still too many unanswered questions and I doubt we will get anywhere close to the needed percentage for herd immunity. I also don’t think we will ever get back to our previous normal. We will just have a new normal. One thing for sure, 2020 will go down in history books.

2 years ago

Amazing we haven’t heard the Duffy Trio before now.

Joe Goomba
2 years ago

Be aware that the “Christmas Story House” was *only* used to external filming. No scenes were actually filmed within the house.

2 years ago

I love the Christmas music!

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