It's a Different World
The Corona Virus has completely changed our culture, so when planning for an RV trip that is something that needs to be considered. We want to help all travel trailer owners, especially the newer ones, to make sure that their trips are a success! Here we are going to outline some things that are important for planning any mobile trip, but especially during COVID and we hope that this information helps. With all of your planning, you need to also rate your level of susceptibility to and fear of the coronavirus and add those considerations into your planning: aka checking for hotspots and avoiding them if you need to do so.
Begin by Picking Your Campsite and Planning Your Route
Since COVID is turning many jobs into “at home” jobs, many people can plan long trips that can include many stops, which is why this can be considered the first step. If you want to go to more than one campground, it is important to plan the route before picking the spots, though picking the spots can help plan the route. If you know that you want to travel Route 66, hit certain national parks, or something up and down the whole East Coast, then you would build a route between your beginning and end destinations. If you want to make a simpler trip and hit just one destination, then those trips are significantly easier to plan, but still require planning. It is important to also make routes that are safe for towing or motorhomes and RVs. As an example, there are many ways to get to campsites in Zion, Utah, but some of the routes aren’t as safe or as friendly to towing/ RVs, so it is important to research that beforehand. When choosing routes, do you want to go the more scenic way or the way straight down the highway or through the city? When planning trips, it is important to also consider the speed limits and the capabilities of your vehicles. If Google maps say you can get somewhere in 11 hours, you need to consider that the map will be using the speed limit to calculate that time, not the speed that your vehicle can always handle. Plan to go about an average of 55 MPH. It is also important to remember that automated maps won’t include fill up or bathroom/ meal and snack times; this also needs to be added to the total time of a drive. If you want to be extra safe, having printed maps is always a great idea because technology isn’t always reliable and there may be some spots where phone service is spotty, and not having a non-digital map may be a problem. Lastly, if it’s a very long drive to your destination, try planning out places to visit in between to help break up the journey. Look online to find kitschy stops or cool meal stops or places with a unique history!
For planning your campsites, the BEST thing to do is call your reservations as far in advance as possible. Sometimes, especially during these times, web information may not be updated so if you don’t book a site and you show up, they may be closed or full. When looking at campsites, it is also important to know if it is the right one for you. Check their website and their reviews online, always do your research! Do you need a full hookup for your travel trailer? Will your motorhome fit in their spots? Do their sites have room for pop-outs? Is there a sewage dump on-site? Is that even something you’re worried about? These are a small portion of the questions that you need to ask yourself when preparing and looking for campsites. Some places have full amenities with pools and games and mini-golf and full hookups whereas others are boondocking in dirt lots. Making a budget for your trip to include gas and more along your route as well as what you spend at a campsite is very important. Planning trips like these help save time and money as well as there is less of a headache and fewer mistakes to be made along the way. Some apps to help with finding campgrounds you can check these out:
- Allstays – Website & Mobile App
- Roadtrippers – Website & Mobile App
- RV Parking – Website & Mobile App
- Campendium – Website only
- Camping Road Trip – Website & Mobile App
- US Campgrounds – Website & Mobile App
- RV Park Reviews – Website Only
- Tripadvisor – Website & Mobile App
- Yelp – Website & Mobile App
- KOA – Website only
What to Pack?
Another crucial part of planning is what you are going to pack. If your trip is based on seeing the national parks and hiking, then you probably won’t need to bring a bunch of items to deter you from being idle during the day. If your whole trip is planned in warmer areas, bringing all of your snow gear and snow chains is an unnecessary weight that will slow you down and waste space on your trip. It is important, to begin with, what type and how long of a trip you are making. If you are making a trip around your state to try all the best eateries, packing a lot of cooking supplies won’t be helpful or useful. When packing it’s important to remember that this is your home on wheels for the time being, so you need bathroom and cooking supplies as well as sheets, pillows, and other typical things needed in a home. It’s truly a case by case scenario of what to pack and what not to, so if you are really worried about packing too much or too little google search what to pack for ‘your destination’ or the weather for where you are going.
- Always know your electrical load. Your Travel Vehicle isn’t made to run every appliance at the same time and can get RV users into a pickle if their power source trips from being overloaded. If your power is 50 amps and your heater, fridge and phone/ computer are all 15 amps, then running anything else might cause a big issue.
- Make sure all of your items are secure. When driving, things in your home on wheels can get tossed around so it is best to be sure that everything is secure with bungee cords or curtain rods and even child locks can be helpful.
- Always look at the road and weather conditions to make sure that you have a safe journey to your destination.
- Insurance is always a good idea, especially if you are renting. Better safe than sorry is a good motto to standby. It is always best to coordinate the type of insurance you are looking for with your budget as well.
- A good idea as well as to make a checklist, especially when you are taking trips with multiple stops or destinations so that nothing gets lost or left behind.
- Trying to meal prep for your trip is a great way to save on cooking time and mess as well as helping you organize and minimize the space used up in your fridge.
- Going over your trip when you return is a stellar way to make sure that your next trip will be even better than your last. Go over the things that worked and what didn’t and what you wish to have done differently so that the next trip can be even more fun and seamless.
- If you are new to the Travel Trailer life, maybe starting with one destination that isn’t too far from your home is a good way to kick off your journey with the home on the road experience.
- If you are going on a long-haul trip, make sure that you have knowledge of how to fix minor issues with your rig. It’s best to have general knowledge in case you get to an area where there is no service or help is a long way away.
- Make sure you always have emergency supplies like flashlights, water, and other things to stay ready for anything!