As with any dream, people may delay or completely give up on pursuing full-time RVing because of fear and doubt. Standing in their way are uncertainties of all kinds. Will RVing break the bank? Is this the right choice for my family? The list of questions goes on. What’s missing in this cloud of apprehension is clarity. There are many RV myths circulating that are simply untrue.
For anyone still on the fence about the nomad lifestyle, now is as good a time as any to get to the bottom of the matter and start your quest to learn the absolute truth behind the misconceptions. Once you know the facts, you can take steps of your own to better prepare for your new life on the road. The following are three full-time RV myths busted!
Myth #1: RVing is Expensive
In short, it all comes down to you. RVing can be as over-the-top expensive or frugal as you make it.
- Upfront costs can be expensive depending on the type of rig you choose. But if you are looking for a more affordable unit, opting for an older, used model greatly reduces the up-front cost.
- Fuel can get costly traveling from one destination to the next, but longer stays at each location mean fewer trips to the fuel station.
- Strictly opting for campgrounds and RV parks or resorts can get pricey quickly, but throwing boondocking and discount camping memberships in the mix will lessen the monetary load.
Make Full-Time RVing Work Financially For You
Establish a monthly budget upfront. Regular costs for full-time RVing include fuel, camping fees, food, phone/internet, insurance, RV/extra vehicle maintenance and repairs, and adventuring. Of course, additional items could include any outstanding debts or loans, medical bills, and other miscellaneous costs like pet expenses, trips to the laundromat, etc.
List your potential expenses. While you may not know the exact amount for every item, fill in what you do know in the way of typical monthly charges. Generally speaking, all items on the list can be reduced to manageable numbers by finding ways to save, like in the tips below:
To minimize your monthly budget costs:
- Pay off outstanding debts before beginning your full-time RV adventures.
- Opt for club memberships that offer discounts on campground/RV resort stays.
- Camp for free/boondock throughout the year.
- Cook at home as opposed to eating out.
- Perform regular maintenance on your RV to avoid unnecessary repairs down the road.
- If you haven’t already, create an emergency fund for those unexpected repairs or services that will inevitably happen along your journey.
Myth #2: RV Life is a Constant Vacation
RVing is an adventure like no other! Traveling the countryside, visiting famous sites, exploring new places, meeting folks from all over, sampling delicious cuisine from different regions, and seeing the sun rise and set on some of the most gorgeous landscapes sounds like a constant vacation! Reality check: Like everything in life, full-time RVing has its highs and lows.
Not to put a smudge on those rose-colored glasses, but RVing has its fair share of mishaps and unfortunate events. There’s a learning curve to full-time RVing, and it’s important to realize, heading into this lifestyle, that things won’t go your way all the time.
- Things in your RV will eventually break.
- You may get a flat tire.
- Your next camping spot won’t be that picturesque setting you imagined.
- Cell service will be spotty at some locations.
- You may not particularly enjoy your neighbors at an RV park.
- Let’s not forget emptying the black tank. Sewer debacles are also part of the fun.
But these incidents ought to be seen as part of the adventure. The good with the not so wonderful go hand-in-hand to make the journey! Learn from the mistakes and become proactive to prevent future mishaps.
Myth #3: RV Travel is Only For Retired Folks
“Traveling the country at a leisurely pace has historically been seen as a reward for having lived a productive life. Now, however, there is an ever-increasing number of full-timing folks who do not match that particular demographic, and whose motivations are somewhat different.”
“Full-time RVing has really taken off in the last few years. Traditionally, the full-time RV life has belonged almost exclusively to retirees, “ mentions a Do It Yourself RV article.
Move over baby boomers, here come Gen Xers and Millennials. The idea of “wanderlust” is a huge draw for the younger generations; full-time RVing is trending. Millennials, in particular, have shown a great interest in nomadic life, leading the pack in RV purchases throughout the past few years.
A 2018 report by RV LIFE explained, “Manufacturers are expecting to ship nearly half a million RVs in 2018. Even more encouraging though, is the age of the buyers. Younger enthusiasts looking for a cheap, versatile vacation are largely driving sales growth.”
A 2020 Camper Report article mentioned how an uptick in Class B sales was due to millennials. “…among the many RVs to choose from, the Class B motorhome seems to be the pick of the litter for millennials. Besides being compact and easy to drive, camper vans are becoming the new homes-on-wheels for digital nomads.”
Even before the pandemic, younger generations saw the advantages of living life on the open road. For many, this new way of living is…
- An escape from the monotony of typical life, working 9-5 until retirement
- A way to live minimally
- A more affordable lifestyle
- A perfect option for digital nomads and other traveling workers
Even More RV Myths Busted
For an even broader reality check on full-time RVing, check out this video from full-time veterans Chris Dunphy & Cherie Ve Ard of Technomadia. The vlog was recorded almost 10 years ago, but the myths and realities they discuss still ring true for RVers today.
Bust RV Myths By Being Proactive and Using Helpful Resources
Rather than relying on RV myths and other hearsay, get the facts and learn about how you can make full-time RVing work for you! Resources like the trip planning program RV LIFE Trip Wizard and the accompanying RV LIFE Safe GPS app are invaluable for travelers. This nifty online tool helps RVers find and map out RV-friendly routes to camping destinations like boondocking spots and RV campgrounds all over the nation.
Are you a full-time RVer? What RV myths have you heard about on the road? Please share them in the comments below.