The holiday season is in full swing, and it’s time to start thinking about gifts. Whether you’re an RVer thinking about what you might like for the holidays or someone who needs to do a bit of holiday shopping for the RVer in your life, you may feel a little stuck. After all, you can only fit so much stuff in your RV, meaning if you live in your rig full time, extra odds and ends really aren’t helpful—and even those part-time RVers out there may not need more stuff to cram in their rig, or RV knick-knacks to fill their sticks-and-bricks home.
This is where experience gifts come into play!
RVers love to experience new things. That’s a huge part of why many of us took up RVing in the first place. Being gifted an experience rather than a physical item means we can try something new and exciting. It also means fewer things to juggle as we head out on our RVing adventures.
Not sure what kinds of experience gifts an RVer might like? My family has received nearly all of the gifts below, and they have made for some incredible memories.
Passes and Memberships
First, let’s talk about the kind of gifts that keep on giving: passes and memberships. By purchasing a membership of some sort for your RVing loved one, you are actually giving them multiple memorable outings, all in one neat little package.
In order to cater to your friend’s wandering ways, make sure the pass you purchase offers reciprocal benefits so it can be used all over the country.
“America the Beautiful” Pass
First and foremost, we must mention the “America the Beautiful” Pass. This is an annual pass that grants cardholders free entry to a huge number of government-owned lands, including all of the national parks.
This is the ideal gift for those who enjoy hiking and other outdoor recreation opportunities, as well as national park enthusiasts. Honestly, we can’t imagine an RVer who wouldn’t adore this pass as a gift!
Reciprocal Museum Membership
Who doesn’t love visiting museums? Certainly, nobody we know.
Unfortunately, museum entry fees can be quite high. Give your nomadic buddy the gift of unlimited museum visits this year by purchasing a membership to a museum that is part of a reciprocal network. Some of our favorite reciprocal museum networks include ASTC and NARM, but there are several other good ones out there.
Reciprocal Zoo Membership
Similar to the reciprocal museum memberships mentioned above, a zoo membership with reciprocal benefits through AZA is also an excellent pick, especially if you have a traveling animal lover in your life.
We recommend buying the pass from a zoo that offers 100% benefits. You can find these by looking at the list of AZA reciprocal zoos and buying from one with “100%” listed next to the name. This will allow the cardholder to enter other 100% zoos for free and will give them 50% off admission at all other zoos and aquariums on the list.
Theme Park Pass
A theme park pass is another wonderful option! You can choose to buy a pass to a local theme park if you know the RVer in your life will be in one place for a while. That said, those who travel often and extensively might get more use out of a theme park pass with reciprocal benefits.
One-Time Events and Experiences
Of course, not all experience gifts come in the form of a membership or a pass that can be used over and over again. There are plenty of one-time experiences out there that make excellent gifts as well!
From concerts to workshops, the choices are endless. Just make sure you know your RVing friend’s travel plans so you can ensure the experience you choose is in an area they will be visiting.
An RV Rally
RV rallies are an excellent way for RVers to meet other RVers and learn more about their favorite hobby while socializing and having a great time. For this reason, an RV rally makes an excellent experience gift for the traveler you love most. Choose a rally that is along their travel path and make sure you reserve both the rally tickets and the campsite, as these are often booked separately.
Some organizations that put on RV rallies include:
Tours or Regional Experiences
When you travel regularly, it becomes important to find experiences that are unique in each place you visit. This helps each location stand out and helps ensure you learn a bit about local culture while you’re at it.
A tour or some sort of workshop or class to learn about the local culture could be an ideal gift for an RVer. Some examples include a foodie tour in Savannah, a walking tour in Washington, D.C., a surfing class in SoCal, or a jazz workshop in New Orleans.
Will your friend’s travels put them near a really cool attraction? Why not offer to pay for them to go? Even if there isn’t a reciprocal membership that’ll get them into the attraction and others like it over and over again, a single-day visit to a super cool place can be an excellent gift.
Concerts, Performances, and Sports Games
Tickets to a concert, performance, or sports game can also be a fun experience gift. This is an especially great pick if you can snag tickets to an event that caters to your friend’s interests, such as a concert performed by their favorite band, a production of The Nutcracker for a dance enthusiast, or a hockey game played by your friend’s favorite team.
RV Resort Stay
Sure, RVers are used to paying for their own campground fees, but what many don’t do is shell out for the fancy glamping resorts. Help make your RVing loved one’s next camping trip an incredible one by paying for them to stay somewhere awesome.
Look for RV parks with water parks attached, petting zoos by the campsites, or hot springs pools onsite. There are a huge number of amazing parks out there, and a stay at any one of them would be magical.
A Day with You
Last but not least, if your friend will be near you for the holidays, you could give the gift of your time. Full-time RVers often long for connection and a day with you could be just the thing to help them feel loved. Meanwhile, the part-time RVers out there would likely love for you to join them camping or enjoying one of their favorite outdoor activities, as hobbies are always more fun when shared with friends.
Did We Miss Any?
In conclusion, this article presents a thoughtfully curated list of experience gifts that will surely delight any RVer. From passes and memberships to one-time events, there’s something special for everyone who cherishes the RV lifestyle. We’d love to hear your ideas too! Share your own unique gift suggestions in the comments below to inspire fellow RV enthusiasts. And don’t forget to spread the holiday cheer by sharing this article on your social media. Let’s make this festive season memorable for every RVer out there!