Welcome to The Village Square, the series that answers common RVing questions with tips, tricks, and camping hacks from RVillage community members just like you.
Full-time RVing is all about ditching the mortgage payment, selling your belongings, and living a wanderlust-filled life that provides you with an endless supply of the Instagram-worthy content dreams are made of—right? Not so fast. While full-time RVing can be (and is) a wonderful, fulfilling lifestyle for many, it’s not necessarily as enchanting and easy as some people make it appear to be, especially on social media. And it most certainly shouldn’t be a lifestyle you jump into without doing research first.
That’s why we asked full-timing RVillagers to share their best camping wisdom with those of you who are considering joining the full-time community. From surviving frigid temps to choosing the right rig, these are must-read tips for anybody thinking about making this leap.
RVillagers Share Their Best Advice for RVers Considering the Full-Time Lifestyle
Rent a camper and give camping a try. Then, buy a camper and give camping more of a try. Then, after you have a better idea of what you’re doing, consider full-timing. —Marcia M.
Get a heated water hose, heat tape, and foam to wrap your pipes (if full-timing in cold temperatures). If your underbody isn’t heated, leave the cabinet doors under all sinks open so warm air can get to the pipes. Buy a skirt for your camper, they make them to fit exact models. I camp year-round in temps down to 10 degrees and haven’t had any problems thus far…knock on wood. —Susan J.
Consider how often you’re going to move. The larger your RV is, the more difficult it is to move all the time and to find spots. It’s a trade-off, space versus mobility. No right or wrong answer, just a personal choice. —Ginny W.
Get a nice comfortable mattress. Don’t keep the one that comes with the camper. Get a better one. —Daphney A.
Be flexible and resilient. —Kevin/Yvonne & 4 Doxies
Go full-time for at least 6 months before selling your home. My wife and I full-timed for 2 years and decided we wanted a place to call home. Now we spend half of our time at each. —Tom & Patti R.
Learn all about your rig, whatever kind you have—it will save you tons of money. Even if you don’t fix it yourself, this helps keep you from being ripped off or accepting poor workmanship. —Hank & Shirleen
My greatest advice for anyone deciding to adopt this lifestyle is to be prepared to be a lifetime learner, because you’re driving or towing the eternal classroom that doesn’t care if you’re tired or frustrated or new to RVing. Handle the inadvertent issue that’s certain to arise with patience. Know your resources and use this wonderful community of RV angels to help you through those challenges that are certain to appear. —TheBouies
Relax and enjoy it. Don’t over plan so you have room for spontaneous stops. Harvest Hosts and Boondockers Welcome are great resources to use to fill in planning gaps. —Double K (Kathy and Keith)
If you’ll have a companion, make sure the two of you can tolerate each other in small confined spaces before taking the leap. Secondly, figure out how to get cell phone/internet services to stay connected (even if rarely) to at least a few friends and family. —Newshutz
Bonus Tip: When you’re sitting at some amazing lake where it’s 70 degrees and breezy and the mountains are towering above you—every little reason you had not to do this will vanish while you laugh really hard. —Trippin’ turtles
Thank you RVillagers for sharing your full-timing wisdom with the RVing community. If you want to see your advice featured on “The Village Square,” be sure to share your favorite RVing hacks, tips, and tricks with the community, and keep an eye out for questions from RVillage Camp Hosts.
Editor’s note: Some quotes have been slightly edited for clarity.