It is rare to go into a casino parking lot anywhere in the country and not find at least a few RVs there. Casinos are known to be “RV-friendly.”
Just about every casino in the West with a large surface parking lot offers free overnight parking. The main attraction for RVers is security. Casinos that allow free dry camping in their parking lot give RVers a quiet and safe spot to rest and relax with 24/7 professional security.
Casinos welcome adult campers in self-contained vehicles because the casinos usually have large enough parking areas to accommodate big vehicles and they know their facility may get extra business. However, you are not required to go in to gamble. As a matter of fact, most RVers who occasionally dry camp in casino parking lots are not gamblers, certainly not high rollers. But most folks will treat themselves to a meal at the casino and sometimes they’ll drop a few dollars into the penny slots, just for fun.
Nearly every casino features a buffet restaurant and that’s a good bet wherever you go. The food is high quality, professionally prepared and it’s fresh! That’s because, in spite of the sinking economy, casinos still enjoy high customer traffic, so the food offered at the buffet doesn’t sit on the steam table for any length of time. Frequently, casinos also offer coupons or specials at their other restaurants.
Many casinos feature RV parks for people who wish to stay longer or for those who simply don’t like to dry camp. RVers who travel with pets prefer having hookups so they keep their pets cool during the summer heat.
Some of the RV parks connected to casinos rise to the luxury level. Stay at the RV park at the Riverside Resort in Laughlin, Nevada, for example, and you have access to shower and laundry facilities, propane, a dump station, a 34-lane bowling center, a six-plex cinema, and a supervised children’s play area. There is a 24-hour shuttle to the casino.
At Seven Feathers RV Resort in Southern Oregon, the RV park is situated on 23 acres amid manicured lawns and lush landscaping. There is a heated pool and spa, a state-of-the are fitness room, and a library lounge with computers.
Overnight Parking Tips
If you plan to use a casino parking lot for free overnight parking, here are a few tips:
Always check with security or casino management to get permission to stay overnight in the parking lot. Ask where they prefer for you to park. Many facilities have a specific section of the lot designated for overnighters. Since most casinos are open 24/7, security personnel are on duty all night.
Do not abuse the property owner’s hospitality. Please keep in mind that a parking lot is not a campground. You did not rent the space you occupy for the night. Do not put out your awning, chairs or barbeque. It is OK to extend a slideout if you need to, but restrict your activity to the inside of the RV.
Do not use hydraulic jacks on soft surfaces (including asphalt), especially in summer.
Stay one night only. If you plan to be in the area for more than a day or two, check into a campground.
Always leave the area cleaner than you found it.
Even though casinos have 24/7 security, it is not wise to leave your RV unattended overnight or for any extended period. You may think this is just common sense advice, but you would be surprised at how many folks leave their large, expensive vehicles in a casino lot and go off to visit friends in the area for a few days. If you are foolish enough to do this, don’t be surprised when you return to find that your unattended vehicle has been towed away.
We cannot emphasize enough how important it is to notify security if you want to stay overnight in the parking lot. With very few exceptions, casinos are RV-friendly. Some casinos will ask to see your driver’s license, some may ask you to complete a form showing your name, vehicle license plate number and the date of your overnight stay in the lot. Many casinos have fee-pay campgrounds or RV parks as part of their facility. Some of these casinos will also allow free overnight parking in their lot. But others may expect you to stay and pay at their RV park and will not permit dry camping in the parking lot. When you check in with security, they will provide information about where the casino prefers for you to stay for the night.
Casinos Near Interstate Exits
If you want the convenience of stopping close to the interstate, the following casinos are located less than two miles from the exit:
• Cliff Castle Casino, Cape Verde, next to I-17 exit 289. RV park on the west side of the interstate; casino and free overnight parking on the east side.
• Gila River Casinos, Chandler, at I-10 exit 162. Free overnight parking.
• Desert Diamond, Sahuarita, at I-19 exit 80. Free overnight parking.
• Viejas Casino, Alpine, at I-8 exit 33. Free overnight parking.
• Morongo Casino, Cabazon, at I-10 exit 144. Free overnight parking.
• Golden Acorn Casino, Campo, at I-8 exit 61. Free overnight parking.
• Rolling Hills Casino, Corning, at I-5 exit 628. Self-serve RV park or free overnight in the lot.
• Elk Valley Casino, Crescent City, at U.S.101 south end of Crescent City. Free overnight parking.
• Fantasy Springs Casino, Indio, at I-10 exit 144. Free overnight parking.
• Bear River Casino, Loleta, at U.S.101 exit 692.
• Coyote Valley Casino, Redwood Valley, at U.S.101 exit 557.
• Lucky 7 Casino, Smith River, at U.S. 101 at N. Indian Rd,
• Pechanga Casino Resort, Temecula, at I-15 exit 50. RV park.
• Cher-Ae Heights Casino, Trinidad, at U.S.101 exit 728. Free overnight parking.
• Fort Hall Casino, Fort Hall, at I-15 exit 80. RV Park or free overnight parking.
• Gold Country Casino, Elko, at I-80 exit 303. RV park.
• Commercial Casino, Elko, at I-80 exit 301. Free overnight parking.
• Gold Strike Casino, Jean, at I-15 exit 12. Free overnight parking.
• Arizona Charlie’s Casino, Boulder, at I-515 exit 70. RV park.
• California Casino, Las Vegas, at I-515 exit 75B. RV park.
• Circus Circus Casino, Las Vegas, at I-15 exit 40. RV park.
• Sam’s Town Casino, Las Vegas, at I-515 exit 68. RV park.
• CasaBlanca Casino, Mesquite, at I-15 exit 120. RV park. Free overnight parking in the lot.
• Eureka Casino, Mesquite, at I-15 exit 122. Free overnight parking.
• Oasis Casino, Mesquite, at I-15 exit 120. RV park.
• Virgin River Casino, Mesquite, at I-15 exit 122. Free overnight parking.
• Primm Resorts, Primm, at I-15 exit 1.
• Grand Sierra Casino, Reno, at I-80 exit 15. RV park.
• Several casinos in Sparks, at I-80 exit 17, offer free overnight parking.
• Boomtown Casino, Verdi, at I-80 exit 4. RV park. Free overnight parking at mini-mart.
• Gold Ranch Casino, Verdi, at I-80 exit 2. RV park. Free overnight parking in the lot.
• Casinos in Wells at I-80 exit 352.
• West Wendover area casinos at I-80 exit 410 have an RV park and free overnight parking.
• Model T Casino, Winnemucca, at I-80 exit 176. RV park. Free overnight parking.
• Seven Feathers Casino, Canyonville, at I-5 exit 99. RV park. Free overnight parking.
• The Mill Casino, Hotel and RV Park, North Bend, U.S. 101. RV park.
• Wildhorse Casino, Pendleton, at I-84 exit 216. RV park.
• Angel of the Winds, Arlington, at I-5 exit 210. Free overnight parking.
• Emerald Queen Casino, Tacoma, at I-5 exit 135. Free overnight parking.
• Tulalip Casino, Tulalip, I-5 at exit 200. Free overnight parking.
Jane Kenny is the author of the best-selling book, Casino Camping: A Guide to RV-Friendly Casinos. The fourth edition, with hundreds of casinos in 32 states, is now available from Roundabout Publications at www.travelbooks.com . The book is also sold at Camping World, RVBookstore.com and Amazon.com .