While the COVID-19 outbreak has peaked across most of the country, it is still unknown when travel restrictions will be lifted, allowing things to begin to return to normal. If you’ve developed a case of white line fever from staying at home during the containment mandates (like I have), plan on being fully prepared before departing on an RV outing this summer season. By being prepared, you will avoid putting undue pressure on small communities in the area you plan to camp.
1. Prepare your RV
The first thing is to make sure your RV is fully prepped and ready to go as it will likely be the first RV outing of the season for many RVers, myself included. Here are the springtime items you should check prior to hitting the road.
As the pandemic winds down, properly preparing your RV and making sure it is road-ready before you depart will be especially important as not all RV repair facilities may have reopened or the ones that have may be overwhelmed with business.
2. Supply your RV before leaving home
Secondly, don’t count on the local mom and pop store near your favorite campground for supplies when you arrive as they may not have ramped back-up for visitors and are only catering to locals.
Fully supply your RV with groceries, propane, potable water, fuel and all other essentials before leaving home to avoid disappointment at your destination.
3. Have a plan for dumping your tanks
Thirdly, unless you have reserved a full hookup RV space, check the status of dump stations as many government-sponsored dumps stations like state parks and rest areas were closed during the height of the outbreak and could be slow to reopen. There is nothing worse than heading home after an enjoyable RV outing only to discover there is nowhere to dump your tanks.
4. Know what’s open
Finally, know if where you plan to camp has remained open to camping during the outbreak or when it might reopen after being closed by stay-at-home orders. The most up-to-date website regarding what campgrounds are open and closed due to COVID-19 is CampgroundReviews.com. There you will find thousands of campgrounds and RV parks, their contact information, and their current operational status. They have also implemented this important information into the RV LIFE App With GPS as well as on RV LIFE Trip Wizard.
If you are a boondocker like me that enjoys dispersed camping on public land then make sure you know the status of the land you plan to camp on. Currently in my home state of Washington, all state land (State Parks, Fish and Wildlife and Department of Natural Resources) is closed to any form of camping, both developed campgrounds and dispersed camping, but Federal Land (USFS and BLM) remains open to dispersed camping while developed recreation sites like campgrounds, boat launches, picnic areas, etc are still closed.
With proper preparation, you too can start enjoying your own adventures in RVing again very soon. Stay safe and enjoy.
See also: How Will Your Post-COVID RV Trips Be Different?
Dave Helgeson’s many roles in the RV industry started before he even had a driver’s license. His grandparents and father owned an RV dealership before the term “RV” had been coined, and Dave played a pivotal role in nearly every position of an RV dealership. He and his wife Cheri launched their own RV dealership in the Pacific Northwest. The duo also spent 29 years overseeing regional RV shows. Dave has also served as President of a local chapter of the Recreational Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA), worked on the board of advisors for the RV Technician Program of a local technical college, and served as a board member of the Manufactured Home and RV Association. Dave’s reputation earned him the title of “The foremost expert on boondocking,” bestowed by RV industry icon, the late Gary Bunzer (The RV Doctor). When he’s not out boondocking, you’ll find Dave in the spotlight at RV shows across the country, giving seminars about all things RVing. He and Cheri currently roam in their fifth travel trailer, with Dave doing all the service, repair and modifications to his own unit.
thanks for the tips, it was very appreciated
Dan Larson says
Good information Dave. Had some service work on our trailer at our local RV Country. Fortunately I made an appointment 60 days ahead. They said without an appointment their current wait time was at least 30-45 days out. Great weather is coming, don’t be stuck at home when the green flag drops.
Dave Helgeson says
Good plan – have your rig serviced and ready to go! Be safe and enjoy!
Andy mattingly says
When will the madness end