When you’re getting ready to go RVing, the actual RV park you’ll be staying at might be the very last thing on your mind.
After all, there’s so much other, more exciting stuff to think about — like where you’re going and all the fun things you’ll do once you get there.
But it’s called RV camping for a reason. No matter how amazing your destination is, you’re going to spend a decent amount of time at your campground. So you want to make sure you find one that fits your needs and will ensure your family is safe, happy, and comfortable.
Fortunately, as RVing has grown in popularity, more and more RV campgrounds have popped up across the nation — ranging from cheap lots with no hookups to luxurious affairs with every amenity you can imagine. When it comes to deciding which is right for you, a lot will depend on personal preference and travel style. Maybe you don’t need all the extras and just want to be in close proximity to the sightseeing attractions you came for. Or maybe you want the full-on resort experience, complete with water slides and ice cream socials.
No matter where on the spectrum you find yourself, there are a few questions to ask that will help you find the perfect RV campground and campsite.
How RV Parks Work
Before we dig into these RV travel questions and ideas, let’s talk about how to find RV campgrounds in the first place. After all, you can’t ask these questions if you don’t have anyone to call!
RV campgrounds can be found all across the USA, so no matter where you’re headed, you’re sure to find at least a few options. A great way to get started is to check online by searching “RV resorts near me” or using your destination zip code.
Once you have a few campgrounds to choose from, it’s time to dig in and figure out which one will best serve your purposes. Here are the questions that will help you make your decision.
1. What does your standard site offer, and how much does it cost?
Campgrounds usually advertise a daily rate, but what’s included for that cost can range. Will you have electrical and sewer hookups? Cable? WiFi? And if you do have hookups, will they be the right amperage? (Most sites offer either 30 amps or 50, and which one’s right for your rig will depend on its size and type.)
2. Does your campground have pull-thru or back-in sites?
If you’re in a large RV or trailer, a pull-thru site is much simpler to get your rig into than a back-in… but no matter what kind of rig you drive, knowing what you’re up against could help you narrow down your pool of park options. No one wants to deal with a complicated parking job after a long day of driving!
3. Can your campground accommodate an RV of this size?
If you drive a big rig, you’ll want to double check to make sure it’ll fit in their campsites! Not every park is set up for a 45-foot diesel pusher with slide outs — especially if it’s an older campground that was designed before that technology existed.
4. Does your campground allow pets?
If you’re traveling with pets, it’s critical that you make sure they’re actually allowed on the property. If you try to sneak them into a park where they’re not allowed, you could get kicked out and end up with nowhere to go.
RV Campgrounds Rates
How much are RV campgrounds charging these days, anyway… and what does it cover? Here are some money-related questions to ask.
5. What fees aside from the advertised daily rate can I expect?
Even cheap RV marks might not actually be that cheap. RV campgrounds’ prices don’t always include every last fee you might be responsible for.
For example, the park may allow pets, but charge extra for them; increasingly, some parks are imposing a charge of an extra few dollars per child. To avoid sending your camping trip with a case of sticker shock, make sure you know about everything up front!
And don’t forget — if the prices are too steep, you can find free and cheap RV campgrounds in state parks, or try out boondocking!
6. How long can I stay, and can I decide to extend?
Looking to get away for longer than a weekend? Different parks have different restrictions as to how long you can stay, so if you’re looking to live somewhere for a month or so, you might have to specifically seek out long term RV parks. And even if it’s a shorter trip, be sure to ask ahead of time if an extension is possible. That way, if you decide you haven’t had enough fun yet, it’s easy to keep the party going!
Best RV Campgrounds
You likely already know you should check your RV campground’s reviews before you book — but even the top-rated RV campgrounds might be incompatible with your needs. Here are some questions to ask before you get there.
7. Does your campground offer shady spots with tree cover, or will my rig be out in the sun?
Even if you plan on running your AC, camping in the sun will make for a much hotter experience than you’d find under the natural shade of trees. But at the same time, trees can make for a sticky mess of sap and bird droppings on your RV’s roof.
Decide whether you want to camp in the shade or in the sun, and be sure to ask the campground ahead of time if they have a site that fits your preference.
8. Is it quiet?
If there’s one thing that makes every single camping trip better, it’s a great night’s sleep. Be sure to ask your campground representative if their spots are quiet or if they’re in range of highway traffic and other noise sources.
Luxury RV Campgrounds
If you’re looking to camp in an RV resort, you might be after some specific experiences. Make sure your campground offers what you want!
9. What amenities does your campground offer, and what are the hours?
What’s important to you in your RV campground? Do you want to lounge by the pool while the kids while away the afternoon in the game room? Maybe a grill or a fire pit is your must-have… nothing beats fresh s’mores while you’re camping, after all.
No matter what’s on your list of dealbreakers, make sure your campground meets them before you book your site. That way, you won’t face any disappointment when you get there.
10. Are there any organized activities for me and my family?
Luxury campgrounds often hold organized events ranging from ice cream socials to game nights. If you’re interested in partaking in something like that, be sure to ask what’s on the schedule — and when, so you can make your plans accordingly.
Enjoy your trip!