RVing On A Budget

Last updated on August 6th, 2021 at 10:20 am. Originally published on April 9th, 2014

One of the biggest struggles with planning an RV getaway is the budget. You want your family and/or friends to have an experience they’ll always remember, but you don’t want to go broke doing it. We’re going to give you some tips and advice on how to keep your expenses down, without sacrificing any enjoyment and fun.

Do a lot of research.

Whether you plan on renting or purchasing an RV for your trip, you need to do your research, and find the RV that is right for you. All factors play into this decision. Cost of the RV, sleeping capacity, quality of the interior and exterior, included features, history of the RV, etc. You will have to choose what you think is necessary to have, and what you can do without. Finding that middle ground is going to take some time, but it will save you money in the long run.

You will want to search RV dealer websites, and classified listings, to get an idea of what you can get, for the money you are willing to spend. Once you feel like you have a good grasp on that, you’ll be more equipped at finding bargains and value, and it can also help if you need to negotiate with a seller.


Don’t forget to shop around for insurance, either. Talk to a number of insurance agents to find the best value of coverage for the premium. You’ll have to decide if the value of your RV is worth purchasing things like collision and theft coverage. If your RV is a trailer, you’ll have to see if the towing vehicle’s liability will cover you, while you are on the road. Research the insurance company’s customer support ratings, and roadside service response grades, when having to deal with their clients.

Take things into your own hands.

Learn how to do your own maintenance and minor repairs to your RV. The owners guide should give you a good idea on what the maintenance schedule is. You can also go online and buy books on basic RV repair that will help you diagnose problems, and teach you how to repair them.. At first, this may seem like a little too much, but these things can save you large amounts of money throughout the course of a trip.

Another factor that you can control is fuel consumption. Controlling your fuel costs can save you a lot of money. Specs on an RV, like weight, engine type, and equipment/features on board can determine how much you spend on fuel. Remember, fuel is only consumed when you’re traveling, so the closer your destinations are, the less fuel you will use. This will also give you more time at the destination and less time stuck behind a wheel.

Stay at affordable places (campgrounds, parks). You can check the Trailer Life Campground/RV Park and Services Directory for information on campgrounds and parks that will accommodate your budget. Many campgrounds and parks, in addition to nightly rates, charge separate amounts for electric, sewer, water, internet, and telephone. You can control costs by choosing the ones that you feel you need.

These are only a few tips and suggestions that you can use to help save money on your next RV vacation. Once you hit the road, you’ll get a better understanding of what you can and can’t go without, and your budget will become more clear. The good news is, after the initial renting or buying expense, RVing is a relatively inexpensive experience!

Good luck and safe travels!


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