Using RVs to Safely Visit Family this Holiday Season

Last updated on October 20th, 2020 at 02:04 pm. Originally published on October 19th, 2020

Believe it or not, it’s time to start thinking about holiday travel for this year!

It has been a strange, unusual year, and just as with many other plans, our holiday travel might look much different than normal. If you usually spend time with people who are in a high-risk category, or you usually fly to see family, you may be rethinking visiting this fall or winter.

carving a Thanksgiving turkey

One other option, however, is to drive instead of fly to visit family. If you’re heading a long distance, driving in an RV could be a great idea compared to flying or staying in hotels along the way. When you rent an RV with RVshare, you can limit your exposure by using your own restroom, your own kitchen, and your own bed. You won’t be flying with countless other people or encountering them in crowded airports before you take off and after you land. Traveling by RV makes you almost entirely self-sufficient and significantly cuts down on your exposure to others until you get to your destination.

RV traveling a tree-lined fall road

Perks of RV travel

There are other advantages to traveling by RV as well. If you’re headed to a houseful of people, you don’t have to worry about sleeping on a couch, or in a basement, or in another place without much personal space. Staying at a hotel presents its own challenges – even if you arrive at your destination without getting sick, you re-expose yourself each time you return to the hotel at the end of the day. You can bring kids back out to your RV to nap (or take a nap yourself!) without worrying about noise in the house. You can just escape for a few minutes if you need some calm. And you also don’t have to worry about missing out on those impromptu moments with family – sitting at the kitchen table in the morning for coffee, or having a late-night conversation – that you might not get if you have to return to a hotel each night.

kids helping in the kitchen

You can also bring along more items from home. If the kids need to keep up on schoolwork, you can set up a station in the RV for them to work away from distractions. If you have pets, you can bring them along. You can even use the kitchen in your motorhome rental for cooking if you need the extra room!

trailer driving by fields and a farmhouse

How to travel safely

If you do choose to travel in a motorhome or RV this holiday season, there are a few things you’ll want to do to keep yourself and your loved ones safe.

1.) Do some research

Along with following credible sources such as the CDC for the latest information on the virus, be sure to check the local guidelines where you’re headed so you know the rules and restrictions. States and counties vary in their ordinances, so check beforehand to see what the local mask requirements are and to know about other rules. If you have plans to visit any places of interest either at your destination or along the way, you’ll also want to check and make sure those landmarks or attractions are open.

2.) Keep it clean

Make sure to clean and disinfect surfaces that are commonly touched in your RV every day. Those include door handles, countertops, light switches, tables, faucets, toilets, and phones. Don’t forget the steering wheel, radio dial, and door handles up front! You can get other tips for cleaning your RV here.

people cooking dinner together

3.) Keep yourself clean

Make sure to wash your hands frequently, for at least 20 seconds each time. Keep hand sanitizer near the entrance to your RV for visitors, and bring a small bottle if you go on day trips. Wear a mask when you’re in public, and avoid touching your face with unwashed hands. Cough or sneeze into your elbow or a tissue, not your hand. Keep six feet apart while in public to avoid spreading germs. Avoid other people if you’re feeling sick.

4.) Make reservations ahead of time

If you’re allowed, it’s a lot of fun to stay in your host’s driveway or on the street in front of the house you’re visiting. You get the feeling of being a houseguest, and the late night talks and impromptu visiting that comes with being a guest but with the extra room an RV provides! However, not every neighborhood allows this, and depending on where you’re visiting, you may need to stay at a nearby campground. Check ahead to make sure that they’re open and make reservations so you know you have a place to stay when you arrive! Also, ask ahead of time if there are any health rules you need to know about while at the campground, or if the check-in process has changed at all.

5.) Have a backup plan

Consider the possibility that even with your best efforts, either the family you’re visiting or someone in your group could get sick. Have a backup plan in case your trip is cut short due to illness, or in case your trip needs to be extended due to a quarantine that keeps you from traveling home on schedule. Bring your health insurance cards and any other pertinent information, and know what needs to be done and how to find medical help if someone in your group does get sick.

a thanksgiving dinner spread

6.) Have fun!

Let’s face it – traveling during a pandemic is not easy. It requires extra research and planning. Our familiar, long-held traditions are being upended and it’s unsettling and uncomfortable. But it can also bring families together. Traveling by RV means you may be driving through places you previously just flew over, or traveling through places you’ve never seen before. You’re making new memories and having new experiences with your family. It can also make you appreciate and be thankful for these people in your life – both the ones you’re traveling with and the ones you’re traveling to see. You may find this journey makes you thankful in ways you never considered before this year.

Safe travels and happy holidays!

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