Great American humorist, Kin Hubbard once said, "The safest way to double your money is to fold it over and put it in your pocket." But when RV living is your way of life, saving every penny may not be as easy as you might expect. The following RV tips are sure to help you save, and even earn, money while enjoying the RV way of life.
Ways to save money
1. Get more bank for your tank. Enjoy better gas mileage by practicing these simple driving tips:
Slow down - The faster you drive, the lower your fuel economy will be
Inflate - Proper tire inflation is a sure way to improve your gas mileage
Lighten your load - Eliminating excess RV weight increases your fuel efficiency
2. Stop and shop. Forget about stocking up on everything you need for your entire trip by buying in bulk beforehand. Instead, shop often and locally. You'll not only reduce the weight of your RV and get better fuel economy, but also save money by skipping the national chains and shopping for produce, meat, dairy and other items at local discount and dollar stores.
3. Eating in is in. Skip the restaurants and eat in. Your meals not only will be more affordable, but also they will be healthier than those bought at the fast food restaurants and old-fashioned diners along the highway.
4. Go green. Use plastic, not paper. Although paper products are easy to use, and even easier to throw away, why not go green while on the road? While the initial investment of purchasing a set of washable and reusable dishes may cost more upfront, not having to continually purchase paper plates, cups and utensils will save in the long run.
5. Try "boondocking." According to Jack and Julee Meltzer, authors of The Smart RVers Guide to Saving Money: Have More Fun RVing For Less Money, boondocking, or "dry-camping," usually entails staying somewhere that offers no hook-ups (water and sewer) at little or no cost. Whether it's a parking lot or in the desert on public land, some RVers only boondock. Most RVers, however, stay at a campground every few days in order to empty their tanks, do laundry and fill up on fresh water.
6. Make house calls. If boondocking isn't your style, why not turn your RV road trip into an opportunity to visit with family and friends? Be sure to be respectful and always ask before showing up; however, most close friends and family would be delighted for an impromptu visit that doesn't involve clean sheets and extra towels. Parking your RV in the driveway shouldn't be a problem; just make sure to ask if there are any city ordinances requiring parking permits in the neighborhood.
7. Join the club. RV membership clubs like The Good Sam Club, KOA, Passport America, Camp Club USA, Happy Camper and Escapees offer a wide range of benefits to their members, including substantial discounts on campground fees. Do your research before embarking on your journey to see what deals and discounts you can find for the road.
8. Get online. RV forums can be found on numerous websites. And while you're surfing, try finding online coupons, codes and discounts for all of your other necessary RV purchases.
9. Save money on storage by selling your stuff. Save that monthly storage unit fee and make some money at the same time. Before embarking on your road trip, hold a sale and eliminate all of your unused belongings, then donate whatever is left to the local Goodwill or Salvation Army. In addition to a little extra income, you'll receive a deduction on your taxes.
10. Investigate your policies. Research your insurance policies to ensure you are getting what you need at a price you can afford. Whether you're looking at your RV insurance options or trying to find discount RV insurance coverage for your vehicle, sometimes changing your provider or premiums can save you money.
The RV lifestyle is one of the most affordable ways to travel and experience all that the country has to offer. Utilize these helpful tips for RVing on a budget, and make every dollar stretch for miles.
Melanie Broemsen is a professional writer and content specialist at Rosetta, one of the top 10 interactive agencies in the U.S. Broemsen has a degree in Public Relations from Kent State University and more than 10 years of experience in Web marketing.
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