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Lessons Learned From Full-Time RVing

By Jaimie Hall Bruzenak

Our RV friend Lloyd wrote in his "Wanderin' Blog" about lessons he's learned as a full-time RVer. He has a good list. I especially like "don't make reservations or commitments." Inevitably, you'll end up rushing and leaving a good place before you want to. It happened in the first month of hitting the road plus many times since! We've always regretted it.

So, what additional things did I learn?

1. You can support yourself on the road. Bill and I had to work as we left at age 47. There are so many jobs for the RVer, you can always find something to supplement income or provide a free or low-cost site while in the area.

2. Slow down. When you first begin full-time RV travel, it is tempting to try to see it all. That means moving every day or two to cover the miles and get from one place to another.

3. Stay a while in one place. This a corollary to the previous one. It is a more relaxing pace and you get time to actually see things. If you are visiting a national park, you can get an overview the first day, but come back and do a hike or two or visit an outlying area in the park.

4. Full-time RVing means freedom. RVers have so many choices that people in stick-bound houses do not have. If you don't like the area move. If you are near a barking dog or the weather turns cold -or hot- move to a new place. You can leave a job if things get bad.

5.You can live more cheaply. A full-time RVer has much more control of her budget, especially if you own your RV outright and are out of debt. You can boondock on public lands in the West at no charge. You need less "stuff" and that includes clothes. When do you plan to wear that business suit? T-shirts and jeans or shorts are the usual uniform. Again, it's about choice.

6. Visiting family is (more) fun. Since you are bringing your own house, you have space when you want and need it. Many families will still try to get you to stay inside their house, but politely decline. Why pack a suitcase to go a few feet? You do have a real bed! And you won't wake anyone if you go for a snack.

7. RVing can be the vehicle to make your dreams come true. Going to Alaska was the big dream for me. Bill and I worked there for two seasons, opening doors to experiences like kayaking in Glacier Bay and riding the White Pass & Yukon Route Railroad that I hadn't even considered before. Kayaking among porpoises and whales was a high point in my life. Last summer, I finally checked Niagra Falls off my list.

The full-time RV lifestyle is affordable and leads to adventures you've probably never even imagined. It's not for everyone, but don't let fears and money hold you back.

Jaimie Hall Bruzenak is an RV Lifestyle Expert. She has been RVing since 1992. She and her late husband weren't retired so RVed on a budget and worked on the road. She is the author of Support Your RV Lifestyle! An Insider's Guide to Working on the Road and other RV books. See for more information about the RV lifestyle. To read Lloyd's blog entry, see his blog at

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