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Old 03-22-2008, 06:29 AM   #1
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Join Date: Mar 2008
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Hello all,

I'm new to these forums and relatively new to RVing. After searching through the forums, I have a few specific questions I was hoping someone could answer for me:

1. First of all, I'm going fulltiming in 2011. I won't be able to afford $30/night campgrounds, so I've been looking into campground memberships. After much research, I'm pretty sure I'd like to get a Thousand Trails membership (after a year or two of fulltiming). However, I was wondering if the "50 nights free then $5/night after" plan would work for me. I plan on moving to new campgrounds every week (I'm going to compete in dog shows with my border collies every weekend), so I don't really care about staying 14 days. Also, I'm going to be spending most of my winters in California (friends & family), so would being a TT member be an advantage here (rather than paying $35+/night at other campgrounds)? And how much would the national "50 nights then $5/night after" plan cost me (approximately) to purchase used? And about how much would it cost per year (approximately)? Do I get into WHR parks, or do I have to be a member of WHR? Does the $5/night count towards NACO too?

2. If I end up going with TT, I might look into ROD as well. Is ROD worth it? I was reading some of their parks reviews on rvparkreviews.com and they weren't too good, but then again, I don't want to just assume. And how does ROD work? From my understanding, you must have a home park, and it's $10/night at any of their parks.

3. What are the advantages to having a home park? Do you get in for free or a discounted rate (for paying the annual dues)?

4. Even though I'm three years away from going fulltime, I've narrowed down my fifth wheel search to two companies: Excel and Newmar (I've been researching for a year & a half). What are your thoughts on these two companies? I'm probably going to buy a used model (2008/2009). How much truck do I need for these fifth wheels (I'm probably going to buy a new truck)?

5. I will be traveling with several dogs (I currently have two). By the time I go fulltiming in 2011, one of them will be a certified therapy dog and a Canine Good Citizen. Will these certifications help (getting into campgrounds with multiple dogs)? I plan to get every dog I own certified (both therapy dog and CGC). They're small border collies (no more than 35# each) and highly trained. Also, would people be annoyed if I set up a long dog run (line of tall ex-pens next to the fifth wheel) and work on their agility training during the day? I've worked hard on training them to work quietly, so they don't bark.

I think that's it. Sorry for all the questions, I just can't wait to hit the road!
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Old 03-22-2008, 06:29 AM   #2
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 2
Hello all,

I'm new to these forums and relatively new to RVing. After searching through the forums, I have a few specific questions I was hoping someone could answer for me:

1. First of all, I'm going fulltiming in 2011. I won't be able to afford $30/night campgrounds, so I've been looking into campground memberships. After much research, I'm pretty sure I'd like to get a Thousand Trails membership (after a year or two of fulltiming). However, I was wondering if the "50 nights free then $5/night after" plan would work for me. I plan on moving to new campgrounds every week (I'm going to compete in dog shows with my border collies every weekend), so I don't really care about staying 14 days. Also, I'm going to be spending most of my winters in California (friends & family), so would being a TT member be an advantage here (rather than paying $35+/night at other campgrounds)? And how much would the national "50 nights then $5/night after" plan cost me (approximately) to purchase used? And about how much would it cost per year (approximately)? Do I get into WHR parks, or do I have to be a member of WHR? Does the $5/night count towards NACO too?

2. If I end up going with TT, I might look into ROD as well. Is ROD worth it? I was reading some of their parks reviews on rvparkreviews.com and they weren't too good, but then again, I don't want to just assume. And how does ROD work? From my understanding, you must have a home park, and it's $10/night at any of their parks.

3. What are the advantages to having a home park? Do you get in for free or a discounted rate (for paying the annual dues)?

4. Even though I'm three years away from going fulltime, I've narrowed down my fifth wheel search to two companies: Excel and Newmar (I've been researching for a year & a half). What are your thoughts on these two companies? I'm probably going to buy a used model (2008/2009). How much truck do I need for these fifth wheels (I'm probably going to buy a new truck)?

5. I will be traveling with several dogs (I currently have two). By the time I go fulltiming in 2011, one of them will be a certified therapy dog and a Canine Good Citizen. Will these certifications help (getting into campgrounds with multiple dogs)? I plan to get every dog I own certified (both therapy dog and CGC). They're small border collies (no more than 35# each) and highly trained. Also, would people be annoyed if I set up a long dog run (line of tall ex-pens next to the fifth wheel) and work on their agility training during the day? I've worked hard on training them to work quietly, so they don't bark.

I think that's it. Sorry for all the questions, I just can't wait to hit the road!
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Old 03-22-2008, 11:58 AM   #3
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content"> Also, would people be annoyed if I set up a long dog run (line of tall ex-pens next to the fifth wheel)... </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

*doc puts on his flame retardent suit*
Let me just add one experience we had at a KOA in Montana with a truck load of dogs. These were, according to owner, well trained, well mannered doggies. Might have been both, but they barked from sun up until sundown and after. I never want to listen to that again. Somehow I think that owners feel everyone ought to love and feel about dogs the same way they do. Not the case!! Dogs are OK, but just not for us. I certainly don't want to pay the high price for a site and have to listen to the cacaphony of a barking dogs.
Sorry, but I would mind a bunch.
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Old 03-22-2008, 12:12 PM   #4
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runawayRVer...
Welcome to iRV2! I did want to also suggest you check in here at the New Member Check-In so you can be officially welcomed by all!!


MM
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Old 03-22-2008, 12:42 PM   #5
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">5. I will be traveling with several dogs (I currently have two). By the time I go fulltiming in 2011, one of them will be a certified therapy dog and a Canine Good Citizen. Will these certifications help (getting into campgrounds with multiple dogs)? I plan to get every dog I own certified (both therapy dog and CGC). They're small border collies (no more than 35# each) and highly trained. Also, would people be annoyed if I set up a long dog run (line of tall ex-pens next to the fifth wheel) and work on their agility training during the day? I've worked hard on training them to work quietly, so they don't bark. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>Runaway RVer.. This will be your problem!most campgrounds limit you to 2 dogs...no matter how well trained they are or what certs they have. ALSO...almost all park rulles state that no pet may be left outside unattended.

Almost everyone would be annoyed at the dogs in the ex-pens unless you are sitting there with them and keeping them quiet at all times.

Ok...that is my dollar's worth...

MM
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Old 03-23-2008, 03:59 PM   #6
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Thousand Trails memberships can be complex. We just bought one (on the resale market) after 12 years of RVing without any campground membership except Passport America. We anticipate slowing our pace down a bit and spending more time in one place (and saving fuel doing so), so we decided we could get our money's worth from a membership campground.

Most of the standard memberships require you to stay out of the system for 7 days once you leave a park (unless only there for 4 days or less). To go from "park to park", as they call it, you need a premium membership of some kind. The nest way to get one is on the resale market - there are plenty available. Prices vary all over the map, but if you watch you can pick one up for around $1000 or so. Transfer fees will add another $750-900 and of course there are annual dues as well. If you use the parks more than about 25 nights a year you come out ahead, if much less you are probably wasting money.

Thousand Trails have several sets of park and few membership give you admission to all of them. Check carefully when shopping for make sure you know which of the many parks they talk about are actually included in the membership you are considering.
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Old 03-23-2008, 05:01 PM   #7
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Welcome to irv2.com forums! I can't speak of thousand trails, as I've never had interaction with the company.
Your #5 paragraph will be your waterloo. Virtually all RV parks that permit pets, limit the number as monacomama says and have a fenced run or designated area for defecating. This is to prevent contamination of campsites and grassy areas where children will play, and to efficiently manage the park for all guests.
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