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Old 08-16-2014, 12:31 AM   #1
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To Make A Reservation Or Not To Make A Reservation??

I vaguely remember a post awhile back addressing this. But I can't find it. So let me ask it here "When you travel, do you prefer to book your reservation in advance of your trip - thereby locking yourself into your itinerary - or face cancellation fees. Or simply look for camping along the way - and then obviously face the occasional "No room at this inn"

If you ask "Why are you even bothering offering this thread?" Let me explain: We left the San Diego area earlier this morning heading off to Yellowstone National Park looking at it as an adventure - what can we see along the way?

We've found that while leisurely driving alone one of our many great highway systems if we spot a road sign saying something like "Scenic Route" or "Historical Site" or listening to local radio station and finding out that there is a "concert-in-the-park" around the next bend in the road or local event that sounds like fun. We - personally - feel that the occasional No Room... scenario is a minor inconvenience to this adventure.

Tonight we're staying in a cozy truck stop off the beaten path for free; safe and convenient. Tomorrow we'll either visit the local Fishlake National Park or the Cove Fort or... Whatever seem like a good idea at the time. We'll figure that out in the morning.

So, what is/are your personal experiences, your personal way of traveling and WHY? THere are no right or wrong answers. And, while others on this form may attempt to push their will on you, don't let them. Speak up and speak out!!!! Inquiring minds want to know.
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Old 08-16-2014, 02:59 AM   #2
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We usually drive till we want to stop, then look around for a place to drop anchor.
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Old 08-16-2014, 03:54 AM   #3
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Great discussion topic...looking forward to hearing from more folks.
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Old 08-16-2014, 05:20 AM   #4
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This has been a topic of discussion in our travels. My wife wants to know where we will be staying each night, she can't relax until the reservations are made and the itinerary set.
I like to wing it. I am tied to a schedule 49 weeks of the year and this is my time to unwind and go with the flow. How do we know what might interest us along the way? We have passed up some interesting side trips because we had reservations for the night. We have been turned away once, the host made a call and found us a spot a few miles down he road. Guess I will just have to accept it or listen to the worrying.
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Old 08-16-2014, 05:27 AM   #5
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when we go to lower fl in feb we do.but when we went to alaska in 2012 no. if so we might call ahead to see if there is room.
safe travles bob,linda & missy
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Old 08-16-2014, 05:49 AM   #6
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For us, it varies. If we want to be in a popular specific place on specific dates, we reserve. An example would be Asheville in mid October. Or, here in FL, many of the State Parks (senior FL resident discount) need to be booked far in advance.
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Old 08-16-2014, 06:19 AM   #7
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Truck stops and walmarts always have vacancies if you want something like fortwilderness or ocean front reserve at least a year in advanced.
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Old 08-16-2014, 06:48 AM   #8
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We usually call to check on availability at a specific CG or a couple in the area. If they have four sites left, we may book one. Otherwise we leave it until our lunch stop that day. Unless we are on a specific timeline, like attending a wedding, advance reservations are just counterproductive to the purpose of our trip, which is to relax and enjoy.
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Old 08-16-2014, 06:49 AM   #9
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We don't necessarily make reservations, but do call ahead to check on availability. Over the years we have stayed in many of the same CGs. However, you can never tell when there will be a rally, fishing tournament, etc and, even though there has always been room before...no room this time.
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Old 08-16-2014, 07:04 AM   #10
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Reservations for us. DW and I are former bean counters, so we like things set in neat columns and rows.
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Old 08-16-2014, 08:18 AM   #11
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If you have some dry camping capability and willingness to occasionally do without ALL of the on-board facilities, there isn't any real need to book days ahead if you are just travelling around seeing the sights. Just come down from Yellowstone and Glacier and didn't book ahead in either place but got a spot OK

Different if you are doing the annual migration and will be sitting in one place for 4 months.
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Old 08-16-2014, 08:26 AM   #12
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Except for the destination campground, while on-the-road, Sunday through Thursdays we find "winging it" usually works out pretty well for us. Friday and Saturday nights during the summer tend to be planned out with reservations made. \ken
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Old 08-16-2014, 08:41 AM   #13
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To Make A Reservation Or Not To Make A Reservation??

It depends on the trip. If I am deadheading to a destination with a time constraint, I just drive and get what I get along the way. If I am going somewhere with the plan to stay there for a given number of days, I make reservations to insure availability. I drove on a four month trip this summer without any specific itinerary. I found it was easiest to just plan the next leg when I knew the destination, usually one or two days in advance at best.

I have found that if I am going to be stoping at a campground on Friday or Saturday night, those are the most critical for nights for making advance reservations. There seem to be more weekend warriors that come in on Friday and leave on Sunday resulting in a greater chance to the "no vacancy" sign.


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Old 08-16-2014, 08:46 AM   #14
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When we stop for lunch we get out the atlas and decided how much farther we want to travel. we then look for campgrounds in the area and call to check on availability. we will then reserve a spot if needed.

Seems to work well for us.
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