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Old 04-06-2016, 09:56 AM   #1
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What kind of "RV person" are you?

I was wondering........what makes (drives) some of you to embrace the "RV lifestyle" (and what kind of RV person are YOU?) ?

I'll start with my story.

Wife and I (separately) lived all over the world. I lived out of US for about 30 years in different countries (military family). I grew up "on the base" in Germany with my parents (both military). I've seen just about everything I ever wanted to see in the world. Wife was stationed in Turkey for five years (before we met), and traveled the world extensively. Needless to say,....we like to travel. We settled down on the horse ranch in SoCal, but we still traveled. By plane (private, and commercial), and by car.

Then TSA came around, and we found out we are reluctant to put up with long lines, check-ins, taking our shoes off,......all of it. So we traveled mostly in the States, either by car, or by a small private plane. Somehow (long story!) we ended up with three large dogs (which we love), and we felt bad leaving them in the kennels, not to mention the anxiety, kennel cough, and what comes with it (vet bills, feeling of guilt, etc.).

I am NOT a camper. I swore I'll never camp again after I retired from military. Wife suggested we get "an older RV", and take the dogs with us on the weekend trips to the beach, and such. We purchased "an older RV" to do just that, but inside of it was not "up to our standards" (it was EXCELLENT mechanically). I spent two months remodeling the interior, after which we decided to take it on the "longer trip" (2500 miles RT). I liked the trip! I liked driving the big thing (34' ClassA), and told the wife I could get used to this. I hated driving that gasser on the grades though!

Came back from the trip, and a week later went to spend a weekend in a "high end" hotel in Vegas. Against my better judgement, I peeled off the sheets on the bed in that suite, and was shocked to find moderately stained mattress underneath. Then I researched this on the web, and "discovered" this to be a BIG problem in hotels all over the world (bacteria, bed bugs,......disgusting!).

So after that experience we hammered the plan. Sell the gasser, buy a high end DP, change the furniture (bed first!), and concentrate our travels in the US, with dogs in tow, sleeping in our own bed every night. And that's what we did!

We are still not "real RV people". We don't hook up in the "RV resorts", we don't socialize with other RVers, and we don't belong to any clubs, nor we travel in convoys. We use the RV pretty much the same way we used the planes. We go to the destination, pick the place to park, spend a night or two, and hit the road again. We have friends in various parts of the country, and we hook up (some 50A, mostly 30A) at their places. It was hard to explain (without offending) that we prefer to sleep in our coach instead in their guest houses, and/or guest rooms. Parking/hooking up is never a problem with our friends. The smallest property we go to is 15 acres (all our friends are horse/country types).

We like fine dinning, shows, and entertainment that Vegas or Reno provide (we don't gamble). We like hanging out on the beaches, and dining/dancing in the clubs down there (we live in relative solitude in SoCal mountains). When we do that, we park (boondock) either in State parks/beaches, or on the casino parking lots. We call the cab, and "go out" (just like we used to do in hotels). Dogs are guarding the RV (our private "hotel on wheels"!). En route to a faraway destination (friends places), we sleep few hours on the Walmart parking lot (and buy what we need for the next day or so). We don't carry food/drinks for us, or the dogs for the entire trip.

This is the lifestyle we like. We decided to crisscross the country back and forth, and see everything we only saw from the cockpit flying over. To us the drive IS the destination, and the stops are just the "rest stops" with dinning, and entertainment.

What kind of RV person are YOU?
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Old 04-06-2016, 10:11 AM   #2
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Sound like you nailed it perfectly for us also. We consider ourselves tourers more so than campers.
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Old 04-06-2016, 10:11 AM   #3
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You sound just like us. I spent a career working for the FAA and doing a lot of flying but when I retired I no longer wanted to put up with the security and all the waiting, so we purchased our first motorhome back in 1995 prior to retiring and got into the life style. I retired in 2000 and haven't flown since. Don't miss it a bit.

The Wife is an Attorney and practices law on the road with the use of the internet. She has a legal aid at her office who monitors her mail and sends out significant docs that she needs. When we do get home she confers with her clients in her office. The last trip we took was six weeks and we got home a week ago. We leave again for a shorter one in June and plan several more during the Summer and Fall.

We do belong to a couple clubs but do not participate very much. We tried the Rallys and Caravans and just didn't enjoy all the smoozing. We like to be on our own pretty much. We travel alone and roam wherever we feel. In a camp ground is the neighbors choose to be friendly, then that's fine, but usually we aren't in one spot long enough to make many friends.

We too like good food and especially seafood, so we travel the coasts a lot. Also good BBQ.

It would be nice sometime to have travel companions, but I doubt many folks want to roam the way we do. We get along well and enjoy each others company so we are pretty happy.
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Old 04-06-2016, 10:29 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cooperhawk View Post
We like to be on our own pretty much. We travel alone and roam wherever we feel. We get along well and enjoy each others company so we are pretty happy.
Funny,.......I forgot to type this in my post!

Just to add,........when we go to Vegas (example) alone, we have a GREAT time. Few times we met up with friends in Vegas, we were miserable!
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Old 04-06-2016, 10:35 AM   #5
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One place we haven't been yet is Vegas. On our bucket list I guess.
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Old 04-06-2016, 10:46 AM   #6
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Not sure how to classify us, but we love the lifestyle. We use our coach for any and every trip possible. We do belong to an RV club, which I am President but mostly travel with a few others. Be we enjoy dry camping in an open field just as much if not more than a fancy campground. We also travel alone as a family quite often and have a blast. It's much easier when you are alone because you are not waiting on anyone or having to confer with the group on decisions. At the same time it's nice to have travel companions as well. I like talking to other RV owners just to share stories and tips, but also respect that some just like to be left alone. Happy travels!
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Old 04-06-2016, 12:56 PM   #7
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I think you'll find this to be the case with most on this forum.. Clearly the lifestyle we've endeared ourselves to isn't exactly "camping"... Not sure what to call it.. but its a far cry from camping, in my book...

For me... my story starts out with a friend.. I worked for Snap-on Tools and a franchisee invited me to an IHRA event.. He put me up in his RV and spent the weekend at the track.. had an absolute blast... Fast forward to when I became a franchisee... a bunch of us wanted to go to the Chicago NASCAR race.. I decided at the time to rent one, along with some other guys... Again.. we had an absolute blast, and all the people around us were so nice and helpful to a bunch of guys who had no business being involved with an RV (the beer probably didn't help)...

After those two experiences, I felt so strongly that this was a "lifestyle" I'd like to share with my kids.. So, I went out and bought one.. Unfortunately it was short lived, to a point... My wife at the time.. didn't seem to like the idea.. and well.. I guess it was "just another thing" that contributed to the downfall of that marriage..

However, I still "liked" the experience and have since continued (without the EX-wife) and have found a new partner that enjoys the lifestyle just as much, if not more, than me.. and my kids love it too... I've been fortunate to take some pretty epic vacations with my kids and the RV (Mt Rushmore, Yellowstone, Williamsburg, Gettysburg and trips throughout WI).. I'm very happy that my 16yr, 14yr and 13yr old's still look forward to time in the RV... that makes me very proud..

Now... Seeing as I am divorced.. I have an alter-ego... The weekends I'm not with my kids.. I'm out with my GF... and we enjoy our RV very much like you.. with a twist.. We enjoy going to "destinations" and exploring on our motorcycle.. we trailer it everywhere we go (less kids) and have a blast exploring the surrounding areas.. we enjoy eating out, but I very much enjoy cooking.. we do LOVE hanging around the campfire and enjoying the stars and each others company..

Funny thing... We started alone, didn't really have any friends who had RV's.. in the past three years.. we've had two friends who we ride with decide to purchase RV's and we met another couple in Forest City, IA and we have become best of friends... It helps that we all have Harley's and we all enjoy each others company...

So, for me, I'm blessed to have the best of three worlds.. I get to camp with my kids.. I get to camp with my GF and I get to camp with friends who enjoy the RV AND Harley lifestyle... its pretty cool.. and I'm very lucky...

Oh.. and yeah... I've come to realize that as I get older, I become less tolerant to the craziness of airports and hotels... I like my own bathroom, my own bed, my own shower and my own kitchen..
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Old 04-06-2016, 01:07 PM   #8
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It's hard to classify us. We are very social and make friends almost everywhere we go. We love to travel and see our great country. Trying local food dishes, and learning the life traits of those we meet along the way. We believe there is too much to this country to be seen from a plane. Give us the open air, and the freedom, and time to travel.
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Old 04-06-2016, 01:15 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Swerwin View Post
Sound like you nailed it perfectly for us also. We consider ourselves tourers more so than campers.
I've always liked "Traveler" but "Tourers" pretty well takes it all in.
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Old 04-07-2016, 04:33 AM   #10
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We love to travel, but also enjoy the people met while doing so. Happy travelers I guess. With a love for the outdoors.
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Old 04-07-2016, 05:43 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oakcreekeric View Post
Clearly the lifestyle we've endeared ourselves to isn't exactly "camping"... Not sure what to call it.. but its a far cry from camping, in my book...

........we do LOVE hanging around the campfire and enjoying the stars and each others company..

Oh.. and yeah... I've come to realize that as I get older, I become less tolerant to the craziness of airports and hotels... I like my own bathroom, my own bed, my own shower and my own kitchen..
.............Amen - and we have the CBP/TSA expedited passports.......I get to keep my shoes on - at least this week!


Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyDi View Post
It's hard to classify us. We are very social and make friends almost everywhere we go. We love to travel and see our great country. We believe there is too much to this country to be seen from a plane. Give us the open air, and the freedom, and time to travel.
Above pretty much sums it up for us........

We were both military - 55 years between us - we were pretty much regimented - traveled - stressed - and enjoying life as we knew it.

Looking at the Sunday paper travel section back in 1991, Angie asks me if I would ever consider an ocean cruise. Seemed cruising was coming of age back then or Carnival was doing a great job of advertising with Kathy Lee Gifford singing songs of praise......

So we jumped on the Carnival Holiday and we were bitten. It was like entering another world.......

We cruised every year since 1991 at least once, later in life 2 to 5 cruises in a year, most 10 or more days, up until 2013. Cruising in 2013 was nothing like cruising in 1991 - the term "Nickel & Dime" comes to mind.

We were on a Trans-Atlantic cruise and at the same time looked at each other and said, "Time to get off the cruise ships!"

At one time when in service we talked about "selling-everything" when we retired from service - buy a motor home and see America!!

When we did retire from service, 2000 & 2001 respectively, we immediately went back to work for Uncle Sam...........and continued cruising.

So somewhere Mid-Atlantic we made a decision to "Get off the cruise ships" and finally buy that motor home!!!

We went looking and did a lot of research but I didn't know what I didn't know!! We were lucky to happen upon the motor coach we have now - it is older but in wonderful condition.

We do enjoy our motor coach, I'll call it a hobby at this point in time. We currently "camp" with working-class friends on the weekends at state parks. Also take the occasional week long summer trip. This summer we are doing a rally or two with a couple clubs we are members of.

Next winter we are going to do the FLA thing at one of those 55+ RV parks. You know, shuffle board, bingo, the hokey pokey!!! Hmmmmm LOL Really not us but we will get a break from the Mid-Western winters for a couple months - then it will be a lifestyle. Maybe I can start a scotch & cigar club?!!!?

Oh - and like most military types we said, "No more camping - unless I'm getting paid for it , of course!!" Hahahahaha

Living in a RV with heat - A/C - shower/with hot water - bed- kitchen & bathroom sink - kitchen - living room - TV - curtains - dry - not relying on a "Lister-Bag" or "Entrenching Tool" for life's necessities - ain't camping. Not sure what it's called - I'll just call it comfortable!

Take care everyone - "Go RVing".........

g
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Old 04-07-2016, 05:51 AM   #12
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The op sums up a lot of our position, I would add that grandchildren and visits to my mother who is 89 now was a big deciding factor in getting the MH. I can set up in their driveway and have our own bedroom along with bath. Now that we have the MH side trips to other places has been added to our agenda. More of sightseers (travelers) then campers. We do find ourselves crossing over to the other side and just go camping. That's when the fishing poles and lawn chair come out.
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Old 04-07-2016, 10:26 AM   #13
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We were introduced to the RV life when I went home to visit my parents and saw a toy hauler in the driveway. My dad purchased it after attending a motorcycle event and some of his friends had units. I thought that was cool and was always interested in them. A few weeks later I purchased one. We attended that same bike event with him and have since that year. At the time none of our friends had them, only my parents. Now my in-laws, and lots of friends have them. We soon formed an RV club and the journey began. My kids love it. After two travel trailers, and a fifth wheel (all toy haulers), we upgraded to a DP Motor home. We love it. My kids experienced a cross country trip that had views only those who have experienced it would understand. We use our coach every chance we get. From tailgating football games with the fellas, kids travel sports, bike events, race events, or just finding a nice quiet campground to relax at. If we can take our coach we will. Nothing like being out in the coach, kids running around playing with other kids they meet, while I have the grill going with a cold beverage in my hand. It's even more fun when my wife and I get away alone in the coach. How about I add another category, opportunist! Because every opportunity I get, I'm off in the coach!! Happy Travels
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Old 04-07-2016, 10:07 PM   #14
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We started with a pop-up 20 odd years ago when our kids were really small. We just loved the peace and quiet, family time. As the kids grew so did our trailers. Our last 32' jayco was great with two big kids and 60lb dog. We loved it, but the kids grew up and out and with just us two we decided to move into a MH. I hate, really hate, flying. The whole tsa lines, rude people, strange beds, ick. I have always loved the tt since I could sleep in my own bed, and use my own bath. Plus we saved bunches traveling!!
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