Jim Puplava spoke with Marc and Julie Bennett, authors of Living the RV Life: Your Ultimate Guide to Life on the Road, about their experiences as full-time RVers. They share helpful tips to guide anyone who’s thinking about making the leap to experience travel in a new way.
Find Your 'Why'
There are several questions people need to ask themselves when considering RVing as a lifestyle. “For us, these questions all seem to center around finding your ‘why’,” Marc said. If you are considering the RV lifestyle, ask yourself why you want to travel. Do you want to explore? Are you planning on living in an RV full-time for the long-term?
What you’re trying to accomplish with your RV lifestyle will drive a lot of those decisions, Marc added. RVers thinking of traveling sporadically will have different needs than those planning to live full-time on the road.
It isn’t just retirees who are making the leap, either. Those still in their working years can work remotely from their RVs as Marc and Julie do. “Traditionally, RVing is considered an activity for retirees,” Julie said. “We're finding that is still true, but of course a lot of people are retiring younger these days.”
Benefits of RVing
Staying mobile can provide many financial incentives and other benefits for those seeking a different way of experiencing travel. The great thing about the RV lifestyle is that it is very affordable at nearly any life stage on almost any budget.
“That’s one of the things we love about it,” Julie said. “You can find a way to RV depending on what your financial situation is. “RVing is a much more comfortable way to travel, as well,” she added. You have your necessities with you everywhere you go.
There are other appealing benefits, including bringing pets along on your travels, visiting family more easily and setting your own schedule. “When you're traveling with the airlines or staying in hotels, you're at the mercy of other people's schedules,” Marc said. “In an RV, you have a lot more flexibility to decide your own timeline.”
How to Choose Your Vehicle
There is a learning curve when it comes to RVing, Marc and Julie noted. They started an online school called the ‘RV Success School,’ as well as a YouTube channel, to help newcomers ease into the lifestyle.
There is a lot to consider when choosing an RV, but most important is the size of the vehicle. There are Class A, B and C vehicles, toy haulers and even fifth wheels. Narrowing it down depends on how you want to travel and the frequency of your travels.
“If you want to be very nimble, you might look at a class B, such as a sprinter van,” Marc said. “You can move very frequently, and you're able to take your RV with you into national and state parks.” He continued, “For those who want to be more planted, they may want that extra homey feel of a large fifth wheel.” Ultimately, your RV choice will have to match your lifestyle.
“We’re coming up for five years on the road full-time,” Julie said. “In 2014 we sold our Colorado townhome and decided to hit the road. We just wanted more travel and adventure in our life and RVing just seemed like the right way to do that. We both love to drive. We love the open road, and it was a more affordable way to do it, too.”