Recreational Vehicle (RV) sales soared during the pandemic, as stir-crazy families across the U.S. realized that road trips might be the safest and only way to get out of the house. And according to recent consumer reports, the trend shows no signs of slowing.
If you're a brand new RV owner preparing to hit the road, here's a checklist of things to do before you hit the road:
Practice Driving: Although in most cases you do not need a special license or training to drive an RV (unless your RV is over a certain weight, depending on your state), it's not the same as driving a car, van, or truck. It will be well worth your time to practice, take a course, or even hire a personal coach to help you learn the ropes.
Check the weather: Anticipating weather conditions can be especially important when you're driving an RV. Even in the summer, thunderstorms, flash floods, extreme heat, and other conditions can easily ratchet up the danger and make safe driving extremely difficult. Give yourself the flexibility to adjust your schedule based on the weather, and don't force yourself to keep going when it isn't safe.
Plan landing spots: The question with RVs is always where you're going to stay for the night and you can't always park just anywhere. Before you hit the road, map out campgrounds, RV parks, or well-lit parking lots at businesses that are friendly to RV travelers, and try to find multiple options along each day's route.
Stay secure: Just like you might with a home that stays put, you can outfit your RV with cameras, smart locks, and other security system technology that will make you safer inside or when you leave your RV unattended.
Plan for health emergencies: When you're on the road, a health emergency can be a very different and more challenging experience than when you're at home. If you're traveling frequently or for an extended period, anticipate that people might get sick or injured and need medical care. Be sure to have backup supplies of important medications, emergency numbers, and any medical information or records that you might need if someone needs to go to the urgent care or hospital.
Anticipate breakdowns: Having some kind of roadside assistance is a must if you're going to be doing a ton of traveling. These programs are often affordable, and if you ever have to get towed or break down in the middle of the night, will be well worth their cost.
Stay safe inside: Before you bed down in your home-away-from-home, be sure all the doors and windows are locked and the blinds and curtains are drawn. Take care of any campground fees, parking meters, or anything else that might result in your being disrupted during the night or early morning. And if someone knocks on your door after you have retired? Seasoned RV-ers say: Don't answer it, especially if you're in unfamiliar territory. It's better to get an angry note or a ticket than to open your door to someone who might wish you harm.
For all of your auto insurance questions, call or contact Arndt-McBee Insurance Agency today.