If you have been following me the past week you know we wrapped up our first RV road trip and it was nothing short of amazing. My children absolutely enjoyed the experience and it has been something I have always wanted to do and keep doing. As first time RVers, I had began to prepare by watching a couple YouTubers ( #SoulfulRVFamily #Knorppandsouth to name a few) who do this full time and with children. I wanted to have an inside scoop on how this could potentially pan out. More importantly though, I wanted to experience this with a child that is wheelchair bound/with additional special needs because there are so many complexities that come along with that. Here are a list of questions that I had been asked and the answers.
How Much Does It Cost To Rent An RV?
This is an overloaded question because the price varies. However, when searching for our rental we used RVshare.com and outdoorsy.com. We decided to use outdoorsey because the user experience was easier to navigate. Our rental cost was $200 per night and it was a steal for the great condition and mileage of the RV.
How Much Does It Cost to Fuel An RV?
Our RV rental used regular unleaded gasoline and the cost was $250(ish) to fill up the tank. On an average, you get 9-10 miles to a gallon of gas, if you have the generator powered, that number decreases to 6-8 gallons.
How Did You Find RV Campsites?
I downloaded an app called Park Advisor. This app was able to track out current location and populate RV Parks, Walmarts, gas stations etc. that were near. This app was helpful because it provided us with options and there were reviews for us to read to gage if the park was desirable. In addition, the site shared other information that is really important such as, amentaties ( showers, laundy, pools, playgrounds and activities), the availability of water hook ups, dumping stations, electricity and wifi just to name a few.
Dumping Waste, Was It Gross and How Do You Know When To Dump?
Actually no, you put on gloves and you carefully connect the waste hook up (hose) to the dumping sewer. You don’t see it or smell much of anything. It's pretty seamless, however, I wouldn't rush the process. You know when you need to dump because the RV has a control panel that shows the measurements. Basically, there is an indicator that lets you know it is time.
BONUS FYI - In RV’s you use special toilet paper. You have to purchase toilet paper designed specifically for RVs and Marine Vehicles. The toilet paper rapidly dissolves to prevent clogging in sewers and septic systems.
Water? How Does That Work?
The RV has three water systems. Potable Water, Gray Water and black water
Potable Water - This is fresh water that provides water to your faucet, toilet and showers.
Gray Water - This is water that is drained from the kitchen sink, bathroom sink and shower.
Black Water - This is anything flushed down the toilet.
The RV has a control panel shares with you where these levels stand so you know when it's time to dump or fill up. We purchased gallons of water to drink and cook with as a preference.
Heating and Cooking?
The RV has a furnace that is powered by propane gas. This is also how the stove was used to cook as well. Also, there is hot water provided in the RV however the generator has to be powered on in order power the hot water tank.
Were The Sleeping Arrangements Comfortable?
Our RV had one bedroom with a queen sized bed, a set of bunk beds, a dining table booth that converted into a full size bed and an additional loft, that pulls down and allows for a blow up mattress to rest there for sleeping. The older girls slept in the bunk, the younger girls slept in the bed with my husband and I and our son slept on the full size dining table convert. We were very comfortable and not cramped on top of one another at all.
Would You RV Again?
This is definately the beginning to many more RV trips. We really enjoyed the experience.
If your family decides to embark upon an RV trip, I recommend you doing it with no set itinerary. Make the trip one that is very laxed and doesn't require you to be at a designated location at a certain time. This will provide you with really enjoying all of the elements of the #RVLife
Cooking in the RV was a great experience and bringing my Crockpot Instant and electric single burner was a great idea. I was able to cook multiple things at once and it worked seamlessly. The stove in the RV had three burners opposed to the traditional four burner cooktops and the oven was so small that my round 8 inch cake pan was the perfect size. If you RV I would recommend bringing a crockpot instant and single burner and here is why. During our trip, the gas was not functioning properly. However, because I had the Crockpot and the electric burner, we were able to cook although there were issues with the propane.
BONUS FYI - Cooking in the oven was not like your traditional oven at home because it cooks twice as fast. This means, the bottom of your food dish is subject to cook and burn quicker, leaving the rest of the dish uncooked. To counter this issue, I doubled the pan. This allowed the bottom to not cook as fast and the entire dish to be cooked thoroughly.
Power Sources for the RV was plentiful. There was a total of ten electrical outlets including one in the bedroom and bathroom. This was great for those small appliances that I brought along and for the electric heaters that came in handy when the propane was malfunctioning.
Propane Was Malfunctioning so we thought, and it forced us to spend one night with no heat and two electric heaters and blankets. Yes, I know that's not an ideal situation in any kind of vehicle, especially with children. Let me tell you, it was cold but our survival skills kicked in and we layered up. We began searching campground locations for the night and we headed to a local RV service center the next morning. Luckily, we arrived to the service center and like magic, there was suddenly nothing wrong anymore #Embarrased but not entirely. The serviceman shared with us that sometimes there is air in the gas line. When this happens you have to continue to crank the stove or furnace until it passes through. I feel like that moment was our welcoming into the RV community. Luckily, the rest of the trip everything was functioning properly.
I hope this has given you additional insight on our trip and has sparked your interest in taking an RV trip one day with your family!