This week we continue our RV Life Q&A Series with a question from Pookie & the Bear. They’re a Florida couple preparing for a life of fulltime RV traveling. As they anticipate life on the road, they wanted to know:
Have your expectations aligned with reality?
On first thought, the quick answer is yes; the reality of fulltime RV life meets and exceeds our expectations. But once we dove a little deeper into our memories of the months before we hit the road, we sure did have some rookie expectations that weren’t met!
During our initial research we loved hearing tales of RVers using free wifi provided by local businesses. McDonalds, Starbucks, Wal-Mart, Home Depot – the list goes on for days. We thought if we needed more internet than the 5 gigs on our phone plan, it’d be easy and fun to drive down the road, grab some fries, and upload videos.
This proved to be horribly wrong. Many times we tried this and found the internet to be overloaded and slow. We also didn’t like hanging out inside any business for more than an hour.
2. Cooking Over a Campfire
In our preparation to become fulltimers, we have an idyllic vision of cooking over a campfire and eating our meals outside while stargazing and listening to coyotes.
FALSE! We love cooking with our propane stove top inside the comfort of our camper. In fact, living in our camper is so similar to our experience of living in a house. We realized quickly – we’re not weekend campers. We’re fulltimers… and this is our home.
Don’t get us wrong – we love nature. But, dealing with smoke, bugs, and uncomfortable picnic tables isn’t our idea of a peaceful dinner.
3. Living off of Solar Power
Sike! We quickly realized our all electric mini-fridge was a battery drain. The solar couldn’t keep up with its energy needs.
There were a few ways to solve this problem; many of them involving lots of cash. We stumbled upon a solution in Quartzsite when Spot The Scotts told us they were selling their Honda 2000 generator. We jumped at the opportunity to grab one of these quiet gennys for a great price.
4. Free Camping
This idea has come full circle, but it took months of practice to make it happen. When we drove away from our hometown 11 months ago, we thought we’d rarely pay for rent again!
Due to solar power limitations, small tank capacity, and weak research skills; free camping was extremely difficult during our first four months on the road. But, we put in the time and energy to learn how to camp for free and it has really paid off.
We haven’t paid for camping in the last 3 months!
5. Social Life
Being introverted home-bodies, we didn’t anticipate a life of social activity once we hit the road.
This proved to be extremely incorrect! Social life on the road is awesome. We love making friends with like-minded travelers and letting serendipity lead us to relationships across the country.
We owe a huge “thank you” to the Xscapers group – it’s Quartzsite convergence became our launching pad for understanding socializing on the road.
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