*This is a guest post by Viktoria of SmallRVLifestyle.com
If you have the same questions about solo RVing, you are not alone.
Safety, loneliness, and feeling overwhelmed are the top reasons many people hesitate to try solo RVing.
The good news is that there are ways to overcome these fears so you get to enjoy the open road.
Is Solo RVing Safe?
Safety is a concern for anyone traveling alone, be it to a new state, country, or in an RV.
The fear of break-ins and thefts is sensationalized by news coverage, making it seem as if they occur more often than they really do.
You will notice that there is never coverage of the thousands of RVers who safely travel the road alone all the time.
Realizing that these isolated incidents are not the norm for RVing is the first step to overcoming the fear of solo RVing in terms of safety.
Safety Tips for Solo RVing
It’s worth giving some thought to what you would do in the off-chance you or your RV is targeted. The noise of a panic button, air horn, security alarm or barking dog can deter criminal activity and are all easy methods to employ.
In addition to this, there are a few standard rules you can follow to increase your safety as a solo RVer:
- Lock your doors at night and stay aware of your surroundings.
- Inform your RV park neighbors that you’re traveling alone.
- Keep family and friends up-to-date on your travel route, share your location on Google Map with friends!
- Try and avoid staying in places where you’re the only RV in the vicinity.
- If you’re staying overnight in a parking lot or rest stop, park under a light and within view of a security camera.
- Camp in areas with a good phone signal.
- When you leave your RV, close the blinds and secure anything valuable left outside.
- If you have one, bring a firearm with you, but make sure to check ahead regarding firearm laws to states that you will be traveling through.
- Put stickers on your windows with a security camera warning.
Solo female RVers also use decoys when traveling solo.
Setting out two chairs to give the illusion there are at least two travelers. This is not always necessary but many solo women RVers have used this trick to enhance their feeling of safety.
Another aspect of personal safety is your safety while you are driving.
Unexpected things can happen while you’re driving such as a rock hitting the windshield or a tire blowing out.
It is essential for you to have roadside service coverage for your RV and vehicle.
You may be comfortable changing your car’s flat tire, but an RV tire is a different matter so it is helpful to know that you can call someone for help when needed.
Feeling Overwhelmed as a Solo RVer
I’ve been living the RV life for over 4 years and I am still overwhelmed sometimes.
Maintenance, meal planning, route plotting, and every other aspect of travel.
And you will be doing it alone.
There are ways to make it all more manageable so you can focus on enjoying the experience.
Here are my top tips to reduce overwhelm while solo RVing.
Get to know your RV
The first step is to learn the basics about how your RV works before you hit the road. This will make sure you don’t feel completely lost on your first trip.
Get comfortable driving your motorhome
Another concern for solo RVers is driving the rig.
The key to this, is finding one that you are comfortable with before you buy.
Take your time to look and test the RV before you buy, and when you find one that you are comfortable driving or towing, this will be one less concern to worry about.
Make friends when solo RVing
Remember too that just because you’re traveling alone doesn’t mean you have to face all the challenges without help.
Make friends with more knowledgeable RVers and seek advice from them. There are Facebook groups out there where you will find many knowledgeable people who will give you advice.
You can also join an RV group like The Escapees.
Need a gift for the RVer in your life? Check out 15 Awesome Gifts For RV Owners.
It’s normal to be scared
It is also important to remember that it is okay to be scared, particularly if you decide to go full-time. It’s a perfectly natural reaction to the upheaval that comes with a big purchase and going outside our comfort zone.
Here are some ways to make the fear more manageable:
- Break big tasks down into smaller ones.
- Practice the things that make you most nervous, such as dumping tanks.
- Enjoy the process and instead of dwelling on what needs to get done and what you don’t know, celebrate the small victories.
- Go for it, don’t overthink it!
Is Solo RVing Lonely?
One of the most common misconceptions about solo travel is that it is lonely.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
RVing can be as social as you want it to be.
There are so many RV groups that you can join and follow and join. You can learn where people will be as well as events. It is also a way to keep in touch with those you meet at campsites so you can keep friendships going between visits.
Here are some other ways to avoid loneliness when solo RVing:
Take on a workamping job
If you RV seasonally or full-time, taking on a workcamping job or volunteer position is a great way to make friends and stay socially active while RVing.
In workcamping, you’ll have other RVing coworkers to bond with and give you a sense of community, even though you are traveling alone.
Visit loved ones
When you have your home on wheels, this also means you get to travel and visit family and friends all over the country.
As fun as it is to explore unknown places, there is no rule that says you cannot RV to places you know and love too. Take time to strengthen ties with people you already know and love.
Distance is not an excuse anymore.
Join day-tripping and hiking clubs
If you do like your privacy then RV living is perfect. You can explore and socialize during the day, but have evenings to yourself in the RV.
You are free to join clubs and take part in activities that are geared towards day-trippers.
When you stay in places for a few weeks or longer, you can find local groups that enjoy hiking and other outdoor activities.
You don’t have to do everything alone, but when you want some peace and quiet, the RV life is perfect.
Start a romantic relationship
For those who are curious, it is also possible to have relationships when RVing solo.
Just be upfront about your situation and what your goals are for a relationship.
That way there are no surprises and all parties are on the same page.
Are you ready to try solo RVing?
Solo RVing is not as big of a challenge as it may seem at first.
Even if something is scaring you, there are solutions to help you deal with problems of safety, of being overwhelmed and of loneliness.
As the top reasons why people are hesitant to hit the road alone, there are ways to overcome them so that you can enjoy the rewarding and pleasurable RV adventure that you deserve.
Other stories you might like:
- “I confronted my fears to become a solo female RVer”
- The best small RVs for full-time living
- 40+ remote work jobs for RVers and van lifers
Kristin Hanes is a journalist who founded The Wayward Home as a place to learn about alternative living. She currently lives on a sailboat and in a Chevy Astro van, and has written articles about alternative living published in Good Housekeeping, Business Insider, Marie Claire and SF Gate. Read more about Kristin here.