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Filed under: RV Maintenance, RV Repair, Safety on the Road, Summer 2011, Traveling Tips

Are You Ready for the Road?

May 24, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

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Memorial Day weekend kicks off those lazy, hazy days of summer.

State and national parks are great spots for family camping. Pictured above is campground at Arches National Park near Moab, Utah. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

The long weekend is perfect for a camping getaway to enjoy biking, boating, fishing, golfing, hiking, paddling, photography, or bird watching.

More than 30 million people nationwide will travel more than 50 miles during Memorial Day weekend, defined as the period from Thursday, May 26 to Monday, May 30 says AAA, an increase of 0.2 percent.

“In 2010, Memorial Day travel experienced a gain of more than 14 percent,” AAA-Oklahoma spokesman Chuck Mai told the Washington Post. “Many travelers have told us they’ll compensate for higher fuel costs by cutting back in other areas of spending.”

They’ll pay more too, with gas running just a bit less than $4.00 per gallon, compared to $2.85 this time last year reports TulsaWorld. But while the high price of gas does not appear to be stopping road trip plans, travelers are looking at expenses carefully, saving where they can.

When we think of what we need for a road trip, a common list unfolds. Food, beverages, ice, snacks, paper products, lawn chairs, and maps are all normal items we might bring along. We’ll fill up the RV with fuel and head out on the highway to get away, even if just for the Memorial Day road trip weekend.

This year, some of those items will cost a bit more, some a bit less, and there are some new things we might want to consider bringing along.

What else to pack?

Colonial Williamsburg is a popular vacation spot. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Make a list and check it twice. Using a checklist is an excellent way to make sure you have everything you need.

Useful items include:

  • Bungee cords, Velcro, tape (Duct, Gorilla, electrical, masking, Teflon)
  • Well-stocked first-aid kit including bandages, gauze, pain remedies, cold and flu medicine, allergy medication, antiseptic, and any prescription medications your family requires
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Electrical adapters, extension cord (30 amp, 10-gauge), polarity tester, digital voltmeter
  • RV water hoses (DO NOT use a garden hose) and fittings, water pressure regulator
  • Sewer hoses, toilet chemical, work gloves, disposable plastic sewer gloves
  • Flashlights, extra bulbs, fuses, and batteries (a variety of sizes for your onboard gadgets)
  • Tool box with basic tools (store on curb side) that can be used for minor vehicle repairs and get you out of a jam, e.g., screwdrivers, hammer, adjustable wrenches, pliers, baling wire, tape measure, rags.
  • Emergency items such as road flares/warning reflectors, tarp, emergency blankets
  • Fully charged cell phone and charger
  • WD-40, silicone spray, distilled water, jumper cables, heavy-duty tire pressure gauge, fold-down shovel, stepladder
  • Weather radio
  • Bottled water (individual and larger containers)
  • Navigation devices (atlases, maps, GPS, or laptop with navigation program)
  • Cooking utensils, pots, pans, dishes, cutlery, can opener, coffee maker, potholders, ziploc bags, aluminum foil, wax paper, saran wrap
  • Clean-up materials (soaps, scrubbers, rags, trash bags, dish drainer)
  • Paper products (towels, plates, toilet and facial tissue)
  • Digital camera, memory cards, rechargeable batteries, lenses, filters, tripod, camera bag, computer; plus related battery chargers
  • Binoculars

Now you’re ready to pack away the hotdogs and marshmallows.

Have a great holiday weekend camping in your RV.

Worth Pondering…
“Where are we going, man?”

“I don’t know, but we gotta go.”

—Jack Kerouac, in On the Road

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If you enjoy these articles and want to read more on RV travels and lifestyle, visit my website: Vogel Talks RVing.

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