Camping has always been something families do together. However, until recently, living and traveling in an RV fulltime was something that was primarily done by retirees. Now thanks to the internet, more and more young people are able to find mobile work and take their families on the road.
This is great of course, as it means children have the opportunity to see the world and learn from fantastic experiences. It also gives families a chance to really connect and get to know one another as they all live in their tiny home-on-wheels. That said, RVing fulltime with kids also comes with number of challenges.
Here are my tips for successfully living in an RV with kids.
Choose Your Rig Wisely
The first step is finding the right rig for your family. Size does matter to an extent, but what really matters more is the floor plan of the RV you choose.
While you’re shopping, be sure to consider how your day-to-day life might go. Where will everyone sleep? Are you willing to set up and take down beds each day? Is the fridge big enough? Is there enough floor space in the kitchen? Where will you all sit down for meals?
These are the kinds questions that will help you find the ideal floor plan for you.
Sort Out Schooling
Obviously, if you’re going to be traveling fulltime, you will have to do some sort of homeschooling or roadschooling. That said, there are several styles of homeschooling you may want to consider.
From public school online to super relaxed unschooling, there is something for everyone in the world of homeschooling. Do your research, figure out what works for your family, and keep in mind that nothing is permanent and you can always change your mind.
Minimize and Organize
In our society, kids come with a lot of stuff. From toys and games to ridiculous amounts of clothing, the average American child has far too many things to store in the small space of an RV. For this reason, you will need to minimize your belongings by quite a lot.
Once you’ve gotten rid of as much as possible, be sure to create a solid organization system. I love IKEA for this purpose and have found lots of awesome storage solutions there.
Seek Out Family-Friendly Stops
If you’ll be traveling with kids you will clearly want to seek out family-friendly campgrounds. Sometimes it can be hard to tell on the surface exactly what is kid-friendly and what isn’t, so be sure to read reviews in order to get a feel for the place. Some reliably family-friendly campground chains include Thousand Trails and Jellystone.
When you move into your RV, be sure to set very clear boundaries for the kids from the beginning. For instance, our son is not allowed to leave our campsite without permission. He also isn’t allowed in anyone else’s RV without us. Setting these clear and unchanging boundaries will help keep your kids safe while you see the world.
Everyone needs friends, but this is especially true for kids who are always on the lookout for someone to play with. We actually find lots of friends at campground pools and playgrounds, but we found it much easier to make lasting relationships once we joined Fulltime Families and attended some of their events.
We now run into our Fulltime Families friends on a regular basis, and we always make a point of hanging out with them.
Get Out and About
RV homes are quite small. For this reason, it’s important to get out of the RV and stretch while all giving each other some space.
While heading outside and exploring the campground is effective much of the time, you’ll probably want to make sure to go on fun outings on a fairly regular basis as well. This will get you all out of the RV and campground and help ensure you’re making the most of your travel lifestyle.
Besides, seeing museums, national parks, and animal based attractions is a great way to expand upon your homeschooling!
Traveling fulltime is a little bit scary no matter what. However, taking on this challenge with kids in tow is especially nerve-wracking. Be sure to secure good fulltimer’s insurance, at least one reliable source of income, and RV-specific roadside assistance (such as Coach-Net) before hitting the road.
Are you RVing fulltime with little ones? We’d love to hear your tips as well! Share them in the comments below.
About the Author:
Chelsea has the amazing opportunity to take part in full-time RV living and traveling with her tiny tribe. She homeschools her five-year-old son as they travel, and takes full advantage of their unique situation by using the entire world as her son’s classroom. A group of total Disney fanatics, Chelsea and her family often find themselves in the Orlando area in order to visit the Disney parks, but they have also visited over 25 of the 50 states with plans to see many more along the way. No matter where her travels take her, Chelsea enjoys riding bikes, gazing at beautiful sunsets, finding new coffee shops, Irish dancing, and sitting around a campfire with her family.
You can join her adventures through her blog, Wonder Wherever We Wander.
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