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Old 05-04-2016, 01:01 PM   #1
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Cost Per Night on the Road

Here's a question for all of you full-timers (or mostly full timers) out there:

What is your average cost per night to park; thinking a combination for most of free (Wallyworld parking lots, boondocking, etc.), public (local, state and federal campgrounds) and RV parks?

We'll be in a 28 or 30 ft, probably a Flying Cloud, if you're wondering.


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Old 05-04-2016, 01:17 PM   #2
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I don't think that there is a definitive answer..

And I am not qualified to answer. The only campground I stay at was free of charge to my group of musicians. I work/camp at many of the Bluegrass Festivals. Most of the festivals I pay to attend end up costing around $100, for tickets and four days of camping included. Some double that. Some of the big Rock festivals can cost way more.

But two of the expert gurus of boondocking that I followed, averaged about $8 a night, averaged over a year. You would have to be making an effort to get away that cheap.

But there really is no way to answer the question…It would be up to you, and your camping style. Keep in mind that you may want to go to campgrounds, one or two nights a week to dump, get water, and charge.

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Old 05-04-2016, 01:58 PM   #3
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I have only ever spent one night for free. We probably average 25 a night when traveling. Higher on the road and lower at usfs campgrounds when we get there.
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Old 05-04-2016, 03:12 PM   #4
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My time on the road usually averages $45 per night, but that reflects where we go & stay. Throughing in some boondocking would reduce that greatly.
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Old 05-04-2016, 04:10 PM   #5
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I recently made a month long trip to the Keys. Most private and state parks in the range of $25 to $70. Military and federal camps around $14 with discounts.
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Old 05-04-2016, 05:25 PM   #6
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Brother likes State and Federal parks. Out West, they found pricing from $8-20. As they moved East, the prices went up a bit. Our experience is that full and partial hookups at state parks are in the area of $40. We have found that our best rates come from half price Passport America sites. We have had a few Walmart, Cracker Barrel and rest area nights while traveling. That reduces the average. The folks who take advantage of BLM property and dry camp a lot reduce their overall cost considerably. Good luck with your investigation. Pat
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Old 05-04-2016, 07:37 PM   #7
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Overall, our cost is about $10/night or maybe a bit less. Of course, that includes the five months in Stillwater for free, the three weeks in Big Cabin, OK for free, and two six-week projects that were free, plus the three two-week RV Care-A-Vanner projects that included free camping. We also take advantage of the "geezer pass" that gets us a 50% discount at COE and Forest Service campgrounds. We've used PA a couple of times, too. State parks are often good bets for lower costs. We generally avoid commercial campgrounds (personal preference).

Oh,yes. Those "free" three weeks at Cabin Diesel? The camping was, indeed, free, because we spent $7000 there for repairs. Camp Foretravel was also free camping,but the service and remodeling ran $5000 for the five days.

Many of us full-timers volunteer some time in exchange for a free campsite. We've spent a month at a very nice State park as campground hosts, and we've spent the past month here at Heit's Point as volunteers - with free FHU (50A) and meals!
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Old 05-04-2016, 07:44 PM   #8
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Great question. It would be neat to know.
Family of 4 living, working & exploring the USA in our Airstream.
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Old 05-05-2016, 05:39 AM   #9
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FWIW on the thread about going to Alaska this summer, the figure of $1.00 per mile was mentioned as a good ballpark estimate for the overall trip.

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Old 05-05-2016, 05:58 AM   #10
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Were entering our 5th year on the road.
our figures show our daily lodging at $6 a night and $1.03 per mile.
These figures reflect lots of free overnight stops, coe parks, misc parks, and of course don't deflect food, insurance, maintenance or Bourbon.
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Old 05-05-2016, 10:40 AM   #11
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we like the pay parks that monitor traffic in and out and provide a little additional security. We also like having a store on site if we need it and when possible a pool or other recreation. But that is just us. We pay $35 to $70 per night for a spot depending on location and time of year. In addition I pay a dog-sitter $50 per night to stay at our house and watch the house and our pets when we are gone. I'd have to buy food and "adult refreshments" camping or at home but add another $25 - $30 per day to feed the hordes with high quality steak & chicken and plastic cup quality wine or beer.
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Old 05-05-2016, 11:50 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by vito98103 View Post
Here's a question for all of you full-timers (or mostly full timers) out there:

What is your average cost per night to park; thinking a combination for most of free (Wallyworld parking lots, boondocking, etc.), public (local, state and federal campgrounds) and RV parks?

We'll be in a 28 or 30 ft, probably a Flying Cloud, if you're wondering.

My RV Park is $400.00 per month with all utilities paid.
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Old 05-05-2016, 12:07 PM   #13
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Kind of depends on you and where you camp.

No doubt you have checked out Aluminarium, at They are full timers and post their daily averages and also include how many days are paid camping as opposed to free.

Check it out, these folks are fun to follow as they travel the country.

As I understand it they also manage the Campendium site, which is way cool too!

"don't let life get in the way of living"
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Old 05-05-2016, 02:01 PM   #14
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Update to date numbers are 593 nights averaging $30.99 per night. All have been in descent parks with no National Parks or Walmart parking lots. My latest stay has been for 3 months so I received a steep discount coming to around $20.00 a night. With a long term stay of a month or so electricity is extra which has been about $50.00 a month.

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