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If you’re a new motorhome owner, then you’ve likely already made quite a few new purchases for your RV. Beyond the cost of your RV itself, you’ve probably picked out some favorite RV accessories, tech gear to keep you on the road and maybe even a few memberships to RV clubs and organizations for RV enthusiasts. But as you outfit your newly found RV lifestyle, are you overlooking one very important purchase?
Here’s a quick look at everything you need to know about buying insurance for your new RV, so you can stay protected no matter where you travel.
If you have a Class A motorhome then RV insurance is non-negotiable. Just like you need a minimal level of automobile insurance to legally drive on the roads, you also need minimal insurance coverage for an RV that can be driven on its own. The amount of insurance that you’ll need, however, depends on your state of residence.
If you’re planning to live in your motorhome most of the year or full-time, then you’ll likely need additional coverage. Otherwise, you can expect to pay for your standard liability insurance, along with personal injury protection, depending on your state. You can further refine and enhance your coverage from there.
While you can expect your motorhome insurance to cover things like collisions or accidents while on the road, you’ll likely want to consider adding — or at least asking about — other coverage that may or may not be included in your initial policy.
For example, will the motorhome insurance you’re considering cover you in the case of an accident or theft? What about if you need emergency assistance? What if something happens to your RV while it’s in storage?
These are all things that you’ll want to ask your insurance provider about, before you sign on the dotted line.
Recommended coverage beyond the standard liability includes custom equipment coverage, roadside assistance and personal effects coverage. Custom equipment coverage is necessary if you’ve added custom parts or equipment to your motorhome. Roadside assistance is a nice add-on if you drive your RV often and don’t want to be left stranded in the event of a battery failure, flat tire or other issue. Personal effects coverage can help protect all of your personal belongings that are in your RV (though, sometimes, your homeowner’s policy may cover this; check with your agent to be sure).
Other nice-to-have coverage include RV roof protection and pest protection. The former can help you out in the event you run into the all-too-common leaky RV roof. The latter is great if you store your RV for long periods and are worried about a potential mice or bird infestation.
If you’ve not yet purchased your new motorhome, you might want to talk to your current insurance agent about what kind of coverage you can or should buy for your motorhome, as well as how much you can expect it to cost. Depending on the type of motorhome you purchase, as well as the value, the premiums can run into the thousands of dollars. That’s a cost that you’ll want to consider as you budget for your new RVing lifestyle.
Your agent, though, should be able to advise you as to how you might be able to save money on your policy or get discounts, like through paying your annual premium all at one time versus monthly. You may also be able to get discounts based on your prior driving record.
Lastly, while insurance is an extra cost and can seem like a headache, especially as you're shopping around for the right policy, remember that you’ll be glad you have the right RV insurance once you’re out on the road. There’s nothing quite like the peace of mind you’ll have, knowing you’re protected no matter what life throws your way.
On the road and need to park the RV for a quick overnight before you get back to your route? If there are no campsites in sight, or if You just want to save some cash with some free parking, there are a few things you’ll want to remember. Make sure you know where you should and shouldn’t park your RV.
If you’re in an area that you really don’t know all that well, you’ll probably want to steer clear of parking on the street, including residential streets. Street parking a motorhome is a bit of a gray space, so erring on the safe side and parking only in a residential driveway is the best way to go if you want to avoid a costly fine.
Many cities do not allow for any overnight RV street parking in residential areas. Most times, you’ll see this posted in the area, but not always. Other cities, meanwhile, allow RV street parking in residential areas, but only if you have a permit and then only for a certain amount of time.
If you absolutely do want to park your motorhome on a residential street, check with the local Department of Transportation regarding the dos and do nots.
As a rule of thumb, don’t park on private property if you're not familiar with the property owner and haven't received explicit permission. Of course, there are some businesses that will generally allow for RV parking, which we’ll get to in a second, but stay away from parking in random office parking lots, church parking lots and the like, unless you want to raise suspicion.
A rest stop seems like a no-brainer for parking your RV, but don’t make the mistake of posting up overnight at rest stops in certain states. Overnight RV parking at rest stops is prohibited in Colorado, Minnesota, Utah and Nebraska. The laws are a little more lenient in Texas, but you still can't stay at a rest area for more than 24 hours.
While rest stops are a no-go in some states, truck stops are fair game. Just be courteous of your fellow parked vehicles, don't take up too much space and don't linger longer than a night or so.
Many casinos allow for overnight parking, if you’ve checked with the casino ahead of time and so long as there are parking spots available. You’ll just want to park on the further end of the parking lot, so as not to take up valuable real estate. And bonus — you're at a casino! You can spend the evening playing the slots before hitting the sack and then the road the next morning.
There is a handful of national chains that allow you to post up at the end of their parking lots. You likely know Walmart as a safe haven for motorhome drivers, but you can also often park at Cracker Barrel, Cabela’s, Camping World, Costco and Sam’s Club. However, be sure , as is needed with most of these parking suggestions, that you talk to a store manager or someone similar ahead of time, just to get the all clear.
Where’s the most interesting or out-of-the-ordinary spot you’ve parked your motorhome during a trip? Do you have any tales of parking-gone-wrong? What are your top tips for parking your RV for free while on a trip? Share any of the above with us info@motorhometires at and your responses may be featured in one of our future newsletters.
Headed out on your first winter RV trip? If you’re dreaming of mountain vistas covered in snow passing by your windshield, or cuddling up next to a roaring campfire during a white Christmas, make sure your RV is outfitted with everything you need to travel safely during the snowier months.
If you already live in a snowy climate, then, yes, you know to keep a snow shovel and snow salt in your garage, for those inopportune snowstorms. However, you should buy a second shovel and some snow salt for your RV as well. Not only will these items be necessary if you end up stuck in the snow, but they’ll likewise be nice to have at your campground, if you’re setting up camp for an extended period of time and want to be able to shovel around your RV as you clean up your outdoor space.
Make sure that your RV is properly insulated, both inside and out, before you roll up to your snowy, winter parking spot. This doesn’t require much. Just buy some RV skirting to insulate your pipes and tanks, and a window insulation kit for the interior.
Yes, you should have an emergency kit in your RV all the time, but in the winter, you’ll want to outfit that kit with cold weather-specific gear. Consider adding emergency blankets and extra layers, in case you have heating problems. A generator and/or space heater are also good ideas.
Stocking your RV for a winter getaway isn’t just all about safety (though that’s paramount). Since you’ll likely be spending a good portion of your winter RVing trip indoors (at least compared to a summer trip, even if you do anticipate some snow sports and similar activities), be sure to stock your motorhome with some indoor entertainment, too. Think books, movies, board games, card games, puzzles and the like.
While many RV enthusiasts are snowbirds who prefer to flock to warmer locales when the winter temperatures hit, that doesn’t mean a wintertime RV trip is out of the question. Channel your sense of adventure and see what awaits! Just be sure to stay safe, pack appropriately and then enjoy visiting some of the country’s most beautiful snow-covered destinations.