RVs & Deals

The Ultimate RV Camping Checklist

If you are new to RVing, you’ll want to have a written checklist of what you need to do for setting up and taking down your campsite. If you are moving between campsites for your whole trip, you’ll soon become a pro. Every member of your family can have a specific job when setting up the site.

Chantal Mercer
4 minute read

Choosing a Campground

For most people, campgrounds represent the most logical place to park your RV. If you are planning on spending more than one night at the same spot, a campground will probably work best. Campgrounds provide many conveniences that you would not get staying elsewhere. Campgrounds tend to provide RV hookups. Hooks up will allow you to connect your RV to a power source, and a water and sewer source. Other amenities that may be available at campgrounds are; convenience stores, swimming pools, hot tubs, cable hookups, WiFi, shower facilities, laundromats, and playgrounds. The list is endless to what campgrounds can have to offer. 

How much is a campground going to cost?

Prices for campgrounds vary depending on what amenities are available at each campground. Most campgrounds will cost you somewhere around $40-$70 per night.

There are other factors that will also help determine the nightly cost of your campground. Pull thru sites tend to cost more. Pull thru sites allow you to get into and out of your camping spot without having to back up. Another factor will be the amps your RV will need when you plug into power at the campsite. Most RVs only need a 30 amp hook up. If you have an RV that has a washer/dryer then you will need the 50 amp hook up. 

Setting Up Your Site

If you are new to RVing, you’ll want to have a written checklist of what you need to do for setting up and taking down your campsite. If you are moving between campsites for your whole trip you will soon become a pro. Every member of your family can have a specific job when setting up the site.

  1. Before you attempt to park your RV, get out, and survey the campsite. You will want to know where the sewer, water, and electrical connections are. Also, look for any low branches that you could hit while backing in. Even small branches, while small enough not to do any damage, could brush against your RV in the breeze making it hard to sleep at night. You will also need to make sure that you have enough room to open any slide outs you may have on the RV.
  2. Now make sure that everyone is back on the RV, except your spotter. You do not want to have to worry about where the kids are if you have to back in. Some campsite will be pull-through spots, which will make it easier if you are new to RVing. Have your spotter back you into the spot. Your spotter will have to remember to look up to make sure that you are not going to hit any branches or wires. Once parked make sure you can reach all hookups and that you have room to open your slide outs.
  3. Apply the parking brake and level the RV using parking blocks or leveling jacks, depending on what you have.
  4. Pull out the steps and open the slide outs. Have your spotter stand outside to make sure that there are not people or obstacles in the way when opening the slides.
  5. Plug the RV into the campsites power supply. Plug into the power that matches the amperage of your RV. Turn the fridge to the electric mode to use the electricity rather than the propane source.
  6. Use the white potable water hose to attach the RV water intake valve to the campgrounds water supply.
  7. To connect the sewer hose or black water hose always wear gloves. Attach the sewer hose to the sewer connection at the campsite. Use a rock or a piece of wood to prop up the hose so it has a smooth drain into the sewer. You can leave the grey water (water from the sinks and showers) open, but close the black water hose value until you have a nearly full waste tank. The reason for this is that the pressure of the release works with gravity to empty the tank.
  8. Now you can set up your home away from home outside! Set out the lawn chairs and put out the welcome mat (great jobs for the kids) and enjoy.

When it comes time to pack up, just do everything in the reverse order. Empty your tanks before leaving will lighten the load and save you a little money on gas. Before you drive away, double-check that the slide-outs are in and that the stairs are tucked back in. Many RV repairs come from driving with these two things left out.

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