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Old 07-12-2016, 10:36 PM   #1
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Long Distance Trip

I'm heading out on a 2 week, 3200 mile RT, with a number of stops along the way. I have done a number of things to prep outside of what we normally do for a weekend visit to the lake. Does anyone have any good lists or lessons learned regarding a trip of this length? Things you you wished you had done beforehand. I am not an over planner, and I will be near decent sized cities throughout the trip, so I can always run to a Wal-Mart, Target or RV Dealer. However, I just want to make sure I am not missing something really obvious.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 07-13-2016, 01:29 PM   #2
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Not a list, but check the air pressure and condition of your spare tire for your camper. Make sure you can actually get it out of it's rack.

Get a copy of the "Next Exit" book so you can see what services are located ahead of you on the thruways.

Make sure you GPS software is up to date and get a current year road atlas for planning detours should the need arise.

Plan rest stops and fuel stops so you don't run short of fuel.
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Old 07-13-2016, 02:38 PM   #3
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Another not list item would be verify you don't have any prescriptions that need refilling during the trip or make provisions for doing it on the road.
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Old 07-13-2016, 03:35 PM   #4
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Make sure your over nighters include some downtime. In other words, don't stop late at night, try and sleep right away, then get up early. Give yourself a couple of hours to relax, eat, maybe watch a little TV, what ever. It makes a big difference to "recharge your personal batteries".

Make sure to pay all your bills and take care of other business that are due during and the week after that time period. That way when you return you don't have to scramble to get personal business done.
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Old 07-13-2016, 03:44 PM   #5
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Make sure your over nighters include some downtime. In other words, don't stop late at night, try and sleep right away, then get up early. Give yourself a couple of hours to relax, eat, maybe watch a little TV, what ever. It makes a big difference to "recharge your personal batteries".

Make sure to pay all your bills and take care of other business that are due during and the week after that time period. That way when you return you don't have to scramble to get personal business done.
You bring up a good question about bill paying. How do full timers keep up with their bill paying? Have they gone totally green?
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Old 07-13-2016, 05:31 PM   #6
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Plan your gas stops. If you have a larger trailer it helps to plan out the larger fuel stations ahead of time.
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Old 07-13-2016, 05:50 PM   #7
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Being an old map person by profession, and wanting a backup to the GPS, I always stop at a state's welcome center to pick up a road map if my current one is old. It also provides a nice break while I scope out the state's tourist brochures. Many welcome centers provide free coffee, and Florida has orange and grapefruit juice!
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Old 07-14-2016, 07:34 AM   #8
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You bring up a good question about bill paying. How do full timers keep up with their bill paying? Have they gone totally green?
When we wintered in the RV I don't recall any problems with bills. I have the monthly ones, electric, propane, insurance, etc., set up on auto pay from our credit union. We put almost everything on one credit card and I pay it online, so a bunch from Lowe's, etc., aren't sneaking up on me. Right now I can't think of any that arrive in the mailbox.

Hope that answers your full-timer question. But two weeks shouldn't be a problem if you pick up and open your mail as soon as you get home.
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Old 07-14-2016, 07:51 AM   #9
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You bring up a good question about bill paying. How do full timers keep up with their bill paying? Have they gone totally green?
If I was in a position to full time, I'd do it all online as I already do now. You can also have your mail forwarded to near where you are staying.

For a 2 week trip I would not want to be bothered with paying bills during a trip. I just want to have fun.
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Old 07-14-2016, 02:53 PM   #10
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After retirement, my parents went on a 5 week trip to Alaska -- through the Canadian prairies, down through the BC interior to Seattle, and back via the northern states. They had left me in charge to house sit and gave me a few thousand dollars to pay their bills, etc. They put most of their purchases on credit, so it was kind of interesting to see all of the little towns where they stopped to get gas and the like when I looked at the bill. They were gone long enough and put on enough miles that they had to get the truck's oil changed during the trip.
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Old 07-15-2016, 03:04 AM   #11
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On long trips into unfamiliar territory, I carry a 5 gal can of gas for the TV just to be sure we don't get stranded out in the middle of nowhere.
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Old 07-15-2016, 04:10 AM   #12
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Personal wifi secured hotspot. We never do financial transactions on a campgrounds public wifi
We were gone for 7 weeks and kept everything up to date.
Yes and the truck needed an oil change
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Old 07-15-2016, 08:47 AM   #13
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Old 07-15-2016, 05:23 PM   #14
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We are leaving Sunday for 2 months and between 8 to 9 thousand miles total. My list is to long to post but kind of important for us. In the truck, honda generator, air compressor, lots of tools, spare fuel and water jugs, 2 trailer spare tires, bottle jack, wrenches to fit truck and trailer wheels, black and gray tank repair kit, dot road flares, 377 lbs in the truck.
Camper, lots of food and clothes, leveling boards, more tools, fuses, bulbs grease gun and grease, wheel bearings and brakes all checked out. lots of little stuff to much to list. Prepared to boondock when needed.
Personal, bills paid automaticly, medical prescriptions filled, passports and all trailer and truck registrations and insurance cards on board.
Weighed everything in the truck and camper. Camper stuff 226 lbs
I have 714 lbs max cargo for camper so minus 237 lbs water minus 45 lbs battery minus 226lbs leaves us 206 lbs under cargo max.
Headed for scales tomorrow and Alaska Sunday. Pardon the spelling
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Old 07-15-2016, 07:03 PM   #15
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I found to take extra toilet chemical if your not going to be flushing out the tank nightly, the higher temps and no AC running when your towing, you will probably go thru more than you do on a normal weekend trip. We ended up having to buy some on the trip.
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Old 07-24-2016, 07:54 PM   #16
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We've taken 2 cross country trips with our old popup, 5 weeks in 2007, the kids were 14 & 6 and then 7 weeks in 2009 when they were 16 & 8. Did all the bills, etc. online. My husband was a teacher so summers off and I work remotely, so I did that too when I had a wifi signal.
I'd second "Next Exit" book. We also had the good sam book and maps, no gps used. Don't drive too far each day, we would stop by late afternoon, set up the trailer, take a quick dip in the campground pool, then dinner and rest. Each day I drove first, then my husband drove later and I would figure of where we might stay and call ahead. Didn't make any reservations, except for possibly a weekend where it might be harder to get a site. Also found quite a few free or really cheap places, like city parks, etc. that let you camp.
Definitely check the prescriptions, and all the standard tow vehicle/trailer related things like the oil, fluids, etc. Had everybody pack enough clothes for 8 days, then did laundry once a week. We hit all the national parks, visited friends in CA.
We have a truck with a cap, so we organized a lot of things into the back of it that we could easily get at but didn't need to be in the trailer.
Also, make sure to turn things off at home, give someone a key to check on things, stop the mail, make sure a neighbor is picking up the stupid flyers that get thrown on your lawn and cutting the grass.....
My best advice would be don't push yourself too hard, take the time to really see all that landscape you're driving by, it's a beautiful country.
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