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How to Create a Complete RV Travel Itinerary + Useful Planning Tools

Updated: Apr 26

Creating an RV travel itinerary is a key soft skill you won’t find in your owner's manual or in a fancy newbie's book. Yet, having one will help you make the most of your time, prioritize your favorite activities, estimate expenditures, and even ensure essentials aren't left behind.


Basically, an itinerary is an organized outline for a journey. It focuses on how and where you’ll spend your time and has plenty of leeway for unforeseen circumstances. But with so much to consider, writing an RV trip itinerary can be daunting, even for seasoned RVers.


In this post, we will show you how to prepare an RVing itinerary so you can have a harmonious and fulfilling trip.


Contents

travel accessories including guidebook, journal,  bag, and camera lying on open map

  1. Choose an Editing Tool

  2. Harness the Power of RV Trip Planning Apps

  3. Research Your Destination

  4. Divide Your Document into Sections

  5. Get Input from Family and Make a Plan for at Least Three Consecutive Days

  6. Include a Packing List

  7. Be Flexible

  8. Include a Backup Plan

  9. Print a Hard Copy


Choose an Editing Tool

While you can use a pen and paper to make your travel itinerary, a simple program like Google Sheets or Microsoft Excel will help you share the plan with your travel companions. Plus, a digital copy is easier to access and update from different devices.


Harness the Power of RV Trip Planning Apps

Apart from a spreadsheet program, there are other tools that are a must-have for anyone organizing an RV trip. Visit our Media Guide Resource to discover our compilation of over 350 RVing mobile apps, websites, books, magazines, podcasts, films, and YouTube channels. Below are some of the ones related to trip planning:


  • AllStays - Finding private and public campgrounds and RV amenities even without internet.

  • Campground Views - Virtual tours to help you see and book campsites.

  • RV Spot Drop - Sends you canceled or unsold sites at the most popular RV parks to your inbox.

  • Campendium - Locating paid RV campgrounds, free camping opportunities, and their reviews.

  • CampNab - Alerts you when a spot opens up in your preferred RV campground.

  • CampSpot - Discover and instantly book campgrounds, RV parks and glamping spots.

  • RV Life's Trip Wizard - Finding routes that match your RV's dimensions, discovering points of interest on the route, and reading campground reviews.

  • ToGo RV - Use pre-made RVing checklists and find the best RV mobile service, nearby campgrounds, attractions, and service centers.


Research Your Destination

Using the tools above, collect all the information you can about your upcoming trip. That includes the best routes to the destinations, contacts for campgrounds to stay at, RV rental owner contacts, attractions to visit, interesting local events, foodie stops, reviews, what to pack for the weather, RVing rules in the region, travel costs, and expected weather.


Divide Your Document into Sections

Open a blank page in your word-editing tool and create sections to note down what you’ve researched. Your rows can include the following headings:


  • Travel Date - The first row should have columns of your vacation dates.

  • Where to Stop - In this section, list specific places you’ll visit on each date in the morning, afternoon and evening, and note the route and entrance fees. In addition, factor in driving time and waiting time when approximating arrival and departure time.

  • Where to Eat - List the places you’ll stop for meals on each date.

  • Where to Stay - Campground you’ll stay, contacts, address, and rates.

  • General Information - List things like contacts you’ll need on each date, interesting information about each stop, opening/closing hours, emergency numbers, and other expenses.


Get Input from Family and Make a Plan for at Least Three Consecutive Days

Motorhome parked on the roadside and family taking a break

It’s time to fill the sections above with the actual plan. Consult your travel companions and note down activities for three consecutive days. Ideally, the spots you visit on a particular day should be close by to minimize travel time. Make sure you allocate each activity a time frame to avoid spending too much time in one area and missing out on other activities.


Include a Packing List


On a different page or section, add a packing checklist. It should include clothes that match the weather that’s forecasted in your destination and gear that complements the activities you’ll be doing. Don’t forget to add travel documents.


Be Flexible


While it’s smart to have time frames, you don’t have to create a strict schedule. Instead of rushing from one place to the next and restricting fun hours, leave enough time for you to appreciate each attraction. There are also days when you’ll need a day off, and sometimes you can deviate from your plan to check out a hidden gem.


Include a Backup Plan


Have a Plan B regarding the attractions you want to visit and places to stay. Record details of free campsites near your destination in case the campground you booked is closed or can’t be reached on time. Find and list alternative attractions in case you find annoying lines or extreme traffic near your target attraction.


Print a Hard Copy


To easily keep track of what you’ve done and what needs to be done, print the plan. A hard copy is easier to follow and tick. Also, electronics aren’t always reliable, plus not every place is safe to use a gadget.


A Complete RVing Itinerary is Your Recipe for a Successful Trip.


Take the guesswork out of your trip by crafting a well-thought-out RV road trip itinerary. Creating a precise plan will ensure you know exactly where to visit, how to get there, where to camp, and how much time to spend at every point of interest. Plus, with all details in one place, it will be easier to refine your budget.


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