How Do We Decide Where to Go?

Non-fulltimers often want to know what we’re thinking when we decide to pack up and travel somewhere. They wonder:

Million Dollar HIghway Colorado
Million Dollar Highway, Colorado
  • How do you choose when and where you’ll go?
  • Do you ever know how long you’ll stay?
  • What goes through your head when you turn the key?
  • Is there always a destination in mind? Or do you just drive until you’re tired?

How we pick our full-time RVing destinations

When you’re new to full-time RVing and your only travel goals tend to be something like seeing a shrunken head, bucket list destinations usually shape your travel itinerary. At least they did for us.

But as we fell into a full-timing routine, we started to relax and realized that there’s no rush to tour a Colorado missile silo or romp around a theme park in the middle of the desert. Those things will hopefully always be there. And since we’re full-timers, it’s pretty easy to go back again.

Shrunken Head, University of Missouri Collection
Shrunken Head, University of Missouri Collection

Once we decided to make full-time RVing a permanent lifestyle, any sense of urgency to see stuff disappeared. As the miles rolled on, we crafted a more laid back attitude about catching all of these cool attractions. Our goal was to figure out how to occasionally integrate those quirky destinations into our road tripping plans, without feeling rushed to get there because we still have to find time to earn a living, after all.

We ask ourselves:

  • Is it peak season? We avoid crowds like the plague. If it’s popular and people are there, we go the other way.
  • What’s the weather like? The sunnier and warmer, the better.
  • What we want to do / see? Catching great music from rising stars and local legends is high on our list, so we gravitate toward places where we can catch live music.
  • Is it nice to look at? Things have to be interesting, beautiful or fun to watch for us to go there and stay a while.
  • Is it fun? Perhaps the most important factor of all. If we’re not having fun while we’re there, what’s the point?
Ray Wylie Hubbard, Alpine TX
Ray Wylie Hubbard, Alpine TX

Since we have a satellite Internet system, WiFi broadband connectivity hardly ever factors into our location decisions. Unless we know that a Skype session is in our future, this really isn’t an issue for us.

Of course if there’s no WiFi it stands to reason there’s no cell service either. In those instances when there isn’t, like the Pads in Death Valley, cell phone service withdrawal is a little unnerving at first but quickly turns into a breath of fresh air. We love it!

The Pads, Death Valley
The Pads, Death Valley

Everyone has different reasons for going where they go. I know Jim and I are a little odd in the sense that we tend to be like hermits wherever we roam, but we wouldn’t have it any other way. Solitude surrounded by natural beauty and total off-grid independence is how we roll.

Now, how do you roll?



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