Photo Credit: Instagram User @thomasw.photo
Renting an RV is the perfect getaway when you’re feeling stressed and just want to unwind.
However, before you can relax, you must plan your adventure!
Choose a destination, plan RV driving games, make a packing list, and, most importantly, determine where you’re going to park at night.
The most common option is to stop by an RV campground. However, depending on how long your trip is, the cost of parking can add up.
Luckily, there is such a thing as free overnight RV parking. Nevertheless, you’ll need the right resources to track down free parking.
Keep reading to learn where you can find free overnight RV parking and what to know when you park!
What to Know When Searching For Free Overnight RV Parking
What’s the benefit of overnight parking?
Even if you’ve been RV camping for years, finding the right parking can be a little challenging.
For some, paying to park at a campground really isn’t worth it, especially if you’re there just for one night.
Plus, some camping sites can get too crowded. The goal of your vacation is to unwind, so if crowds cause unwanted stress, you may want to avoid campgrounds.
All in all, avoiding crowds and unnecessary costs are what make free overnight RV parking an amazing benefit.
Don’t Forget Your RV Camping Etiquette!
It may seem like a given, but it goes without saying that RV camping etiquette matters.
When parking at your typical campground or a rest stop, you should keep some of these rules in mind:
Leave your campsite as clean (or cleaner!) than you found it. Someone else is going to use it after you! So, pick up any trash and return anything you’ve borrowed during your stay.
Remember, this is not like your own personal campsite. In other words, when using overnight RV parking, you shouldn’t set up camp for the night.
Be respectful of your RV neighbors, if you have any. This includes turning off your lights at night and keeping the noise level low.
Park where you’re allowed to. If you’re ever unsure, ask for information and look out for parking signs.
The best way to make sure you park in the right place is to call ahead and ask. So, if you’re looking to park at a Walmart, call and ask about their parking policy.
Some locations have a no-parking sign, so be wary of those. If you see one, then don’t park there!
Try to park in the back of a parking lot if you’re in one. Doing this is courteous of day-time visitors who need parking space at various locations.
Thank your hosts—a little kindness can go a long way!
Unique Places That Offer Free Overnight RV Parking
Walmart is pretty well known for allowing overnight parking. Naturally, Walmart parking doesn’t have the same amenities as a campground.
Regardless, Walmart’s designated RV parking is a great place to rest your eyes for the night before hitting the road again.
An important thing to remember is that not every Walmart has this policy. Generally, this policy seems to vary depending on what city and state you’re traveling in.
So, it never hurts to double-check before pulling into the parking lot for the night!
Another store that offers free overnight RV parking to visitors is Cabela’s. Like Walmart, not every Cabela’s store has this policy in place.
If you do find a Cabela’s that offers this parking perk, it’s worth checking to see if this is a store that also offers an RV dumping station.
Finding a good spot for overnight parking and handling your RV waste is great for any trip, especially long-distance ones.
Plus, the Cabela’s store itself offers some cool perks. For example, you can stop in at the store’s deli for a bite to eat and check out their camping gear.
If you’ve ever been to a Cracker Barrel, then you know it’s not your average restaurant. Along with the good food, Cracker Barrel is known for its in-house store, offering everything from novelties to furniture!
That’s not all that Cracker Barrel offers. Many locations across the country also offer overnight parking to a wide number of vehicles, including RVs!
As always, it is important to check ahead to make sure the location of your choice does offer this perk before parking there.
All in all, you can really make the most of your visit to a Cracker Barrel. From a delicious meal to shopping on the go and, most importantly, comfortable parking, this is a great place to stop on your trip.
A general place to remember when looking for free overnight RV parking is a truck stop.
While each truck stop’s rules vary depending on the owner, many allow overnight RV parking.
As you would with any location, you want to first make sure the truck stop has RV parking. Then, if you do decide to stop there, make sure to park in spaces specifically for RVs.
Some truck stops may have other amenities for you to check out, like a rest area for you to stretch your legs.
Make the Most Out of Planning Your RV Adventure!
When planning your RV trip, make sure you check out some of Cruise America’s awesome RV resources!
Not only can you plan where you’ll park, but you can also pick out your dream RV rental with Cruise.
Plus, Cruise has RV renter’s resources so that you can have an unforgettable adventure in your RV home away from home.