These Campground Etiquette Tips Brought Us Smooth Travels


Wherever you go, however you travel to get there, and however long you stay there, there’s always a bit of etiquette you’re expected to follow. For instance, when flying, you should be considerate of the passenger in the row behind you when you recline your seat. When driving on a divided highway at night, it’s polite to temporarily dim your high beam headlights when cars approach from the other direction. 

Similarly, when heading out into the wilderness overnight, there are certain rules of camping that apply. Following campground etiquette is good form, and will help make everyone’s experience smoother, safer, and more enjoyable. 

Campground Etiquette is for Everyone 

The important thing to remember about campground etiquette is that the rules of camping apply to all, and when you get right down to it, many of them are common sense. Furthermore, it’s a two way street: You have every right to expect that others will show the sort of respect for campground etiquette that is expected from you. 

Overall, by setting a good campground etiquette example, you can offer teachable moments for those in your party and others camping nearby. So, even if you see others violating campground etiquette, continuing to follow the rules of camping yourself is better than not doing so.

A Short Guide To Campground Etiquette 

It’s time to have a look at some of the more common rules of camping. These rules serve as the foundation for campground etiquette, providing a jumping off point for a fun, safe time.

Where’s There’s Smoke, There’s Fire (and Campground Etiquette)

While many rules of camping are simply a matter of being polite to other campers or respectful of your natural surroundings, this first one is all about safety –– namely, campfire safety. You should only build campfires in designated areas, and it’s wise to make sure there’s no debris in those areas (such as leaves or trash) that could pose a fire hazard (causing it to spread). 

In addition, even if you have a romantic notion of falling asleep to the sound of crackling firewood, don’t let it guide your actions. Make sure your campfire is fully out before you hit the hay. 

Campground Etiquette for Keeping Quiet (Time)

One of the reasons people go camping is to get away from it all, and that includes all the noise that can accompany the hustle and bustle of daily life, at all hours of the day. Depending on where you’re camping, there may be a recommended or even officially-mandated quiet time.  When that quiet time arrives, be kind and abide by commonly accepted campground etiquette for such situations: Don’t be loud, and don’t run generators. 

Remember, you’re sharing the campground with others who also want to have a relaxing time, so please do your part!

There’s No Shortcut To Campground Etiquette

There’ll be times that modern bathrooms are available at a campground, visible just on the other side of that campsite next to yours. Everyone knows the shortest distance between two points is a straight line, and it’s mighty tempting to walk through that other campsite to save some time. Just don’t. It would be a huge violation of campground etiquette. 

Keep in mind that just as you’ve paid for the exclusive use of your own campsite, your neighbors also paid for the exclusive use of theirs. Respect their space and privacy as you would expect them to respect yours, and stick to public paths or main roads. 

Don’t Speed Past This Bit of Campground Etiquette 

Speaking of roads, don’t drive too fast on the ones that wind their way through campgrounds. There are kids running around as they play, other campers taking in the scenery on mountain bikes, and campsite neighbors making their way to the restrooms. Abide by posted speed limits. If you don’t see any, follow one of the unspoken rules of camping that says don’t take the absence of posted speed limits as a permission to speed. 

Driving safely and considerately through campgrounds is one of the most important tenets of campground etiquette. 

The Rules of Camping Say Clean It Up –– Yes, All of It!

If you were to have guests over at your house for the night who just leave trash and belongings everywhere, how would you feel? Disrespected, right? Exactly! Of course, staying at a campground isn’t quite the same, but the same principle applies to campground etiquette: You should clean up after yourself. You’re not the only people to ever use that campground; you should leave it looking good for the next group. Also, wild animals usually call camping areas home, and you shouldn’t leave anything that could attract predators or injure native creatures.

Finally, if you bring your pets with you, clean up after them, too. Don’t leave any smelly “presents” around for the next group of campers!

How To Put Campground Etiquette To Good Use

Now that you’re more familiar with some of the most common rules of camping, it’s time to put what you’ve learned into action. Yes, it’s time to book an RV rental with Cruise America. You’ve taken the time to learn about the rules of camping, and now you owe it to yourself to see how well you can abide by the principles of campground etiquette in a real world setting!

What are you waiting for? Go ahead, get in touch with Cruise America today and start your next adventure!