Is the RV Stereotype True?

A stereotypical image of a full-time RVer is quite often described as an older retired couple traveling from RV park to RV park.

Maybe they’ll be a bit adventurous and take a detour or two for a quick stop at a National or State Park. But more than likely, they’ll just make a beeline to the RV park, where their golf cart is waiting for them.

But is this RV stereotype really true?  

RV stereotype of retired people

What is the RV Stereotype? 

Along with this oversimplified image of the typical RVer being a retired couple, comes another common RV stereotype. 

“So, you’re homeless?” 

And more often than not, the retired couple living in an RV is paid some respect. They’ve done their part and contributed to society. They’ve earned their time off to finally experience life.

The working-age adults get quite another RV stereotype thrown at them.  People often look down at them for not contributing to society.

They may think of them as YouTubers or influencers trying to get free things and wasting precious time and resources meant for those that work hard.

The RV Stereotype Is Massively Incorrect

But who is really wasting time here? The people who may or may not make it to retirement to finally enjoy the fruits of their hard-earned labor over the past 40 years?  Or the ones who have gotten creative with fitting in both play and work while creating experiences now, instead of waiting 40 years?  

We have blown the traditional dream of a house with a  white picket fence wide open and flipped the RV stereotype. RVers are full-time families, individuals, and couples. RVers are young, old, and every age in the middle. 

Some travel full time, others part-time. Others still have a brick and mortar home, others have no home base at all. 

Some work full-time as remote employees.  Others have created unique businesses that highlight their lives on the road.  Some are influencers, others like to keep to themselves.

So, yes, while there may still be a hint of an RV stereotype, it’s disappearing quite quickly. The only constant is change, and RVers are definitely changing the idea of what the RV stereotype is.

van lifer RV stereotype

About the Full-Time RVing Lifestyle Stereotype

As a society, we have been brought up to follow a typical path.  One that generally involves graduating high school, attending college and building a career. 

Along that path comes the expectation that you will find a partner, get married, buy a house with a white picket fence and have a few kids along the way. When you have time amid the work meetings, soccer games, grocery shopping, laundry, etc., you might take a vacation or two. 

Every day starts with a rushed cup of coffee, generally knocked over onto your computer or clean white shirt before you can finish it. Every evening ends with a drink in hand planted on the couch mindlessly watching television as you fall asleep to yet another horrifying news story.

That question of why people would live full-time in an RV quickly transitions into, “Why would you not live full-time in an RV?”

Life in an RV gives a different perspective on what life should be about, experiences instead of things. When choosing an RV lifestyle, people are generally choosing a minimalist lifestyle. They’re tired of working so hard to pay for all the things that a big fancy house needs to have to keep up with the Jones’.

They’re tired of not having time with their kids, their spouse, and their families and friends. These folks are simply tired.

An RV lifestyle may mean a life of travel. But it also may mean a life of simplicity.  In today’s world of go, go, go, ironically, a full-time RV life slows you down and allows you to make intentional choices.  Living in a small space allows you to experience much bigger spaces!

Working Aged RVers Working and Living on the Road

Blowing the RV stereotype out of the water are hundreds of thousands of working-age adults, families, and single travelers. These people are far from rich, are not retired and generally don’t have years of savings to live off of while traveling.

With the economy always seeming unstable in one way or another, people have taken their careers into their own hands and have gotten quite creative with it.

Full-time RVers working on the road are entrepreneurs, writers, consultants, bloggers, photographers, engineers.  They are teachers, repair techs, videographers, artists, nurses, construction workers. They are freelancers, entrepreneurs, and remote employees.  

Instead of waiting for a job to become available and working the typical 9 to 5 weekdays on, weekends off, many RVers have learned how to create their own jobs. 

And these jobs become a part of learning how to love life again while experiencing travel and adventure. These innovative adults are creating their own schedules and learning that life can be lived on their terms.

They are changing the RV stereotype.

rv influencer stereotype

Full-Time RVers Raising Families on the Road Stereotype

There is an RV stereotype that you can’t full-time RV if you have kids. Or, that full-time RVing as a family is irresponsible.

“I would love to do what you’re doing, but I have kids to raise first.” Why wait until your children are grown to teach them valuable lessons?

Travel is teaching. It’s hands-on, experiential learning at its finest.  Not only will you and your children experience history and science from a first-hand perspective, but your perspectives will also change. 

Travel opens doors to different cultures, foods, stories, and new ways of doing things. Travel teaches you how to be comfortable with the unknown. Life on the road also offers lessons of adaptability, flexibility, and patience.

Raising a family on the road may be quite different than you’re used to.  You may have to become their official teacher, but aren’t you already their teacher? (Bonus: there are many online schooling options available too.)

You may have to do more things together, but isn’t that what you wanted in the first place? Also, you may have to make some sacrifices, but don’t you have to do that anywhere when raising a family?

You will have to adjust to living in a small space with fewer things.  And while that small space will bring your family closer together quite literally, more importantly, it will bring you together. And those things that you have less of?

Well, you’ll end up with more experiences.  Some may not all be fun and games, but the lessons learned and stories to tell will never be forgotten

Houseless, Not Homeless

A home is wherever you make one. So, whether you’re thinking of becoming a full-time RVer or already are one, you’ll never be homeless. You may no longer have the traditional house, but just as a home is what you make it, so are traditions. 

So, toss out those long-held RV stereotypes, create some new traditions, and plant your home wherever you would like to roam.

And one last thing, RV living sounds quite glamorous, and it can be, but it, like any type of travel, is also quite messy. We’ll leave you with a quote from Anthony Bourdain:

“Travel isn’t always pretty. It isn’t always comfortable. Sometimes it hurts, it even breaks your heart. But that’s okay. The journey changes you; it should change you. It leaves marks on your memory, on your consciousness, on your heart, and on your body. You take something with you. Hopefully, you leave something good behind.”

If You Love RVing, You Need to Stay Informed

Don’t rely on RV industry new sources (owned by the manufacturers) or newbie YouTubers to keep you informed with RVing news.

Stick with Nomadic News. We publish the daily articles and breaking stories that matter to your RV lifestyle.

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