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  1. Default Need ideas and suggestions. .. family trip

    Hi everyone. .. I'm completely new here and need some advice on an upcoming RV trip.

    Some background :

    I'm 40, my wife is 30, we have a 2 year old daughter, and would like to bring my 74 year old mom along as well. We've never done this before.

    The three of us live in South Korea and mom is in North Carolina. Mom is ailing in her age and battle with cancer but still getting along. We like the idea of having a lot of time with mom and her granddaughter (my daughter ) while still being out and about. Since I work in Korea we don't get a lot of time with her.

    Anyway I would dearly love to show my family the Desert Southwest... sort of Moab, Vegas, Grand Canyon, Yosemite kind if trip... but timing is an issue.

    My vacation time will be best used in Summer with mom's health in mind but the desert will be roasting then. Any thoughts on this? Maybe do 'all California ' instead? Vancouver, n Idaho, Glacier, Calgary?

    Too ambitious?

    Trouble is... I'man avid long distance offroad motorcyclist so I'm used to inconvenience for a few weeks... may not work for them.

    Open to your thoughts! !!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Spend Your Time Wisely

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    My wife and I, our daughter, and our two grandsons often travel as a three generational family group. What we have found to work best for us is to find an area that we would all like to explore and then settle down in a house in the center of that area and take day trips in various directions. Nothing too strenuous and we're always back in the same 'home' and beds each evening. It makes for a very low stress vacation, one where we concentrating on each other's company and exploring our surroundings at a relaxed and maintainable pace. You can do the same thing with an RV and a Toad, particularly if you find a great state park to use as a home base.

    If you already own an RV, then your choices are mainly limited by where you can get it to in a reasonable amount of time and that your mom can also get to. I suspect that this is not the case, given that you live in South Korea. In that case, I am going to recommend that you not think in terms of an RV, but in terms of a home where you can all settle in. This will be much easier on your mom, and on the two of you trying to handle a two-year-old. As is said often here, RVs are not a good choice for the budget conscious, nor are they a particularly good choice as a rental item for people seeking a low stress vacation, particularly if you don't have a lot of experience driving and maintaining one.

    If you choose to go the home rental route, there are a number of outfits that serve as resources to link renter and owner. Among these are VRBO, HomeAway, and RedWeek, all of which tend to book places by the week; and AirBnB which has more homes available for a few days at a time.

    I also wouldn't make your mom travel too far if she's not really up to it. It's better that she save her energy to dote on her grandchild. To that end, might I suggest several areas closer to her home such as the middle Appalachians, the Great Lakes, New England, or the Outer Banks of her home state. All of those have many attractions and scenic venues in relatively compact areas and would require far less travel on your mom's part to get to, and on everyone's part once your there. I can pretty much guarantee that "inconvenience for a few weeks" will not make this a pleasant trip for anyone, not your wife, not your daughter, and not your mom.

    Anyway, that's my take on your dilemma.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Another take on the trip.

    Reading your post I assumed that you would fly into NC, and then travel to wherever, with your Mum. I take it you still have access to a vehicle there.

    But I agree with Buck that renting a home for the time of your vacation would make it much more comfortable for all, especially your mother. I am not sure I would be taking a senior citizen who is suffering from cancer (been there on both counts) on a trip which involves distance driving each day. With that in mind, and if you are still set on showing all the beautiful country out west, you could fly from NC and rent a vehicle at your destination. The heat should not be a huge problem if the home and car are airconditioned.

    The other benefit of a home would be when your mother needs a day's rest, you can still have a day out leaving her in the comfort of a real house. In an RV all would have to be sitting up in seat belts while the vehicle is moving. Just sitting in a moving vehicle can be very exhausting.


  4. Default

    OK, I'll add more info to assuage some concerns. :)

    Mom's health isn't dire...yet. But she's visibly and physically weaker than she used to be for sure, and we (and ESPECIALLY she) would rather not emphasize that by going home once again and sitting in her house. She hates that as much as anyone. She's always liked to travel since she obtained the means to do so. Since she's flown out to Korea a few times (and formerly Dubai where we used to live), and since we've already done the Outer Banks, BRP, DC, NYC, and Orlando as fly/hotels and we're ALL a bit bored of it, we thought about the RV this time. Yes, the idea would be to fly to LV or a similar area and once we've spent a few days there, rent an RV and go see the desert... or something. Again, no good plan on this yet.

    The thought of being in a park and her taking a nap whenever she wanted appealed to her quite a bit.

    One thing I did not realize is you have to be upright in a seat in an RV if it's moving. Even in the back?

    Oh! Also, not that anyone likes "wasting" money, but we understand this is not the most economical vacation idea. :)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Would you risk it.

    Quote Originally Posted by sr1 View Post
    One thing I did not realize is you have to be upright in a seat in an RV if it's moving. Even in the back?
    Yes, it is the law in every State. But even if it weren't, would you risk the life of one of your loved ones? I know you know you are a good driver, but you have to allow for all the other drivers on the road.


  6. Default

    Fair comment. Worthy of consideration for driving.

    Can the AC on one of these RVs keep up with the heat of the desert in the Summer? Or is it better to go in another season?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    AC in an RV: we had a 27 ft with a big A/C unit. It kept us cool, even when staying in Phoenix in the middle of the summer. I was less enamored with the furnace in ours, which wasn't nearly as efficient as the A/C. The vast majority of RV's have Coleman A/C units, and they do make a good one. In the 14 years that we had our rig, it only had to be serviced once for a problem. Longer rigs, btw, usually have two A/C units. That said, they also have a 50-amp cord. Also, common sense tells you, if you're on a generator, you're probably not running an A/C unit. :-)


  8. #8


    I would either fly into Vegas or Salt Lake City and rent the rv there. If you leave from SLC you could drive to Moab in a short amount of timeline because it is only like 250 miles. Moab to the Grand Canyon is like another 300 miles Grand Canyon to the Hoover Dam is like 250 and from the dam to Vegas it is like 35 miles. I would see if you could drop the RV off in Vegas or take it back to SLC.

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