Snobbery Among Full-Time RVers – Full-Time RV Life

I’ve noticed a disturbing trend lately among the RV community on Facebook.  I don’t necessarily see it as much in the RV parks and resorts we’ve visited in person, but on line it’s another story.   We’re members of several social media groups made of up all types of RVers–newbies, experienced, full-time, weekenders, women only, etc., and the problems below seem to be prevalent in almost all of them.

For the most part, people are congenial and willing to help when someone poses a question.  I did say, “For the most part,” because when a newbie asks a question about a sewer hose, all bets are off.  Mean and nasty people cannot let the questions go without a sarcastic comment that implies the novice RVer does not have a brain.  Those commenters are rude, unwelcoming, and immature, and there are lots of them out there.  They obviously forget what it was like to be new to the business end of a sewer hose.  Maybe they were born knowing it all–except how to be an adult and ignore the question if they don’t want to answer it from practical standpoint.  Other hot topics that bring out the ugly are questions about guns, politics, dog poop, toilet paper, vegetarians, and golf carts.

The comments getting under my skin lately are the ones criticizing what rigs others have chosen to call home as they full-time RV.  There are actually Class A, B, and C haters.  Some of the comments I’ve seen are:  “Loud diesel pushers; Spoiled old people; Can’t get that behemoth in most parks.”

Fifth wheels get their fair share of criticism, too:  “They’re playing ‘whose is bigger’;  They take up too much space; You have to buy a semi cab to drive the darned thing.”

Travel trailers aren’t exempt: “The tiny little thing is just adorable; A wind would blow it off the road; Five kids sleep in there?”

There is the same nastiness with vans:  “Freeloaders; They gotta poop in a bucket.”

I won’t even start with Airstreams.

There are put-downs for school buses converted into RVs.   Little rig owners complain about big rig owners and the large carbon footprint.  There are snobby comments from big rigs looking down at the little rigs with their solar panel exteriors and composting toilets.

If someone has a larger rig, it’s obviously because they’ve made wise financial decisions over the years.  If not–it’s their debt and their monthly payment–and it’s none of my business.

As for the smaller rigs, it’s obviously because they’ve made a smart financial decision to invest in an affordable RV that can be accommodated almost anywhere.

Those busses with the beautiful makeovers?  They’ve obviously made a wise financial decision because they have an outlet for their creativity and mechanical engineering.

Who cares if a van dweller poops in a bucket?  They’ve obviously made a smart financial decision with their low profile allowing free parking virtually anywhere.

And the Airstreams?  Well.  I just won’t go there.

Does it really affect day-to-day life if a 20-foot travel tailer is parked next to the 45-foot Prevost tag axel?  What about the pop-up that’s in the camping site on the other side?  Does it make a difference if the bus three sites down is painted in tie dye colors with a big peace sign on back?  Unless there’s a strong contact high wafting in through the air conditioning system, I don’t think there’s a valid reason to complain.

It’s a stark reminder that we still hold values of a financial pecking order by what type of RV sits on the rolling wheels.  It’s also sadly reminiscent of a homeowner’s association with the complaints of what rig is sitting next to us in a campground site.  After all, everyone pays the same fee.

Why is there prejudice among this community?  Didn’t we leave the societal norm to redefine freedom that isn’t tied to material possessions?  Isn’t this just a symptom of societal snobbery bleeding over into our nomadic pursuits?

We have to stop berating one another for the mode of travel we choose or what questions we have.  It’s a lifestyle we can all enjoy in our own unique style, based on our personal family needs, and in a way that makes our travel dreams a reality.

Let’s spend less time on the snobbery and more time around the campfire bonding over our mutual wanderlust and sense of adventure.

About those Airstreams, though…


(It’s all tongue-in-cheek, so go easy on me!)

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  1. This actually made me laugh so hard because I see those same posts. I’m currently in a park with over 200 RVs of all shapes and sizes. Not one person has waved at us when we go in or out. It’s now my new mission to act the fool smiling and waving until someone waves back!

    1. As we walk through our park, I wave at everybody. Most wave back (we are all members of the same RV club so maybe they feel a duty). But if they don’t, I get very animated and wave much more vigorously. I think they then sometimes get embarrassed and wave back, (or maybe they’re just afraid I might walk over closer to them!)

      1. We’ve been to some where people were not overly friendly, but they weren’t necessarily UNfriendly, either–just not sociable. I try to wave at everyone, even when we’re passing someone on the road. I’m waving to you, Herb and Kathy!

    1. The RVing community is absolutely wonderful. There are just some nasties that get brave behind a keyboard and don’t think about what they are saying or how they are coming across. We ran across someone nasty only once in person, but others get sarcastic on line. It’s like any social community, though–there are bad and good. I was hoping some humor would come across while making a point.
      Hope you’re doing well!

  2. Fortunately, I haven’t seen (or heard) any of that in any park we’ve been in, BUT online is a different story. Social networking and the keyboard allows people to say things they WOULD NEVER say in person. We just need to blow it off and keep on scrolling down the page.

    1. On line is horrible. I especially feel bad for the new RVers who are trying to gather information on the basics, people are just so mean. We only ran into someone mean in person once, and it was just her personality. Overall, I love RV community. I’ve just tried to refrain from reading some of the comments on the FB posts. Much more peaceful that way. 🙂 Safe travels to you two!

  3. I remember when we posted that we were renting our first RV with pens on someday going full time. I was told by somebody who “always boondocks and never pays for a campsite” that we didn’t know what we were doing and not to waste our time. Needless to say we didn’t pay any attention to him 🙂

    1. I’m glad you didn’t pay attention to him. Some of those on-line people think they know what’s best for everyone and they don’t have a clue. 🙂 I’m just so thankful that I’ve not run into any serious meanies on the road. Safe travels!

  4. My hubby and I would LOVE to have an rv. We go tent glamping…I call it glamping even though we don’t do the christmas lights and gauzy curtains everywhere. We take a couple of cots, throw a mattress on top and use sheets and comforters. I also have a shower/toilet tent we set up. I need the thing as I can not walk to the community showers buildings no matter how close we park. We always stay on the RV side of any park. There is electricity and water at those sites and I need those utilities. We’ve met people from all over the nation/canada and central america while camping. The only time we ever met a stinker of an rv’er was the last time we camped. This guy had a forty foot silver monster of an rv, and was pulling his caddy on a trailer behind it. He fussed at everyone for making his life difficult as we had all the “good sites” and he was stuck with a non-pull-through. There was a young couple with babies in a popup next to us and a pretty egg shaped camper next to them. Everyone was wonderful except the dude with manhood issues.

    1. I’ve run into that in the places we’ve stayed–doesn’t matter what everyone came in, when it was campfire time we were all friends! There are so many amazing people out there! Thanks for sharing your experience!

  5. You forgot the boondocking versus RV campgrounds debate. I agree with you though, I’ve only seen this online not in real life. I’ve left most of the RV FB groups I initially joined, and my life had been much better for it. 😄

  6. I wonder what your experience with those Airstreams 😉. We are fortunate to manage to stay clear of negativity of online world. I guess mostly because we don’t use FB.

    1. I think you have the right approach with not using Facebook! I’d probably be better off spending that wasted time interacting with the people around me! 🙂 About those Airstreams… Take care and safe travels!

  7. Geeze, I welcome anyone that is willing and wanting to talk about anything RV or the lifestyle. Hard to imagine there are folks out there who don’t, even to the point of missing an opportunity to make a new friend. But then again, our experience on a longer trip in 2016 was marked with a little of what you write about, but not to any bad point. In some parks folks seemed to just hang out in their RV. Others, especially with families and parked for longer terms seemed to be out more and willing to just talk and compare notes.

    And some folks just must feel they need to live miserably and up-tight all the time. I’m working on giving them a break because who knows how their day is going. But a jerk is a jerk and they need to stay around other jerks and away from those that are not.

    Now sarcasm is another story. Amongst friends if might be fun and funny. But with a stranger, they are just having fun at someone else’s expense. Here is something I learned after much observation: You can sometimes judge the attitude of a person by how they park their car. Watch them when you see them inside the store. They get upset a lot and can be rude.

    1. I love the people we have met in our journeys and we actually maintain contact with them, usually through Facebook or the blog, as we all travel to different places. In the campgrounds, if we can help our neighbors, we certainly try (Mike more than me as he has more practical RV knowledge than I do). If someone asks a question on line and I think I have the resources to help them, I try my best. Sometimes someone very new will ask one of the basic questions (that beginning spot where we all started), and they get blasted by mean people. I just don’t get why they have to be so ugly. I’m just thankful that in the “real world,” RVers are generally very helpful and friendly (if not overly social). I’m going to have to make a note of observing how people park their cars. It will give me a new avenue of people watching. 🙂

      1. Started my own blog just to get feedback and have a place to park notes. No idea where I would be today without that feedback. And can’t even guess at the number of people willing to take phone calls, respond to emails and more just to answer the basic questions. I always felt they did it because they enjoyed the topic and I’m sure to pay it forward.

  8. Great post! I’ve seen the same stuff on the Facebook groups, but it really is the rarity. When you think about how many people are members of those groups, only a small percentage actually take part in any given conversation, and an even smaller percentage of them are jerks. But, those jerks are usually more memorable than the nice, helpful, non-judgmental people. I think it’s just important to remember most people are decent, and those that feel the need to put others down are usually pretty insecure themselves.

    I am curious though about people getting mad about vegetarians, toilet paper, and golf carts! These seem like incredibly awesome topics to argue about!!!!

    1. I know, right!? LOL People don’t get MAD about vegetarians, they just make snide comments. Mainly someone asking about what to bring to a potluck where the majority attending were vegans, which garnered you’re-so-dumb comments. The toilet paper issue is a non-stop debate–what brand, type, and black tank debacles as a result. The golf cart issue seems to have the prejudgment of laziness. Sometimes I think it’s entertaining to see people get all spun up, but I also feel sorry for the people asking genuine questions and getting smart-butt answers.

      It’s all good, though, because I love the RV community and have met some beautiful people in our travels (and on line) and I’m holding out hope the meanies will come around. I love the good and the bad, because this is my tribe! 🙂

  9. It appears things have changed since we have been full timers. I found most people charming….like I said most.

    1. We’ve found that, too, in the people we have met and been in contact with. The nasty ones seem to be the people hiding behind their keyboard taking potshots at anyone they can. Thankfully, they are few and far between. We’ve made so many wonderful friends!

  10. I totally agree about the snobbery online. I WAS a part of a FB group, everyone was fine until I mentioned we were workampers. We were very fortunate, my parents gave us their diesel pusher, but we still have to make a living. Yet, the people we actually meet in the campground are, as you said, almost always genuinely nice people. We try to be. It’s just how we roll, lol.

    1. I just don’t understand how they can be so mean sometimes. I’m just glad we haven’t run into that in the places we’ve been (only 1 so far). We’ve met so many wonderful people. We roll pretty friendly, too–no reason to do otherwise. 🙂

  11. I enjoyed your post. I think a lot of people pre-judge before actually meeting their fellow campers. The online issue is a whole other situation… why people think they can make snide remarks online is beyond my comprehension. BTW I travel in an Airstream 😊

    1. I secretly adore Airstreams, but do not travel in one. 🙂 They are made just a couple miles from where I grew up. Airstream has a strong community and I couldn’t think of anything negative say about them. LOL Thanks for reading and commenting! I appreciate you stopping by! Dawn

  12. Hahaha some people just aren’t happy unless they’ve got something to complain about. It just bounces off, I’ve been on the internet too long to pay it any mind. And I’ve always felt an affinity with Airstreams, my Lazy Daze is clad in aluminum too 🙂

  13. Funny; I had been contemplating a post like this myself.

    The RVing world seems to be divided primarily (especially evident online) into the “young, carefree, #vanlife” segment that is very proud of how little they spend on campgrounds (but will spend $5/day on Starbucks); the “retirees on a permanent vacation,” who love to dress up and go out for fine dining every evening; and the “working poor” — the rest of us, all ages, who hunt for bargains and must have good cell/WiFi for work.

    Of course I’m being facetious, but the point is that people seem to look more for what divides us rather than brings us together. We continue to self-segment into “tribes” based on lifestyle, which is really not a good indicator of shared values. And in the online groups I’m a part of, there still seems to be a deliberate “looking over the fence, comparing mine to yours” attitude. Sigh. Maybe I just need to revise my IG follow list….

    1. I agree with you. Just seeing some of the snide and condescending comments on the on-line threads make me sad. As a subgroup of society living our lives differently, you’d think we’d be more accepting and supportive of each other, but it’s still dog-eat-dog. I’m just happy the people we meet in person in the places we travel are not like some of the on-line bullies.

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