It's happened to anyone who's spent much time travelling by RV. You set your first-day sights on a distant stopping point, then realize how much there is to see along the way. A festival here, a roadside diner there, and the day is gone, long before you reach your destination. With no campground reservation in hand, what's a savvy motorhome camper to do?
Check out Walmart! Yes, you read that right - Walmart is not only the place for camping essentials, it's also the best-kept "secret" in free overnight camping. Many Walmart locations across the country allow motorhome campers to stop overnight (free!) in their parking lots.
Here at El Monte RV, we want to be your full-service vacation resource and not simply your RV rental dealer, so we like to share helpful tips like this whenever we can. We listen and learn from our clients' experiences, and share the best of their tips, just like this one about free “Walmart camping”.
So, you've started with a great RV rental from El Monte RV, and decided to take advantage of this budget-stretching concept. How to find the Walmart locations along your route? Here are two helpful links to make things easy:
- Walmart Stores That Provide Overnight RV Camping - There are plenty of Walmart stores that DO allow overnight RV parking, and you can find a state-by-state directory of those locations here. Because you are all great "citizens of the road", we know you'll follow camping etiquette, no matter where you stop. Here are some things to remember, however, when you're pulling into a Walmart "campsite":
- This is "dry camping", so there won't be electricity, water or dump stations available while you're there. You'll need to find a dump station elsewhere (you may want to check out rvdumps.com for this), as well as filling water tanks and using your own generator. Seems obvious, but it's always worth mentioning.
- Park only in the spaces designated for RV parking. You should always double-check with the store ahead of time, so you aren't rudely awakened by a security guard!
- To benefit RVer's world-wide, always leave your campsite clean, whether in a Walmart parking lot or at an exclusive resort. Blowing trash from motorhome campers could shut down this generous benefit from Walmart.
- Walmart Stores That Do Not Provide Overnight Camping - Not all Walmart locations allow overnight RV parking. You can use this link to find stores that don't offer this service. Please keep our public image shiny by respecting the policies of these stores.
DISCLAIMER/WARNING: While free overnight stays at Walmart may be something that may seem attractive, always check with the store to see if they allow camping. In addition, in some cities/states, it is illegal. El Monte RV cares about your safety, so consider the area in which the Walmart is located when deciding to stay there. Some stores may be in areas that may be unsafe.
Other Sources of Information on Free RV Camping
- Casinos - Some casinos allow free overnight parking for motorhomes. A good resource to locate them is Casino Camper.
- Truck Stops - Many truck stops will let you stay overnight for free. To locate these see Truck Stop Locations.
- overnightrvparking.com - Another resource for free overnight parking is overnightrvparking.com. They also offer a mobile app for your convenience.
- boondockerswelcome.com - Free overnight parking on private property.
- Harvest Hosts - Free overnight camping at wineries, farms, and agri-tourism sites.
Happy FREE camping!