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Those who abuse the system

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There's a Wal-Mart, Home Depot, and several other large businesses with a series of large parking lots near where I live.  Recently someone in a rusty,dirty old motorhome has been staying there frequently and putting out the bedroom slide.  Whoever is in it moves it daily, sometimes twice a day.  It has been there now for the past week and I've seen it previously for similar periods of time.  There are signs saying unauthorized vehicles will be towed but nothing about no overnight parking.  This kind of activity is the kind of thing that gets us all kicked out for overnight parking.  I thought about putting a note on his door but thought better of it.

 

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There was a saying in the auto factories that 5% of the workers caused 95% of the problems. If the 5% would just go away, then 3/4 of the rules would not be needed.

Greg

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Sorry, I don't see the distinction.  The fact that they're in a "rusty, dirty old motorhome" makes it abuse?  So, if they were in a nice shiny new Prevost it wouldn't be abuse? 

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Yes, it would still be abuse. The difference, I guess, is that the Prevost looks expensive while the "rusty, dirty old motorhome" doesn't. If it doesn't look expensive, then the owners must not have much money. Years ago, Sam Walton used to drive his rusty, dirty old pickup to his stores, dressed in his old clothes, and see how he was treated. No camera crew followed him around like "Undercover Boss" does, but it was still the boss undercover. He learned a LOT about how his employees treated customers.

It is hard to not judge based on appearance, but someone who is obviously living in that parking lot, moving only enough to avoid consequences, is certainly abusing the hospitality of the businesses that are paying for that parking lot.

I can't say much about putting out slides, though, as sometimes that is the only way to access certain parts of the coach. Motorhomes are generally better in this regard, but even then putting out the bedroom slide might be the only way to access the bed or the closet.

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If they leave the area clean with no sewage spills, or other fluids on the ground then no harm no foul.  If the store managers complain then the police will respond and you won't see them again.

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7 minutes ago, kb0zke said:

 

It is hard to not judge based on appearance, but someone who is obviously living in that parking lot, moving only enough to avoid consequences, is certainly abusing the hospitality of the businesses that are paying for that parking lot.

 

Okay, gotcha.  If I am crossing the country and stay in a different Walmart each night for 10 straight nights, that's good.  But, if I stay in one city and move around during the day but stay in the same Walmart for 10 straight nights, that's abuse.

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I admit it would've been best if I hadn't described the motorhome as I did, but I notice now that it seems to be accompanied by a relatively new and sharp-looking suv which is parked beside it.  Regardless of appearances, there is a well-established protocol for overnightIng in parking lots.  Don't put out slides or awnings and leave after one night.  Ignoring those rules is what could get every rig kicked out of that complex.  I've never liked bedroom slides in motorhomes, but most that I've seen can be lived with, even with the slide in.

I fulltimed for six years, using RV parks of course for lengthy stays, but on the road I never used an RV park for overnight, and in that time was never run off from an overnight spot. 

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You know if Home Depot, or the owner of the property doesn't care and if the law doesn't see fit to send them down the road, just drive on by and don't worry about it. I remember when we lived in Penna., there was a motorhome with an enclosed trailer behind it, sat at a Wal-Mart in a nearby town for about a month and of course several citizens wondered why Wally didn't send the rig down the road. Well it turns out it was a Wal-Mart vendor setting up new kiosks etc.   

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Where I live there is a Home Depot and a Walmart in the same shopping center . They used to allow over night parking, now thanks to several people taking up permanent residence in their shopping center, they now have signs posted all over the lot not overnight parking. In the area between the Home Depot and the Wall Mart, they have put a beam across driveway that are 9ft 6in. high. it really makes it fun for the semi trucks to deliver to the grocery store, and the Way Mart and the Home Depot.

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10 hours ago, gjhunter01 said:

...5% of the workers caused 95% of the problems.

I tend to agree with Greg and believe that is true in about any segment of society. The one thing it seems many of us forget is that many of those RON restrictions (be it businesses or city statutes) are not only in place in response to greedy CG owners or irresponsible RVers. Certainly there are a few that contribute to the problem, but don't overlook the fact that there are an increasing number of involuntary homeless living out of their cars/trucks/vans.

Without the ability to be self contained (like we are) you can imagine some of the issues businesses might face when some "take up residence" in their parking lots and utilize their facilities. Not that all "invo-homeless" cause problems. Not at all. However, there are a significant number that may be dealing with substance abuse or psychological issues, businesses may be experiencing an increase in crime in their parking lots, trash, or patron harassment/panhandling.

Without RON restrictions there is really no "simple solution" for businesses and residents to have those elements removed from their parking lots or communities. Unfortunately, it impacts us as well, but let's not loose focus on the fact that there are other elements at play and not strictly some kind of prejudice against RVers.

There are still a great number of places that freely allow RON's and are extremely tolerant and accomodating.

Just to add a little humor and a case in point. There is a town I pass through a couple of times a year (abt. 160k population). For YEARS I have seen this old guy and his rig. He parking lot surfs year round but always within two blocks one direction or the other. Everyone knows who he is (crazy old coot), but he never causes any problems, doesn't litter, and doesn't ever bother any patrons. Granted, there is very little RON traffic in that area, but his rig would certainly be considered a beater and a bit offensive to most.. yet he remains. I've heard that every once in awhile the authorities make him remove all the signage off his rig, but it never fails to go back up.

Talk about RVer tolerance? Imagine being a business owner having THIS in your parking lot off and on throughout the year:

 

rvguy.jpg

Edited by Yarome

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Ya' know, there's a worn looking class C locally that plays "musical parking lots". Leaves no mess, does not panhandle with a sign at traffic lights, etc. Could be someone down on his luck, a wounded veteran, whatever.  "There but for the grace of God.........."

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6 minutes ago, ARGO said:

Ya' know, there's a worn looking class C locally that plays "musical parking lots". Leaves no mess, does not panhandle with a sign at traffic lights, etc. Could be someone down on his luck, a wounded veteran, whatever.  "There but for the grace of God.........."

Yeah, I fail to see the difference between someone who stays in a parking lot every night in different cities and someone who stays every night in the same city if the lot owner allows overnight parking.  Of course, if one of these people is violating the rules, that's different, but I saw nothing in the OP to indicate that they were.

It may make some people feel superior because they go from city to city doing it.  All it says to me is they have more money for fuel than others. :)

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I'm thinking it might be reasonable to suggest alternate locations that are more suitable if he's out in AZ or something.  But if he's in Los Angeles then obviously he's not going to find anyplace that he can legally stay for free.

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1 hour ago, ARGO said:

Ya' know, there's a worn looking class C locally that plays "musical parking lots". Leaves no mess, does not panhandle with a sign at traffic lights, etc. Could be someone down on his luck, a wounded veteran, whatever.  "There but for the grace of God.........."

I totally Agree! Unless we walk in another's boots, lets us not Condemn! So long as there is no messes and the store or land owners & police don't ban them, whom are we to say!

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The issue becomes one of visibility to the folks who live in the community as far as the impact on all RV owners. Most cities have some sort of regulations about where one can live even if they don't prohibit the spending a night in some parking-lot. I suspect that once the residents begin to recognize the same RV over a long term, there is much more likely to be objections made to local authorities. It is probably true that those objections come more quickly when the RV is unattractive, but I suspect that objections would come in time even if the person resided a new Prevost or New Horizons. 

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interesting comments. It does not make any difference what the Rv looks like or who you are there is abuse and we all have seen it. It is a very  small segment of Rv,ers that abuse but we all take the rap for it. Responsible Rv'ers know the rules for overnight parking and adhere to them. We would have no problem going cross country Walmart parking to  Walmart parking lot if we chose to.

My number one RV abuse has nothing to do with overnight parking but the inconsiderate RV'er who will fuel at say a FJ Rv pump the leave the Rv to go inside and  come out with a coffee and  food  regardless of the sign that says pull ahead when finished fueling. We have seen them do that at truck pumps once with a unpleasant reaction from the working truckers in line.

We have been at this Long time RV'ing for 11 years and found the vast majority of Rv'ers to be responsible. We are on a summer road trip to the N.E States and did yesterday at see a  TT at a F.J . kids, Lawn chairs out  awning  down one slide out having lunch and a travel break. They were parked next to a grassy strip not in the truck parking section with the slide and awning over the grassy strip out of the way and not in any way interfering with any thing. They did everything right but I am sure a non Rv'er would disapprove.

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We park at Walmarts when on the road and I usually park off to one side with the slide side overhanging onto grass or a curb and we always put out our sldes. I see no harm in that. Most people do the same and no one complains.

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17 hours ago, Jimalberta said:

We park at Walmarts when on the road and I usually park off to one side with the slide side overhanging onto grass or a curb and we always put out our sldes.

The reasoning behind the "no slides" was to be less noticeable but the position has been changed in recent years since it can be difficult to use the RV and not some slides. I don't think that the majority of residents in most communities are too concerned about that today, if we do as you suggest.

Quote

ESCAPEES CODE OF PARKING ETIQUETTE

1. Obtain permission from a qualified individual.

2. Park out of the way.

3. No awnings, chairs, or barbecue grill.

4. Avoid using slide-outs if at all possible.

5. Do not use your leveling jacks on asphalt.

6. Limit your stay - one night maximum!

7. Purchase gas, food, or supplies as a form of thank -you when feasible.

8. Always leave an area cleaner than you found it.

9. Practice safety precautions.

1

 

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On 7/19/2017 at 8:09 AM, chirakawa said:

Yeah, I fail to see the difference between someone who stays in a parking lot every night in different cities and someone who stays every night in the same city if the lot owner allows overnight parking.  Of course, if one of these people is violating the rules, that's different, but I saw nothing in the OP to indicate that they were.

It may make some people feel superior because they go from city to city doing it.  All it says to me is they have more money for fuel than others. :)

I'm not an elitist and I don't feel superior.  But I do think there is a distinction between a traveler and a squatter.  Businesses like WalMart apparently feel travelers are good customers and therefore it is a business decision to graciously allow us travelers the use of their facilities for an overnight stop.  By the same token I doubt it is a good business decision to allow someone to take up semi-permanent residence on their property.  It is a place of business, not a trailer park.

I heartily agree with the ESCAPEES CODE OF PARKING ETIQUETTE quoted above by Kirk.  If all RVers live by that, ALL RVers and not just travelers, these businesses will likely continue to offer us the use of their facilities.  If not, businesses and/or town fathers will get fed up with those few squatters and ruin it for the rest of us.

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36 minutes ago, Hot Rod said:

I'm not an elitist and I don't feel superior.  But I do think there is a distinction between a traveler and a squatter.  Businesses like WalMart apparently feel travelers are good customers and therefore it is a business decision to graciously allow us travelers the use of their facilities for an overnight stop.  By the same token I doubt it is a good business decision to allow someone to take up semi-permanent residence on their property.  It is a place of business, not a trailer park.

I heartily agree with the ESCAPEES CODE OF PARKING ETIQUETTE quoted above by Kirk.  If all RVers live by that, ALL RVers and not just travelers, these businesses will likely continue to offer us the use of their facilities.  If not, businesses and/or town fathers will get fed up with those few squatters and ruin it for the rest of us.

Great way to state it. I totally agree.

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8 hours ago, Hot Rod said:

Businesses like WalMart apparently feel travelers are good customers and therefore it is a business decision to graciously allow us travelers the use of their facilities for an overnight stop.  By the same token I doubt it is a good business decision to allow someone to take up semi-permanent residence on their property. 

When we do spend a night in a store parking lot, we also go inside and do at least some shopping but clearly, those who stay for many consecutive nights do not go inside and spend money each day. 

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Interesting topic and a broad spectrum of opinions.

As far as putting slides out....I have a Grand Design Momentum 376TH that has 5 slide outs.  It's possible to leave the opposing living room slides in however, you do not get in the refrigerator or access to the bedroom without putting the kitchen opposing slides out (they're both on one switch and operate at the same time).....can't even make a sandwich without putting the kitchen slides out.    And in the bedroom, you don't have access to the closets without putting the bedroom slide out.  Pros and cons to having five slides.

On the flip side.....a Walmart here in San Diego, not far from us....recently a newer (probably less than ten years old), maybe 35 feet long, was there for about nine days with slides out, awnings out, lawn chairs and b-b-q with portable generator sitting on the ground.  He moved some place for about a week (we assumed another local walmart) and then was back for about a week.  So this would be the same as the first post only with a later model 5th wheel and pick up.....and had some nice looking chairs and b-b-q and a nice Honda Generator.  Because he was set up under the only trees.....he was set up at the main driveway where it intersected the street out front......so every time we entered or left over that few weeks, we got a good look at the set up.  I-15 at Aero Drive.......major traffic area.

Edited by JCZ

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