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Wife said I have to ask (miles per year)


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Laura and I are talking about what our patterns and travels might look like over the next few years. As part of a discussion about whether or not it made sense to fly or to pull the rig across the continent for a relatively short stay (two months or less) to visit grandkids twice a year, she wanted to know how many miles the average full-timers tow their trailer or drive their motorhome each year. I told her that asking that question probably wasn't going to yield much useable information because there are so many ways people full-time: travel/change locations regularly, move regularly for work (if still working), snowbird, settle into an SKP co-op park (or similar) with occasional forays (or not), do volunteer gigs where they stay a month or longer in several places, etc. So, with all that said, consider the question asked, please. How many miles per year do you average?

Rob (please don't shoot the messenger)

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This year we will do approximatly 6500 miles. We went from Tallahassee to the Keys then to Tennessee to pick up our new rig then to Texas and to Massachusetts to visit grandkids for the summer then will go to our home in Florida for a month then head to Texas again for a month before we head to Arizona. 

 

That is what we do about every year.

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We always drove to see the family although there were times when they flew to us and together, we toured a specific area or park.  They were in Michigan, Ohio, Texas and Arizona and we were all over the place.  

We refuse to fly anymore.

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We do loops from Florida out west, the last two ran up about 10,000 miles and 8500 mile respectively. About 1/4 to 1/3 of that is trips out from campgrounds not cg to cg. We intended to slow down this time but we are on our way out right now, north Florida to Rock Springs then by mid september to the Oregon coast to catch crabs and clams.

Want to do the Aspen color change, probably in Colorado. If it has cooled down we will probably cut thru Nevada on the way.

Then working our way back for the holidays in N.Florida. So I'm sure that will be over 10K. Not so good with fuel prices climbing over $1.25/gal since the end of last year.

Edited by agesilaus
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Since 1997 we have been doing between 12000 and 18000 miles until last year when it was only MD to FL and back and so far this year the same. Prior to 1997 it was hit and miss and with the heavy work schedule then sometimes only a few miles.

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In our 11+ years of fulltime RV life we ranged from a low year of 3,800 miles to a high year of just over 9,000 miles. Our average was just over 7,000 miles per year. As an interesting side note, before we were retired we used to travel between 4,000 & 6,000 miles in a typical year with 3 weeks of vacation and lots of weekend trips. Eventually it occured to me that when we live in a fixed location every trip is twice as long because you go to the site and return, while a fulltimer goes to a location, and then just moves on to the next location without the return travel. Since returning to part-time travel we are varying from about 2,500 miles to a high of nearly 5,000 miles. But last year we never moved the RV from storage. This year it is looking like about 4,000 to 4,500 miles. 

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When I was full timing, the average was 30K miles a year.  Now I only take part time trips of about 4 months duration.  The trip always involves driving from the East coast to the Western States and is typically about 15K miles.  A lot of my driving is done in spurts.  I am old, tired and lazy, but I can still drive through the Midwest at 600 miles a day.  It is easy with a truck camper.  I typically drive about 2 hours in the morning, make a pit stop and drive another couple of hours.  Then I stop for at least an hour.  I jump in the camper, fix a hot meal and take a nap for up to an hour.  I drive 4 more hours and repeat.  Then I drive 4 more hours before landing at a Walmart or rest stop for the evening.

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We've only been full time for three years.  Winters are spent in Florida.  The first year we left there in May traveled about 5000 miles up through GA, TN, KY, IN, MI, WI (ferry across Lake Michigan), OH, NY and PA then back down the coast to FL for a total of about 5,000 miles.  Last year was just up to Maine for the summer and then back to FL, about 3,500 miles.  This year we looped further west and are going up the Mississippi Valley, across the norther tier and them back down to FL visiting Outer Banks and Charleston in particular.  That will be about 6600 miles.  Next year is still evolving but looks to be a loop further west.  The length will depend upon where we decide to winter but will probably start earlier and be closer to 7,500 - 8,000 miles.

Travel patterns are about 300 miles per travel day followed by a week or more of non-travel.  Currently in NW Wisconsin and turning east Sunday.  We arrive in Maine for two months beginning 8/1.

Wayne & Jinx
2017 F-350 diesel, dually
2006 Carriage Carri-Lite 36KSQ

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16 minutes ago, Jinx & Wayne said:

Travel patterns are about 300 miles per travel day followed by a week or more of non-travel. 

I think that most of us tend to slow our rate of travel as we are on the road for more years. When you look at total distance covered each year, that is usually influenced by the chosen lifestyle. If you stop for no more than a week at any point you will certainly accumulate far more miles per year than those who sit for a month or longer. We initially got into the RV volunteer lifestyle to conserve money and travel few miles because of our limited budget. When we began to receive social security, we had planned to stop the volunteer lifestyle but after 6 months we discovered that we missed the involvement so we returned to that life and have continued some of that even after returning to part time RVing. Our typical year was to plan either several 1 month volunteer or 1, 3 month position each summer in the north and 1 or 2 similar stops in the south each winter. Depending on the distance between positions we would spend anywhere from 2 to 6 weeks traveling with most travel days limited to 200 miles or less. Our shortest travel day was 34 miles, when we discovered something we had missed in the area and stopped for 2 more nights. We only traveled the interstate highways if passing through an area that we had been through traveling all of the US routes and we often spent time in small town America. We also seldom returned to the same volunteer position a second time as there are so many wonderful places to experience that we will never live long enough to visit them all. In 11+ years of fulltime, there were only 5 places that we stayed more than 1 time. That lifestyle clearly did play a significant part on the low travel mileages per year for the motorhome, but because we did our best to see everything in the places we stopped, we put an additional 250k+ miles on the vehicles that we towed.

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I have been full time 7 years now and usually volunteer in a National Park for several months in the summer so my drives are to and from my winter stop to my summer stop. I usually stay in AZ or FL for several months for the winter stopping to visit my grandkids in the  Midwest on the way to my summer stop. I average about 7,000 miles a year 

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Not full time but normally put 5-7,000 miles annually, except last year 1300 miles. This year the plan is 4,000 mile if the doctor's release us. Camping in 7-9 states, mostly between Texas and MN & WI. If my wife didn't have a home in Illinois, we would be making a bigger figure 8 and most likely hit closer to 9 - 10,000 miles per year.

I did drive 10 hours one day to get ahead of a ice storm once but then rested. Normally 7-8 hour and nothing after dark.

Sure beats Planes, Rental cars and Motels

Clay

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Not full time but you asked a question but you also used a situation.  I know my answer regardless of full time or not. 

 

Less than 2 weeks, fly, visit, return to "normal" life.  Over 2 weeks, take my home, be comfortable and have some adventures on the road.  

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I drive anywhere from 10,000 to 18,000 miles per year, but that does not count a quick flight to visit grandkids the week after Christmas.  They live in a snowy climate, so I would not want to drive my motorhome there anyway. 

Total miles over last 9 years is 158,000. 

Edited by Solo18
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On 6/22/2021 at 6:46 PM, Second Chance said:

So, with all that said, consider the question asked, please. How many miles per year do you average?

One question, about your question...    😊

Since you have a truck and fifth wheel, were you thinking of miles driven towing your RV or total miles driven? For some that includes every mile driven, even to the grocery store, while others tow a second vehicle and so the miles driven given are only those traveling between locations. That was the reason for my second post. Our motorhome typically accrued about 7,000 miles (or less) each year while the towed vehicle would accrue another 20,000 miles or so. 

Had we been living in a towable without a second vehicle our annual average would have been approximately 27,000 miles per year. 

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1 hour ago, Kirk W said:

One question, about your question...    😊

Since you have a truck and fifth wheel, were you thinking of miles driven towing your RV or total miles driven? For some that includes every mile driven, even to the grocery store, while others tow a second vehicle and so the miles driven given are only those traveling between locations. That was the reason for my second post. Our motorhome typically accrued about 7,000 miles (or less) each year while the towed vehicle would accrue another 20,000 miles or so. 

Had we been living in a towable without a second vehicle our annual average would have been approximately 27,000 miles per year. 

Good question, Kirk - and I should have clarified. We have a chase car that Laura drives behind on RV travel/moving days, so I'm just thinking of the actual miles on the truck/RV. The truck is a dedicated tow vehicle except for the occasional utilitarian run. The car gets quite a few more miles put on it sightseeing, shopping, and - this past year - running back and forth between Aberdeen, MD, and Richmond, VA, helping with my 90-year-old mother-in-law who just passed away. The fact that she's gone now and the pandemic situation is changing is why we can get back on the road.

Rob

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