Safety Tips For Your Next RV Trip

Tiffin MotorhomesTiffin Tips
Placeholder ImageDustin and Sarah

Going on an RV trip can be a lot of fun. But any time you travel, regardless of how you travel, there are always some safety considerations to keep in mind. This list includes some of our personal safety tips and suggestions for fellow RVers. And while no list can anticipate every potential problem, having well-considered, backup strategies can keep you prepared and help you spot little issues before they become big concerns.

1. Backup Driver

Injuries or medical issues can happen on the road, and with that comes the risk that the “main driver” will be incapable of driving to get help. So, our number one safety recommendation for all RVers is to have a backup driver. All licensed drivers should know the basics of driving the RV, including backing up, turning and parking. If you are the “main driver” and you don’t feel comfortable teaching someone else, seek out a professional to help. There are numerous RV driving courses online, and some dealerships even offer safety classes and seminars. Having a backup driver is especially important if you plan to do a lot of remote boondocking in your RV and no other RVers or campers will be around to help. Additionally, having another driver can break-up long travel days so one person doesn’t have to drive the entire time.

2. Order of Operations

Our second safety recommendation is to have a set-up and tear-down order of operations. Having an established order in place can help expedite the process in case of an emergency. Additionally, it can help build self-confidence and prevent you from leaving anything behind or missing an important step. Make sure your order of operations has detailed notes for any safety-specific issues, such as circuit breakers and landing gears. We recommend writing out your order of operations and keeping it in an easily-accessible place inside your RV where anyone can access it.

Dustin and Sarah's Order of Operations Checklist

"This is an example of what we like to use before packing up and moving our RV. We recommend making something so that hitting the road is a safe and smooth process."

Here is a checklist that helps us with remembering our order of operations.

3. GPS Tracking

Our third recommendation is to have some sort of GPS tracking, either through your RV, cell phone or a separate device. Having GPS not only saves you from becoming lost in the wilderness or an unfamiliar city, but it can also allow first responders and emergency personnel to find you. We utilize the dashboard GPS system inside our Tiffin for driving, but we also have a personal inReach GPS tracking device that we take with us when we leave the RV. This device works even if there is no service and has a 24/7 SOS feature that will notify nearby search and rescue monitors. If you don’t want to purchase a separate tracking device, another option is to download a location sharing app on your phone or drop a pin at each new location so friends and family always know where you are.

4. Fully-Stocked Emergency Kit

This might feel like a no-brainer but it’s very important to include—you should always have a fully-stocked emergency kit inside your RV. This kit should have a wide range of emergency supplies, including first-aid, a fire extinguisher, jumper cables, flares, and some basic tools. It’s better to have more items in your emergency kit than less, so try to pack whatever you think you might need. We also recommend having a smaller emergency kit that you can take with you on a hike or adventure. If you adventure with any pets, make sure they have a kit as well, including some food, water, an extra leash, tweezers, and basic medicine. Regularly check all of the items in your emergency kit to make sure they haven’t expired and still work properly.


5. Emergency Contacts

Keep a list of emergency contacts inside your RV or tow vehicle. It should include phone numbers for close family or friends, roadside assistance, the police, the fire department, doctors, and poison control. If you have any pets, it’s also a good idea to include their veterinarian.

6. Personal Safety

Keeping yourself and your travel companions safe is a top priority for any type of traveler, and we have a few recommendations to help. First, research your destination and the surrounding area prior to visiting so you can avoid any unsafe or high-crime places. Second, be cautious about who you share your location information with, including posting on social media. Not only does this let strangers know where you are but it also lets people know that your sticks-and-bricks home might be empty. Third, always be aware of your surroundings. Try not to walk around late at night or stare at your phone. If something doesn’t feel right, trust your gut and remove yourself from the situation as safely and quickly as possible. Fourth, always lock your RV and tow vehicle, and keep any valuables out of plain sight. And lastly, if you’re camping somewhere with a lot of wildlife, keep pepper spray or bear spray with you at all times.


Any time you travel, unexpected things happen. But having a plan and a course of action to tackle difficult situations can give you peace of mind and allow you to enjoy the trip more deeply. We hope these tips help you feel better prepared and more confident for your next RV trip.