The RV Podcast

The major RV News of the week is the acquisition of Roadtrek Motorhomes by Europe’s gigantic Erwin Hymer Group, the largest motorhome manufacturer in the world. I was on hand in Kitchener, Ontario and Roadtrek headquarters this week when the deal was announced and have in depth interviews with the principals.

Bottom line is that while Roadtrek is now owned by the newly formed Erwin Hammer Group of North America, it’s top management team is the same as its been and the company wll continue to aggressively buoid its award winning and best selling Class B motorhomes…. BUT it is now part of the newly formed Erwin Hymer Group of North America which will soon be introducing some amazingly innvatiive new products, like ultraw light weight towables and even larger Class C and Class A motorhomes.

You’ll get all the details, in depth, in the news of the week segment of the podcast.

But there's even more in this episode!

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Shownotes for episode 76 of Roadtreking: The RV Lifesyyle Podcast

JENNIFER'S TIP OF THE WEEK - Water filters for RVers

I’m a fanatic about clean water. Clean drinking water. Filtered drinking water. It amazes me how many RVs I see that hook up directly to campground water spigots without using a filter.

They say one filter lasts an entre season. We use the Camco TastePURE Water Filter. You can pick them up at most RV dealers, Walmart or Amazon for about $15. You do want a fresh one each year. These filters reduce bad taste, ordors, chlorine and sediment in drinking water. They have a carbon filter and come with a short flexible hose connection.

Here’s a hint, when you first hook it up r to your water source, allow the water to run free for a few minutes to flush the initial loose carbon out of the filter. When the water runs clear, the filter is ready for use.

But please… use a filter when you connect water to your RV.

And by the way, these filters aren’t restricted to RV use. Use it in the garden for reduced-chlorine watering when watering your plants and when washing your car to reduce mineral deposit spots.

LISTENER QUESTIONS

Anew RVer asks our recommendations about mail forwarding while on extended trips. We refer him to Episode 58, where we talk with people fromDakotaPost j, a mail forwarding company based in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, that works with the Family Motorcoach Association in handling mail forwarding and offering virtual mailboxes.

We talk about food storage and safety in bear country and also receive a listener tip about health care while on the RV and traveling when you're not feeling well.

RV NEWS OF THE WEEK: Roadtrek's new owners

This week we interview in depth:

Jim Hammill, President and CEO of Roadtrek and the newly formed Erwin Hymer Group North America, Inc., which will continue producing Roadtrek motorhomes and introduce some new Hymer models over the next three years

Martin Brandt, the CEO of the Erwin Hymer Group, who discusses the product line up, plans for Roadtrek and the drive for innovation and consumer-oriented RV products.

TRAVELING TECH NEWS OF THE WEEK - Group Messaging Apps

With just about everyone using a smartphone or tablet these days, there’s almost no excuse to not be in almost constant contact with just about anyone you know.

That’s where an ever-changing breed of group messaging apps come into play. Here are three of the best around.

Blend combines functionality with flash and simplicity. The app allows users to set up one or more groups of friends, family, co-workers or anyone else. Blend users can take part in video chats, send pictures, or have private chats with individual members of their group or groups. The app is free for iOS and Android users.

Tango works on smartphones and tablets, and specializes in video calling for group messaging. You can also send and receive texts, photos, and audio through Tango and for free. Tango even allows you to make free voice and video calls from just about anywhere in the world. Tango is free for iOS and Android with paid premium services available.

And, of course, there’s GroupMe. Considered by many to be the top group messaging app, GroupMe allows users to set up multiple texting groups, say, family, friends, or co-workers. In addition to text messaging, you can share photos, videos, or your location. And if you don’t want to be bothered by anyone, GroupMe has a setting to block messages from coming through. GroupMe is available foriOS, Android, and Windows devices with paid premium options also available.

This part of the podcast is sponsored by Verizon, the nations most reliable 4gLTE Network

There are a lot of claims being made by wireless companies about their networks. Some say they are powerful, other say they are fast – but when it comes down to actual network performance, independent studies point to one company time after time as providing a better wireless experience.

performance-by-stateVerizon Wireless customers once again have hard-and-fast data that indicates they’ve made the right choice. For the fifth consecutive testing period, Verizon Wireless was rated No. 1 in overall network performance in the United States by RootMetrics in its National RootScore® Report.

In addition to overall performance, Verizon’s network was ranked highest for the fifth consecutive testing period in reliability, data and call performance. Verizon also won network speed performance for the fourth consecutive time and shared a first place ranking in text performance.

So, just how handily did the Verizon Wireless network outscore the competition? Verizon outranks all competitors, ranking first or tied for first with the most wins or ties in all six state categories:

  • 46 states for Overall Performance (vs. 11 wins/ties for nearest competitors)
  • 47 states for Network Reliability (vs. 20 win/ties for nearest competitors)
  • 44 states for Data Performance (vs. 9 win/ties for nearest competitors)
  • 41 states for Network Speed (vs. 10 win/ties for nearest competitors)
  • 45 states for Call Performance (vs. 23 win/ties for nearest competitors)
  • 49 states for Text Performance, (including the most outright wins at 10)

For more information, head over to www.verizon.com/about/news,

OFF THE BEATEN PATH REPORT - Florida's Swamp Cabbage Festival

Thanks to Beth Fields for a review of the annual Swamp Cabbage Festival in LaBelle, FL it celebrates the 50th Anniversary on Feb. 27t&28th swampcabbagefestival.org

 

This episode of Roadtreking the RV Podcast is brought to you by:

  • Van City RV in St. Louis, and their Partner Dealerships Creston RV in Kalispell, Montana, and Wagon Trail RV in Las Vegas. Bringing You the largest Inventory of class B’s from three locations
  • Alde… the only name to know when choosing a heating system for your RV
  • Verizon, the nation's largest and most reliable 4G LTE Networks
Direct download: RT76.mp3
Category:Travel -- posted at: 8:39pm EDT

Every RVer these days is pretty dependent on their smartphones. From directions, to finding attractions and to stay in touch with friends and families, our smartphones are overwhelmingly the most used gizmos we take with us when we travel by RV.

But they could work better, right? Battery life dies too fast. Data allocations get gobbled up by apps. The dreaded "no bars" indication of no nearby cell tower happens too often.

Our guest in the Traveling Tech segment of this podcast is Steve Caruso, Director of Digital Development at the EGC Group, a New York advertising agency.

Steve offers a mix of security, data/power saving and everyday useful tips that most smartphone users are unaware of. You will want to tune into this episode and follow along as he shares his tips, which are written down for you towards the end of this post.

But there's much more in this episode as we talk about such things as:

  • Getting rid of black tank odors
  • Finding the right security system for your RV
  • Choosing the right Class B RV
  • A first-of-its-kind small motorhome RV show in Phoenix, AZ that will have more motorhomes from more Class B manufacturers than you will find anywhere.
  • And an off the-beaten path report from New York State

 

MIKE AND JENNIFER GET A NEW DOG

As Jennifer joins Mike at the top of the podcast, they share the birthday present they received last week from their three kids: A 10-month-old Norwegian Elkhound we decided to name named Bo.

We lost our previous dog, Tai, to cancer last July. He was a great traveler and many of our readers and listeners got to meet and enjoy hi as we made our way across North America.

We are unsure of this new pup. Man, a puppy is a lot of work. He's requiring constant supervision and we hope we have the energy to keep up! We call him Bo, in honor of Tai, whose full name was Taibo. Wish us luck!

 

JENNIFER'S TIP OF THE WEEK

Today’s tip addresses an unpleasant subject: The stinky smell that sometimes comes from the black water waste tank on an RV.

First, use a lot of water to flush. Yes, you may have to empty it more that way but we have found mixing water by at least two to one is the easiest way to keep odors down. By that I mean, whatever you put in the toilet, put twice that much water in.

We also use something called the “Geo Method.” Essentially, this mixes two cups of water softener and one cup of household detergent in a gallon of water that we pour down the toilet after every time that we dump the black tanks. It really heps keep odors down. We use Calgon Powdered Water Softener. It supposedly dissolves the fastest. We had trouble finding it in stores and ordered it on Amazon. They make a liquid version of this product. It may work, too, though the person who told us about this stressed that we should use the powdered kind.

Anyway, we’ve been using this concoction for a couple of years now and find it really does a nice job.

One more related tip. Sometimes, gunk gets caked on black water tanks after a lt of use, especially if the unit hasn’t been used much. If you suspect that is an issue, buy a bag of ice, drop it down the toilet and drive around for a while. The ice bangs around in there and loosens the crud. After you think the ice has melted, flush with lots of water and then dump.

That’s this week’s tip. If you have a tip you’d like me to consider, just send me at email at Jennifer AT Roadtreking.com.

 

Security Devices For an RV

A listener named Sherie is about to get a new Class B RV and is worried about security. She sent in a voice message and wondered whether Mike and Jennifer have done anything different since our RV was broken into last summer.

 

Mike brings her up to date on what we learned, talking specifically about the Windshield Witness dash cam we have and how that helped identify the thief. He also talks about a new $199 unit he plans to review called the Canary. This has a wide angle HD camera, monitors temperature and sends video via Wi Fi to your smartphone and it alerts you to a break in, yet also lets you check up on your pets.

 

Choosing the Right Class B RV for You

We are recently retired and interested in a Class B of a shorter length for easier parking. Are there pros and cons when looking at Roadtrek vs Pleasure-Way etc.? How do I learn what models/year that have issues when looking at earlier years? Thanks Greg Rockford, MI

 

The key things Mike says to consider are the brand’s dealership network, service availability and manufacturer reputation. Then compare specific floor plan needs you have. Mike suggests he visit an RV show and check into our Roadtreking Facebook Group to be on contact with other Class B owners. But in particular, if you can get to Phoneix, AZ, there is a fantastic RV show coming March 17-20 that is totally devoted to small motorhomes. It will be held INDOORS at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, AZ, so there’s no chance of it being hot inside the air conditioned stadium. As of now, they’ll have Roadtrek, Leisure Travel Vans, Winnebago and Thor Motor Coaches. They’ll probably have between 60 and 80 Class B style products to choose between as well as some shorter Class C units. Test drives will be available. All units will be clearly priced with a sales price. Even some pre-owned units will be available.

 

WHY MIKE AND JENNIFER CHOSE THEIR RV

Hi Mike and Jennifer: I sure enjoy your blog and podcasts. I am an old camper via a Jayco trailer, but have decided I want to move down to a type b motorcoach. I have researched heavily the Type b rv and feel like my wife and I can make it just fine. What do you like about your unit the Roadtrek CS Adventurous XL? I plan to do boondocking and like the idea of lots of solar and battery power. Thanks for your response. Mark, Tennessee

 

Mike explains the main draw of the CS. All that solar and boondocking power - 650 watts of solar on the roof and a 20K Amp Hour bank of Lithium Ion batteries for extended off the grid camping that allows him to be energy independent. And the other main draw: The large 7 cubic foot refrigerator on the CS!

 

RV NEWS OF THE WEEK

There’s a big controversy in South Dakota involving RVers who use mail forwarding services as an address for voter registration.

Newly introduced legislation seeks to reduce the influence of nomadic recreational-vehicle owners on South Dakota elections.

State Sen. Craig Tieszen, R-Rapid City, last week introduced a bill that would essentially forbid the use of a mail-forwarding service as an address for voter registration.

Read the full story from the Rapid City Journal

 

TRAVELING TECH TIP: Smartphone Hacks for RVers

Mike interviews Steve Caruso, Director of Digital Development at the EGC Group, a top Manhattan advertising agency.

Steve offers a mix of security, data/power saving and everyday useful tips that most smartphone users are unaware of.

Steve’s favorite app these days is Swarm. He uses it to keep a record of the paces he’s been, as sort of a travel diary.

Here are some of his tips:

1) Change your phone’s wallpaper background (the picture that comes up when your screen is locked) from a pretty scenic to something useful: an image of your name and a contact number (other than your own, obviously). You can do this by taking a screen shot after you input the info in a notepad   function, or simply scrawl it on a piece of paper and take a camera shot. This way, passerby who finds your locked lost phone will have a way to contact you.

2) With all the streaming, downloading and Periscoping we’re doing these days, it’s no wonder many of us our exceeding the limits on our date packages. And yet most service providers let you set up warning (some even shut data connections off completely) when you near you monthly limit. Look for these options in the data setup area of your phone and employ them. There are also a variety of 3rd party apps that will perform the same function and let you know what apps or services are being the data hogs on your device.

3) Forget your charger while on the road? Your campground can probably supply you with a USB cable that you can use on a variety of devices to get a charge.

4) If you find yourself in an area that has poor signal coverage, activate your phone’s airplane mode for a minute or so. When you return to cellular mode, your phone will automatically connect to the nearest cell tower, instead of the weaker tower it might have been holding onto.

5) Facing an emergency situation and your cell phone suddenly has no bars? Try dialing 112. In most instances, this will allow your phone to use ANY available service (even if it’s not your provider and even if your phone is locked) and connect you to an emergency operator for assistance.

6) Cell phone companies love tagging on a convenience fee for using their 411 information service when you need to get a phone number or address. And while Google can usually find any number you need, many of us are too lazy to conduct a search - or are busy operating a motor vehicle. But there’s a free 411 service you can call: (800) FREE 411 (800-373-3411) which will get you a number or address without incurring a fee.

7) GPS is a huge data hog and yet many of us rely on our phone’s GPS to get us to our destinations. There are several ways to beat the GPS at its own game. A) Before your road trip, simply screenshot your travel directions and refer to them rather than live location services. B) Many apps, including Google Maps, allow you to download the maps of the area where you’re traveling. Do this while you’re connected to wi-fi and then store the map. This will save you mobile date charges and actually be a lifesaver if you are traveling in an area with limited reception.

8) This is a tough one, but it will save your data allowance and associated overage charges in the long run: pay for full versions of your Apps. Why? Because all those ads the “free” editions continually present to you are downloaded items. This means, the app is constantly using your data plan to deliver you commercials! If you pay for the app, and eliminate or limit these ads, you’ll have more date for other, more critical, uses. This also saves your battery, too.

9) Another way to save on data and battery consumption is to form good web browsing habits. Try to browse only mobile versions of your favorite websites (the best way is to download that site’s mobile app). This allows the site to load faster and optimize data usage.

10) Putting your phone into airplane mode allows it to charge faster since it disables the power sapping transmission functions. It’s true, you’ll temporarily be unable to receive calls or texts, but your phone will have its incoming juice dedicated to charging the battery.

 

OFF THE BEATEN PATH REPORT -   The Finger Lakes area of New York

Off the Beaten Path Reporter Tom Burkett reports on lots of out of the way tourist destinations in New York State, especially applicable for RVers who visit the Niagara Falls and Buffalo, NY region. From a quirky kazoo factory in Eden, NY to beautiful lakes to the world famous Chautauqua community, you’ll want to listen up for these great attractions.

 

 

 

 

Direct download: RT75.mp3
Category:Travel -- posted at: 4:09pm EDT

In this episode of the Roadtreking RV Podcast we answer some questions from listeners who want to embrace the RV lifestyle but have concerns because they are not mechanically inclined or good at fixing stuff. They wonder if they'll be able to cut it as an RV owner. 

I do my best to assure them, with Jennifer chiming in. Bottom line is if I can do it, they can. I am not a Mr. Fix it.

We share the tips and suggestions needed that will let anyone take to the road in an RV confident that, whatever comes up, they can handle it. And no, you do not have to roll up your sleeves and do-it-yourself. Help, we assure everyone, is easy to find, as we share our experiences.

As Jennifer joins me, we update the audience of our whereabouts and our rough travel plans for 2016, both confessing that we have a bit of cabin fever and are soon planning to hit the road.

JENNIFER’S TIP OF THE WEEK 

Let’s face it, sometimes those long drives in our RV to get to all those great places out there can be…. Well, a pain in the…. Glutes.

Both Mike and I have had it. And while our Roadtrek seats are very comfy and have great lumbar support, all that sitting puts a lot of pressure on your butt and the back of your thighs.

We’ve seen comfort pads and padded cushions sold at truck stops and online but we were looking for something more ergonomically designed.

And that took us to a store near our house called Relax the Back. Actually, there are about 100 of these around the U.S. and each one specializes in products aimed at people seeking relief and prevention of back and neck pain.

It was there that we found the Travel Lite Cushion by Lifeform, a seat cushion made with pressure sensitive memory foam that conforms to your body and then regains its shape when not in use.

The sales person at the store took it out to the parking lot so we could try it in our Roadtrek. He explained that it is designed to help correct our pelvic angle and sitting posture while maintaining the natural curve of the spine.

By reducing pressure to the glues and the back of the thighs, it helps improve circulation to the legs and feet. We couldn’t be happier with these cushions. We carry it between our RV and our personal car and I even bring it in the house and pur it on my office chair when we’re home.

They are exclusive to the Relax Your Back stores and cost $145 each. That’s a lot but we think they are really worth it.

Oh yeah, one other related tip we picked up from our Relax the Back store consultant that is for you men. And this tip is free: Don’t sit on your billfold. Do not keep your billfold in your back pocket while you drive. Even if you have one of these skinny billfolds like Mike has, siting on it makes an unnatural tilt and that will always result in back pain after a long drive.

LISTENER QUESTIONS OF THE WEEK

 Two of our listeners have questions this week that expressed their eagerness to hit the road in an RV but were worried at their lack of mechanical skills.

 Listener Brian is a Texas attorney about to retire and hit the road in a Class B campervan. But he worries that his lack of fix it skills will leave him in a bind.

 And Listener Dan, whose looking to buy used class B, has the same concern but wants to know where he can find one for about $30K. Mike and Jennifer suggest he try Roadtrek International or RV Trader for used RVs, besides calling various Class B dealers around the country and ask them. Jennifer warns him that because they are in such high demand, he should be prepared to go on a waiting list with others seeking used Class Bs.

A listener asks about traveling to Alaska in an RV and seeks advice on what to see and where to go. Mike refers her to the Alaska Tourism office and their excellent book Milepost 2016, which details literally every single mile of the Alaska Highway.

And a listener named Tim is planning to downsize from a 40 Foot Tiffin Phaeton Diesel Class A to a Class B Roadtrek. He asks what the trade offs are and Mike and Jennifer share their experiences of living in a Class B 

RV NEWS OF THE WEEK

The National Park Service (NPS) this week released its Fiscal Year 2015 deferred maintenance statistics for national parks. The $11.93 billion nationwide total is a $440 million increase from the previous year.

Deferred maintenance is necessary work – performed on infrastructure, such as roads and bridges, visitor centers, trails and campgrounds – that has been delayed for more than one year. Aging facilities, increasing use of park facilities and scarce resources contribute to the growing backlog.

“While Congress provided increases this year, the annual bill for maintenance in America’s national parks is still almost twice as much as is appropriated,” said National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis.

Congressional funding for the National Park Service in 2016 includes an additional $90 million for non-transportation maintenance.

Congress also passed a new highway bill which will provide a $28 million increase for transportation projects in parks this year. Funding for transportation-related maintenance and construction will continue to rise, by $8 million per year for five years, until it reaches $300 million per year in 2020.

Nearly every unit in the National Park System has maintenance items that have been deferred. Regions regularly evaluate and prioritize project submissions to ensure available dollars make a difference, and will be using the new funds to address the highest priorities. Even though more maintenance items had to be deferred in 2015, these increases from Congress are welcome. Jarvis said they are part of a multifaceted approach to end the growth of deferred maintenance and eventually have enough resources to keep pace with annual maintenance responsibilities.

“We have a lot yet to do but I think everything is moving in the right direction,” Jarvis said of the deferred maintenance issue. “Congress has pitched in with base funding and with additional funds for the Centennial Challenge – a program that enables us to leverage private and non-profit partner contributions to complete important projects that improve visitor services in parks.

There is more Congress can do through the Centennial Act now under consideration including short-term mandatory appropriations.” 

TRAVELING TECH TIP: Apps to keep track of your finances

The Goodbudget app sets a budget for spending on specific categories like dining out and groceries. Easy-to-read graphics show you where your money is going. And you can share it with others so that you all stay on the same page when it comes to spending. The app is free for iOS and Android with paid, premium versions with more features available.

Mvelopes is a simple-to-use app that categorizes and tracks spending. You can even take pictures of receipts with your smartphone or tablet for quick and easy access. Your set budget will update as you spend and Mvelopes is able to download transactions from more than 14,000 financial institutions. The app is free for iOS and Android with paid, premium versions available.

Wally is one of the most well-known finance management apps. Wally’s clearly laid out interface makes it easy to input your spending. It even uses your device’s location settings to make identifying where you are easy. If you have specific savings goals in mind, Wally has the ability to help with that, too. The app is free for iOS and Android.

RV CALENDAR - Roadtreking Gatherings

We have a bunch of Roadtreking gathrings planned this year,

The first, a Photo Safar iat the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, was announced this week but sold out in 10 hours.

Among other place we plan Roadtreking gatherings this year are Oregon in August, Northern Ontario, Canada in September, and the Porcupine Mountains in Michigan in October . We’ll be releasing details on these other trips soon on the Roadtreking.com blog.

This episode of Roadtreking the RV Podcast is brought to you by:

  • Van City RV in St. Louis, and their Partner Dealerships Creston RV in Kalispell, Montana, and Wagon Trail RV in Las Vegas. Bringing You the largest Inventory of class B’s from three locations
  • Alde… the only name to know when choosing a heating system for your RV
  • Verizon Wireless, the nation's largest and most reliable 4G LTE Networks
Direct download: RT74.mp3
Category:Travel -- posted at: 1:31pm EDT

One thing we all need, no matter what size RV we have, is organization and space saving. In this episode of the podcast, we hear from the lady whose known as the RV Space Saver. Her name is Gail Alexander and she does seminars all across the US on ways to organize, maximize storage and save space.

Gail shares her top five tips that every RVer can incorporate in their traveling lifestye.

But we have so much more in this episode: Some food preparation tips from Jennifer, listener questions, RV News of the Week and three apps you will want to have on your smartphone or tablet s you travel this year.

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Complete shownotes for Episode 73 of the Roadtreking RV Podcast:

TWO NEW ROADTREKING GATHERINGS PLANNED

Jennifer and Mike discuss their still under development travel plans for 2016 - and Mike makes a pleas to go to Alaska, that seems to be drawing a not-so-enthusiastic response from his bride. But he also lets slip advance notice of two new Roadtreking gatherings being planned for this year.

Both will be geared towards hiking, photography and exploring.

The first will be June 20-24 at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

The second is October 7-10 in the Porcupine Mountains of Michigan's rugged Upper Peninsula.

Details on these trips are still being worked out. Each will be limited to no more than 30 units. We'll announce on the blog when we are ready for signups.

JENNIFER'S TIP OF THE WEEK - Cooking Tips for RVers

I’ve had several emails from listeners of this podcast who want to know some simple recipes they can make ahead of time and take on their RV trips so when they stop, they can have a nice meal ready fast, without a lot of fuss and muss.

One tip is to find a small crock pot for your RV that fits in the sink. You’ll have to do some measurements but we have found that the 4-quart size works best for us.

The one we got a few years ago cost less than $20 and was made by Rival. But it doesn’t seem to be available anymore so we made an Amazon page that lists a whole bunch of crock pots you can look at.

We found that round ones fit best, not the oval shapes. You’ll need to measure the size of the sink and then find one that fits your RV.

Why the sink? Because you can put the crockpot in the sink and not worry about it falling out as you drive. You’ll need your inverter on of course but you can start your crock pot meal in the morning and leave it cooking as you drive. Then, when you stop in the afternoon, you have a delicious meal just waiting for you.

Something else we like to do is prepare some easy meals ahead of time. Our favorite is salsa chicken.

It’s easy to prepare right in the RV. But as we often do before setting off on a long trip, we like to make several meals ahead of time that we can put in the Roadtrek’s freezer and then bring out when we want.

Salsa chicken consists of chicken breasts and salsa. That’s it.

First, you pound down the chicken, tenderizing it and making it easier to cook. Then I place it in a sauce pan. On top of the chicken, I pour a container of salsa. We use the sugar-free chunky style that you can get at Whole Foods. But you can use any kind you want.

Then, occasionally stirring and turning the chicken, let the salsa come to a boil and then have it simmer as the chicken cooks in the salsa for 20-25 minutes.

We make a double batch – two large chicken breasts and a full container of salsa. That’s enough to serve the two of us, twice.

We like to serve it with long grain brown rice, a side salad and broccoli.

Simple, huh?

We have a blog post and video of this that we will link to in the show notes.

So give it a try… crock pot meals as you drive, make ahead salsa chickedn for your RV’s fridge. I hope you enjoy!

LISTENER QUESTIONS OF THE WEEK:

Q: We joined the FMCA and they just sent us a humongous lexan plaquard. Have you found a way to display this thing without defacing your coach? I thought I saw suction cups available as an accessory, but wondered if this is secure for travel. Perhaps it's possible to just put it on the coach at rallies or when you're parked, etc.? Obviously we have more questions than answers. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated :) - Carol

A: To affix the FMCA plaquard, I use Industrial Strength Hook and Loop tape. it costs about $25 and it has proudly held my FMCA membership plaque to the back of my Roadtrek for years, as well as lots of other things inside and outside the coach..

Q: Please talk about driving in ice and snow. How does the RT handle in those conditions. Do you use snow tires, chains? Our RT (190P2010C) is only 2 wheel, rear wheel drive so we are cautious in any icy road conditions. - Ian

A: I travel all year round and do lots of winter RVing. I have never needed to add chains or snow tires. While chains are required on some roads in mountainous regions, I've never had an issue. Here's a video I did a couple years ago on winter driving with a Roadtrek.

Q: Hi Mike & Jennifer, Love your podcast, listen every week. I am new to the RV life, having just purchased my new 24' Arctic Fox TT in September. Planning a trip to The Grand Teton, Yellowstone and Glacier in September, and my question is, knowing you have a Verizon Jetpack and a WeBoost. Did you have a useable signal in these three parks to take advantage of the Jetpack and did the WeBoost help -Dan

A: I have Verizon coverage in about 87% of the places we visit this week. That said, some places of Yellowstone and Glacier National Park are so remote or mountainous that you will find spots with no coverage. I have found the weBoost cellular booster does a great job in giving me a connection pretty much everywhere. Not everywhere, because those parks are huge and wild. But most places. Teton, has solid coverage in most areas.

RV NEWS OF THE WEEK

61 Pythons Caught So Far in the Florida Python Roundup

Is Good Sam getting short shrift from the CEO?

Meet Mike and Jennifer at the FMCA Family Reunion in Perry GA 

 

TRAVELING TECH TIP - Fuel saving apps

Fuel prices haven’t been this low in years. That, of course, is spurring lots of RV sales. But there is still a big disparity between pricing at various stations as you travel around the country.

So having a reliable app to check prices as you travel is a big help.

Here are my Top Three Gas Price Apps:

GasBuddy is an old favorite and has been around for years but I still find it and gives you the most up-to-date gas prices wherever you may be in the U.S. or Canada. GasBuddy relies on users to update prices, who in turn have a chance to win $100 every day for adding prices. It also gives you a map so finding the lowest gas prices is easy. The app is free for all platforms.

Gas Guru is another handy app to have. It gives you the lowest and closest gas prices. With Gas Guru, you can even search for the lowest fuel prices based on grades – even diesel. That’s a big help for those of us who dont want to pull off the freeway only to find a gas-only station. Ben there, Done that. With Gas Guru, uou can search using a list or you can view the app’s map to see your options. The app is free for Android and iOS and works with Apple Watch.

Using a smartphone’s location, the app called Fuel Finder will show you the closest gas stations and how much you can expect to pay at each. It, too, includes a map to make finding stations a breeze. You can even find stations that have ATMs or car washes. I have tried this app a few times and found that it does a great job, even though this one is not free. The app is $1.99 for Android.

Interview - Gail Alexander of RV Space Savers

Gail runs the RV Space Savers site and she and her husband Mike and toy poodle CoCo travel across the U.S. to RV Rallies and Shows selling space saving products for Rver's. Gail also gives seminars on space saving tips and ideas for small spaces.

In this interview, she shares her five top tips for saving space in an RV.

 

 

 

Direct download: RT73.mp3
Category:Travel -- posted at: 4:51pm EDT

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