While you're on the road traveling from one destination to another, there will be times when you need to stop overnight and boondock. Since leaving San Diego and trekking across the country, we've had several of these overnight stays in between destinations. Not all of them have been great, but we made sure to find recommended, safe places using the Allstays Camp and RV App.
So far we've stayed overnight at:
- Love's Truck Stop: ★★★☆☆ Overall Rating
- The nice thing about Love's is that there are a lot of them around. Other popular truck stops are Flying J, Pilot, and Petro. Another good thing is that they're always busy with plenty of people around so you have safety in numbers. The truckers and other travelers who stay at these stops keep to themselves since everyone's just passing through. There are showers at these stops and food, so it's convenient for one night stays. However, the con is that these stops are really busy and the lots are packed with big-rigs. The first Love's we stopped at was late at night and we got lucky finding a spot to park in in the overflow lot. Overall, it was an ok stay, but most of these big-rigs have their engines running the whole night so it was a bit loud and being wedged between 2 big trucks, we got a lot of exhaust fumes coming into the trailer... In a pinch, truck stops will do just fine, but open spots can be hard to come by if you get there late.
- Casino hotel parking lot: ★★★☆☆
- We've only stayed in one casino hotel parking lot overnight, and the one we stayed at had a small overflow lot that had several cars, a couple of big-rigs and a few other RVs. It was right next to the main road so it felt fairly safe with constant traffic flow. We didn't go inside the casino, but I imagine it would be convenient for bathroom breaks, food, and of course a little gambling if you're feeling lucky.
- Walmart parking lot: ★★★★★
- For us, Walmart parking lots are the most ideal for overnight stays! The lots are huge, there are always cars around with lots of lighting and it's pretty level. Plus, you can go in and stock up on groceries and supplies! Not all Walmarts allow overnight parking though, so I would recommend you call the store and ask if it's ok. There are usually several big-rigs and RVs parked in these lots, but there's so much room that everyone can spread out comfortably.
- Rest areas: No rating
- We've never stayed in a rest area, but in general, they seem pretty safe. At least the bigger rest areas that have truck parking. You have to look up the rules about overnight parking in rest areas though because some counties only allow stays for a few hours, but not overnight.