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Author Topic: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses  (Read 949 times)

nonrev321

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30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« on: December 29, 2017, 02:55:06 AM »
Hello,

Wife likes the Grand Design Imagine 2670MK at slightly more than 32 feet long.  Lately when driving around I've been imagining I was pulling that trailer and eyeballing business along the highway and asking myself "Could I get in there".  Truthfully there are not as many business or locations as I had hoped that I could get into.

This brings up a question.  When traveling, say making a 3-4 day transit across several states.. how do folks find places to stop and eat?  I can't see many restaurants along the main roads I could get into and I'm not keen on finding a place to pull over with the truck and trailer every few hours to prepare a meal

Is there some broad defined cutoff length for a trailer where below xx number of feet I could get into more places.  Wife likes a bigger trailer but I'm leaning toward something in the 27.5 to 30 ft range thinking I can get into more eateries and stops along the road.  Is this right or is there really not much difference were I can get into with a 28-30 footer vs a 32 footer.

Thanks

Rgds

nonrev

Sun2Retire

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2017, 05:34:55 AM »
is there really not much difference were I can get into with a 28-30 footer vs a 32 footer.


There really isnít much different. In fact, if youíre talking 30 vs 32, Iíd say thereís no difference.


The reality of RVing is that there will be many times along the way that you canít just squeeze into the same little parking lots. Youíll learn to consider this and adjust.


A floor plan that works for you is a very important issue, and Iíd say that a floor plan your wife likes is the most important issue  ;)
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Dance Chick

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2017, 06:25:12 AM »
We quickly learned that it's easier a lot of times to pull into a large parking lot  - like a Lowes, Home Depot, Walmart, etc. - and walk next door or across the street to eat or do whatever we need to do. There's almost always some kind of large parking lot available. And, most times we need something anyway, so
will go in the store and shop.
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AStravelers

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2017, 06:34:31 AM »
Well, I pull over every 2-3 hours to take a break from driving and to use the bathroom, so we just fix a sandwich or snack while we are stopped.  Besides it is a lot faster to just fix a sandwich than to go into a restaurant and sit down for a meal. 

If we want to stop at a fast food place, we may park on the street a block or so away and walk to the restaurant.

When traveling, our RV is our home, so we treat things like fixing meals just as we would in our sticks and bricks. 

And, Yes, it is frequently difficult to find a place to get the park the RV to go get something to eat.  But then again, when we stop for the night we have our home with us.  We don't have to use a motel.  We sleep in our bed, use our bathroom, have whatever we want to eat in the fridge, etc.  We don't have to unpack a suitcase and then repack in the morning, hoping we didn't forget something in the motel room.
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Oldgator73

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2017, 06:50:00 AM »
I think you are worrying about a situation that really does not exist. You said you didn't want to pull over every few hours to fix a meal. Were you being facetious? We fulltimed in a 37', triple axle 5th wheel. When we got hungry we stopped at a rest stop or truck stop and fixed lunch. Take some snacks along in the tow vehicle for those hunger pangs in between meals. I now have a 17' TT that is hard to get in and out of some places. I try not to go to those places.
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Larry N.

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #5 on: December 29, 2017, 07:09:52 AM »
Quote
When traveling, say making a 3-4 day transit across several states.. how do folks find places to stop and eat?  I can't see many restaurants along the main roads I could get into and I'm not keen on finding a place to pull over with the truck and trailer every few hours to prepare a meal

Quite simply, as others have indicated above, we rarely stop at restaurants, rather stopping in rest areas, truck stops or other places where we can sit for 20-30 minutes. It's quicker and cheaper to fix a quick sandwich for lunch than to go to a restaurant. But if you must, then Cracker Barrel, most truck stops, and some other places have restaurants you can use.

Breakfast and supper we do in the coach while in our parking spot for the night (we did the same when we had a 20 foot trailer). Come to think of it, even when we traveled before we had an RV, we still took along a cooler with sandwich materials and rarely stopped in restaurants for lunch.
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Oldgator73

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #6 on: December 29, 2017, 07:19:54 AM »
Our first duty station out of tech school (Air Force) was Barksdale AFB, LA. Our hometown was Daytona Beach, FL. When taking a trip home my wife would fry two chickens and pack them along with snacks, drinks and coffee and we would head out. We had a 73 AMC Gremlin that had a tank big enough to get us from Barksdale to well into the panhandle of Florida. My point is you do not have to stop at restaurants to eat.
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NY_Dutch

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #7 on: December 29, 2017, 07:30:28 AM »
The simple answer if you don't want to fix your own meals is that you're driving a truck and trailer. Go where the other truckers go...
Dutch
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John From Detroit

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #8 on: December 29, 2017, 08:04:32 AM »
Interesting. My RV is 38' (37'7") Class A with towed and there are darn few places I can't stop and shop. THOUGH somnetimes I need to park next door or across the road.
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HappyWanderer

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #9 on: December 29, 2017, 08:17:56 AM »
This doesn't answer the question on length, but we never eat at restaurants on the road. We plan meals in advance, something quick and easy. We've found scenic picnic areas where we can relax for a little while and exercise the dog, or sometimes just a rest area on the highway.

Spending the time to find a restaurant, getting a table and waiting for food doesn't make a lot of sense to us when we already carry everything with us.
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Sun2Retire

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #10 on: December 29, 2017, 08:44:16 AM »
When traveling, say making a 3-4 day transit across several states..


Just adding another thought, when Iím just going from A to B driving all day, I make sure snacks and a premade sandwich are readily available. I like to stop every 3 hours or so and stretch my legs and just use one of the stops to eat.


I downloaded rest stop POIs to my Garmin GPS, and often use rest stops when using interstates. Usually plenty of room to park.
Scott
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SeilerBird

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #11 on: December 29, 2017, 08:58:15 AM »
I full timed it in a 32 foot class A without a toad for many years and never had a problem. Walmart carries just about everything you need and you never have any problems parking a 32 footer in a Walmart lot.
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Isaac-1

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #12 on: December 29, 2017, 09:28:57 AM »
I have a sub-30 ft Class A without a TOAD, so my accessibility may be a bit different, having said that I find that scouting ahead using google maps satellite view helps spot viable parking options for dining, etc. This often means parking next door walking over etc, but given the number of restaurants located on the edge of big box store parking lots this is usually not a problem.  So instead of looking at all the places you can't go, spend some time driving around looking for the places where you can go.   
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Joezeppy

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #13 on: December 29, 2017, 10:27:04 AM »
Our popup was only 18' long and I could get into just about anywhere. Our 3 other campers have been 29', 32', and now 35' and I just don't try to get into any parking lot smaller than a box store or mall. If you are on the interstates, no problem. If you are on secondary roads, keep your eyes open for industrial locations, vacant buildings, larger churches, that sort of thing. We've even stopped at a couple of Volunteer Fire Departments - just make sure you don't block any doors or driveways!


I've only got myself into a bind 3 times since 2004 so that's not too bad. Luckily I was able to back out (literally) of each one.
« Last Edit: December 29, 2017, 08:05:03 PM by Joezeppy »
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ArdraF

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #14 on: December 29, 2017, 06:21:51 PM »
Nonrev, it seems you're thinking like you would when driving a car, e.g. stopping at restaurants to eat.  It's a whole different ballgame with an RV.  You don't need to look for restaurants because you have your food (and toilet and bed etc.) with you.  Find a rest area, perhaps a scenic pulloff, a large box store, or even a large pulloff alongside the road and fix your lunch.

To answer your question though, there are two good resources to locate places catering to travelers.  One is your GPS.  Just ask it for nearby restaurants and it will tell you what's available, in which direction, and how far they are to reach.  If you're traveling on an interstate, there's a neat publications called The Next Exit which has all the interstate highways and the businesses available at each exit.  It includes fuel stops, restaurants, sometimes campgrounds, hospitals, auto services, and other businesses of interest to travelers.  Our copy normally "lives' in the motorhome but we even take it on car trips.

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grashley

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #15 on: December 29, 2017, 08:54:28 PM »
Locally, the mall is a great place to park - around the edge - and there are 18 eateries within 100 ft of the parking lot, between the mall and main road or in adjacent strip malls.  Add 10 more near Wally World or accessible side streets.  In fact, very few are NOT near decent RV parking!
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UTTransplant

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #16 on: December 30, 2017, 08:00:03 AM »
I am someone who likes to occasionally eat at restaurants especially while traveling from one destination to another. Like others have noted, we look for big store parking lots and then walk to a restaurant. I can usually find something pretty close to the parking by using Yelp. Note we have a 30í trailer plus a 20í truck so we are pretty long. Also note I have been unpleasantly surprised at big box stores in some tourist areas that do not have adequate parking at all. There seems to be a trend to having concrete dividers down the middle of parking rows so I canít pull through, and there isnít always room to take up the 6 or 7 parking spots I would need to parking down a row. I have always been able to drive through though. Places off the beaten path in the middle of nowhere are generally easier to get in and out of.
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Patnsuzanne

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #17 on: December 30, 2017, 04:34:34 PM »
Access is generally going to depend on the surrounding area. Interstates and toll roads will often have rest stops with truck/rv parking along with restaurants. Although you will have a greater variety of eating places going through town, parking, or just being able to make a nice wide right turn off the main road will often be difficult. As most have mentioned, big box stores, shopping malls, etc make good places to at least get off the road and park. Weíve even had trouble finding some place to pull off just to take a bathroom break when traveling on some smaller back roads. No shoulders, or if there are some businesses along the road, they donít have enough room for the truck and trailer.  Just part of the adventure, I guess!
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blw2

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #18 on: January 09, 2018, 02:26:06 PM »
32 foot MH is very different than a 32ft TT behind a truck.

There's not too many places I can't make work..... but plenty that would be tight for a trailer.  I'm thinking specifically places like Cracker Barrel that have RV parking but that are rarely long enough for anything terribly much longer than me.  I pulled into one once and was blocked in by someone on the outbound side of me in a bumper pull TT probably 32ft or so long.  That guy was hanging well out into the road on both ends of the parking space.
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jayc2640

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Re: 30ft more or less and access to commercial businesses
« Reply #19 on: January 09, 2018, 03:59:33 PM »
We have a 30 ft Class A and pull a toad.  So, in addition to size, I can't back up.  Most places, especially at freeway exits are fine, but you have to give a parking lot a once over before you pull in.  There have been a few that I've passed on, and just got back on the freeway.  That being said, there is always google streetview and earthview to check things out ahead of time.
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