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Author Topic: 1st Walmart Overnite  (Read 34668 times)

Marsha/CA

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1st Walmart Overnite
« on: August 13, 2006, 08:33:03 AM »
Tim and I have now started coming back west along the TranCanada Highway in CAnada and are in Parry Sound at the moment.  We couldn't find anyplace to camp last night as all the campgrounds were full.  Several places suggested we stay at Walmart because the next city was a good distance drive.  So.....we bit the bullet and stay in Walmart's parking lot.  There were about 3 other big rigs and 4 5th wheels/trailers here so we felt comfortable and safe. 

Now, no offense to those of you who like to stay at Walmart; but Tim and I would rather be in a campground and prefer to avoid Walmarts.  However, this one worked out well.  We met another couple from the States and shared information.  We bought things we needed at Walmart, so felt we did our part.  We were prepared to keep the slide in and not put down the jacks; but others had their out, so we did too.

We are off this morning to Espanola near the Killarney Provincial Park.  Apparently it's beautiful.  WE have reservations at a small campground with only 20 amp service.  We've also learned a lesson, make reservations on weekends and check to make sure we know when their holidays are as their campgrounds fill up fast.

Another bit of information.  We were completely surprised at the amount of heavy traffic in and around Toronoto.  It was bumper to bumper...looked just like Interstate 5 between LA and San Diego.

Marsha~
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Wendy

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2006, 10:35:07 AM »
We prefer boondocking away from pavement and roads but an overnighter at a Wal-Mart can come in mighty handy sometimes.

p.s. Didn't know you guys had gone so far east ! Sounds like you're enjoying yourselves.
Wendy, Mike, and Gordon
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rhmahoney

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2006, 09:16:12 PM »
I came through Toronto westbound about 5 yrs ago on a Sat eve. Yipes! That much traffic gives me hives. The locals didn't seem to know that it was the weekend.
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Marsha/CA

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2006, 10:24:20 PM »
Russ, we were amazed at the Toronto traffic.  We thought we would have no trouble as we too went through on a Saturday; but it was mid-day!

Wendy-we went back to see family in both Indiana and Ohio.  WE seem to keep making that trip...<g>  Remy is getting very good at "RVing".

Marsha~
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Jim Dick

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2006, 11:28:35 PM »
Hi Marsha,

We have stayed at a few WalMarts. I prefer a campground but when I only need a few hours sleep a WalMart can be the answer. I don't condone "camping" at Walmart. The biggest problem I have seen is shopping carts. They can come out of nowhere!!! 
Jim

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Marsha/CA

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #5 on: August 14, 2006, 07:07:00 AM »
Now shopping carts coming out of no where I had not thought of.  I'll have to keep that in mind when we do it again.  I should have thought of that as one hit my big truck right after I bought it in 93.  We parked way out of the way to avoid a cart and as you say......one came out of no where.... :o

I was surprised at Tim (husband).  He said it wasn't as bad as he thought it would be.  It made us feel better that other campers were there.  I think we would have been more leary if we were the only ones.

Marsha~
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Betty Brewer

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2006, 01:45:15 PM »
We have stayed at a few WalMarts.  The biggest problem I have seen is shopping carts. They can come out of nowhere!!! 

Jim and Marsha ,
Forgive me if you have heard this  story before but  for others...The one and only Wal Mart stay we made was someplace in Wyoming.  I purchased LOTS of stuff as the motorhome was pretty new and I needed things.  To "Make up" for free camping I thought I should do something, so I walked all over their huge parking lot gathering up loose shopping carts.  When the guy  came out to do it, he was surprised and pleased.   I got exercise, he got a break from cart gathering.  A win.  For me, Wal-Mart  stop overs are a very expensive deal!

Betty
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Jim Dick

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #7 on: August 14, 2006, 01:50:29 PM »
Betty,

I'm sure he was very pleased that you had taken care of the carts. Less for him to do. :) It also kept them away from your new coach.

Yes, Walmarts can be expensive BUT usually the stuff you buy is needed. You would spend the money elsewhere if you weren't parked at Walmart. Pat likes the Supercenters because she can buy food which we always need.
Jim

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Ken & Sheila

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #8 on: August 14, 2006, 07:18:31 PM »
Jim,

Hard to believe, but we've only stayed at Walmart twice. I as going to say once, but I think we (you & Pat, us and and a few other RV Formers stayed at one at the end of the Des Moines FMCA rally. The other time was a whole 20 miles from home so we could beat some traffic and make a 7am Cummins appt on the way to a small Forum Rally at Deadhorse State Park (AZ).

But then in Alaska we did Kmart (Anchorage), Juneau Mall, and Fred Myers (Ketchican). As you know mostly on the road we do Truckstops, although in Alaska we did some "roadsides".

None of the above were for anything more than overnight except Juneau and Ketchican. Both places I had permission to stay a few days BEFORE I arrived. The Mall lot in Juneau was large and no problem (Good Sam had a booth and controlled RV parking). The Fred Meyers lot in Ketchican much was smaller. After arriving and finding a place at the end of a row of cars (and nicely facing the water), I went in the store and talked to th manager. He assured me that because the campground had such limited space for large rigs, that we were welcome to stay. If it were not for these to places we could not have taken the MH&car on the ferry trip south because I could not get CG reservations for a 36 ft rig at either city.

NOTE: I do not use Truckstops in large urban areas and I have have stopped at a few and driven on because Sheila or I wasn't comfortable.

ken



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Wendy

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2006, 08:24:43 PM »
I'm more comfortable at Wal-Marts and find them more quiet than truck stops even though we use them for basically the same thing...an overnight stop.
Wendy, Mike, and Gordon
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woodartist

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #10 on: August 14, 2006, 09:04:01 PM »
Well, we prefer the truck stops over Wal-Mart..in general. Noise doesn't bother us or the dogs and we feel more secure. However it is nice to get a roasted chicken dinner at Wal Mart:) There are some really nice truck stops that are not stereotypical. Don't care for the seedy ones ;)

Shayne

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #11 on: August 14, 2006, 11:00:37 PM »
Woody  thats what we had for dinner tonite from
Sam's Club.   HMMMM HMMM Good.   Hate to go there cause almost always buy one.
Old, Stubborn, Opinionated, Set in my Ways, and Independent,  IMHO

Jim Dick

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #12 on: August 15, 2006, 05:51:12 AM »
Hi Ken,

Yes, I remember that Walmart but it was Ames. Hotter than Hades. We've probably only stayed at Walmart a half dozen times. Always call the Manager ahead of time to be sure they allow parking and then go in and let them know we are there. Have never been refused yet but there are some that can't allow it. If it's a Supercenter then we spend quite a bit for groceries. :)
Jim

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Jim Dick

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #13 on: August 15, 2006, 05:54:59 AM »
Well, we prefer the truck stops over Wal-Mart..in general. Noise doesn't bother us or the dogs and we feel more secure. However it is nice to get a roasted chicken dinner at Wal Mart:) There are some really nice truck stops that are not stereotypical. Don't care for the seedy ones ;)

One must be very careful in truck stops. Some truckers have been known to take off your mirrors as they pull out. They don't like RVs taking up their spots. It's best to ask at the fuel desk if it's safe. If we ever stay at a truck stop it will be a Flying J. They have an area for RVs and the newer ones have pull throughs.
Jim

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Ken & Sheila

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #14 on: August 18, 2006, 11:02:10 PM »
Jim,

Yes it was Ames. My good friend Larry who lives in Ames would not forgive me for not remembering correctly. But I also made a second mistake, the store we stayed at in Ketchican was a Carr's not Fred Meyers.

And your very right about being careful at Truckstops. Just after we a our Windsor repaired, including a new Drivers side mirror we stopped at a Truckstop in Santa Nella and the trucker next to us pulled out a scraped the mirror housing. I believe it was deliberate. But in all our many nights at truckstops. that is the only problem we have had. Again as I said before we are selective at which truckstops we stay at and Flying J is a the top of the list. We have found many other really nice truckstops to overnight at, but no other "brand" like Flying J.

My cats really liked the FJ in San Antonio, TX. We were instructed to park on the far side of the restaurant parking lot. It was right near the on ramp to the freeway and a tree with lots of birds. Obviously the cats like to watch birds, but mine also like to watch trucks at night with all the lights.

ken
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woodartist

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #15 on: August 19, 2006, 12:01:15 AM »
Flying J's are starting to prohibit RV's from parking over night. We have never had problems at truck stops and prefer them over the Flying J's anyway........less Rv's:)
Date Posted: August 18, 2006, 09:56:56 PM
Flying J's are starting to prohibit RV's from parking over night. We have never had problems at truck stops and prefer them over the Flying J's anyway........less Rv's:)

cheryl

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #16 on: August 26, 2006, 08:07:17 PM »
I think is a place to mention this.  First off, I think an overnite at a Walmart once in awhile is ok.  We have done it a couple of times on a long day traveling to another location for a stay.  Putting out the slide and jacks, well I guess when in Rome...... BUT while we were in Cody, WY the Walmart should have been named Walmart RV Park.  We stayed right outside of Cody for a week and went into Cody 5 of the seven days.  Each time (in the middle of the day) we would count 11 to 12 units, several we saw day after day.
There are many RV parks in Cody and around so I think this would rate as abuse of a good thing in case you need one for a night out on the road with no parks around or just passing through.  Just my thoughts!
Cheryl

woodartist

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #17 on: August 26, 2006, 08:16:45 PM »
Well Cheryl, it is like so many things where a few ruin it for the rest of us. I've seen the RV'ers put their slides out, fire up the outside stove, spread out the lawn chairs, etc. No attempt to be discreet. Same thing with casino lots........oddly the worst offenders seem to be the folks who could afford a campground ;)

Just Lou

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #18 on: August 26, 2006, 09:43:22 PM »
I snapped this pic in the Sam's Club parking lot in Anchorage, Alaska in July of this year.  They stayed there two days.  The curtains stayed closed and the generator ran the whole time.  How do I know this?  I sat there too.
lou
« Last Edit: August 26, 2006, 09:53:36 PM by OnaQuest »
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CeeBeeEll

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #19 on: August 31, 2006, 10:05:48 PM »
Our first time in a Walmart on the way to New Mexico last year.  It was our second night out after spending nearly $30 dollars on the honor system at a campground that we got to at 11:00 PM and left at 6:30 AM.. still no one in the office.

Anyway that night was the first time I discovered what hours the parking lot sweepers work!  I think he started about 3:00AM and finished an hour later.  I could have sworn he spent the entire time circling our coach.  I think thats the only time since we've had that happen.  I think they are great for a quick overnite stop.
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Smoky

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #20 on: August 31, 2006, 10:55:55 PM »
Anyone who knows us knows we LOVE staying in Walmarts. 

Never had a problem there and better security than most campgrounds.  We only use them when we are in transit on long haul trips, but we greatly enjoy them.  In fact my icon on these messages is currently the Larmie WalMart with a rainbow over their sign.  Laramie has one of the most scenic views among all the WMs.

When we were in Cody we stayed at the KOA, but I was quite envious of the WalMart RVers.  They had an excellent location right next to the rodeo and a short drive to the museum.  That is one of the most RV friendly WMs anywhere. They even have big signs up instructing RVers where to take their trash.

No one should feel bad about putting slides out if they park at the back of the lot.  Every seasoned WM RVer does this.  We like to pick a spot that has a grass lot on one side.  Then we put out the slides on the grass side of the coach.  Interferes with no one.  Would be impossible to navigate through our bedroom without at least one side out.  If you can't get a spot by the grass, and you are sure the size of the parking lot is such that it never fills up, then park vertically across a series of parking spaces.  Never ever block a driveway.  We advise against putting out awnings, chairs, etc because that is just begging for trouble and is camping in the real sense of the word.

The bigest hazzard at WM is errant carts flying through the neighborhood.

We make a point during each stay to go around with a trash bag and pick up trash.  We then, like Betty always go around and gather up carts.

We were once chewed out for this being told we were taking jobs away from employees.  How silly can you get?  Does this mean everyone should leave trash and carts all over the lots to insure that WM has plenty of jobs to offer?  LOL!   ;D  I can assure you the employees and managers are thankful when we do our part and it gives RVers a good name.  If everyone did that it would help a lot and it only takes a few minutes and is good exercise.
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John From Detroit

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #21 on: September 01, 2006, 08:32:45 AM »
Well, when we went out west last Jan we were in a hurry so we traveled on the Flying J plan, which meant I had to deal with winey women cause wife wanted to put out slides and such (I am flexable but as tight as they park rigs in a Flying-J I did not want slides knocked off by a passing seim which was not supposed to be in the RV lot to begin with)

But it worked out fairly well.

Coming back we paid for campgrounds since there was less hurry,   this year it will likely be a mixed lot.  Longest I've stayed in a Wall-mart lot is a few hours (Actually wife stayed in the lot,,, I dropped and headed to a nearby business where the RV would not fit well, actually it would fit on the lot (They have several simular size rigs there) but I don't care for the traffic there with the RV so I parked and drove the towed)  I don't like Wal-Mart for other reasons.

As for taking up employee parking... Many stores request emp;loyees park "Out around the edges" of the lot, in the less desierable parking places.  It fits 100% with the Wal-Mart management style to demand (not request but demand) this of their employees.  (This has to do with why I don't like Wall-mart) and, of course, as a courtisy to the customers and, thus to management, this is where I'm going to want to park my big rig, out along the edge, where nobody else is parked, so I'm not taking up prime parking

So, perhaps you were parked in the employee section of the lot
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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #22 on: September 02, 2006, 10:27:16 PM »
I think you missed my point John.  I was talking about someone who said if we played good Sam and picked up trash around the parking lot and returned carts that other people had left abandoned, then we would be taking away JOBS, not parking spaces.
Smoky S  Ham radio - W3PY

The magic of a campfire
where the fish get bigger
the mountains get higher
the hike was uphill both ways
and new friends become old friends

2005 KSDP3910 Newmar Kountry Star
Toad - Taurus wagon w/ axle lock
On our way to the Poudre River in Colorado for the summer!

Jim Dick

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #23 on: September 02, 2006, 10:37:21 PM »


We were once chewed out for this being told we were taking jobs away from employees.  How silly can you get?  Does this mean everyone should leave trash and carts all over the lots to insure that WM has plenty of jobs to offer?  LOL!   ;D  I can assure you the employees and managers are thankful when we do our part and it gives RVers a good name.  If everyone did that it would help a lot and it only takes a few minutes and is good exercise.

The next time someone tries that just tell them that picking up carts that lazy shoppers couldn't return is not their primary job. They have other duties but when most of the carts are left in the parking lot someone has to bring them back.
Jim

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Wendy

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #24 on: September 03, 2006, 11:32:49 AM »
Have you ever seen a WalMart that didn't have a "Help Wanted" sign up? How can you be taking jobs away from people at WalMart if they can't find enough people to fill the jobs they have? Same goes for grocery stores....not a one in our area that doesn't have a "Help Wanted" sign.
Wendy, Mike, and Gordon
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Smoky

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #25 on: September 03, 2006, 10:52:05 PM »
LOL Wendy.  True!  I will point that out the next time I am accosted by another "save jobs" weirdo. 

Though likely that was a once in a lifetime incident. 

My answer to them was to ask them if they then thought everyone should just leave their trash all over the parking lot.   ;D
Smoky S  Ham radio - W3PY

The magic of a campfire
where the fish get bigger
the mountains get higher
the hike was uphill both ways
and new friends become old friends

2005 KSDP3910 Newmar Kountry Star
Toad - Taurus wagon w/ axle lock
On our way to the Poudre River in Colorado for the summer!

BigEdW

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #26 on: September 05, 2006, 02:42:23 PM »
Just as a quick note, I worked at both a Sears and a Penny's during my college years, and both demanded, not requested, that we employees park at the far ends of the lot as a courtesy to the customers. It was mall policy, not the individual stores. I even know of one case where an employee's car was towed because he consistantly parked closer in.

woodartist

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #27 on: September 05, 2006, 03:12:32 PM »
Might be hard to understand, but there are people out there who do work for a living and at a low pay. Maybe they lose a few overtime hours because of someone, who has a ton of money, is trying to innocently take them away. There is a real world out there? Heck, WM isn't even union.

Jim Dick

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #28 on: September 05, 2006, 10:08:23 PM »
Just as a quick note, I worked at both a Sears and a Penny's during my college years, and both demanded, not requested, that we employees park at the far ends of the lot as a courtesy to the customers. It was mall policy, not the individual stores. I even know of one case where an employee's car was towed because he consistantly parked closer in.
m
Big Ed,

At a Mall in CT there are parking spots marked in white a quite a few marked in yellow. I believe the yellow are for Mall employees. Always the furthest from the entrance.  Never see many parked there but it's great when we take the motorhome on a run. We have lots of room to park out of the way! :)
Jim

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Just Lou

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Re: 1st Walmart Overnite
« Reply #29 on: September 06, 2006, 05:14:01 PM »
I have been a vendor representative, with products in all the Big Box and Home Improvement stores, for the past five years. 

It is standard practice, whether in a shopping center or stand alone environment, to demand that all employees and service vendors park in remote areas of available parking.  As Jim said, they usually paint a line or use a different color paint to mark these areas.

I have heard many a store/center manager remind their folks that this was a condition of employment.

I can also tell you, although they may not always enforce it, that it is Lowe's and HD's corporate policy to NOT allow overnight RV parking.  They will generally defer to the Shopping Center policy when located in that environment.
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