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RVing message boards => Destinations, RV Parks, Routes => Camping at Wal*Mart and other non-campgrounds => Topic started by: Sam Bar on May 08, 2014, 07:14:55 AM

Title: Overnight in Walmarts?
Post by: Sam Bar on May 08, 2014, 07:14:55 AM

I will be towing my tt down to my house in the Smokie's next month on hwy 81 and am wondering if I will be able to pull off when I am tired and overnight in a Walmart parking lot?  Do all of them allow this, or just some?  It would be much more convenient than staying in a hotel.

It would probably be in Va. that I will be looking to stay.


Title: Re: Overnight in Walmarts?
Post by: Rene T on May 08, 2014, 08:27:17 AM
Last fall and this spring going to and from FL we stayed at Walmart's and had no issues. Just make sure you contact the store manager to get his permission an find out where he want's you to park even if there is already other people parked there. Something I always do is grab a shopping cart and put a few items in it prior to talking to them manager. Good PR. Another place is Cracker Barrels They generally allow you to stay in their lots but typically it's harder to get into their lots. I've heard of some Walmart's don't allow overnight parking but I understand that's regulated by local ordinances. Some things I do is stay hooked up to my truck. I do extend my front jacks a litle at times just to be a little more stable. Do not open slides unless it's absolutely necessary, don't run a generator, don't open up your awning and start grilling and leave early in the morning. Do not spend more than 1 night there. Good luck and happy motoring.
Title: Re: Overnight in Walmarts?
Post by: John From Detroit on May 08, 2014, 08:41:18 AM
Do all allow or just some.

Neighborhood Wal*marts, small stores that have "Business Hours" (not 24hours per day) fairly rare, Small lots no overnight parking.

Regular and Super Store Wal*Marts: With one excpetion do allow overnight parking by company policy however read on.

ONE store, Auto dealer next door has been a pain in the policy, put his excess inventory on WM's lot so they had to ban, Apologies to the RVers, but they had to ban.

MANY: the Campground Owners Association lobbies government bodies, City, County and State, trying to force us to pay their members for parking.. No matter if its 15 miles of hard driving and you are already over tired, No matter if it is often cheaper to park in a CG and eat "Home cooking" Than to eat in the restaurant attached to teh WM lot or Flying-J.  They cite such things as sanitation (Helped by the idiot who dumped his tanks in a WM lot,, NOTE the use of the singular) and such to get governments to ban overnight RV parking except in a licensed campground.. THIS IS NOT WAL*MARTs FAULT.

Most "posted" Lots,  are due to such laws.. I believe Nebraska is one such state by the way.  Others I can not comment on as I've only encountered a state wide ban in NE.   Clark County, NV has such a law as well but under pressure from the Casinos has modified it some.. Not sure the current status as I've not been back there since it's passage.
Title: Re: Overnight in Walmarts?
Post by: Jammer on May 08, 2014, 12:15:00 PM
The other thing to watch is that there may be a limit on how many rvs they can accommodate.

In Minnesota if there are more than four RVs camping then the state regulations for campgrounds apply (must be licensed by the state, must have local zoning approval, must have shower, toilet, and water within 400 feet of each site, must use designated sites with at least 10' spacing between rigs, must post a 10 mph speed limit, must have a dump station).  Walmart managers in Minnesota keep track of how many RVs are spending the night and will not permit more than four at once.

Title: Re: Overnight in Walmarts?
Post by: Foto-n-T on May 11, 2014, 10:45:32 AM
We use Walmart a lot while transitioning from north to south or visa verse.  It's always a good idea to call ahead when you have an idea of what your final destination is going to be.  We've found that in resort type areas you're more likely to find camping not allowed, although here in Cody only 45 miles from Yellowstone our Walmart during the summer often looks like an RV park.

One of the things which we've learned over the years is that a Walmart isn't the only place you can stay.  We've also used Lowes or Home Depot up in the northern central states where RV parks are few and far between in March or April.  A recent epiphany we had was in Boise City Oklahoma.  Given the fact that this town is just a wide spot in the road and the local grocery store parking lot is hardly big enough for a pickup let alone a Freightliner with a toy hauler behind it we back tracked to a local church parking lot.  Since then we've used a number of church parking lots as an overnite stop although unless you want to hang around for the service it's basically only a six nite a week option.
Title: Re: Overnight in Walmarts?
Post by: jglass on November 17, 2014, 12:07:20 AM
My wife says the Wal-Mart web page says overnight parking at Wal-Mart is allowed if space permits.

However, the Wal-Mart at Kenora, Ontario is posted "No Overnight Parking".

Some Wal-Marts along the Great Lakes are posted "No Overnight Parking".   I didn't
 notice the signs untill the next morning.    The Wal-Mart greater told me that was for snow removal in the winter and not to worry about it in warm weather.
Title: Re: Overnight in Walmarts?
Post by: SMR on November 17, 2014, 04:43:34 PM
we stayed at WalMart once- I called the store prior to the trip to make sure it was OK to overnight there. when we arrived we went to the service desk and let them know we were staying the night- they told us were to park.