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RV Holiday Magic: Creative Ways to Use Your RV This Season

Published on November 30th, 2023 by Dave Helgeson

According to the RVIA (Recreational Industry Association), 55% of us took an RV holiday vacation for Thanksgiving weekend. My wife and I did. How about you?

You don’t need to put your RV away for winter!

In the RVIA’s Holiday Travel Intentions Survey, the results show that 20 million Americans are planning to go RVing throughout the holiday season. This is a 30% increase over 2022. But that’s not the most interesting part of this news, according to the RVIA survey.

Not all will hit the road though. 56% of those planning to use an RV this holiday season will park it at home and use it for guest accommodations. 49% will use it as an extra kitchen for food prep and storage.

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20 Million Americans Planning An RV Holiday Vacation,” The Recreational Industry Association

After reading this, the light bulb went off in my head. What better way to infuse some festive holiday spirit than by embracing the versatility of an RV? From vans to fifth wheels and everything in-between, any recreational vehicle can be transformed into a mobile haven of holiday joy!

Creative and Festive Ways to Use an RV in the Holiday Season.

From spreading cheer through campground caroling parties and festive potlucks, to creating a traveling RV light display and hosting RV park crafting nights, your rig can be a hub of holiday merriment.

Here are some ways I may turn my RV into a cozy retreat that spreads cheer this season. You can do the same with any of these ten ways to create RV holiday vacation magic at home or on the road..

Make It a Mobile Winter Wonderland

Transform your RV into a winter wonderland with festive decorations.

Adorn the exterior with twinkling lights, wreaths, and even a small Christmas tree strapped to the roof rack.
 On the inside, bring in holiday-themed throw pillows, blankets, and table settings. Consider battery-operated fairy lights for added ambience. List item

The goal is to create a cozy and festive atmosphere that captures the magic of the season.

Turn your campsite into a winter celebration! (Image: Shutterstock)
Turn your campsite into a winter celebration! (Image: Shutterstock)

Organize an RV Park Caroling Party

Spread joy to fellow RVers by organizing a caroling party at your chosen RV park.

Invite neighbors to join in the festivities and create a makeshift choir to sing classic Christmas carols.
 Bring along instruments like a portable keyboard or guitar for added musical flair.
Consider setting up a small refreshment station around a group campfire with hot cocoa, cookies, and festive treats to share the warmth of the season.    
RV holiday cookie party! (Image: Social Knowledge)
RV holiday cookie party! (Image: Social Knowledge)

Show a Christmas Movie Marathon Under the Stars

Utilize the outdoor space around your rig by hosting an RV holiday movie marathon under the stars. If you are in a colder or rainy climate, you can hold movie night in the RV park covered pavilion or reservable shelter at a state park.

Choose classic holiday films, or let everyone vote for their favorites.
Set up a projector and screen. Invite fellow RVers to bring their camp chairs to join in the cinematic festivities.
Don’t forget to bring blankets and popcorn for the full movie night experience.

Host a DIY Ornament Crafting Night

Gather friends and family inside your rig or the RV park clubhouse for a festive crafting night to make DIY holiday ornaments

Set up a table with art supplies. You can use a variety of materials, from traditional paper and glue to more unconventional options like pinecones, fabric scraps, and even small RV-themed decorations.

Not only does this activity spread holiday cheer, but it also provides participants with unique keepsakes.

Set Up a Campground Secret Santa Exchange

Organize a Secret Santa gift exchange at your campground. Create a sign-up sheet and encourage other RVers to participate. You are certain to make some new friends along with the fun.

Set a budget for the gifts to keep it inclusive and make sure everyone receives a thoughtful present.
On a designated evening, gather around a communal fire pit or decorated common area to exchange gifts.

A Secret Santa party fosters a sense of community, and  adds an element of surprise and delight to the holiday season. 

Embrace the holiday spirit by creating a traveling light parade.

Host a Festive Potluck Dinner

Organize a festive potluck dinner with your RV community. Encourage fellow RVers to prepare and share their favorite holiday dishes.

Set up a communal dining area outdoors, like a reservable picnic table in a state park.
Give it an RV holiday vacation feel complete with holiday-themed tablecloths, candles, and centerpieces.

This communal meal fosters a sense of togetherness. Everyone can enjoy a variety of seasonal treats while swapping stories and creating lasting memories.

And don’t worry; cooking a holiday meal in your RV doesn’t have to be hard. There are plenty of easy RV meals you can make in a tiny kitchen.

Coordinate a Traveling Light Parade

Coordinate with other RVers in the area and agree on a night to illuminate your RVs with dazzling lights.
Take your decorated RV for a slow drive through the campground. Consider driving by a local senior center. Think of locations where everyone can enjoy the twinkling spectacle.

Maybe take it up a notch and join in a community led event like a lighted tractor parade or an evening Christmas parade. This is great holiday fun, where vehicles large and small are decorated with lights and driven down main street for the enjoyment of young and old.

You can even turn it into a friendly RV holiday competition with your fellow RVers. Compete in categories like “Most Creative Display” or “Best Use of LED Lights.”

RV holiday lights with travel trailer and truck in parking lot (Image: Dave Helgeson)
Celebrate the holidays in your RV! (Image: Dave Helgeson)

Chase the Snow in Your RV

If you’re a fan of a white Christmas, plan a trip to a snowy destination. Head to a winter wonderland where you can experience the magic of snowfall, build snowmen, and engage in winter sports.

If you have never tried cold weather RVing, here are some winter camping tips to get you started. Once you and your RV are equipped for cold weather, be ready to embrace the unique charm of celebrating the holidays surrounded by a pristine blanket of snow.

Volunteer for a Holiday Cause

Spread holiday cheer beyond your RV community by volunteering for a local holiday cause.

Whether it’s serving meals at a community kitchen, participating in a toy drive, or helping decorate a local shelter, volunteering adds a meaningful dimension to your holiday celebrations. It’s a wonderful way to give back to the communities you visit during your RV travels.

While it is always better to give than receive, you might be receiving a little gift too, as your travel costs while volunteering are likely tax deductible.

Host a New Year’s Eve Campground Countdown

Welcome the New Year with a campground countdown celebration. Coordinate with fellow RVers for a synchronized countdown to midnight.

Set up a central gathering point where everyone can come together, share resolutions, and toast to the upcoming year.
Consider organizing a fireworks display (if allowed) to add a dazzling touch to your on-the-road New Year’s Eve festivities.

Even if you don’t plan to take a trip this holiday season, your RV can make a great extra bedroom for guests. It’s a terrific place to store Christmas presents, serve as a second kitchen, or just a quiet place to escape the hustle and bustle.

Take an RV Holiday Vacation Wherever Your Wheels Take You

The holiday season is a time for joy, connection, and creating lasting memories. Your RV, with its mobility and adaptability, provides a unique canvas on which to paint your holiday adventures.

Whether you’re parked in a snowy mountain retreat, a coastal campground, or a desert oasis, the creative ways to use your RV during this festive season are as boundless as your imagination.

Embrace the magic of the season, share it with your fellow RVers, and create a holiday experience that goes beyond the ordinary. After all, the road less traveled often leads to the most memorable celebrations.

This post may contain affiliate links or mention our own products, please check out our disclosure policy here.

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