Patti’s Saga of An RV Rookie: “How to Earn Money RVing: Chapter 2: “Doing it Off-Line.”

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January 26, 2011

You know who you are. You hate the internet, or would, if you knew enough about it. You’ve always thought “online” referred to wet clothes in the backyard and that an “attachment” is a connection with another person (true, but it means something else in the techno world). It’s ok. You’re not alone. According to a recent Pew Foundation study, 21% of all American adults agree with you. That’s right. One-fifth,  just like you, avoid the internet. You’re only reading this blog because your techno-geek spouse or friend printed it out for you… because you for sure the heck aren’t getting on the internet!

So does having zero interest in the internet mean you can’t earn money from your RV? Or lessen your value as a human being? Or that you’re not quite right in the head? Of course not! Earning money from an RV without the internet may be more challenging, but the work exists.


  1. What skills do you have?  Were you a security guard, plumber, barber, mechanic, handyman, landscaper before you started RVing?
  2. Can you visualize using those skills in an RV park or campsite? Might someone need what you have to offer?  For example:

Let’s say you’re a handyman; a Mr. Fix-it kind of guy:

  • Make new business cards.
  • Drive your rig up to the place you pay at the campground. I’m sure there’s a name for it…somewhere.
  • Exchange pleasantries with the campground host. Let him/her know if anyone needs help with anything, you’re available. You’ll be on-site for x days, and would they consider referring you? Leave a couple of your business cards with the host. Check back to chat.  Maintain relationships. People need to know you’re not an idiot.

The worst that can happen?  Hearing a host say, “Sorry…no can do.” The best?  Hearing a host say, “Sure, folks always  need help with something. I’ll send them your way.”  What do you have to lose?

  • Think of a situation when  RVers  may need reputable help from, say, a security guard ( I can think of two right now), plumber, barber, etc? Try to think “outside the box.”

So you know I’m not blowing smoke, I just called four RV parks. I asked if they would accept my business card when I registered and refer campers to me  that needed  a handy (wo) man. Three responded “Sure”  and one replied, “Probably.’   Guaranteed source of income? No. Potential for income? Yes.

3.   Workamping:  This website offers unique ideas and things to consider.

4.   Workamping:  This Good Sam’s Club forum offers exchanges among RVers with all kinds of income making ideas.

5.  Other ideas:

  • Selling RV stuff for RV or travel companies:  a/k/a become a “rep.”
  • Selling a high- quality, family-friendly product. I bought some Mary Kay night cream from a lady at an RV park…I beat on her door after seeing the sticker on her toad (car they towed).
  • Read RV or travel magazines. Study articles carefully. See what the publisher likes: she paid someone for that article; why not you? Then submit your own article or review of a place/product. You can send your writing snail mail (unless the company requires email submissions).
  • Sell your crafts, handmade soap, jewelry, etc. beside your RV.  I called three RV parks and asked if I could set up a discreet card table and display my handcrocheted dishcloths under my awning.  Again, each park said it would be fine. NOTE: However, each county, state and national park I called said “No” and explained they have  restrictions. So be up front. Always ask. Do the right thing.

Earning money can be a challenge from anyplace–RVing is no exception. It requires creativity, self-motivation, and a willingness to do your homework. It might mean retraining. I invite you to visit next week’s blog,   “ How to Earn Money RVing: Chapter 3 “Time to Retool.” I hope to see you here again.

Happy Tales,


Leave a Reply


  1. Hi Jakob~

    To reiterate what Patti said, I think our readers would really appreciate hearing how you juggle work and RVing. Would you consider writing a guest blog for us about the subject? We would love to keep the conversation going.

  2. Patti Faustini

    Hey there, Jakob, and great hearing from you again. Can you write back and share a bit about your online business venture, and how it’s going? I think readers are always interested in things like this. I’ll be starting a blog series on full timing from an RV,and we’ll probably have tips to share and exchange. Have you chosen your coach yet?

    Happy tales to you and yours,

  3. Jakob Hardon


    Just wanted to comment here and say you’ve got the right frame of mind for those who are looking for ways to make money on the internet while living full-time in an RV!

    As a soon-to-be full-timer, I knew I was going to have to find a way to ensure I had sufficient funds in order to sustain the life-style I was planning for (fuel, food, cell phone, etc., etc.,) and decided – much like you’ve mentioned in another post (doing what you love) to take my love of writing, as well as SEO (search engine optimization) and apply it to an online venture I could do while out on the road.

    Over the last few months, as I work to finalize my coach selection, as well as travel plans for the upcoming year, my online business/venture has allowed me to make a pretty good sizable income and will allow me to run my business successfully while out on the road!

    I look forward to reading more of your posts and hopefully sharing a few tips that have worked for me over the last few months to your fellow readers!


    Jakob Hardon

  4. reinita

    Well, we can both root against the University of Michigan! (I’m a Spartan). So we’re good. Will definitely check back in. it helps with the cabin fever.
    Can’t imagine we’ll be out camping any time before May. It’s been in the teens and single digits up until this weekend. And there’s still February. Brrrrr…
    Safe travels to you and yours!

  5. Patti Faustini

    Thank you , Reinita! Michigan? I graduated from Ohio State…I hope that doesn’t make us enemies! A marathon blog reading session sounds like fun! Stay in touch…I’ll be writing more about earning money while RVing and doing some book reviews as well. I look forward to hearing from you again.

    Happy Tales, Patti

  6. reinita

    Patti, I stumbled on your blog and just read all of your posts. A quick note to tell you how much I enjoyed them. I’m in Michigan and have serious cabin fever…ergo the marathon blog-reading session. (Actually, a little embarrassed to say that I’ve spent most of the past week reading and shopping online for rv gear for our trailer). Thanks for sharing your experiences with us.

  7. Patti Faustini

    Hey there Butterbean! I thought of work you could do from your RV, based on your last comment: What about traveling the country writing reviews of local beer and hot BBQ sandwiches that you “test” in roadside haunts? Could this be be you? Sure, it may be a dirty job, but someone has to do it! (:

    Happy Tales, Patti

  8. butterbean carpenter

    Howdy Patti,
    As Billy Crystal would say, “you so smaht”!!! If I can ever think up something I can do; sitting down
    with a cold favorite in one hand and a hot bar-b-que samich in the other and make money doing it
    in an RV, maybe!!! Give me some ideas, please…

    Smooth roads & balmy breezes…

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