A Full-timing To Do List

So, what exactly does one need to do to prepare for full-time RVing? Glad you should ask. Everyone’s situation and needs are going to be a little different, but here is a peek at my personal list for anyone who might be curious.  For those of you embarking on your own full-timing journeys, feel free to steal it and alter it to suit yourself.

These items aren’t necessarily in order. This is just meant to be a loose collection of the big things that need to happen, so that I can stay on track.


To Do! 1/12

  • Change all bills/paper mail to electronic where possible, scan important documents and keep copies somewhere safe?
  • Buy laptop, look into Millenicom for Internet card
  • Sign up for Escapees, sign up for Passport America
  • Determine mail forwarding solution (My Dakota Address or Alternative Solutions) Set up new address at least 1 mo before departing to get everything switched to it!
  • Work my butt off on figuring out location independent income! Be making /some/ before departing (set a goal for this?)
  • Move w/ J to small/cheaper living in September to work on savings
  • Buy Casita once circumstances allow (At least $16.5k if staying in one place for a while with steady income, 19k for traveling) See Purchasing Out of state document for details
  • Continue selling stuff (TV, gaming stuff)
  • Give away stuff that won’t sell (books, etc)
  • Decide on Insurance for Rving/truck/etc. Make sure it is full-timing insurance!
  • Decide on personal insurance – Likely a high deductable plan through some place like BCBS
  • Learn to drive the RV – attend a driving course or rally through Escapees
  • Spend at least a couple months taking shakedown trips and determining what is needed for full-timing
  • Finish any necessary mods or repairs to RV
  • Get old 401k moved to current bank IRA? Stick with Wells Fargo or maybe move to Simple Bank if out of beta and looking good by then?
  • Plan our first route, including places to stop to earn income if needed (Quartzsite selling, working at Amazon, etc.)
  • Go to doctor, dentist, & get vision checked before losing full-time work benefits/heading out
  • Set up SD residency, get driver’s license, vehicle and RV registration settled
  • Visit parents, drop off anything that needs to get stored & clean my room.


  • Decide on state to live in
  • Decide on tow vehicle & RV
  • Determine how much $ is needed
  • Start downsizing

A few notes. Notice how I don’t have all the answers yet. Some things on this list are ideas I haven’t looked into or decided on, this is quite intentional. If I was to stress about every point on this list right now I’d probably drive myself crazy.

Instead, I know which points on this list are next up to do (purchasing the Casita, finding a better way to make money, rolling 401k over), and I’m just focusing on those points. Or at least, I was until this whole job searching thing got in the way. But once that is all settled, I’ll have this as a guide to get back on track.

I realize some of these little notes won’t make much sense to people who aren’t me. If there is a point on this list you would like clarified, leave a comment and I’ll do my best. If there is enough interest, I’d be willing to explain some of these points in more detail in future posts. For example, why I decided on South Dakota, and how I narrowed my RVing clubs down to those two.

This past week has been kind of crazy. If you every want to shake your life up in a major way: quit your full-time job without having a new one lined up. My last day at the old job will be this Friday. The roomie has 3 days off from work and I’ve been telling potential employers that I can’t start until the 31st. Originally those three days were going to be set aside for auditioning for the Georgia Renaissance Festival, something I’ve always wanted to do. However, the the place I’m likely to be getting an offer from today won’t let me have 8 weekends off in a row, so we’ve scratched that idea (for now, it’ll happen some year!) and instead will be going to the Florida Keys this weekend. It looks like I’ll be getting even more truck camping experience.

Wishing you all a good week, and the same sort of weather that we’ve been having around here lately (highs in the 70’s, lows that don’t drop below 50).

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At IO I teach people how to ditch the status quo and travel full-time before retirement, and share stories of my adventures (and misadventures) to inspire future nomads and armchair travelers alike. Included at no additional charge: seizing your dreams, living boldly, and making a difference.


  1. Kelly on April 13, 2014 at 9:53 pm

    What does Quartzite selling mean? Just curious

    • Becky on April 14, 2014 at 5:11 pm

      Quartzsite is a town in Arizona that most of the year is small and rather insignificant, but during the winter RVers from all over the country converge there to make it the third largest city in the state. There’s also a huge RV show that happens there every year at that time and a large flea market where RVers and vendors can sell wares. It’s been a goal of mine since I first thought of going RVing to visit Quartzsite and sell something I’ve made with my own two hands there. This winter I’ll be heading there for the first time, I’m very excited. Whether or not I’ll have had the time to make something to sell remains to be seen.

  2. Ross Macintosh on February 4, 2012 at 6:57 am

    Another thing you can be do in advance is to put together a great first-aid / emergency kit. My thoughts are it should be better equiped than those little pre-prepared kits you can buy that have a half dozen band-aids. Think instead of serious accidents like cutting yourself with a hatchet (outch!) when boondocking miles from help. Hopefully you’ll never need the kit but if you do you’ll be glad you were prepared.

    What you end up putting in such a kit could be another great blog entry. If you do, I’m sure you’ll get lots of great feedback from your followers. Don’t forget matches and a big spool of dental floss!

    Cheers! Ross
    (from Prince Edward Island – the land of lawn tractors)

    • Becky on February 5, 2012 at 1:15 pm

      Thanks for the tips Ross, good idea!

  3. Ross Macintosh on January 31, 2012 at 5:11 pm

    One idea I’ve thought about is it could be a good idea to put copies of all your important computer files on Google Docs — it is the free virtual file storage/sharing service offered by Google as part of the Google Mail service. They give you 1024mb of free secure server space to store files. Where this becomes important is you can access it from any internet-connected computer from anywhere. So if your computer dies, is stollen, or lost, at least you can still access your important files. Archive scans of important documents, all your contact info for friends & family, your favorite URL’s, various passwords/user names, important photos etc. Save copies of anything you might want to access from another computer if you become separated from yours. It can allow you to live “light” without excessive worry of losing your computer.

    Regards, Ross
    (from Prince Edward Island, Canada)

    • Becky on January 31, 2012 at 6:19 pm

      Thanks for the tip Ross, I already have google mail so I’ll definitely look into that.

  4. Pleinguy on January 28, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    Another item I don’t see is the important papers file you may need like birth certificate, a medical directive just in case, emergency contact info, and critical med info like blood type, medications used, allergies, etc., even though you are still young a will and a power of attorney left with someone (you never know when you might become incapacitated), a passport card just in case you decide to go into Canada or Mexico. Think about such things you might need. I wrote a blog post called Papers and Proofs you might want to read.
    Pleinguy recently posted..Projects UnderwayMy Profile

    • Becky on January 30, 2012 at 5:27 pm

      Heya Plein. I grouped all of this stuff in that first bullet of ‘scan important documents and keep copies somewhere safe?’.

      Right now I have paper copies of important paperwork in a little file cabinet in my room, but I worry about taking originals on the road with me in case something happens, so I’m contemplating carrying digital copies and leaving the originals with my folks who can send them to me if/when I need them.

      I hope you’re continuing to make good progress. 🙂

  5. Brian on January 24, 2012 at 7:44 am

    I’ll suggest some type of roadside assistance/towing service that caters to RV’ers.

    • Becky on January 24, 2012 at 5:10 pm

      Ahh, thanks for reminding me Brian! At some point I had thought of that, but the idea never made it onto this list. Never underestimate the power of more sets of eyes for proof reading. 🙂

  6. george on January 24, 2012 at 12:12 am

    It all looks good Becky ! The only thing I would add is that it’s good to have a plan, but equally important to be willing to flexible as the plan has to change !
    I have looking at Casita’s on their website out of curiosity, and I can’t wait to hear your of your experience in it once you get one. Looks like a great little trailer.

    • Becky on January 24, 2012 at 5:07 pm

      Thanks George, I’m so excited. 🙂

      And yeah, this list is in constant flux, this is merely a snapshot of one point in time, haha. I did a good number on it already this year with my decision to switch jobs.

  7. The Good Luck Duck on January 23, 2012 at 6:09 pm

    If you establish a SD domicile, you may find low-cost high-deductible plans there more reasonably. You’ve probably checked out eHealthInsurance.

    I don’t want to spam you, but I’ve stolen ideas from different places and put them on a page:

    The Good Luck Duck recently posted..Crossing over.My Profile

    • Becky on January 24, 2012 at 5:05 pm

      Huh, and somehow the response I made to this yesterday got lost, odd.

      Anyway, it’s funny you should bring this up Roxanne because I spent a couple hours looking up high-deductible plans yesterday on eHealthInsurance. The job offer I thought was coming yesterday did come! It’s only part-time though so I had to get insurance for myself. Just because I was curious I put in a Sioux Falls zip code to peek, and indeed the plans are cheaper, but there are less options. Humana and Blue Cross Blue Shield don’t seem to exist up there. I’m guessing smaller premiums will mean smaller networks, but it’ll work out.

  8. Dale on January 23, 2012 at 1:02 pm

    For mail forwarding Escapess offers a great plan if you want to be a Texan.
    I use http://www.sbimailservice.com/ . So I use Florida as a home-base (SBI is awesome!). For Health Insurance I have a Cover Florida plan.

    Lots of RVers use South Dakota too. So you will likely have good luck with that as well.
    Have fun,

    • Becky on January 23, 2012 at 6:31 pm

      Heya Dale. Yeah, it seems like Florida, North Dakota, and Texas are the big three when it comes to full-timers who don’t own property somewhere. I’m pretty set on SD, but thanks for the link. That’s one more to add to my resources list. 🙂

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