On this web site there is no such thing as a dumb question when newcomers need help

May 01, 2007
On this web site there is no such thing as a dumb question when newcomers need help

Joan and Dave are new to the caravanning, camping and Recreational Vehicle experience so we have created a new section in our Public Forums on GoSeeAustralia and New Zealand - Newbie Questions - to help.

We all were Newbies once. So as they take to the road we hope you wiser heads will be with them all the way.

Here is what Joan and Dave asked us to help with -

"Just a thought - as we are just new to the whole caravanning scene (we take delivery of our new (old) van tomorrow - very nervous and scared at the thought of driving it from Bayswater to Mornington, Vic.!!")

Perhaps you could consider this group of people like ourselves - as complete novices and in need of as much advice and helpful tips/techniques as all you veterans can give us!!

What do we need to know regarding caravan park etiquette??

What do we need to remember to bring with us?? ..... etc. etc.

Looking forward to this next new phase in our lives.

Regards Joan Dave, Australia


Well Joan Dave, you are right, This is a great idea as it separates the beginner stuff into one easy forum for those just starting.

Secondly, as it is advertised as for newbies there should be no such thing as a dumb question, we all have the right to learn.

Here is a basic list looking at the caravanning thing from the following angles:

Car Equipment.

Caravan exterior.

Interior requirements and;

Luxury nice to haves.

Happy  campers Pauline and Robert Ferguson
Happy campers Pauline and Robert Ferguson

Under essential Car Equipment either before picking up the caravan or

fitted/purchased when picking up the caravan:

Tow Mirrors

Tow bar (of suitable rating).

Trailer wiring and socket.

Electric Brake controller (If required) .

Weight distribution/anti sway bars dependant on caravan selected .

For the exterior of the caravan:

D shackles for safety chains (with suitable rating) .

Wheel chocks for parking (may be just couple timber blocks) .

15 amp power cable (can be purchased from dealer, or hardware store).

Sullage drain hose .

Food quality water hose (stops bad tastes in tanks) .

For Interior:

Anti-slip mats for cupboards and bench tops .

Basic dinner set (either cheap crockery or plastic/melamine).

Cutlery .

Cooking pots .

Basic utensiles for cooking .

Bedding.

Towels.

Torch.

Basic spices (salt pepper all season etc to taste ).

Washing up stuff (soap, tea towels).

Luxury nice to haves:

TV / Entertainment.

Cloths hangers.

Laundry bag.

Spare chemicals for tiolet if fitted.

Electric blower heater (thermostat controlled is best) .

Breakfast for two
Breakfast for two

Hope this kicks it off there is much more.

One last thing, don't be too nervous driving just take your time and plan ahead with certain things like:

Get into the required lane long before any turns as it is harder to merge with a caravan.

Allow extra clearance when cornering (caravans cut corners).

Allow extra braking distance.

Don't be pushed or bullied by other vehicles, safety first.

When backing have someone direct (with longer caravans we use handheld UHF so the person assisting can be where they can see and still communicate with the driver).

Be carefull and mindful of overhanging branches/awnings/eaves if you have a full height caravan campervan or motorhome.

Here are some features which will help with getting the best from life on the road:

There is  nothing quite like a good, safe, campfire
There is nothing quite like a good, safe, campfire
Campervan comfort makes home any place at all.
Campervan comfort makes home any place at all.
Caravan family Kerry, Rob and Ty
Caravan family Kerry, Rob and Ty
Dining  out
Dining out
Lisa  lands her first fish
Lisa lands her first fish
Many caravan parks are close to great beaches
Many caravan parks are close to great beaches
Master chef Morrison
Master chef Morrison
Oops
Oops
Nissan crossing stream
Nissan crossing stream
Steve puts elbow grease into bbq cleaning
Steve puts elbow grease into bbq cleaning
The McMahons with their Jayco Swan
The McMahons with their Jayco Swan
The Possums, Sharron  and Darryl, with their Winnebago
The Possums, Sharron and Darryl, with their Winnebago
The view from the Jayco Conquest motorhome bridge deck
The view from the Jayco Conquest motorhome bridge deck
We would add poles and guys. The awning can be set to suit, but we would wind it in at night.
We would add poles and guys. The awning can be set to suit, but we would wind it in at night.
 Our towing team, Ford Territory auto, GX 1985 Sahara manual Land Cruiser  and auto Sahara 4.2 TD
Our towing team, Ford Territory auto, GX 1985 Sahara manual Land Cruiser and auto Sahara 4.2 TD