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Here you’ll find 8 caravan park etiquette rules guaranteed to cause controversy.
Now… these aren’t the obvious things (like clean up after yourself)
These are the things where different people have different opinions on the matter.
So even though these things might not bother you…
…they’re definitely things that if you do them, you’re guaranteed to upset some people.
Here we go:
1. Taking other peoples’ clothes out of the caravan park’s washing machines
You have a load of washing to do…
…but all of the caravan park’s washing machines are full.
The loads have all finished AND there’s no one around.
What do you do?
Some people wait, refusing to touch the clothes
(and then get upset at the the owner when they eventually arrive)
Or… if you take their clothes out?
Some people get REALLY upset if you touch their belongings by taking their clothes out of the machines.
(even if you put them in their basket or on a clean bench)
So what do you think is the worse breach of caravan park etiquette:
The person who is isn’t there when their washing is finished?
Or the person that’s touching other peoples’ belongings?
2. Striking up a conversation with someone while they’re trying to pack up their caravan
Some people in caravan parks just don’t seem interested in engaging in conversation.
And that’s okay.
But what’s really weird is when they finally muster up the courage to chat… right when you’re trying to hitch up your caravan.
And now they want to tell you their life story.
You know, that time when you’re:
- In a rush because you’re trying to make check-out
- Trying to concentrate so you don’t miss things
This person sums up this part of caravan park etiquette well:
So just because you might love a chat and have the time on your hands…
…that doesn’t mean others do too.
3. Cutting through other peoples’ campsites (behind their van)
It’s standard caravan park etiquette that you don’t cut through other peoples’ campsites.
But here’s where opinions are mixed:
If it’s a really long way around to the amenities, is it okay to cut through on the off-side?
Here’s one point of view:
“No. It’s like walking between two houses that don’t have a fence between them and your house is behind them. Rude and self entitled.”
“If there’s another option or way through them use it. If not, let’s use common sense and cut through where its safe and least intrusive. If you want your privacy and personal space, perhaps a caravan park isn’t the best place to go during busy season.”
4. Moving other peoples’ solar panels into the sun
Your neighbour is on an unpowered site. Their solar panels are out…but the sun has moved.
What’s the caravan park etiquette here:
Do you move the panels for them?
[My initial thoughts were ‘yes’ because you’re doing them a favour]
But when I’ve asked this question, the answer is about 50/50:
Some people would rather have their batteries left uncharged than have someone else touch their things.
Some other great responses:
“Sounds very neighbourly, and I’m all for helping out others but what happens if you move it and break something”
I like this approach:
“I’ll do my friend’s if they’re not at the campsite but I wouldn’t touch others’ unless we spoke about it prior”
5. Offering to back-in someone’s caravan for them
You’d think it’s good caravan park etiquette to offer a hand:
“Would you offer to help someone who’s struggling to reverse their caravan into their site?”
The answer you get to this question is an overwhelming ‘yes’
But the reality:
When you offer, some people take it as a personal insult.
I’ve had a not-so-nice response when I offered once…
…it was like they took offence because they thought I’d judged their abilities.
It pays to lead with the more subtle:
“Would you like me to help guide you in?”
[That’s an easy option for them to accept… and it’s easier to move on to doing the reversing]
6. Using a generator
Now this one’s less about caravan park etiquette, and is more applicable to free camping.
The noise from the average generator is less than 55 decibels.
To put that into perspective:
That’s a bit over the noise levels of a quiet office…
…but less than a typical air conditioner.
It’s pretty easy to see why half of the caravanning community are all for them.
So using one during the day sounds pretty reasonable, right?
Well, for some reason:
Some people absolutely FREAK OUT over the mere thought of a generator.
So yeah, if you use one, be prepared to cop an earful
[that’s ironically louder than your generator]
7. Letting the kids out to play early in the morning
What’s an acceptable time of day for kids to be outside playing?
In some caravan parks there’s rules that are clearly posted
But if there’s no specific rule?
A good rule-of-thumb for this piece of caravan park etiquette:
Whatever the local council noise restriction rules are for things like lawn mowers and power tools.
[That’s 7am on weekdays in most states]
No one can get upset with this… can they?
Surely the noise of kids playing is better than a whipper-snipper!
8. Asking parents why their kids aren’t in school
This one should be a no-brainer. When you say:
“Shouldn’t your kids be in school?”
What you’re actually saying is:
“I think you’re a bad parent… and I’m not smart enough to realise that the experience your children are gaining is priceless”
So yeah, if you’re thinking about asking this question… don’t.
If someone asks you… just nod, smile, and laugh at them on the inside.
Oh, and if you’re travelling on weekdays you will be asked this question.
Your turn: caravan park etiquette
These are the caravan park etiquette rules that divide fellow travellers.
The key point:
Just because they don’t bother you, doesn’t mean it won’t offend someone else.
What’s the caravan park etiquette that you see that polarises people?