Free and Low Cost Camping

Boondocking in Freeport, Maine

Early morning mist settles in around Airstreams boondocking in Freeport, Maine

As talks of recession predominate the media, people are thinking about how to cut back on spending and still have a budget for Airstream traveling and camping. Regardless of the state of the economy, RVing continues to be a less expensive travel alternative. You can further lower your RVing expenses if you carefully select the places that you choose to stay overnight. Typically, full-service campgrounds are more expensive so if you are willing to forgo hookups and other amenities, you can keep your camping costs at a minimum.

For free and low cost overnight camping, you will need to spend more time researching but if you plan your travels carefully and well in advance you can lower your camping costs considerably. The following links will help you get started with your research of free and lower cost camping opportunities.

We also want to hear from you. If you have a favorite source of information about free or low cost camping, send us a message.

Camping Clubs

Escapees RV Club The Escapees RV Club has a network of parks which give a discount to members. Members have contributed over the years to a list of free camping locations called “Day’s End” which is available only to club members.
Good Sam Club Many RV parks give Good Sam Club members a discount.
Wally Byam Caravan Club, Inc. Membership with the WBCCI includes a directory of courtesy parking locations along with a listing of campgrounds which offer member discounts.

Discount Programs

Camp Club USA Camp Club USA offers up to 50% off nightly rates at many top-quality campgrounds.
Happy Camper Happy Camper is a 50% discount club for RVers. As a member, you can stay at over 1,200 quality RV parks on a full hook-up site for half price.
KOA KOA offers a KOA Value Kard Rewards program which gives you points for camping at a KOA Campground. Redeem your points for savings rewards on your next stay at KOA.
Passport America Passport America offers a 50% discount at over 1,500 campgrounds across the US, Canada and Mexico.

Federal Land and Parks

Bureau of Land Management The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) managed public lands offer more diverse recreational opportunities than any other Federal agency.
National Park Service The National Park Service offers camping at National Parks around the country.
Public Land Government-owned recreation opportunities on public land.
Public Recreation Government-owned day and overnight camping.
US Army Corp of Engineers The US Army Corp of Engineers offers camping in various project locations around the USA.
US Forest Service The US Forest Service has many campgrounds in the US and many of them are free.

Fraternal Organizations

Elks The Elks offer free or low cost camping for members at selected lodges.
VFW Many VFW’s offer free or low cost camping for veterans.

Online Forums

Air Forum The Air Forum has an active community of campers who share information about boondocking in the USA, Canada and Mexico.
Open Roads Forum The Open Roads Forum has an active community of campers who share information about free and low cost camping.
Wal-Mart Group The purpose of this group is to discuss overnight parking of RV’s at Wal-mart, K-Mart, Flying J, Travel Centers of America, Camping World, Union76 Truck Stops, Love’s, Pilot Travel Centers and others.

Other Resources

Casino Camping This website shares information about camping and parking at casinos around the USA.
Free Campgrounds Find campsites for $10/night or less.
Free Campgrounds and Overnight Parking The Gypsy Journal website lists some of the many places where RVers can park overnight for free or almost free.
Free Overnight Parking Contains an extensive listing of free overnight RV parking locations in the USA and Canada.
Military Campgrounds If you’re active duty or retired from the armed forces, this website will provide you with a listing of low cost camping alternatives.

Region One Member Recommendations

Nova Scotia Provincial Parks The Nova Scotia provincial campgrounds are relatively low cost compared to private campgrounds.
WBCCI International Caravans
WBCCI Region One Caravans
When making your annual plans for your travel vacation, think about traveling with a WBCCI sponsored caravan. Generally, when Region 1 Caravans include more than 10 Airstream RVs, they receive about a 20% discount on campgrounds, museums and other miscellaneous group activities.