RV News

Embarking on a full-time RV journey

After a great deal of planning, research and a leap of faith, this Canadian couple decided to give full-time RVing a shot

Meghan and Dan standing together and smiling at the camera
This couple is ready for the adventure of a lifetime. — Photo courtesy Meghan Thomlinson

Meghan and Dan Thomlinson originally hail from Crossfield, Alberta—a small hamlet north of Calgary. While they enjoyed their first home together there, and appreciated the friendly neighbourhood, the Thomlinsons realized they had another calling.

They discovered a taste for RVing, and it wasn’t going away any time soon. They put serious time and effort into testing out various camping arrangements, until they knew exactly what they wanted. This year, their dream became a reality. They sold the house and moved into their RV along with their two labradors, Lincoln (six years old) and Milly (two years old). They now have an Instagram account (@thomlinsonrvadventure) to document their journeys.

We asked Meghan a few questions about their adventures:

How did you go about moving into your RV?

We officially moved into the RV on August 19, 2022. Our house sold very quickly, with a short closing date! We had two weeks to sell, donate or give away anything we didn’t want/need. The rest was packed in storage and we brought as little as possible to the RV! Weeks of purging happened before we were going to hit the road, so that the trailer wasn’t too heavy.

Before embarking full-time, we went almost every weekend in the spring/summer/fall months and every other weekend in the winter months

- Photo courtesy Meghan Thomlinson

What type of RV unit do you have?

We have a 2021, 25-foot Highland Ridge, Range Lite 241BH travel trailer.

What inspired you to start RVing full-time?

We are both from Nova Scotia, Canada, and moved to Alberta over 12 years ago. On one of our weekend trips we got to talking about how much we have loved being weekend warriors but that it never feels like enough time. We wished we could explore more that Canada has to offer, but how? The way life is set up in general, is not conducive to a “nomadic lifestyle”. Finally we decided that we would like to at least try! We know we want to explore British Columbia, as much of Northern Canada as possible—and during this adventure, maybe we will find the next place to plant some roots! We are all excited about dipping our toes (or paws) in the Pacific Ocean next summer!

- Photo courtesy Meghan Thomlinson

Where do you hope to travel in future?

Western and Northern Canada, Alaska and Montana are on the “must see” list…so far!

How has RVing benefited your life?

For me, it has been about purging and appreciating the things that I have. I have learned that I collected and kept way too much “stuff”. (We're) enjoying the peace and quiet that this lifestyle brings. We generally choose to go to spots off the beaten path and away from big cities or towns. 

Because space is minimal in a 25-foot trailer, I find myself walking more and sitting outside to read my phone or book. Cleaning takes a lot less time! Food always tastes better after spending time outside.

For Dan, he says the benefit for him is that this is a more visceral way of life. It’s difficult, but rewarding to overcome challenges and it is a more specific way of living in that everything you do is directly related to this lifestyle.

For Lincoln and Milly,  they go on way more walks, they get way more treats and they get to spend all day with their ma’ while she works remotely!

- Photo courtesy Meghan Thomlinson

How have you overcome challenges along the way?

When it comes to challenges, Dan and I are very much a team. If anything goes wrong, calling on the warranty or a repair man would get extremely expensive, very fast. Learning how to repair things on our own is part of the fun and the challenge of this lifestyle. Facebook is full of groups relating to full-time RV life, sharing experiences, questions, humdingers which can be helpful. YouTube has been a great resource, and of course having a husband who is handy and likes a challenge makes everything come together quite nicely. To be honest, in the last few months we have come across a few challenges with regards to the quality of the trailer and things that needed to be upgraded, all of which we have been able to do on our own.

Sharing such a small space with two people let alone two very big, very snuggly dogs can also have its own challenges. Luckily that was something we expected and something we were familiar with and so for us (so far), we haven’t felt any real struggles.

- Photo courtesy Meghan Thomlinson

Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers?

If you are thinking about going full-time RVing in Canada and you aren’t afraid of a little hard work, you enjoy being outdoors and the snow doesn’t scare you, do it! Prior RV experience is, however, recommended. The lifestyle CAN be romantic, but there are a lot of little things to account for. Knowledge will be key when something breaks, and you want to go “home”—but the RV is your home. You will meet and make many friends from all walks of life, you will share space with others but at the end of the day, home is where the heart is.

Part of our adventure is to find a place where we can eventually build a home with nature surrounding. We are using this opportunity to discover where we want to live, with the ability to stay for a while first to make sure the shoe fits.

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