Best RV Locations in the South—and How to Work Remotely From Them
The COVID-19 pandemic has had some terrible and tragic consequences. While we continue to battle with the virus, one specific work-related question has emerged: “Can I work remotely or am I tethered to my office?”
In this article, we will look at the pros and cons of an RV lifestyle, along with some practical tips on setting up an office and the best RV parks to visit in the Deep South.
Things to Consider Before Investing in an RV Office
Many people are downsizing, selling their homes and living full-time in an RV. It may seem like an obvious thing to state, but the RV lifestyle might be more practical if you don’t have children. That’s a personal decision to make though, albeit an essential one.
Many digital nomads also suggest establishing multiple income streams before you commit to a vagabond lifestyle. Having several income streams or a number of clients if you are self-employed can make things a lot less stressful when working and living in an RV. It’s possible that if you need to look for another job while living nomadically, having no permanent address could be an issue.
Consider how you are going to eat! For example, if you cook all of your meals yourself, ensure that you invest in the proper equipment. It may be a good idea to invest in a smoker and an RV grill that works outside and inside. Consider having a backup power supply, too, such as a generator or solar panel, so that you can always keep warm and cook food.
Speaking of food, if you are a keen hunter, you may want to note where the best hunting areas are in the South. From the forests of Texas to whitetail hunting spots in Kentucky, the South has some great locations for hunting enthusiasts. Mississippi is also great for deer hunting, but wherever you go, be sure to read and familiarize yourself with the laws before heading out to catch your dinner.
The RV nomadic lifestyle is often romanticized in documentaries and YouTube videos, but it can be challenging at times. Equipment inside RVs breaks a lot, so if you are not particularly handy, then RVing might not be for you. Also, if you need to stick to a tight or strict schedule, RVing can be a challenge. Often weather and mechanical issues will stop you from following a pre-determined route or road trip. Not only can this cause you to change your route, but it can also mean that you have to spend hours fixing things.
There are many “dirty jobs” involved with an RV lifestyle. For example, the dreaded black and grey tanks that store poop and dirty water need to be emptied regularly and cleaned.
Turning Your RV into an Office
Once you have your food and finances in order, creating a practical and comfortable office inside your RV is the next thing to research and plan. The exact way you go about converting your RV or part of your RV to an office will largely depend on what model of RV you have. However, if you have a pull-out tray near the passenger seat, this can be a great area to change into a mini-office or workspace.
You can place your keyboard or laptop on the pull-out tray, while the monitors can be mounted on the dashboard. Unless you have a way of fixing the monitors securely, you will have to store them safely each time you move or drive. It is possible to use a clamp to secure the monitor base; ensure the monitors don’t interfere with the driver’s visibility.
Adding a shelf to go across the dashboard for the monitors to rest upon can also be a good idea if the dashboard isn’t level. This YouTube video provides an excellent example of how to convert the passenger seating area into a workspace. Having a wireless Bluetooth keyboard, mouse and headphones can also be a great space-saver, which minimizes the wires and mess.
Another place that you can create an office is in the bunk-bed area. Removing the beds is quite a project, and you may also need to reinforce the floor for an office chair. You may need to invest in a specific computer desk that allows you to work comfortably for extended periods as well.
The kitchen area can also be turned into an office space, as this is usually the place with tables and chairs. You can put computer monitors on top of the table(s) and either screw them in place or clamp them. If you don’t want to make your own clamp system, you can buy “monitor clamps” and wall mounts that you can use instead.
If you are self-employed, it might be worth hiring a virtual receptionist or signing up for a telephone answering service for when you are on the road. Some services will also allow you to use a landline number to receive and make calls from, even if you just use your mobile phone. In addition, many of the apps that come with the services will allow you to create an automated switchboard, so even if you are working entirely from your RV, it will appear to callers that you have an office with a complete office phone system.
Best RV Locations in the Deep South
A landscape with fantastic culture and history, the Deep South has to be one of the best places in the world to enjoy a road trip or a working vacation. There is something for everyone here, from amazing food with legendary flavors and portion sizes, old towns, beautiful wilderness and world-famous events.
If you have children, then the South also has plenty of history to learn about, including the origins of jazz to the struggle for civil rights. You can follow the Gulf Coast in an RV as you take in the scenery, including white sandy beaches and oceanfront homes. The French Quarter RV Resort is a short walk from the center of New Orleans, where you can enjoy Creole food and jazz music on Bourbon Street.
You can follow the Mississippi River north from Louisiana, where you can catch a night’s sleep at the Wendy Oaks RV Resort or the Swinging Bridge RV Resort. The Swinging Bridge RV resort has a swimming pool and is close to the historic city of Jackson, while Wendy Oaks boasts a beautiful 8-acre lake that is great for fishing. Nearby to both RV, resorts is the Jackson Zoo and the amazing Mississippi Blues Trail.
From Jackson, you can follow the beautiful Natchez Trace Parkway. The parkway road itself is incredible, with 440 miles of diverse natural landscapes and history. With swamps and emerald forests, it creates arguably the most unique and diverse national park in the U.S.
The Natchez Trace will take you northeast to Tupelo, where you can visit the birthplace of Elvis and the Elvis Presley Museum. You can get back on the parkway and ride over the mile-wide Tennessee River and eventually come to Nashville, crossing the double-arched bridge.
From there, the world is your oyster up into the Smoky and Blue Ridge Mountains.