Saving money and time... Hotels and motel costs can add up if you are on the road. That is one reason why many people avoid them and sleep in their vehicles. But finding the right spots to sleep in at night may be difficult due to local city laws.
What stores allow overnight RV parking? In Canada and the U.S., there are over 14,000 free parking locations you can use.
To learn more about where you can spend the night while on the road, just continue to read our article. It has the information you need to know about to get on the right track when it comes to sleeping outside of RV campgrounds and hotels
Before we provide you with the names of many stores that allow overnight sleeping, make sure to do some research as all outlets from the same chain do not have that policy. You need to check those stores that are on your route to make sure you can park there for the night.
Walmart, Bass Pro Shops, Cabelas, Camping World, Costco, Cracker Barrel, Home Depot, KMart, Lowes, Menards, Sam’s Club, Target are just some of the more well-known stores that do.
As we mentioned earlier, OvernightRVParking.com is one resource you can use to find free parking. However, accessing that information is not free, and expect to pay about $40 unless you have a discount code.
Yes, a majority of Walmart’s allow RVers to stay the night as long as the owner of the RV follows the rules. These rules apply to almost all locations and you should talk with the store manager to get their rules before parking for the night.
The key will be not to ruin it for the people who come after you and treat others as you would want to be treated in this situation.
Yes and no. The company used to do it very liberally but since Camping World’s business-focused has changed it is getting harder and harder to stay the night in one of their parking lots.
One requirement is that you have to prove you bought your RV at Camping World before being permitted to stay. Also, you need to arrive before closing time.
This will depend on the location of the Lowes. They may not allow it due to city rules and laws not because they are being selfish. You need to check with the manager first to see if it is allowed or not.
Then if so, many websites say to thank the store by making a purchase. Usually, only one night is allowed, and clean up after yourselves.
The same situation applies to Menards as it does Lowes. Ask for permission, make a purchase, do not put a bbq outside or lawn chairs, etc., and possibly spend a little money getting necessities for your trip to thank the manager.
Each location will be relying on their city’s laws so do not get angry if the manager has to turn you down.
The final say-so lies with the manager of the store. Generally, you will find that many big box stores will be very helpful and let you stay in their parking lot. Just make sure to be out by 7 a.m. the next morning and park as far away from the entrance as possible
Again, not every location may be accommodating and there will be legal, not personal reasons why overnight parking is denied.
We are not sure if this outlet is still in business or not. The news has been full of stories about their recent problems. However, some locations, if still open, will allow day parking only while others will allow you to stay the night at your own risk.
But like other stores check first as you may be required to purchase to stay. Always leave the parking lot cleaner than when you arrived
There should not be a problem with staying one night in their parking lot. They are supposed to be well lit, safe and it helps if you are a member so you can thank them by making a purchase or two.
That last instruction is going to be the same for all stores that allow you to remain for a night. It is a kind gesture as the stores do not have to let your RV remain in their parking lots.
Their parking lots are well lit also but not every outlet will grant permission for a variety of reasons. The design of the store will have something to do with if you are allowed or not.
Never assume as you do not know the laws of the city you are visiting. While one Costco in one city may allow it, the next one you stop at may not.
One of the best things to do when you are planning your next RV trip is to look at the route you want to take then call ahead to the different stores on that route. Checking first always saves you embarrassment as some Cracker Barrels will allow you to stay between 10 p.m. and 7 a.m. But NOT ALL will.
When you call get the manager’s name, record the time you called just in case the manager is not there when you arrive. That will help smooth things out.
We have mentioned following the rules a lot and it is important to know the rules before you park in a big box store’s parking lot. You do not want to ruin it for anyone else. Target will be the same as other box stores in granting permission.
We have mentioned some of the rules already. Another one is not to lower your jacks onto soft surfaces.
On all the lists we checked, Safeway was not mentioned on any of them. That doesn't mean that some outlets may allow parking. It just means that they are not listed on those lists. This link may have their name listed- OvernightRVParking.com.
Generally, Safeways are located in some very hard to get to locations so it may not be allowed to host RVs for the night.
Yes, but the same process applies here as it does with all the aforementioned stores. Don’t assume, feel entitled or expect to be able to park in their parking lots. Be nice, courteous, and make sure to make a purchase as a thank you when given permission.
It is going to be a case-by-case situation due to different laws in different cities.
One thing to remember is that parking lots are private property and the owners get to decide if you can stay there or not. This is the case with this store. The only word we found is that they do not allow overnight parking at their stores.
That is unless things have changed recently. One manager said that he would bring it up at the next meeting.
At the time of this writing, at least one store did and it is located in Greenville, MI. We did not find out if any of their other stores do or not but you can always ask when you are in town or planning your trip.
Good pre-trip planning is essential when you don't want to stop at an RV campground or hotel.
This store is like Safeway. No list contains any information on if they do or do not allow overnight parking. Again, we will give the store the benefit of the doubt in this situation as many stores are hampered by local laws.
Also, like Safeway, not all Albertsons have huge parking lots like Target and the other big box stores so there may not be room for your RV.
This store is like Albertsons and Safeway and there is no mention if overnight parking is allowed or not. We checked their website and they do not mention if it is allowed or not. But at least one location has 2600 parking spots so e-mail or call them to find out.
It never hurts to ask and that is what you need to do no matter which store’s parking lot you pull into.
No one mentions this store in their allow overnight parking lists. This policy may be due to the same reasons we have given for others that have not made any list. There may be legal issues that prevent Krogers from offering tired RVers a place to rest for one night.
Even a specific search did not turn up any positive answers
Like Ikea, this chain may not be in business anymore. we have read that they were closing down but a few stores may remain open. If there are outlets still open, the final decision rests with the manager.
Be prudent and plan your route, then contact any K-Mart along that route. Generally, it is allowed but you do need permission and be kind. Make a purchase to say thank you. Politeness goes a long way.
Not on any list but the fast-food restaurants located by the interstate may have large enough parking lots. In fact, some do if they have a secondary parking lot for oversized vehicles. Again, those may be located near an interstate and you should ask first, as always.
The one list we saw their name only said ‘may’. So it is not a given that you can.
It is said that this store is happy you decided to park in their lot. They are even happier if you are replenishing your supplies or replacing old gear while you stay. Just make sure to talk to the manager or asst. manager before you settle in.
All the places we are mentioning are private property so respect their rights like you want your rights respected on your property.
Not specifically mentioned on any list that we checked. Their name did not come up in a specific search either so you can take your chances if you want to. The worst that can happen is that the manager will say ‘no’ or a police officer may wake you up and tell you that you should move on.
We checked their policy page and there is no mention of overnight parking. It is best to simply call or e-mail and ask first before driving to their location. Each store may be left to make its own decision on this issue.
However, don’t be confused as there is supposed to be a Wawa, PA town as well.
Not on any list and while many Walgreens are located in strip malls, you should ask the manager or the administration office of the strip mall to see if it is okay. We do not expect to find every store on the lists we check because, as we said earlier, there are at least 14,000 places you can stay the night.
This website is the place to check if you are unsure of where you can stay when you do not want to go to a campground or hotel. Publix is not on the lists we checked but it may be in this database.
It has over 15,000 locations up from the 14,000 we reported earlier. However, you need to create a membership to access the data.
Believe it or not, you can stay at a planet fitness parking lot for a night. However, there is a catch to this policy. You need to be a member of the club to get permission. It is said that no one checks for membership cards but it is always best to be safe rather than sorry.
The policy seems to be no long-term stays, park on the back lots or side lots, and move out by 7 a.m. There may be a limit on how long your rig can be so you better check before you start preparing to stay the night. Local laws will override company policy so make sure the city does not ban RV parking in these lots.
Not on any approved list but that doesn't mean that the store does not. Check the parking lot size and the city it is located in before asking the manager. While the manager may sympathize they may not have space nor permission from the local government to do so.
Check the database we linked to in order to make sure.
Like other stores on this list, it never hurts to call or e-mail ahead to ask. The worst they can say is that they do not allow overnight parking. If they do, then you are ahead of the game and have a nice spot to rest for one night.
We could not access their website due to a technological issue but they do not appear on any lists either.
It is impossible to list all of the gas stations that may allow overnight parking. The ones that possibly do would be located near interstates and other highways. To help you find one that does, here is a link to a website that lists RV-friendly gas stations around the country.
You can contact the gas station directly by using the information given on that website.
Yes, they can and Love’s advertises that it has more RV parking spaces available than their competitors. They also provide RV dumps, dog parks (over 200 of them) as well as other amenities.
Just look for a Love’s website to find the locations on your route. However, some people avoid truck stops due to safety and other reasons.
Yes, it does as well and it should have similar amenities that Love’s has including RV filling lanes, dumps, and discounts on certain purchases. The thing to watch out for is that some truck stops are just basic services and only have dirt parking lots.
You are welcome to stop in there but the safety issue may be a factor in your decision to keep moving until you find a better stop.
This truck stop is owned by Pilots or vice versa. They have the same website and offer overnight parking to RVs. Their parking lots are usually very large and you can take a break from your RV shower and use the private ones at this and other truck stop locations.
Check their website and see where the ones are along your route. That would be the best option to try.
If the church parking lot is large enough there should be no problem. The only catches are location, city laws, and if the church is being used that night or not. Wednesday, Fridays, Sundays are the busiest nights of the week for most churches so ask first before parking.
Church activities take priority and they are not being hateful if they don't grant permission. Sometimes they just can’t do it.
If you pay the fee the hotel charges, then the answer is yes. While some hotels used to allow free RV parking, the trend is changing. Even Walt Disney World has changed its policy and charges fees on a sliding scale-- not for the RV but the class of the hotel you are staying at.
You can try staying at train stations, empty dirt lots, travel centers, and even the street if you can’t find a location on this list or the hotel won’t let you stay in their parking lot.
This is possible and some casinos just want you to go to security and get a parking pass. The night is free but the long term may not be. Some casinos are said to have dedicated parking lots for RVs but those are not free.
Check with the casino first as they all have their own rules.
Not every free location is safe. Some people avoid gas stations, truck stops, and rest stops due to safety concerns, vagrants and beak-ins. You will have to do your research well to make sure you find a safe neighborhood to park in overnight.
Call ahead, e-mail first, and make sure you have permission as the managers may place a limit on the number of RVs in their parking lots on any given night.