Tips for Traveling in a Motorhome—How to Save Money on Gas (Road Trip Series Part 6)

Retro gas station

You love to travel in your motorhome—the scenic views, the comfortable seats, and the freedom to travel where you want and when you want. But when it comes time to gas up the motorhome, your heart always skips a beat. How can you lower the costs of gas during your road trip?

Size matters

If you haven’t bought a motorhome yet, or if you’re thinking of buying a different model, keep in mind that how big your motorhome is will affect how much gas you use. Larger vehicles will always demand more fuel, so choose the smallest motorhome that meets your needs.

Lighten up

Along the same lines as size, let’s talk about weight. The heavier your motorhome, the more gas you’ll burn on the road.

How can you lighten the weight? Before you pack, consider what you truly need. What will you use? What can you buy along the way? If you can, empty water tanks and keep fuel at a maximum of ¾ of a tank.


Bad weather, from headwinds to storms, affects gas mileage. If you check the weather and it calls for some nasty but passing rain and heavy winds, can you wait another day before continuing your trip?

Get discounts

There are many fuel discount programs out there that can save you money every time you fill the tank. If you have a favorite gas company, check to see if they offer discounts or fuel cards that you can use as you travel cross country.

Check your speed

Your heavy vehicle takes a lot of gas to move. If you simply cut your speed by about 15 mph, your motorhome will be more fuel efficient.

Do the basics

Keeping up with routine maintenance ensures that your engine works properly. Also, keep your tires in good shape and don’t forget to balance your RV.

Stay longer

If you’re on the road less, you’ll burn less gas. Consider staying longer at each stop during your trip and getting the most out of the local attractions.

Use an app

You can save money if you don’t fill up your tank at the first gas station you find. Download an app that guides you to the cheapest gas station along your route and you'll see how much you save. 

How National Highway Safety Administration can help--We want evry trip you take to be a safe one. We offer a variety of online drivers ed classes.  These driving classes include parent taught courses for new drivers seeking their learner's permit or driver's ed basics to get you ready for your road test.  In addition, our defensive driving and basic driver safety courses are designed to help reduce your insurance rates or remove points from your driver's license.

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