Living fulltime in an RV is not all fun and games. Occasionally, we do have to take care of the business end of things, just as we used to do living in a house.
How do you get your mail? How do you pay your bills? How do you keep in touch with friends and family? How do you get your medications? Those are some of the most asked questions we get.
While no one way works for everyone, Jim and I have figured out how to do all of the above.
At first, it was not an easy task to keep track of it all, but with practice we have learned what works for us and what doesn’t.
There are many mail forwarding services available:
- Your local post office will forward your mail once a week to wherever you may be for a fee.
- Mail Boxes Etc. also has a service where you can pay for a mail box on their premises. Then, when you’re ready to get your mail, just call them and they will send it to you.
- The Escapees Club, an organization for people who live full time in RVs, offers a mail forwarding service.
- New in the last couple of years is Earth Class Mail, a company that will receive your mail, open it, scan it to a computer, and email the important stuff to you.
Each of our bills that allows for an electronic statement is set up so that we receive our bills by email. And, we pay everything we can online — either on their respective websites, or through the bill pay feature of our bank account at Bank of America.
If you have a direct deposit to your Bank of America account, there is no monthly fee, so we use that feature, too. I have had my Bank of America account for more than 6 years and have only written about 200 checks.
Staying In Touch
Keeping in touch with friends and family couldn’t be easier. We have an AT&T cell phone with unlimited usage, which allows us to call anyone, anywhere. Right now we are in the mountains of north Georgia and get a really good signal.
When my son was stationed in England, I paid an additional $1.99 per month to have the capability of calling overseas. There was a per minute rate of 3 cents per minute, but those calls were well worth the extra dollars I paid each month.
Accessing The Internet
We also use an AT&T wireless aircard for Internet access. I am able to sit in my RV trailer in my pajamas and read my email, surf the Net, even post articles to my blog! How cool is that? I got an external antenna on eBay to boost the signal when I am in a remote area.
Sometimes, there is free wi-fi Internet service available in campgrounds. Sometimes there is a fee for the use of it. If there is no wi fi in the campground, and you don’t have a wireless aircard, there are many other options available.
The local library will have computers you can use to access your email. Plus, there are lots of places you can get free wifi, including some McDonald’s, Starbucks, and Borders Books locations which have wireless hotspots either for free, or for a fee.
Getting Health Care & Prescriptions
Getting medicine delivered to our door wherever we go is easy, too. Jim is a Veteran, and is signed up with the VA. They mail his medications to us when we call them. When we place the order by telephone, we just update the mailing address to the one where we are at that moment.
Occasionally, before he started going to the VA, Jim would call his doctor, who would mail us the orders for the necessary blood work. We could take that to the nearest hospital to have the blood drawn, and have the results sent to our doctor. Then, our doctor would simply call in a prescription to any pharmacy we designated.
For regular checkups, we make our appointments when we are back in Georgia for the winter.
In the end, taking care of business from the road does take a bit of synchronization, but it is possible to get it all done.