RV Lingo, Terms You Should Know

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Have you ever noticed that most everything has its own set of “lingo” that goes along with it? Take for example, golf. The sport of golf uses terms like Birdie, Fairway, and Mulligan. Football uses terms like, Field Goal, Linebacker, and Flea Flicker. I believe bowling even has its own set of jargon, like Turkey, Spare, and Gutter Ball. If you aren’t familiar with these different sports, you may not have any idea what they are talking about. Well, believe it or not, RVing has its own set of terms, or “lingo”, if you will. I have put together a list of terms below and what they mean to hopefully shed a little bit of light on what the heck people are talking about when they say things like, Boondocking or Hula Skirt.

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  • Basement – This refers to the storage area underneath the main area of your RV
  • Black Tank – Tank where sewage is held
  • Blue Boy – Portable waste tank used for taking black and gray wastewater to the dump station. Usually towed behind vehicle
  • Boondocking – Also referred to as “Dry Camping”. Camping totally off the grid with no hookups. You are totally dependent on water in your holding tanks and either solar power or a generator
  • Cockpit – Driver’s side of a motorhome
  • Extended Stay Site – Campsites that allow longer periods to camp, usually for a month or more
  • Fiver – Fifth Wheel RV
  • Fresh Water Tank – Tank where drinking water is stored
  • Full Hookup Site – RV site that offers water, electricity, and sewer hookups
  • Full-Timer – Folks who live and travel in their rig full time
  • Gray Water Tank – Tank that stores sink and shower water
  • Harvest Host – Membership program that gives you access to attractions such as wineries, breweries, etc. that invite full-timers to stay overnight
  • Hose Bib – Campsite water faucet
  • Hula Skirt – Skirt mounted on the rear bumper of a motorhome or tow vehicle to prevent debris from causing damage to the vehicles behind it or to the travel trailer being towed
  • King Pin – The hookup part of a fifth wheel RV. The pin hooks up to the mount in the bed of a truck
  • Newbie – New RVers
  • Park Hosting – An avenue for full timers to travel and work. Park hosts work at various parks greeting campers or doing light maintenance work in exchange for an RV site and possibly a paycheck
  • Part-Timers – Folks who only live in their RV part of the year
  • Puller – Class A motorhome with the engine mounted in the front of the RV
  • Pusher – Class A motorhome with the engine mounted in the rear of the RV
  • Pull-Thru Site – RV site that allows you to pull into the site on one side, and pull out of the site on the other side
  • Rig – Another name for an RV or motorhome
  • Slide-out – RV feature that allows you to slide the wall out to expand the living area
  • Snowbirds – RVers who follow the weather. They travel north in the summer and south in the winter
  • Sticks-N-Bricks – What RVers call a standard house
  • Stinky Slinky – Flexible sewer hose used for dumping waste
  • Toad – The vehicle being towed by a motorhome
  • Wally Dock – Term used for staying overnight in a Wal-Mart parking lot
  • Workamping – Working for a free campsite.

Hopefully this list clears up a few things for you and gives you a little bit more of an understanding of what folks are talking about around the campfire. If you have any more terms that we missed please let us know in the comments below.

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