Is it dangerous to live in an RV? (9+ safety tips)

In this blog post, we will answer the following question: Is it dangerous to live in an RV? We will share with you 10 essential safety tips for RV living. 

Is it dangerous to live in an RV?

Living in an RV is not dangerous as long as you take some precautions. Whether you opt for a camping holiday in a caravan, motorhome or tent, thefts are frequent. Although campground operators try to stem this phenomenon, it is impossible for them to eradicate it completely. In addition, the structure of some rentals favours theft. 

However, it is possible for you to take certain appropriate measures, either by implementing sound advice or simply by using common sense:

  • Take only “essential” valuables
  • Always lock the door 
  • Invest in a good lock.
  • Get motorhome insurance.  
  • Don’t be fooled by classic hiding places.
  • Buy an alarm.

Below we will discuss each of these tips and more. Keep reading if you are interested in a 101 safety guide for RV living. 

RV safety tip: Take only “essential” valuables

The holidays are the best time of the year. So it’s normal to want to bring some nice jewellery, a good camera and all the accessories that go with it or other valuables. But never forget one thing: the RV is a tight space. In just a few seconds, thieves can get their hands on a real treasure.

The main recommendation is therefore to limit the number of valuables you take with you. Your state-of-the-art smartphone camera will undoubtedly make such great photos, and costume jewellery will look great too. This advice applies even more to people who sleep in tents because it is practically impossible to secure this type of accommodation.

Very important: if your vehicle is parked next to your accommodation, never store your valuables in the passenger compartment but in the boot, preferably in the spare tire compartment. They will thus be stored away from prying eyes.

RV safety tip: Always lock the door with a key

Opportunity is the thief. And this even at the campsite. It does not matter whether you are just going to the kiosk, to the swimming pool or to another part of the site: as soon as your accommodation is no longer in sight, even if only for a few minutes, lock it ( or close the pull tab on your tent, if applicable).

All types of locks can be forced open, but mainly during the day, a locked lock will be a much bigger obstacle than a door left wide open.

RV safety tip: Invest in a good lock

This brings us to the next point. Many campers rely on the safety devices fitted as standard to their accommodation. Do not do it ! Most of the locks fitted as standard are low-end locks with many plastic accessories.

Good quality locks can be found on the market for 50 euros. These locks are easy to assemble, even for novices. In addition, it is always useful to install additional locking devices. Don’t hesitate to invest in a quality lock, either.

RV safety tip: Get a motorhome insurance

If you want to travel on the road, you are required by law to insure your motorhome. However, many campers take to the road by opting for “minimum insurance”, that is to say, simple civil liability, in order to save money.

We recommend that you read this article on insurance and then at least opt ​​for insurance covering theft in order to be insured against break-ins and theft. Do not forget to clarify the value up to which you wish to insure your goods, the offers being different depending on the amount. It is also possible to insure the contents in addition.

RV safety tip: Don’t be fooled by classic hiding places

Due to their compact form, mobile homes are an easy target. There is not enough room to hide anything properly. This is why we do not recommend that you store your valuables in classic “under the mattress” style hiding places. Assume that these hiding places are known to all thieves.

The only alternative available to you is to use a hiding place that will delay the thief in his search (a thief always wants to flee as quickly as possible). 

RV safety tip: Buy an alarm

Thieves especially want to avoid one thing: to be noticed. Let’s do just the opposite!

Nowadays there are a whole bunch of portable alarms specially designed for different types of vehicles (mainly motorhomes). 

However, these must be installed by professionals as they require intervention in the vehicle’s electronic system.

With regard to universal alarms, it is on the other hand possible to carry out the assembly oneself.

RV safety tip: Never play the hero

You return to your trailer, the door is open, you enter your accommodation and you face a thief. What to do? One thing and only one thing: to stick to the advice of the police. That is, do not play the hero, do not use violence, and do not try to prevent theft.

Because if the thief feels cornered, he could have instinctive reactions. It would be wise to avoid ending up in the emergency room for a camping television.

How should you act in such a situation? Get out immediately, call for help and run to the nearest people. This will give the criminal the opportunity to escape. Observe him, call the police and report his report.

RV safety tip: Install self-adhesive films on the windows

The more windows, the brighter it will be in your home. But the glazing also gives thieves a clear idea of ​​what’s inside. Normal curtains do not provide maximum blackout rates. 

Regarding the front window and the side windows of the cabin of your motorhome, the law is clear: it is forbidden to cover them permanently, only the curtains that you must remove when driving, are allowed.

For all other windows, we recommend that you purchase a mirror film, preferably untinted, and TÜV approved. Alternatively, you can also go for an opaque film. These films are self-adhesive. They are applied with a little soapy water. It takes a bit of “tinkering”, but the task is not in itself complex. 

RV safety tip: Always carry the important things with you

In a mobile home, there are many items of value to thieves. There is a difference, however, between stealing a DVD player or stealing a credit card. Always assume that you take with you items the loss of which could ruin your vacation, i.e. bank cards or cell phones, as soon as you close the door to your accommodation. A simple fanny pack can be enough to store everything, and you can even wear it in swimming gear.

Very important: if you have taken your laptop or tablet (i.e. devices that connect to the Internet and that are too large for you to take with you), never save links to web pages on these devices. purchase or payment where you saved your payment information. A thief who gets his hands on these devices could then use your Paypal account or your credit cards. Never save PIN codes or the like on such devices.

RV safety tip: Secure the RV

So far, we’ve focused on securing the content of your mobile home. But you shouldn’t lose sight of the caravan or the motorhome itself. The theft of caravans/motorhomes is of course less numerous than the theft within them, but the risk exists.

For RVs, all you need to do is install a tow bar lock. However, bet on a high-end steel padlock and not on a plastic device.

On modern mobile homes, an anti-theft device will prevent starting without the original key. Two precautions are better than one, do not hesitate to install an anti-theft cane or a wheel lock.

FAQ on Is it dangerous to live in an RV?

How to defend yourself in a motorhome?

To protect yourself in a motorhome, take all the necessary precautions. Perimeter protection, carried out by magnetic sensors, concerns the exterior protection of the motorhome, it is effective day and night. The alarm is triggered when an attempt is made to force the doors of the driving position and the front door, but also bays or gates.

What alarm for a motorhome?

Here is a list of the best alarms for motorhomes:

  • Tiiwee A2 – A motorhome alarm with a motion detector. 
  • Kerui – An inexpensive motorhome alarm.
  • Tiiwee Alarm Kit – A good alarm for motorhome.
  • Beeper – Good alarm for wireless motorhome.
  • Beeper TSX99 – A volumetric and perimetric alarm for motorhomes.

How to sleep safely in your van?

Some tips to make the night go well in a van:

  • Stay discreet!
  • Before going to bed, remember to put all your belongings inside the van. 
  • Opt for curtains: in addition to making your interior opaque, this will isolate you from outside view.
  • You can opt for additional locks.

Where to spend the night in a motorhome?

There are many solutions for spending the night in a motorhome and sleeping outside of public spaces without renouncing pleasant and friendly surroundings: Municipal service areas or campsites.