What happens if you want to go full-time and your spouse doesn’t?


Why doesn’t your partner want to full-time RV?

Why is it that some couples can’t agree to what they want to do?  Full-time RV or not?   One wants to sell everything and buy an RV and the other say a big NO!

How to get around this big obstacle? Some couples don’t agree – ever.  That’s a fact.

I’m definitely not an expert but I think that if they can’t even compromise and meet somewhere in the middle they may have underlying problems that are not related to whether they buy an RV or not. So we’ll just move past those people.

There’s always the option of RVing solo and believe me there are lots of solo RVers who are out on the road having a great time.

Deciding to full-time RV can be scary.

I would be lying if I said anything different. It’s a huge step to sell your house, all the furnishing and maybe your toys and mementoes collected over many years. For some of us (I am including myself in this group) its easy because we have been dreaming of this for so many years we have no problem with any of it. For others I know it causes apprehension and tension and that’s understandable as well.

Solutions to full-time RVing Tension

  1. Trial run – do a test trip for a couple of months.  Lock up your house or home for a couple of months (maybe have a house sitter) and plan a trip.  That way there is always your home to go back to if full-time RVing doesn’t work for you, because I have to be honest it doesn’t work for everyone.   However, if one person is against the RV lifestyle they may just possibly find every reason not to make it work.  Did I really say that?  It’s easy to give up before you really get accustomed to your new life.
  2. Don’t sell your home and personal items. If you don’t need the money from the house sale to purchase the RV then it might be possible to rent it out, lock it up or have a house sitter take care of it while you are traveling. It may be necessary to purchase a smaller or more inexpensive RV which is fine – just as long as you travel. It’s not what you travel in that’s important. It’s the travel experience – the people you meet and the things you see and do that are important.
  3. Part-time RVing.  Maybe compromise by traveling six months out of the year or take short excursions.
  4. Solo RVing – It may be necessary for one of the partners to travel alone and the other joins them periodically.  I do know of a couple of couples who are doing this and it works well for them. I’m not sure it’s what I would want but if it works for them I say go for it.
  5. Storage.  Put all your belongings that are important to you in storage. It may cost a few dollars (we are paying around $120 CAD per month) but worth it until everyone is happy with the decision of downsizing to an RV.Storage for full-time RVers


Sometimes and most often it’s about compromising. If it’s really important to one spouse I would sincerely hope the other will try and make it work. That goes also for the other person as well – in other words, if it’s important for one spouse to be more stable and in their home environment at regular intervals then try and accommodate them.

Compromising may mean downsizing from a house to a condo or apartment that they can return to periodically and it’s easy to close the lock the door when it’s time to hit the road. Maybe you dream of a big fancy motorhome and you need the funds from the house sale to pay for it but your spouse isn’t happy with putting all of your money into a motorhome. Would you be able to compromise and buy a smaller unit or a truck and fifth wheel?  Look at all of your options.

Happy full-time RVers

If you are able to compromise or both of you have the same dreams of full-time RVing then it’s just a matter of deciding how you are going to go about it.  Sell the house, buy an RV, store your belongings, sell everything, or decide how to make it work?  It’s a personal choice and if you can agree on how to go about it then you may have two very happy full-time RVers. Happy full-time RVing

How are you going to make it work?

Everyone makes their own plans and figures out how to make it work – how did you do it? Or what are your plans to full-time because I would love to hear about them and will appreciate your sharing. Happy travels everyone,

Carol Ann

12 thoughts on “What happens if you want to go full-time and your spouse doesn’t?”

  1. Justin

    Lots of great info here. I want to sell our house and RV full-time. I have a remote working arrangement, so I can work wherever I want. But my wife — who is on a green card — is stuck on the “American Dream” of home ownership and “stability.” I am doing all I can to convince her that you can have stability in an RV, so long as only the location changes. What matters is us, our two kids and two cats. She is being very stubborn. And because we have two kids, I cannot just go it alone and come back every few months. It is all or nothing for us. 🙁

    1. Hi Justin,

      This seems to happen a lot – unfortunately. I guess it depends if your kids are still at home or grown up. Maybe you could suggest a trial trip for a couple of months and test it out? If it’s possible to compromise and meet each other half way? If you still have kids at home could you make it a family experience – not long term? Maybe the family could plan a year’s trip or 6 months or something like this? Don’t give up – try and make it work for everyone if possible.

  2. Melissa McDuffy

    I am a nurse and want to travel. I can do travel nursing. My husband is unemployed and has been for years. We love to go camping and have an rv. Yet he refuses to go traveling with me… its killing my spirit. it’s to the point I regret marraige and seriously consider divorce.. we have a 7 yr old. We are both 38 yrs old and have been married for 8 years. I am tempted to just give him an ultamatum. But I cant rv alone and dont want to.

    1. This is tough! I can’t advise you on this – each of us have our own situations that we deal with and you have a child to consider as well as your husband. Take your time and think it through carefully. I wish you well.

  3. Ivan Lee Livingston

    It’s my souls dream to RV 6 months of the year and then come back to our province for a 6 month break.Last night I went to bed with a broken heart as my wife flip flops about the dream AGAIN !!
    It feels cruel like a man living with a woman for 8-12 years and he flip flops on marriage because he doesn’t think it’s important to her or he gets anxious.
    I’ve decided to go without her because after years of planning 2019 I decide my destiny.

  4. I think the KIND of full time RVing you engage in can also make a large difference in whether or not either spouse or traveling mate likes the idea. If you plan on touring and being constantly on the move, the break down and set up of camp can become a chore, especially if it’s not shared. The outside work is usually a little more strenuous so we try to do it together to ease the chore. However if you stay at least a month at a time at each park the setup is not too bad. Another factor is the travel time between stops. If one or even both mates drive a 750 mile stretch from one park to the next, feeling irritable, tired and frustrated is more liable to occur making for quick burnout. As a park owner, these 2 factors are the biggest reasons that one OR both partners acquire a dislike of the lifestyle.

  5. These are really good suggestions. When I first shared the idea with my hubby he thought I was insane. We are now full timing with kids and pets. 🙂

    1. Thanks Jessica – appreciate your comments and love that you are full-timing with your whole family. My husband still thinks I’m insane! lol However, we are moving forward. We full-timed for a few years in the past but didn’t travel much because he was working. Now we are in the real deal and it will take awhile for him to feel completely comfortable with it. However, I know once he adjusts to retirement and everything it will be good.

  6. Peter Molesworth

    Hi I am looking for advice and information.I am looking for a female partner who wants to travel in a RV part time,weekends to start. I am going to semi retire next May.I am 61 years old and in very good health. I have owned RVs in the past so I have experience in RV travel. I live in Sonora Ca.What is the best way to connect with a lady who wants to do the same ? Thank you for any advice /help

    1. Hi Peter,

      I’m working on setting up something about this topic on my blog. There are lots of others in the same position as you are. Stay in touch.

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