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Author Topic: Have higher fuel prices changed how you use your bus and How?  (Read 8475 times)
JackConrad
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« on: December 16, 2007, 09:08:01 AM »

   Just curious. 
    As for us, we are doing more short weekend trips (less than 100 miles each way).  We can drive 30-60 miles, enjoy a nice 3 day weekend and not break the bank to pay for fuel. As an example, the last 2 weekends we have went to bluegrass music events (festival & club jam) at a campground that is 19 miles from our house. 
    We also try to group our outings. In January we plan to drive 52 miles to a week long antique tractor show, then go to a week long bluegrass festival, then to another week long bluegrass festival. These 3 events will be one loop ending 19 miles from our house.  Jack
« Last Edit: December 17, 2007, 10:22:34 AM by Dallas » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: December 16, 2007, 09:29:00 AM »

hi jack

so how much is fuel where you are??
ottawa,ontario canada....drum roll please $4.50 per gallon!
mmm maybe ill just work on my electric car next summer instead of buying a bus lol Grin
scottie
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Nick Badame Refrig/ACC
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« Reply #2 on: December 16, 2007, 09:58:54 AM »

Hi Jack,

We have cut alot of long trips out this year for the same reason. The smaller weekend trips seem to be more affordable.

I was hopeing to get out west this winter but, that will have to wait another year or so.  The fuel prices around here are staying

around 3.45 gal. so times that by 6-7 mph and just a weekend trip is sometimes costing $300 in fuel.

If I get to Florida this winter, it will have to be in February when my busisness is it's slowest.

Nick-
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« Reply #3 on: December 16, 2007, 10:47:23 AM »

Hi Jack,

We haven't cut any trips yet, But we will be!

We started out this year with a plan to take the coach out for a trip every month, and with the exception of one, we were able to do it.

As an example, we spent $600.00 in fuel to go the non rally in South Carolina and less than that for the other 10 trips combined.

Like has been suggested by Nick, the shorter trips are much more affordable.

I will still be going to out of state Tallies, but only if combined with other destinations of interest.

The price of fuel has probably gone up close to 66% since I started this project. 

But I would still start a coach today if I didn't already have one.

We will be taking a two week trip this Summer, I went on-line and obtained the prices for airfare, lodging, rental car, food, etc, I am still several 1000.00 dollars ahead by using the coach.  And none of that nonsense at the airport, long term parking, rental cars, hotels and whatever is living on or in the comforter, instead we are riding in our home away from home-priceless  Smiley ...

We will continue with the trip a month plan, but yes, they will generally be closer to home...And to be totally honest, I cannot believe all the cool places that were right around the corner that I overlooked.

This fuel thing may actually be a shot in the arm to the local rallies, it seems like this year there was a whole lot more of them!

See ya on the road somewhere.

Cliff

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« Reply #4 on: December 16, 2007, 12:08:23 PM »

Well, I really don't think we make decisions on what we're going to do, based on the fuel prices, but perhaps if we were retired and had more options, we might.  With us, we have so little free time, that it's more whether we have TIME to make a trip, rather than what it will cost.  I suppose if I were deciding between two events, I would be influenced by cost of travel. 

I just depends on how bad you want something I guess.  We were fully aware of how much it was costing us to run three generators to keep three different places powered up recently, but we still ran them 24/7, rather than turning them off at times to save fuel.  My mom offered to shut hers down overnight, as I had hooked up a non-powered gas heater for heat for her, but even at that, I felt more comfortable knowing she had a few lights, tv, etc., rather than worrying about saving an extra $15. 

Now, if you're asking whether I'd consider driving a car and staying in a motel. . absolutely not. . .no way. . . ain't going to happen.  If diesel was $5 a gallon, I'd still rather stay in my "home" than in a motel!  Christy Hicks
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« Reply #5 on: December 16, 2007, 12:16:28 PM »

 An observation I can share is we see fewer and fewer older motorhomes coming in for fuel at our station on Hwy. 50. Gunnsion is a pretty popular summer destination for RVs and we have many summer residents that I assume are full timers. I think the cost of fuel has substantially reduced the number of folks who are using older motorhomes for travel. We still see lots of high end units coming through. I have to think this is because the owners of the new high end units have more disposable income to put in the tank than Ma and Pa with the grandbabies in the Winnie Chieftan, or at least are more ready to part with their money. I am sure the cost of fuel has affected how much folks are using their rigs.  
  We built Thomas as more of a camper than a full time rig because we can drive 20 miles in any direction and be at some really nice campsites. We're lucky to be able to use our bus and not use much fuel because even with a gas station, we have to think twice about burning $300 in fuel for a weekend trip to Moab.
Doug Engel, Gunnison, CO
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« Reply #6 on: December 16, 2007, 01:02:49 PM »

I hasn't really changed the way we use ours yet because we mostly "camp" at relatives houses.  Grin Grin Grin

We bought the bus because we have a lot of out of state relatives that we like to visit. They don't always have accommodations for us though, or, at least not the kind of accommodations a person of my statue, fame, and accomplishments thinks he should be entitled to   Grin Grin Grin Grin

Therefore, we take the bus down, park it the middle of them, & say, "Here we are, come visit!"

We see everyone and I am treated in the style I think I deserve....mostly.

Fortunately, none of my folks live over two states away.
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« Reply #7 on: December 16, 2007, 01:06:45 PM »

Jack, the price of fuel hurts the wallet now but it will not change the way we use our bus, it was bought  to go vist the kids ,grandchildren and friends a short trip for us is 1200 miles oneway and my wife is like Christy no way is she going to sleep in a motel or hotel.But I do find myself slowing from 75mph to 65 to try and save a little fuel.The trip to FL in Feb may change my mind about long trips 6000 miles round trip
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Gary LaBombard
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« Reply #8 on: December 16, 2007, 03:23:40 PM »

I'm not sure yet about the prices of Diesel fuel but the cost of replacement 12 inch wooden blocks has gone up also to replace some that rot under my bus.  Geezzz.
Gary
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Gary
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Jim Shepherd


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« Reply #9 on: December 16, 2007, 03:53:11 PM »

Since a lot of our travel is for trade shows where we are vendors, we can't cut back too far.  Last year we went to several FMCA area rallies, and we will probably cut back there, since that does not generate as much business.  We are doing a lot of thinking about what shows make sense.  Here, we balance business and pleasure.  For example, we will probably make several bus rallies, since they are so much fun.  However, even here we may have to cut back a bit.  MAK's rally fits in with some other activities, but BusN USA is a long haul for us and we may not be able to justify it and that hurts since we have been to every one so far.  Same thing with Jack's great rally.  Logistically it did not work out for this year, but even if we could have worked out the logistics, I don't think we could justify the expense of the 4,000 + mile trip!  We get close to 8 MPG, but that is still a ton of fuel (over $1700 at $3.5 per gallon) Undecided

What will be interesting is to see what this does to the upcoming FMCA rallies.  Attendance has gone down considerably over the last two years.  If you look at their published financial information, you will find they are really hurting.  They are taking some pretty drastic steps to try to balance the budget in the face of declining membership and rally attendance.

We belong to the PRVVC (Professional RV Vendors Chapter of FMCA) and we have a general meeting at each International FMCA Rally.  Our group has really noticed a significant reduction in sales at the last few events.  Even the "hot" items like jewelry and clothing are not doing well.  Several vendors have talked about folding.   Believe me, we have had to give some strong thoughts in that direction as well.  We have put quite a bit our our limited funds into the business to try to build it up.  As some point we may have to face the reality that an RV focused business is a quick way to go broke.

Jim

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Jim Shepherd
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« Reply #10 on: December 16, 2007, 04:32:21 PM »


     I too feel the pinch at the pump.  I used to take a lot of
     weekend get-a-ways during the year,  not so much any
     more.  Example; last year I only put 1000 miles or so on
     the bus. This year is not looking much better.  I must say,
     that I feel fortunate to have been able to attend Jack
     Conrad's bus ralley before the price of fuel went up. Maybe
     when I get a few things in order, I can get back to the
     week-end get-aways.
                                       Merle.
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jackhartjr
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« Reply #11 on: December 16, 2007, 05:05:30 PM »

Me and Dianne are in an S&S at this time, however when the bus is done...watch out!
We would normally go to the outer Banks of NC 6 to 8 times a year, (812 mile round trip) this year we went once and did some short trips to campgrounds in the area.  Guess what, we found some gems in orr back door.
So bottom line the price of fuel has changed the way we travel and camp...and I don't see that changing unless the fuel goes down!
Jack
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« Reply #12 on: December 16, 2007, 05:42:39 PM »

If any of you are worried about storage of your diesel vehicles, let me just say that I had a GMC truck full of diesel fuel sitting here behind the house for 10 TEN YEARS!!  Not started even once in 10 years.  Put two new batteries in it and it started right up and we drove it 700 miles without any problem.  The temperature in the coaches is far more stable, so we have no problem with letting $150 fuel sit in these coaches until we really want to run them.  There is always sooo much to do.  We just drive around in our hybrids waiting for fuel to come down.  And that might be right after the next election!!  If not, we will have saved enough to pay for a lot of fuel.  Bill T.
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« Reply #13 on: December 16, 2007, 06:29:00 PM »

We had to have a serious discussion before we decided we'd shut the house down, saving on heating costs, and drive to florida for Jack's rally and some serious potluck at the house. 
as Mr. Shephard said "Last year we went to several FMCA area rallies, and... that does not generate as much business.  Here, we balance business and pleasure." 

We also do shows and belong to Family Vendors chapter of FMCA.  i don't beleive there is any real profit in RV shows.  We stopped going if there are more than 2 of us vendors with the same product since neither of us will make our expenses with fuel this high.   

All our travels are evaluated to see if the fun and potential sales will outweigh the fuel costs.  My wife and Christy are on the same path when it comes to sleeping in their own bed.  No motels!
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Tom
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« Reply #14 on: December 16, 2007, 06:34:29 PM »

one more quick note:  Today's wonderful Ohio weather overrode the cost of fuel.  its colder than a welldiggers butt in the klondike!!!  and we got 5-7 inches of snow with blowing and drifting.

if i can get her started, we're out of here.  i've got a full tank and that will get me at least to Georgia and i'll work for fuel to get me to arcadia if i have to.

i'm bringing pictures for those of you in the warmer areas who have no such experiences (Jack and Paula).
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Tom
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Fran was called to a higher duty 12/16/13. I lost my life navigator.
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