Friday, February 10, 2012

Golf trip by RV? It pencils, if you can stand the idea

The Seattle Golf and Travel Show this weekend is again directly adjacent to the Seattle RV Show, a happy confluence of scheduling given the golf show's increased emphasis on golf travel destinations.

Before we even get out the calculator to see if an RV makes sense for your golf road trip, there are some obvious pros and cons.

Pros: Plenty of room for golf clubs, luggage and supplies; legroom; built-in sleeping, bathing and cooking quarters.

Cons: 1) The cost of gasoline; 2) The cost of gasoline; 3) “Sleeps four” doesn’t necessarily mean comfortably; 4) It’s an RV.

The standard joke in RV Nation is it’s not miles per gallon, it’s gallons per mile. Let’s say 10 mpg for our calculations, which is about average, and better than we might have guessed.

So: Four grown men are heading to, let’s say, Bend, Ore.,for a four-day, three-night trip in, say, September for — just for instance — golf.

This presupposes (please) that none of them owns a motorhome. One South Puget Sound dealer offers fall rental rates of $104 (sleeps four) or $189 (sleeps six) per night. Our frugal dudes go cheap, so: $312.

The most direct route from Seattle to Bend is I-5 to Portland, then Highway 26 southeasterly to Madras and south on Highway 97 to Redmond and Bend. It’s about 360 miles, so figuring some in-town driving, you’re talking 71 gallons of gas (at 10 miles per) for the roundtrip. At $3.50 a gallon, that’s about $248.

RV park hookups are 50 bucks, more or less, so: $150.

All in all: gas and lodging, $710, or $177.50 a person.

Compared to what? Four guys in, say, an SUV. You might get about twice the gas mileage, so: $114. Hotel lodging will cost maybe a third again as much as the rental/hookup combo, so: $616.

Total for gas and lodging, for a road trip in a conventional vehicle: $730, or about $182.50 a person.

If you’ve read this far, you’re old enough not to dismiss RV golf travel out of hand.  It pencils, and who’d have thought?

Your objection, then, is one of style rather than substance (see No. 4 under "Cons"). That's a hard one to get around.

Tickets to the golf show, Friday through Sunday at Century Link Field Event Center, are available online at or in advance at Puetz Golf stores.

1 comment:

  1. R.V golf travel can be fun too. After your done golfing, in an RV you can always do a short detour and do some site seeing with out having to worry about finding a hotel. There are always pros and cons.