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RV Checklists: Printable Arrival and Departure Checklists

When you're first starting the RV life it can be very overwhelming. Checklists for departing, arriving, etc. can be very helpful in ensuring you don't make mistakes. After a while, it seems to become second nature but even a seasoned RVer can benefit from having a checklist. We've posted a few articles recently about common mistakes RVers make, having a checklist can certainly help to prevent some of those mistakes.

Luckily one of our hosts, GTS1544, sent us a few checklists their family has used over the years. The lists are quite extensive but we'll highlight a few of the important steps and provide a link to download the full checklists. 

Pre-Departure Checklist


  • Check all fluids (coolant, electrolyte, hydraulic, oil, power steering, transmission, windshield washer)
  • Check generator oil level
  • Disconnect city water, if applicable
  • Reset coach’s freshwater controls to onboard water, if applicable
  • Fill coach freshwater tank (add a capful of bleach), then stow the hose
  • Using the dump checklist, dump the waste tanks, if applicable
  • Ensure the propane tank is as desired
  • Ensure that all basement doors are closed, latched, and locked
  • Disconnect and stow the coach’s shore power cable
  • Ensure that the refrigerator (in auto mode) has shifted back to propane power
  • Retract the leveling jacks, stow the support blocks, and visually inspect each jack for proper travel stowage position


  • Retract any slideouts and secure for travel
  • Ensure that the windows are securely closed and locked
  • Arrange the blinds and curtains, as desired
  • Ensure that the air conditioner is off
  • Ensure that the furnace is off
  • Secure all drawers and doors
  • Secure all loose objects for travel
  • Turn all lights off
  • Ensure that the overhead vent fan in the bathroom is off and the vent is securely closed
  • Ensure that the oven pilot light is off
  • Ensure that the water heater is off
  • Ensure that the freshwater pressure pump is off
  • Check all tank level indications 
  • Close the main door to retract the powered steps
  • Lock the main door with the deadbolt and the latch lock

Download the full pre-departure checklist here.

Arrival Checklist

  • Select as flat and level a parking site as possible, consistent with other considerations
  • Place the shift lever in park and set the parking brake. The automatic hydraulic leveling system will not operate unless these conditions are met
  • Have a person outside to place support blocks under the stabilizing jacks.
  • Engage the automatic hydraulic leveling system to level and stabilize the coach, with the engine running to provide alternator power
  • With the engine still running for alternator power, extend any desired slideouts once the unit is leveled and secure
  • Check the site’s 30 amp shore power receptacle for proper polarity prior to hook up, if applicable
  • Ensure that the refrigerator (in auto mode) has shifted its power to 120 vac
  • Connect the coach’s city water hose to the site’s water source, ensuring that the coach’s water pressure regulator is correctly installed between the site’s water source and the coach
  • Connect the coach’s dump hose to the site’s sewage receptacle using the coach’s hose slope adapter, if applicable. Open the grey tank valve, but do not open the black tank as it requires at least ¾ full to dump properly. Plan to close the grey tank valve when the black tank reaches ½ full so as to have sufficient grey water aboard to flush the black tank at dump time.

Download the full arrival checklist here.

Each of the checklists are available to download and print. It might be beneficial to print it off and have it laminated, that way you can use a dry erase marker to mark off the completed items each time you use it.

We hope you find these checklists helpful for your next RV adventure!

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Boondockers Welcome is a community of RVers that provide overnight stays with each other for free while traveling through an area. We help RVers to travel more economically and find options when campgrounds may be full. It’s a great and safe way to meet fellow RVers or for people curious about the RV lifestyle to learn from members, while also providing a safe place to park for one night or up to five nights.

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