Super Camping British Columbia
Super Camping British Columbia

Super Camping
British Columbia
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Travellers Know Before You Travel.  Province wide campfire bans in place - learn more.

Sunset and Waves Crystal Cove at Mackenzie Beach, Tofino BC - Photo Joss Penny

FAQs

Following are some frequently asked questions on camping and travel in British Columbia.

Lodging FAQs

How do I make a reservation at a lodging property listed on this website?

To make a reservation at a lodging property, contact the property directly by phone or online via their website. Many offer online booking and/or email enquiry forms. Listings with an online booking system will display a ‘book now’ button.

What amenities do lodging properties typically offer?

Lodging properties offer a wide selection of amenities such as Wi-Fi and a number are pet friendly; others offer continental breakfasts or a full dining experience, and some have housekeeping units to allow guests to cater to their needs in their own time.

What room rates are quoted on this website?

Room rates quoted often range from the lowest rate to highest rate for both the low and high seasons in British Columbia. As rates are subject to change, it is recommended you contact the lodging property directly to confirm rates.

What taxes will I have to pay on my lodging accommodation?

An 8% Provincial Sales Tax (PST) is charged by hotels, motels, cottages, inns, resorts and other roofed accommodations on all overnight room rentals, as well as the 5% Federal Goods and Services Tax (GST). These taxes total 13% combined.

In addition, in British Columbia a Municipal and Regional District Tax (MRDT) of 2% or 3% is charged in some 50+ provincially approved municipalities (towns or cities) by hotels, motels, cottages, inns, resorts and other roofed accommodations. The additional 2% or 3% MRDT is only charged on short-term room rentals and does not apply to overnight campsite rentals.

Camping FAQs

Can I have a campfire?

Yes, and most campgrounds have fire rings at each site. As smoke from campfires pollutes the environment it is advised to limit the use of campfires to cooking and warmth. Where possible use firewood purchased nearby or from the campground and always observe local burning regulations. Never leave a campfire unattended and do not move firewood from one location to another as it can spread pests and disease. Occasionally campfire bans are implemented in extreme dry weather conditions. (For information visit, bcwildfire.ca.) Note that CSA approved propane firepits for warmth and cooking devices can be used during a campfire ban unless specifically prohibited. The flame should be six inches or less.

Do campgrounds and RV parks have pet policies?

Most campgrounds allow dogs and cats; however, they are required to be on leash at all times. Pets should not be left unattended at a campsite. Campgrounds may have specific pet policies so check with the management before you arrive.

Do camping properties offer pricing deals or stay promotions?

If you are travelling on a budget or in the off-season then visit our Special Offers page where many excellent rates and offers are available.

Please explain Canadian camping terms.

Air Conditioner (A/C): The system used to cool the interior of an RV; it can be roof- or window-mounted.

Aluminum Exterior Sidewalls: Refers to the outside construction of an RV and consists of a wooden framing with an aluminum exterior and batt insulation.

Amps: The measurement of electrical current. RV parks often offer 30-amp or 50-amp service hookups.

Auxiliary Battery: Additional batteries in an RV that provide power to the RV’s appliances and lights when not connected to shore power.

Awning: A retractable or fixed cover, typically made of fabric, that provides shade and protection from the elements over doors, windows or patios.

Back-up Monitor: A camera mounted on the rear of the RV to assist the driver when backing up.

Basement Storage: Compartments located underneath the main living area of an RV, commonly found in motorhomes and fifth wheels; often also accessible from the outside.

Black Water Tank: The tank that holds waste from the toilet. Proper maintenance and regular emptying are necessary to avoid blockages and unpleasant odours.

Boondocking: Camping without hookups for water, electricity or sewage at locations where RV parking overnight is permitted but no fee is paid. Also known as off-grid camping or dry camping.

Booth Dinette: Interior dining area of an RV with bench seats on opposite sides and a table in-between. Many booth dinettes can be converted to extra sleeping spaces.

Brake Controller: A device mounted inside the tow vehicle that will apply the trailer brakes simultaneously when the tow vehicle brakes.

Breakaway Switch: A safety switch that automatically activates the brakes on the trailer if a trailer becomes separated from the tow vehicle.

British Thermal Unit (BTU): A measurement of heat originally defined as the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit. BTUs are used to rate the cooling and heating capacity of air conditioners and heaters in RVs.

Bunkhouse: An RV floorplan that includes a separate sleeping area with bunk beds, often designed for families.

Campervan: A general term for any type of Class B RV, either manufacturer-built or a van conversion.

Cargo Carrying Capacity (CCC): The maximum weight limit for personal items you can add to an RV.

Chassis: The framework an RV is built upon. In motorhomes, the chassis generally includes the engine and transmission.

Chassis Battery: The battery in a motorhome that operates 12-volt components of the drivetrain.

Class A Motorhome: A large, bus-shaped RV built on a commercial bus or truck chassis. Class As are typically the most luxurious and spacious types of motorhomes (generally sleeping six to ten people) and have either gas or diesel engines.

Class B Motorhome: Often called campervans, these RVs are built on a van chassis and can have gas or diesel engines. Class Bs are more maneuverable than larger motorhomes and popular with couples and solo travellers.

Class C Motorhome: A type of RV built on a truck chassis with a distinctive cab-over bunk area. Class Cs offer a balance between the size and amenities of Class A and Class B motorhomes and range from around 20 to 40 feet in length.

Coach: Another term for a motorhome, typically used to refer to larger Class A or C RVs.

Cockpit: The front of a motorhome where the driver pilot seat and passenger co-pilot seats are located; also called a “cab”.

Control Panel: A wall-mounted panel in which users can control and adjust the RV’s systems for climate, water and power. Many modern RVs include touchscreen ones with remote apps for ease of use.

Converter Charger: A device that converts 110-120-volt AC power to 12-volt DC power to run the RV’s 12-volt systems and charge the batteries.

Curb Weight: The weight of the RV as built by the manufacturer, including all standard equipment, fluids, and fuel, but not including any cargo, passengers, or additional options.

Diesel Pusher:  A Class A motorhome with a rear-mounted diesel engine; provides better fuel efficiency and power compared to gasoline engines.

Dinghy: A vehicle towed behind an RV; also called a “toad”.

Direct Spark Ignition (DSI): Used to describe the method of igniting the main burner on a propane fired appliance.

Dump Station: A facility where black and gray water tanks can be safely and legally emptied. Found at campgrounds, rest areas and other RV-friendly locations.

Ducted A/C: An RV in which air conditioning is supplied through ducts in the ceiling and vents throughout the RV.

Ducted Heat: An RV in which heat is supplied through ducts in the floor and vents throughout the RV.

Dry Weight: The weight of an RV without any passengers, cargo, fluids or additional options. Similar to curb weight but often excludes propane and water.

Electrical Connectors (4- and 7-pin): A 4-pin provides power from a tow vehicle to an RV for the lights only. A 7-pin provides power from a tow vehicle to an RV for the lights and electrically operated brakes.

Enclosed/Sealed Underbelly: An RV design feature where the underside is covered and insulated to protect the plumbing and wiring from road debris and weather.

Fifth Wheel: A camping trailer that is pulled behind a truck and attached via a hitch mounted in the centre of the truck bed.

Free Standing Dinette: An RV dining area with individual chairs and a table in between.

Fresh Water Capacity: The amount of drinkable water an RV’s freshwater tank can hold.

Front Engine Diesel (FRED): A diesel motorhome with the engine in the front of the RV.

Front Galley: A type of floorplan with the kitchen located in the front section of the RV.

Front Living: A type of floorplan with the living room located in the front section of the RV.

Front Sleeping: A type of floorplan with the master bedroom located in the front section of the RV.

Fuel Type: Type of fuel an RV uses, either gas or diesel.

Full Hookup: A campsite that offers water, electricity and sewer/septic connections.

Full-timers: People who live and travel in their RVs year-round, rather than using them just for vacations or short trips.

Galley: The kitchen of an RV.

Generator: A portable or built-in device that generates 120-volt AC to power an RV when shore power is unavailable. Generators can run on gas, diesel or propane.

Glamping: A combination of the words “glamorous” and “camping”, it refers to a type of luxury camping where people can enjoy the outdoors in comfort and style, with amenities such as beds, electricity and access to indoor plumbing. https://www.travel-british-columbia.com/lodging/glamping/

Grey Water Tank: Grey water is collected wastewater from kitchen and bathroom sinks and showers. Though not as contaminated as black water the grey water tank still requires proper disposal.

Gross Axle Weight Rating (GAWR): This is the total allowable weight on each individual axle, which includes the weight of tires, wheels, brakes, and the axle itself.

Gross Combination Weight Rating (GCWR): This is the total allowable weight of the tow vehicle, trailer, all cargo in each, hitching, fluids and occupants.

Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR): The maximum allowable weight of the RV, including all cargo, fluids, passengers and the weight of the vehicle, cargo, fluids/fuel and passengers.

Hitch: The connection between a tow vehicle and an RV.

Hitch Capacity: The towing capacity of the receiver hitch, measured in pounds.

Hitch Weight: The amount of weight exerted on the hitch of the tow vehicle by the trailer. Also known as tongue weight.

Holding Tanks: General term for the black, gray and freshwater tanks in an RV.

House Battery: The battery (batteries) in a motorhome that operates the 12-volt electrical system within the living area; separate from the engine battery.

Interior Height: The floor to ceiling measurement inside an RV.

Inverter: A device that converts 12-volt DC power from the RV’s batteries into 110 or 120-volt AC power to run standard household appliances.

King Pin Weight (or Pin Weight): The actual weight pressing down on the fifth wheel hitch by the trailer. Generally, the recommended amount of king pin weight is 15–25% of the gross trailer weight (GTW).

Levelling: The process of verifying that an RV is even. Built-in or portable levelling systems such as jacks help to avoid issues associated with slanted floors.

Length: The front bumper to back bumper measurement of an RV.

Loft Bed: A type of sleeping space where the bed is on a raised platform above another room or multi-use area. Most common in fifth wheel or travel trailer RVs.

LP Gas: Liquid petroleum, another term for propane.

Motorhome: A self-propelled, drivable RV. Motorhomes are the most spacious of RVs with a front cab area for driver and passenger, kitchen and lounge areas, separate bedroom/sleeping areas and bathrooms with showers.

Park Model: A type of RV designed to stay in one place for long periods of time. Like a traditional travel trailer, park models are built on a towable foundation, but they usually serve as seasonal homes, temporary rentals or even permanent residences.

Part-timers: People who travel and use an RV for more than the occasional vacation but do not live in their RV full-time.

Pop-up Camper: A towable compact trailer that collapses for easy towing and storage but expands at the campsite to provide more living and sleeping space.

Propane (LP): Liquified petroleum gas used to power appliances such as stoves, ovens, refrigerators and heaters in an RV.

Pull-through Site: A campsite that allows an RV to drive straight through without the need to back up; convenient for larger RVs and those who prefer not to reverse their unit.

Rear Kitchen: A floorplan with the kitchen located at the back of the RV.

Rear Living: A floorplan with the living room located at the rear of the RV.

Rear Sleeping: A floorplan with the master bedroom located at the rear of the RV.

Seasonal Camping: A campground/RV park that offers campsites for rent to RVers on a summer seasonal basis, e.g. May to September. https://www.travel-british-columbia.com/camping/seasonal-campsite-rentals/

Shore Power: Electrical power supplied to the RV from an external source, typically through a power pedestal at an RV park or campground.

Sleeping Capacity: The number of sleeping spaces in an RV.

Slide-outs: Sections or sides of an RV that can be extended outward to increase living space when the RV is parked. Common in motorhomes and trailers.

Snowbirds: RVers who head to warmer climes in their RVs for the winter season e.g. October to March.

Stabilizer Jacks: Devices used to level and keep an RV steady when parked; these can be mechanical or hydraulic.

Super C Motorhome: A motorhome built on a diesel-engine truck chassis; resembles a semi-truck from the front and RV from back. Offers more slides and storage than a standard Class C motorhome.

Sway Bar System: Equipment designed to reduce or eliminate side-to-side sway movement of a towable RV.

Tankless Water Heater: A water heating system that heats water on demand, rather than storing hot water in a tank.

Teardrop Trailer: A compact and lightweight camper trailer in the shape of a teardrop. In general, these can sleep two adults and have basic kitchen and toilet areas.

Three-way Refrigerator: A refrigerator that can operate on three different power sources: AC power, DC power and propane.

Toad: A vehicle towed behind an RV; also called a “dinghy”.

Tongue Weight: The actual weight pressing down on the hitch ball located on the tow vehicle. Tongue weight is generally 10-15% of the gross vehicle weight (GVW).

Tow Dolly: A device used to tow a car behind an RV. The front wheels of the towed vehicle rest on the dolly and the rear wheels turn on the road.

Tow Rating: The maximum weight a vehicle can safely tow as specified by the manufacturer.

Toy Hauler: An RV with a built-in rear mini garage area with loading ramp designed to carry motorcycles, ATVs or other recreational equipment. The back areas can often be transformed to extra sitting and sleeping areas when empty.

Travel Trailer: A type of towable RV that hitches to a vehicle using a standard ball hitch; available in a wide range of styles and sizes.

Umbilical Cord: The cable that connects the tow vehicle to the trailer, providing power to the trailer’s lights and brakes.

Underbelly: The underside/bottom surface of an RV, which may be enclosed or open depending on the design.

Unloaded Vehicle Weight (UVW): The weight of the RV as manufactured at the factory, including standard equipment, fuel and fluids, but excluding cargo, passengers and additional options.

Water Heater Bypass Valve: A valve used to bypass the water heater when winterizing the RV to prevent antifreeze from entering.

Weekenders: RV owners who travel and use their unit primarily on weekends throughout the camping season.

Weight Distribution Hitch: A hitch designed to transfer some of the load of the trailer tongue to the trailer and the tow vehicle axles by using adjustable spring bars and tension.

Wet Bath: A bathroom in which the toilet, sink and shower are in one waterproof space. Common in campervans and small RVs.

Wheelbase: The horizontal distance between the centres of the front and rear wheels. For road vehicles/RVs with more than two axles the wheelbase is the distance between the steering axle and the centre of the driving axle group.

Width: The side-to-side measurement of an RV (does not include the added width of extended slide-outs).

Winter Camping: Campers who enjoy cooler weather camping during the winter months (October to March). A good selection of campgrounds in British Columbia are open year-round. https://www.travel-british-columbia.com/rving/winter-camping/

Winterize: The process of preparing an RV for storage during cold weather; typically involves draining water lines and adding antifreeze to prevent damage.

What are some typical campground or RV park rules?
  • Campground quiet hours are generally from 11:00 pm until 8:00 am.
  • RV park/campground fires are to be out by midnight.
  • Checkout time is generally 11:00 am.
  • Visitors must check in at the office and park vehicles in visitor parking. (Online check in may be possible at some campgrounds.)
  • Pets are generally not permitted in the beach areas, swimming pool or recreation halls. (Many campgrounds have pet friendly beaches/areas.)
  • The speed limit in campgrounds is around 10 km/h (5 mph).
  • Do not climb on or destroy trees.
  • Beach areas and swimming pools are often unsupervised. Adults must therefore accompany children under thirteen years of age at all times.
  • Do not feed or engage with wild animals in the RV park/campground.
What are the overnight costs to rent a tent site?

These will vary depending on location. A campground located in a more remote area of the province and with fewer facilities will charge less than one in a popular resort area. Rates could range from around $15 a night to over $45 a night for an unserviced site (a site with no water or power).

What is glamping?

Glamping is camping in a somewhat ‘glamorous’ way. Unlike traditional camping where people stay in an RV or tent with their belongings, glamping is, essentially, ready-made camping. Guests stay in structures such as park model trailers, yurts or cabins located in campgrounds. A park offering glamping often provides modern-day conveniences including sheets, basic cleaning products and essential kitchen items and housekeeping services.

What taxes will I have to pay on my campsite?

The federal Good and Services Tax (GST) is charged on campsite rentals and the current GST rate is 5%. Campsite rentals are exempt from the Provincial Sales Tax (PST) so PST is not charged.

Who is listed in the camping section of this website?

Members of the BC Lodging and Campgrounds Association offering overnight campsite rentals to the travelling public in independently run campgrounds and RV parks are listed on the website.  Want to connect your business to travellers visiting this site? Please see the Membership page.

RV Parks FAQs

Do campgrounds and RV parks have pet policies?

Most campgrounds allow dogs and cats; however, they are required to be on leash at all times. Pets should not be left unattended at a campsite. Campgrounds may have specific pet policies so check with the management before you arrive.

I live in the US and would like to bring my RV into British Columbia and leave it there for the summer season. What are the laws around this?

You can temporarily import a recreational vehicle to British Columbia (BC) for your personal use, however if you plan to leave it in the province between visits you must have first reported to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and obtained a Form BSF375, CBSA Report (formerly known as Form E99). The form must be displayed on your vehicle and be easily available to prove that you legally brought the RV into BC legally. For more information on Canada customs regulations call 1-800-461-9999 within Canada or 204-983-3500 outside Canada or visit www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca

Please explain Canadian camping terms.

Air Conditioner (A/C): The system used to cool the interior of an RV; it can be roof- or window-mounted.

Aluminum Exterior Sidewalls: Refers to the outside construction of an RV and consists of a wooden framing with an aluminum exterior and batt insulation.

Amps: The measurement of electrical current. RV parks often offer 30-amp or 50-amp service hookups.

Auxiliary Battery: Additional batteries in an RV that provide power to the RV’s appliances and lights when not connected to shore power.

Awning: A retractable or fixed cover, typically made of fabric, that provides shade and protection from the elements over doors, windows or patios.

Back-up Monitor: A camera mounted on the rear of the RV to assist the driver when backing up.

Basement Storage: Compartments located underneath the main living area of an RV, commonly found in motorhomes and fifth wheels; often also accessible from the outside.

Black Water Tank: The tank that holds waste from the toilet. Proper maintenance and regular emptying are necessary to avoid blockages and unpleasant odours.

Boondocking: Camping without hookups for water, electricity or sewage at locations where RV parking overnight is permitted but no fee is paid. Also known as off-grid camping or dry camping.

Booth Dinette: Interior dining area of an RV with bench seats on opposite sides and a table in-between. Many booth dinettes can be converted to extra sleeping spaces.

Brake Controller: A device mounted inside the tow vehicle that will apply the trailer brakes simultaneously when the tow vehicle brakes.

Breakaway Switch: A safety switch that automatically activates the brakes on the trailer if a trailer becomes separated from the tow vehicle.

British Thermal Unit (BTU): A measurement of heat originally defined as the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit. BTUs are used to rate the cooling and heating capacity of air conditioners and heaters in RVs.

Bunkhouse: An RV floorplan that includes a separate sleeping area with bunk beds, often designed for families.

Campervan: A general term for any type of Class B RV, either manufacturer-built or a van conversion.

Cargo Carrying Capacity (CCC): The maximum weight limit for personal items you can add to an RV.

Chassis: The framework an RV is built upon. In motorhomes, the chassis generally includes the engine and transmission.

Chassis Battery: The battery in a motorhome that operates 12-volt components of the drivetrain.

Class A Motorhome: A large, bus-shaped RV built on a commercial bus or truck chassis. Class As are typically the most luxurious and spacious types of motorhomes (generally sleeping six to ten people) and have either gas or diesel engines.

Class B Motorhome: Often called campervans, these RVs are built on a van chassis and can have gas or diesel engines. Class Bs are more maneuverable than larger motorhomes and popular with couples and solo travellers.

Class C Motorhome: A type of RV built on a truck chassis with a distinctive cab-over bunk area. Class Cs offer a balance between the size and amenities of Class A and Class B motorhomes and range from around 20 to 40 feet in length.

Coach: Another term for a motorhome, typically used to refer to larger Class A or C RVs.

Cockpit: The front of a motorhome where the driver pilot seat and passenger co-pilot seats are located; also called a “cab”.

Control Panel: A wall-mounted panel in which users can control and adjust the RV’s systems for climate, water and power. Many modern RVs include touchscreen ones with remote apps for ease of use.

Converter Charger: A device that converts 110-120-volt AC power to 12-volt DC power to run the RV’s 12-volt systems and charge the batteries.

Curb Weight: The weight of the RV as built by the manufacturer, including all standard equipment, fluids, and fuel, but not including any cargo, passengers, or additional options.

Diesel Pusher:  A Class A motorhome with a rear-mounted diesel engine; provides better fuel efficiency and power compared to gasoline engines.

Dinghy: A vehicle towed behind an RV; also called a “toad”.

Direct Spark Ignition (DSI): Used to describe the method of igniting the main burner on a propane fired appliance.

Dump Station: A facility where black and gray water tanks can be safely and legally emptied. Found at campgrounds, rest areas and other RV-friendly locations.

Ducted A/C: An RV in which air conditioning is supplied through ducts in the ceiling and vents throughout the RV.

Ducted Heat: An RV in which heat is supplied through ducts in the floor and vents throughout the RV.

Dry Weight: The weight of an RV without any passengers, cargo, fluids or additional options. Similar to curb weight but often excludes propane and water.

Electrical Connectors (4- and 7-pin): A 4-pin provides power from a tow vehicle to an RV for the lights only. A 7-pin provides power from a tow vehicle to an RV for the lights and electrically operated brakes.

Enclosed/Sealed Underbelly: An RV design feature where the underside is covered and insulated to protect the plumbing and wiring from road debris and weather.

Fifth Wheel: A camping trailer that is pulled behind a truck and attached via a hitch mounted in the centre of the truck bed.

Free Standing Dinette: An RV dining area with individual chairs and a table in between.

Fresh Water Capacity: The amount of drinkable water an RV’s freshwater tank can hold.

Front Engine Diesel (FRED): A diesel motorhome with the engine in the front of the RV.

Front Galley: A type of floorplan with the kitchen located in the front section of the RV.

Front Living: A type of floorplan with the living room located in the front section of the RV.

Front Sleeping: A type of floorplan with the master bedroom located in the front section of the RV.

Fuel Type: Type of fuel an RV uses, either gas or diesel.

Full Hookup: A campsite that offers water, electricity and sewer/septic connections.

Full-timers: People who live and travel in their RVs year-round, rather than using them just for vacations or short trips.

Galley: The kitchen of an RV.

Generator: A portable or built-in device that generates 120-volt AC to power an RV when shore power is unavailable. Generators can run on gas, diesel or propane.

Glamping: A combination of the words “glamorous” and “camping”, it refers to a type of luxury camping where people can enjoy the outdoors in comfort and style, with amenities such as beds, electricity and access to indoor plumbing. https://www.travel-british-columbia.com/lodging/glamping/

Grey Water Tank: Grey water is collected wastewater from kitchen and bathroom sinks and showers. Though not as contaminated as black water the grey water tank still requires proper disposal.

Gross Axle Weight Rating (GAWR): This is the total allowable weight on each individual axle, which includes the weight of tires, wheels, brakes, and the axle itself.

Gross Combination Weight Rating (GCWR): This is the total allowable weight of the tow vehicle, trailer, all cargo in each, hitching, fluids and occupants.

Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR): The maximum allowable weight of the RV, including all cargo, fluids, passengers and the weight of the vehicle, cargo, fluids/fuel and passengers.

Hitch: The connection between a tow vehicle and an RV.

Hitch Capacity: The towing capacity of the receiver hitch, measured in pounds.

Hitch Weight: The amount of weight exerted on the hitch of the tow vehicle by the trailer. Also known as tongue weight.

Holding Tanks: General term for the black, gray and freshwater tanks in an RV.

House Battery: The battery (batteries) in a motorhome that operates the 12-volt electrical system within the living area; separate from the engine battery.

Interior Height: The floor to ceiling measurement inside an RV.

Inverter: A device that converts 12-volt DC power from the RV’s batteries into 110 or 120-volt AC power to run standard household appliances.

King Pin Weight (or Pin Weight): The actual weight pressing down on the fifth wheel hitch by the trailer. Generally, the recommended amount of king pin weight is 15–25% of the gross trailer weight (GTW).

Levelling: The process of verifying that an RV is even. Built-in or portable levelling systems such as jacks help to avoid issues associated with slanted floors.

Length: The front bumper to back bumper measurement of an RV.

Loft Bed: A type of sleeping space where the bed is on a raised platform above another room or multi-use area. Most common in fifth wheel or travel trailer RVs.

LP Gas: Liquid petroleum, another term for propane.

Motorhome: A self-propelled, drivable RV. Motorhomes are the most spacious of RVs with a front cab area for driver and passenger, kitchen and lounge areas, separate bedroom/sleeping areas and bathrooms with showers.

Park Model: A type of RV designed to stay in one place for long periods of time. Like a traditional travel trailer, park models are built on a towable foundation, but they usually serve as seasonal homes, temporary rentals or even permanent residences.

Part-timers: People who travel and use an RV for more than the occasional vacation but do not live in their RV full-time.

Pop-up Camper: A towable compact trailer that collapses for easy towing and storage but expands at the campsite to provide more living and sleeping space.

Propane (LP): Liquified petroleum gas used to power appliances such as stoves, ovens, refrigerators and heaters in an RV.

Pull-through Site: A campsite that allows an RV to drive straight through without the need to back up; convenient for larger RVs and those who prefer not to reverse their unit.

Rear Kitchen: A floorplan with the kitchen located at the back of the RV.

Rear Living: A floorplan with the living room located at the rear of the RV.

Rear Sleeping: A floorplan with the master bedroom located at the rear of the RV.

Seasonal Camping: A campground/RV park that offers campsites for rent to RVers on a summer seasonal basis, e.g. May to September. https://www.travel-british-columbia.com/camping/seasonal-campsite-rentals/

Shore Power: Electrical power supplied to the RV from an external source, typically through a power pedestal at an RV park or campground.

Sleeping Capacity: The number of sleeping spaces in an RV.

Slide-outs: Sections or sides of an RV that can be extended outward to increase living space when the RV is parked. Common in motorhomes and trailers.

Snowbirds: RVers who head to warmer climes in their RVs for the winter season e.g. October to March.

Stabilizer Jacks: Devices used to level and keep an RV steady when parked; these can be mechanical or hydraulic.

Super C Motorhome: A motorhome built on a diesel-engine truck chassis; resembles a semi-truck from the front and RV from back. Offers more slides and storage than a standard Class C motorhome.

Sway Bar System: Equipment designed to reduce or eliminate side-to-side sway movement of a towable RV.

Tankless Water Heater: A water heating system that heats water on demand, rather than storing hot water in a tank.

Teardrop Trailer: A compact and lightweight camper trailer in the shape of a teardrop. In general, these can sleep two adults and have basic kitchen and toilet areas.

Three-way Refrigerator: A refrigerator that can operate on three different power sources: AC power, DC power and propane.

Toad: A vehicle towed behind an RV; also called a “dinghy”.

Tongue Weight: The actual weight pressing down on the hitch ball located on the tow vehicle. Tongue weight is generally 10-15% of the gross vehicle weight (GVW).

Tow Dolly: A device used to tow a car behind an RV. The front wheels of the towed vehicle rest on the dolly and the rear wheels turn on the road.

Tow Rating: The maximum weight a vehicle can safely tow as specified by the manufacturer.

Toy Hauler: An RV with a built-in rear mini garage area with loading ramp designed to carry motorcycles, ATVs or other recreational equipment. The back areas can often be transformed to extra sitting and sleeping areas when empty.

Travel Trailer: A type of towable RV that hitches to a vehicle using a standard ball hitch; available in a wide range of styles and sizes.

Umbilical Cord: The cable that connects the tow vehicle to the trailer, providing power to the trailer’s lights and brakes.

Underbelly: The underside/bottom surface of an RV, which may be enclosed or open depending on the design.

Unloaded Vehicle Weight (UVW): The weight of the RV as manufactured at the factory, including standard equipment, fuel and fluids, but excluding cargo, passengers and additional options.

Water Heater Bypass Valve: A valve used to bypass the water heater when winterizing the RV to prevent antifreeze from entering.

Weekenders: RV owners who travel and use their unit primarily on weekends throughout the camping season.

Weight Distribution Hitch: A hitch designed to transfer some of the load of the trailer tongue to the trailer and the tow vehicle axles by using adjustable spring bars and tension.

Wet Bath: A bathroom in which the toilet, sink and shower are in one waterproof space. Common in campervans and small RVs.

Wheelbase: The horizontal distance between the centres of the front and rear wheels. For road vehicles/RVs with more than two axles the wheelbase is the distance between the steering axle and the centre of the driving axle group.

Width: The side-to-side measurement of an RV (does not include the added width of extended slide-outs).

Winter Camping: Campers who enjoy cooler weather camping during the winter months (October to March). A good selection of campgrounds in British Columbia are open year-round. https://www.travel-british-columbia.com/rving/winter-camping/

Winterize: The process of preparing an RV for storage during cold weather; typically involves draining water lines and adding antifreeze to prevent damage.

What are some typical campground or RV park rules?
  • Campground quiet hours are generally from 11:00 pm until 8:00 am.
  • RV park/campground fires are to be out by midnight.
  • Checkout time is generally 11:00 am.
  • Visitors must check in at the office and park vehicles in visitor parking. (Online check in may be possible at some campgrounds.)
  • Pets are generally not permitted in the beach areas, swimming pool or recreation halls. (Many campgrounds have pet friendly beaches/areas.)
  • The speed limit in campgrounds is around 10 km/h (5 mph).
  • Do not climb on or destroy trees.
  • Beach areas and swimming pools are often unsupervised. Adults must therefore accompany children under thirteen years of age at all times.
  • Do not feed or engage with wild animals in the RV park/campground.
What are the RV towing regulations in British Columbia?

Most recreational vehicles weigh less than 4,600 kg and can be driven by a driver with a passenger car driver’s license (Class 5 or 7 in British Columbia). An air brake endorsement is required if the trailer has air brakes. For more information visit the ICBC webpage on towing a recreational trailer in the province.

 

What chemicals can I use to treat sewage in my RV waste tanks?

Without knowing it, many RVers harm the environment and put their health at risk. Treating waste tanks with chemical products means handling and dumping dangerous chemicals like formaldehyde and ammonium compounds. These are hazardous materials and can contaminate septic tanks, poison groundwater and threaten human health.

We recommend RVers use safe and effective biological odour control products. These treatments add helpful bacteria that reduce waste by breaking it down into an easily biodegradable material. Decomposed through natural processes, such a treatment is not harmful to campground septic tanks or the surrounding groundwater. The abundance of bacteria makes the decomposition process very efficient and also eliminates any unpleasant odours.

What is a sani dump and why do I need to use one?

Sani dumps or dump stations as they are often called, are designated areas where recreational vehicles, such as motorhomes and trailers that are equipped with toilet facilities and a sewage holding tank, can be rid of liquid waste. RVs generally have two tanks: one for sewage known as a blackwater holding tank, and one for washing water or shower water and known as the greywater holding tank.

RV sani stations are found at various locations throughout British Columbia, including private campgrounds, RV parks, some gas stations and RV dealers. Anyone who dry camps or does not use full hook-up services will have liquid waste. This waste must be disposed of in a sanitary way at a sani dump station. Simply hook up the RV dump hose to the outlets. (One end of the hose fits on the RV outlet pipe and the other end of the hose in the ground dump tank.) Open the valves to release first the blackwater and then the greywater. Once the holding tanks are fully drained and rinsed it is recommended to flush the connection hose with running water.  Wearing gloves is advised for the procedure.

What is glamping?

Glamping is camping in a somewhat ‘glamorous’ way. Unlike traditional camping where people stay in an RV or tent with their belongings, glamping is, essentially, ready-made camping. Guests stay in structures such as park model trailers, yurts or cabins located in campgrounds. A park offering glamping often provides modern-day conveniences including sheets, basic cleaning products and essential kitchen items and housekeeping services.

What taxes will I have to pay on my campsite?

The federal Good and Services Tax (GST) is charged on campsite rentals and the current GST rate is 5%. Campsite rentals are exempt from the Provincial Sales Tax (PST) so PST is not charged.

Where do I dispose of the grey water and sewage (black water) from my RV holding tanks?

Sani-stations are found at various locations throughout the province, including campgrounds, RV parks, some gas stations and RV dealerships. For a list of places to dump go to www.sanidumps.com. RVers are asked to respect the environment by disposing of grey water and sewage in the proper manner.

Who is listed in the RV section of this website?

Members of the BC Lodging and Campgrounds Association offering overnight RV site rentals to the travelling public in independently run campgrounds and RV parks are listed on the website. Also, RV Dealers and Rental Agencies that pay a listing fee.

Want to connect your business to travellers visiting this site? Please see the Membership page.

General FAQs

Are campgrounds, RV parks and lodgings inspected by an independent body?

No. Independent onsite inspections to meet an Accommodation Approved status were discontinued in 2014. On this website we carry TripAdvisor peer reviews and ratings to assist you in making your selection. They are located in the details pages of the listings.

Are reservations required for BC Ferries?

Reservations on BC Ferries are available but not required. For information on schedules, rates and reservations call BC Ferries at 1-888-223-3779 from within BC or 250-386-3431 from out of province or visit www.bcferries.com.

Does the BC Lodging and Campgrounds Association have a customer service guarantee?

The BC Lodging & Campgrounds Association has implemented a customer service guarantee which all accommodation members are asked to adhere to in the operation of their businesses. For more information visit our Customer Service Page.

How can I find out about road conditions in British Columbia?

The provincial government’s webpage on Routes & Driving Conditions is an excellent source for route information, driving conditions and driving events. It has links to webpages for road construction, avalanche area travel, border crossings, wildlife on BC highways, seasonal driving and useful driving information. DriveBC, run by the Ministry and Transportation, has an informative Traveller Information System website. Here you can plan your route, view BC highway cams, report a highway problem, track and view major road events (delays, closures, forest fires etc.), obtain information on inland ferries and more. Another good reference is the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) and its webpage on safety and road conditions.

How can I make a complaint about a property?

If you would like to file a complaint against a tourism business or accommodation in British Columbia there are several options available. The first is to contact the business directly to discuss your concerns. If this course of action does not attain the desired results you may then contact Consumer Protection BC, which can offer assistance with financial or contractual disputes. Lastly, you can share your experience with other consumers via a review of the business on peer-to-peer review websites such as TripAdvisor. For guidelines on how to post a review on TripAdvisor visit: www.tripadvisorsupport.com/en-GB/hc/traveler/articles/396.

What animal wildlife could I encounter in British Columbia?

British Columbia is fortunate to have an abundance of wildlife and many animals can be seen from the provincial highways. Black bear and deer will often come down to the roadside to feed on new grass and berries and mountain sheep, moose and other animals are often seen in various regions of the province and at different times of the year. If wildlife is spotted while driving, drivers are advised to continue moving and not stop or get out of the car.

What are the driver’s license requirements in British Columbia?

A valid out-of-province driver’s license including an international driver’s licence can be used in British Columbia for up to six months.

What credit cards are accepted by properties in British Columbia?

Generally, both Visa and MasterCard are accepted at all lodging accommodations. Other credit cards may also be accepted such as American Express. Most properties also accept debit cards.

When is fire season?

In BC, fire season typically runs from April 1 to October 1. According to the British Columbia Wildfire Service, the probability of damaging wildfires has increased in recent years; on average, there are more than 1,600 wildfires annually. For information on what to do before, during and after a wildfire visit the BC Wildfire Service’s webpage called Get Prepared for a Wildfire in British Columbia and read the Wildfire Preparedness Guide. Also, refer to Wildfire Prevention Tips page in the Camping & RV in British Columbia website.

Camping Lodging

The Super Camping / Select Lodging Guide

First Published in 1989