Overnight Truck Parking - Flying J, Pilot, Love's and more - WE ARE THE RUSSOS (2023)

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Did you know that truck stops across the United States offer free overnight parking? Flying J, Pilot and Love's are some of the rest stops that offer designated overnight parking for large trucks, RVs and cars.

Overnight parking at truck stops

Since we left in 2015, we've stayed at various rest stops across the US. The first truck stop we parked overnight was Pilot in Tifton, Georgia. At the time, we were traveling full time on aclass A motorhome Mesa towing a Jeep Wrangler.

Overnight Truck Parking - Flying J, Pilot, Love's and more - WE ARE THE RUSSOS (1)

When we reduce the size to aRV Classe B, it was even easier to spend the night at the Autohof. After a long trip awayYosemite National ParkWe stopped at the Flying J in Ripon, California and parked in a regular spot overnight. Check out our overnight experience at the Autohof car park in the video below.

We also spent the night at a Love Truck Stop on ourFour wheel pop up camper. It was an easy and convenient way to get a few hours of sleep before hitting the road again for a long cross-country drive.

Overnight Truck Parking - Flying J, Pilot, Love's and more - WE ARE THE RUSSOS (2)


How to find a rest stop

Our favorite way to find overnight parking at truck stops is througheverything stays.When applying rest stop filters, the map shows all nearby stops.

Overnight Truck Parking - Flying J, Pilot, Love's and more - WE ARE THE RUSSOS (3)

we prefer themeverything staysbecause the notes section contains information such as the number of vacancies, if there is a car wash, CAT scale, showers, chapel, restaurants and much more.


Before driving to a truck stop, we called to confirm if overnight parking is allowed. Sometimes no one answers, so we stop and ask at the cashier. We were never told we couldn't park overnight but often if you ask the staff will point you to the area where they prefer you to park.

Free and paid parking spaces at truck stops

Free overnight parking at truck stops is available on a first-come, first-served basis. As larger motorhomes do not fit in a standard field, they must be parked in the designated parking space. For example, in Ripon, CA, Flying J has six reserved RV sites that are free. Remove the yellow cone and drag it into place. Diesel's website offers reserved parking for trucks and trailers for a fee. Some truck stops ask owners of large trailers to park in the standard parking lot for trucks used by semi-trailers. Note that the RV dot pictured below is on the rear only. Therefore, if you are traveling with a toad, you will have to disconnect it and park it in a separate standard parking lot.

Love's Travel Stops now offer dedicated RV sites with 30 and 50 amp service for a fee. Similar to camping, you can now go on your ownStop Camp Life RV websiteand find a location along your route that offers these junctions. Choose the location of your interest and book your stay through the website. When I checked their location in Fillmore, Utah, an RV backup location was $47 a night.

Generally, if you have a trailer, truck, or other small recreational vehicle that will fit in a standard parking lot, you can park it in the parking lot associated with the "Cars" page of the truck stop.

Overnight Truck Parking - Flying J, Pilot, Love's and more - WE ARE THE RUSSOS (4)

Tips for parking at a truck stop

Since the trucks are on the road 24 hours a day, the truck stops that support them are always open. As you can imagine, there is a constant stream of truck and car traffic, which means a truck stop is usually not a quiet place at night when you're trying to sleep. That said, there are ways to get a good night's sleep at a rest stop.

what concernsUpon arrival, park and watch the truck stop for a few minutes. You'll quickly spot patterns of where trucks are pulling in and out, things that can make loud noises like speakers or drive-thrus, etc. This will help you find the best parking spot away from as much noise as possible. Remember, if the rest area staff asks you to park in a specific area, do what they ask.

Be flexible and get supportNot all truck stops will work for you and you may just have to go and find another place to park overnight. We passed a couple of truck stops and found they were too small and crowded for us to find reasonably quiet parking, so we drove on. Once we stopped at a rest area with our trailer, and shortly after falling asleep, a loudspeaker woke us up and alerted truck drivers that showers were available. This happened every 15 minutes. Unfortunately it was very late and we had no other option, so we ended up having a bad night's sleep.

truck stop equipment

The equipment varies depending on the truck stop. Below are some of the typical services offered at rest stops across the United States, along with the rates we've seen.

trailer dump stationWhile RV dump stations are not standard at truck stops, Love's Travel Stops tend to have them at many of their locations for a fee along with potable water. In the past, when we asked if you were buying fuel, they let youfill with waterDownload for free and at a discount. We usually find these services on the station's "Cars" page under a trailer-specific tank lane.

W-lan$3 for 24 hours. Sometimes free WiFi is available but it is much slower than the paid version. For more resources to stay connected on the go, check out ourHow to keep in touch with the road guide.

take a showerMost truck stops offer showers. The number of showers varies and there can be a long wait depending on the departure time. Many will provide soap, towel, washcloth and bath mat. The shower itself is usually the size of a typical single bathroom with a toilet, sink, shower, and some even have whirlpool tubs (and even offer bubble bath). Showers are usually unscheduled, meaning unlimited use until you're done. We also found some that allow several people to be in the bathroom at the same time. So if you are traveling with someone you can use the shower for the price of one. When it comes to cleaning, every truck stop is different, but we've seen some clean the bathroom after every use. To buy the shower, go to the cash register where you will be given a receipt with a customer number and sometimes a door pin. Expect them to call your customer number to find out which shower stall to enter. Typically, we've seen this cost $12 per customer.

wash truckSome truck stops have truck washes like the Blue Beacon truck wash. They accept both large and small RVs, but before you wash your RV, make sure you do some research. Some truck washes have brushes that can damage items mounted on the trailer's roof, or use sprayers that can damage equipment with openings on the outside of the trailer.

CAT-SkalaThese scales are used to weigh trucks so drivers know they are within weight limits. The scale has three large pans that measure the front wheels, the drive or rear wheels and the trailer (or frog if you have one), and the report you get gives a separate weight for each and a total weight for each of the three. . (you don't need to have a trailer to be heavy). To use the scale, simply walk on it and make sure your wheels are on the correct pads. Press the call button and someone will ask if this is your first weigh-in (meaning it's the first time you've weighed yourself on this scale). Just tell them it's a personal weight and there's no truck number. After the weigh-in, step off the scale and enter to pay and receive your weigh-in ticket. Since we like to keep track of the weight of our trailer, this is probably the service we use the most at truck stops. The current cost is $13, but we've seen a slow increase over the past few years.

other amenitiesinclude natural gas, laundry, chapel, 24-hour restaurants,fitrooms and much more.

Mouse:Sign up for the Pilot/Flying J Professional Driver myRewards card to receive free showers, coffee and other perks.

truck drivers and trailers

As you can imagine, there is debate about whether RVs are allowed to park in truck bays at truck stops. Truck drivers argue that they need these spaces as they are legally obliged to stop after so many hours on the road, as the number of spaces is insufficient for the number of trucks on the road and trailers consume a valuable resource, they need their work . it's working. On the other hand, motorhome owners argue that if they are customers and companies allow them to park overnight in a space for trucks, they should be able to do so when space is available, especially late at night when some campsites are closed. for newcomers. . Arrival.

Fortunately for both sides, companies like Love have incorporated RV-specific spaces into their “ride stops”. Note that they no longer use the term "Truck Stop" as Trip Stop more includes the types of customers they serve. There is also a tendency towards Class B andClass C small recreational vehiclescomtruck trailerthat you can park in a standard parking lot and it doesn't have to take up a lot of space from a truck driver.

Have you ever parked at a truck stop overnight? If so, let us know about your experience in the comments.

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